Posts Tagged travel advisory

Latest Mexico Travel Warning Greenlights Most Tourist Destinations

11 December 2012

As reported in The San Francisco Chronicle, The U.S. State Department’s recent update to its travel warning on Mexico on November 20, 2012 was notable due to the lack of fanfare that has characterized previous warnings.  Also notable is that:

“The State Department has gotten more specific about where travel is dangerous in Mexico – and where it is not. The vagueness of earlier alerts led wary travelers to conclude that all of Mexico was going up in flames. The state-by-state evaluations produced this year, clearly outlining areas to stay away from and places that call for caution, are finally informative enough to encourage travelers to make intelligent decisions.”

Excluding Acapulco, all of the major Mexican tourist destinations are given the green light, including: Mexico City, Cancun and the Riviera Maya, the Costa Maya, Chichen Itza, Merida, Campeche, Baja California Sur, Los Cabos, La Paz, Todos Santos, San Ignacio, San Miguel de Allende, Leon, Oaxaca, Pueblo, and more.

The article goes on to review the areas of Northern Mexico which remain on alert, including Baja California (not to be confused with Baja California Sur), Tijuana, Nuevo Leon and Ciudad Juarez.

To read the full article, go here.

The U.S. State Department’s Updated Travel Advisory for Mexico

25 February 2012

The U.S. State Department issued its most recent Travel Advisory for Mexico in February, highlighting the areas of Mexico that are safe for travel.  Those areas include:

  • Baja California South, including Cabo San Lucas
  • Parts of Southern Mexico including Campeche, Chiapas
  • Central Mexico including Estado de Mexico, Guanajuato, San Miguel de Allende, Leon and Hidalgo, Puebla, Queretaro
  • Mexico City
  • Oaxaca including Huatulco and Puerto Escondido
  • Quintana Roo including Playa del Carmen, Cancun, Riviera Maya, Cozumel and Tulum
  • Tabasco including Villahermosa
  • Tlaxcala
  • Yucatan including Merida and Chichen Itza

States to avoid or to exercise caution in include:

  • Chihuahua
  • Tijuana
  • Coahuila
  • Durango
  • Nuevo Leon
  • Sinaloa

As both Travel Mexico and State Department point out, every year, millions of travelers from the United States cross into Mexico for business, pleasure or educational purposes.  From Travel Mexico :

In fact, over 150,000 U.S. citizens venture into Mexico on a daily basis. The Mexican government spends a considerable amount of resources to protect tourists from both the U.S. and other countries. As a result, resorts and other tourist destinations do not have the type of drug-related crime that is seen in the border regions or along the primary trafficking routes. Plus, the State Department has found that there is no evidence that any organized criminal group in Mexico has targeted U.S. citizens based on their country of origin.

You can read the full Travel Advisory for Mexico at the State Department’s website, here.

Playing It Safe In Mexico in 2012

26 December 2011

A recent article in The Washington Post offers a great, updated guide to traveling safe in Mexico, along with a fair compendium of facts, statistics, and quotes from official and non-official sources. An estimated 4.7 million Americans visited Mexico from January to October 2011. From the article:

Of 2,500 municipalities (what we call counties), only 80, or fewer than 5 percent, have been affected by the drug war, which accounts for only 3 percent of all crime. Mexican cities are also safer than some urban centers north of the border: Mexico City, for example, has 8.3 homicides a year per 100,000 people. That’s fewer than Miami (14.1) and Chicago (16.1). On a global scale, Mexico is safer than many of its neighbors. In 2008, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime reported Mexico’s homicide rate as 11.6 per 100,000, significantly lower than Honduras (60.9), Jamaica (59.5) or El Salvador (51.8). Without a solid understanding of the geography (761,606 square miles) and the nature of the drug wars (internecine fighting), many foreigners assume that all of Mexico is a war zone. But it isn’t.

Violence by and large is limited to specific areas, and unrelated to tourism.  The article suggests areas that are safe to visit, areas to visit with caution, as well as areas to avoid.

Safe to Visit
Cancun, Cozumel, Playa del Carmen, Puerto Vallarta, Cabo San Lucas, Campeche, Merida, Tulum, Uxmal and Chichen Itza, Leon, Guanajuato, San Miguel de Allende, Queretaro, Chiapas, San Cristobal de las Casas, Oaxaca

Go with Caution
Avoid traveling alone and at night in Tijuana, and beware of street crime in Mexico City.

Places to Avoid
Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, Copper Canyon, Baja California, Guadlajara, Veracruz, Monterrey, Mazatlan, and Acapulco

Says U.S. and Hampton, VA expat Margo Lee Shetterly – who relocated to Mexico with her husband 6 years ago: in the article:

“There’s a big gap between perception and reality.  It’s a real shame for people to write off a whole country without looking at the map and at the statistics.”

To read the full travel guide, go here.