A number of recent security incidents have raised concerns about the risks of traveling to Mexico, where more than 20 million tourists flew last year to visit the country’s beaches, cities and archaeological sites, or to obtain health care. What should a person know about traveling around Mexico? Let’s talk about it..
Bob Bevard: “This is not the time. Mexico is quite dangerous and you will be at high risk.”
Brandy Marie Cardenas: “I’ve traveled all of Mexico from the tip of Juarez all the way down to the Yucatan and to Chiapas to Mexico City. If you want to experience food, island beach life, Puerto Vallarta. If you want beauty and to feel like you’re in Europe, go to Guanajuato.”
Rick Carter: “One of my best friends travels around Mexico City and other parts. He and his family have kidnap insurance and a secret service style security force. Traveling in style.”
Sharon Perkins: “I’ve always wanted to visit the Mayan ruins, Chichen Itza. I do hear it’s not safe to travel to Mexico right now though. My friend brought her parents here to keep them safe, as there were always shootings outside their home. That was years ago. That said, I hear that it’s fairly safe in big tourist destinations like Cancun. The bad guys know the tourist money is needed.”
John Ybanez: “Dangerous.”
Mary Svetlik Watkins: “I love Cabo.”
Frances Casales Potter: “Not all places are dangerous. We have been to Cabo, San Lucas twice ,and Nuevo Vallarta. There are a few areas that I do not recommend you visit, find out before you plan where is safe. I have traveled all over Mexico. Today do not drive into. Definitely fly to Mexico.”
Charles Mario Henry: “Depending on which city, everyone is different. I’ve been to all 31 states and have properties here too and each is unique in culture, people , food language. You pick a place but I highly encourage Guadalajara, Mexico City, Chihuahua, Monterey, and Oaxaca. You will have a variety of art, culture, food, city life and country life. These are 5 good places to start.”
Chris R. Pelayo: “Would not recommend it. It’s more dangerous than it’s ever been.”
Steve Taylor: “Not a professional statistician, but if I read the stats correctly, the chances of getting killed on vacation in Mexico as a whole aren’t as high as your chances of dying in a car accident in the peaceful state of Rhode Island. Mexicans get mugged, raped and even decapitated by other Mexicans all the time. The violence that exists in Mexico is massively directed toward other Mexicans.”
Victoria Zorzoli: “Thank you for this! I just got into a conversation about this with my coworkers. To put it plainly, a lot of them are “simpletons”, they hear of cartels residing in a part of Mexico and assume the worst of the whole lot. I’m not certain but I think I can speculate on their political leanings from some of this.I mentioned once that I’d like to retire in Mexico, and the gasps were astounding. ‘Good luck not getting your kidney stolen’ was one comment. This person had never been to Mexico.”
Diana Pulido: “I was born in Mexico but have lived in the US my entire life. I was brought here at a month old. Growing up we would go visit our family down there and I married a Mexican and we are now both retired and have just finished building a house and are packing our US home and moving to Mexico! To top it off, we are moving to the state of Michoacán, where they say it is very dangerous. I was there during construction and never was scared and never felt threatened in any way. We drive around and we see police and military but again, never get scared. If you are involved in any bad stuff, bad stuff will happen but if you live your life without doing stupid stuff you can stay safe.
Just in the US, you hear of all these random shootings anywhere you go, so you can just as easily be shot here too. Looking forward to our move and new life in Mexico!”
David Riberi: “I hadn’t been to Mexico in probably 20 years because I thought it was too dangerous. Well I’ve been down here twice this year (Mexico City a couple months ago and the Riviera Maya as I’m writing this) and I’ve felt very safe and had a wonderful time during both of my visits. Later this year I’m headed to San Miguel de Allende and to the Mexican Riviera on a cruise and I’m looking forward to both trips. Mexico is fantastic, the people are super-friendly, and the dollar is very strong. It’s a great time to visit!”
Linda Valentine: “I realize this is about traveling in Mexico but I’ve been reading the articles lately on Mexico and I need to speak up. I am an American citizen as is my off-spring. My youngest son married a Mexican lady and they’ve been living in Tijuana for 17 years with their children. My other son and I have visited many, many times over the years and once I stayed several months to help out because of an illness. I fell in love with Mexico. When I retired three years ago, my oldest son and I moved to Mexico and bought a house. Am I sorry? No. Am I dead yet? No. Can I go for a walk in my neighborhood? Certainly. I feel perfectly safe here. We had more trouble in the city we moved from! But let us face facts: there is no place in the world where you are safe.
There is a large expat community here; Americans that have moved here. Living here quite peacefully. Are there places in Mexico I won’t go? Certainly. But there are places in the U.S. that I’m not anxious to visit either. And the way things are going in the U.S, I’m glad I’m here!”
George Ramirez: “These stats are awesome! It’s really distasteful to hear many of my family members and friends talk about the dangers of visiting Mexico. I’m a current student living in Guadalajara and love to travel (road trips and camping). The one thing I really do hate is that the backroads are virtually not accessible by a normal vehicle. Other than that, it’s a great country to come and visit, maybe even possibly live. The dollar makes the visit worth-wild and the people are heartwarming and polite. The roads, I recommend to stay on the tolls, are awesome. The news portrays the country as savage and full of violence but that is actually not the case. Even the dimmest and darkest alleys of the most “dangerous zones’ ‘ in Mexico, I can guarantee, are just as safe as the ones in the states. I have traveled the country far and wide and have never had any troubles, although corruption within the police is rampant through bribes. I’ve fraternized with all sorts of people from different social and economic backgrounds and I felt safe. When I lived in the states, SoCal was a war zone with many friends and family getting assaulted, raped, and some even murdered. This hasn’t occurred in my long stay here and I am confident this will not change. I am definitely going to show off these stats!”
Alex Van Guy: “Most Americans visiting Cancun only go to touristic safe towns like Cancun. Chances of a native American being beaten to death and having his car stolen is also quite higher compared to a Mexican.”
Will Cabo: “It’s no country for old men…!!! I mean if you are afraid of whatever, stay home. Everybody else is welcome in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.”
Mary Nelson: “I moved to Mexico in April, 2011. I am still there. I have spent the longest time in Puerto Vallarta (about 5). When I told my daughter I was going, she was not happy. US headlines can be larger when it is related to a problem in Mexico. Wonder why?”
Rohan Barnett: “Another important point: I’ve read that almost all of those US citizens killed in Mexico were not tourists but in fact involved in the drug trade.”
Lane Johnson: “How many Mexican visitors are killed in the US? Last year 8 Mexicans shopping in a Walmart in El Paso were killed, along with 13 US citizens and a German visitor.”
Penelope Perez: “There are so many mycologists who travel to Mexico on the regular to study the biodiversity and unique eco regions. My dad is from Mexico and constantly warns me it is not safe, meanwhile my mycology friends are always inviting me to Oaxaca and Veracruz research stations for big hikes. It seems like if you are doing nerdy things in Mexico with people who are research professionals, you will just be immersed in that field work away from most things. But, if you are doing anything adjacent to the drug trade or illegal things, bad things will inevitably happen.”