I came across this article and thought it would be great to repost since we get asked this a lot:
Article by Heather Steinberger
In recent years, Mexico has been featured in a number of unsettling news stories that have many travelers wondering if it’s safe to travel to the country.
The short answer to the question is: yes, it is perfectly safe to visit the popular tourist destinations.
Here’s the long answer, with more detail. While it’s true that some parts of Mexico are suffering from drug-related violence, these areas are far from the country’s tourist destinations such as Cancún and the Riviera Maya, Cozumel and Los Cabos.
In fact, these popular destinations are so far from the parts of Mexico dealing with violence that we decided to put it in perspective:
- The distance between Cancún and Tijuana is more than 2,700 miles, which is greater than the distance between Tijuana and Chicago, IL.
- Playa del Carmen is 1,220 miles from Michoacán, which equates to a 19-hour drive. That is about the same distance between New Orleans and Sioux Falls, SD.
- The distance between Ciudad Juarez and Puerto Vallarta is more than 1,600 miles, which is similar to the distance between Los Angeles and Omaha, NE.
As the U.S. Department of State notes in its current Mexico travel advisory, millions of U.S. citizens safely visit Mexico each year for study, tourism and business, including more than 150,000 who cross the border every day.
“There is no evidence that organized criminal groups have targeted U.S. visitors or residents based on their nationality,” the report notes. “Resort areas and tourist destinations in Mexico generally do not see the levels of drug-related violence and crime that are reported in the border region or in areas along major trafficking routes.”
In fact, the U.S. Department of State has specifically omitted Mexico’s major tourist hotspots from its Mexico travel advisories. At press time, the following areas had no advisories in place: Quintana Roo, including Cancún, Cozumel, Playa del Carmen, Riviera Maya and Tulum; and the Yucatán, including Chichén Itzá.
Puerto Vallarta and Guadalajara in the state of Jalisco are also safe to visit; however, travelers are advised to defer non-essential travel to more rural areas of the state that border the states of Michoacán, Zacatecas, Sinaloa or Durango, which are far from Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit. For the first time, there is a Baja California Sur-related travel warning specifically aimed at the metropolitan area of La Paz, however the Los Cabos area is safe for travelers.
As when you travel anywhere in the world, it is important to exercise common sense, familiarize yourself with the most up-to-date travel warnings and be aware of your surroundings while traveling.
For details regarding current travel advisories, see the full advisory from the U.S. State Department here.
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