Carnival Do's and Don'ts

In beautiful Trinidad and Tobago we are busy preparing for Carnival 2005. Whether you are a native or a visitor from afar, the Carnival season is one for fun and enjoyment, but always remember that your personal safety and health MUST come first. Here are some reminders to keep you safe and healthy this Carnival season.

Carnival Do’s and Don’ts
In General:
  • DO wear light, comfortable clothes. Swimsuits are not usual city wear, only on Carnival Monday and Tuesday when almost anything goes.
  • DO wear comfortable shoes, eg sneakers. Trekking sandals also work well since Carnival involves a lot of walking.
  • DO carry ID with you at all times.
  • DO try the local cuisine from the roadside vendors, just remember to look for the food handler’s license.
  • DO carry and use lots of sunscreen. You don’t want to miss out on anything due to sunburn.
  • DO drink lots of fluids. Carnival falls right in the middle of the “dry season” so you can get easily dehydrated without recognizing it.
  • DO ask for assistance if you need it. There are many uniformed police, guards, tourism officers etc available to direct and help you.
  • DO check the newspapers daily for things to do that day.
  • DO follow your instincts. If it feels right, do it. If it feels wrong, don’t do it.
  • DO bring (and wear) a shady hat (baseball caps will work) and sunglasses. The sun will be BRIGHT.
  • DO use common sense and enjoy yourself.
  • DON’T flash large sums of cash.
  • DON’T wear lots of expensive jewellery.
  • DON’T walk in dark areas alone. Use the lit walkways.
    In Fetes:
  • DO have your tickets or entrance money with you, but ensure that they are safely tucked away.
  • DO walk with a waving implement (rag, handkerchief, flag etc) to have something in hand when the band calls to put your flag in the air.
  • DO walk with “vex money” – extra money – for a taxi to get back home or to your hotel.
  • DO have a cell phone with you at all times, or a local phone card in case of emergency.
  • DO carry a condom just in case.
  • DO make firm transportation arrangements prior to going to the fete.
    In the Mas Band:
    DO carry with you a pouch or little bag that you can walk with, secured in a safe spot on your person. This may sound like lugging luggage but believe it or not; it does come in handy when you’re out on the road all day. Pack it with the following essentials:
  • Sunscreen – yes, even the darkest skin burns. You need to reapply this stuff so take some with you.
  • Sunglasses are a definite must have, especially for the midday sun.
  • Emergency money – even in an all inclusive section you never know what you might need.
  • Cell phone or phone card – emergencies do happen and the ability to check in is always good.
  • Spare makeup/glitter etc – for those touch ups when the band stops, nothing looks worse than running makeup.
  • Tissues – let’s just say these come in really handy
  • Tylenol/Panadol/Advil or your painkiller of choice.
  • Water – you can get really dehydrated out there so make sure and take water with you or purchase bottled water as you go.
    Information courtesy the Tourism and Industrial Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago - TIDCO

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