“Is Mexico safe,” asked the first time traveler. I’m kidding. Kind of. Plenty of people ask. However, if you’re asking that, I have to imagine that you haven’t begun much other research yet. With sites like How Safe Is Mexico comparing homicide rates and our own US Travel Advisory describing the 3 types of kidnapping we could face, yes, I understand your pause in deciding whether or not to go to Mexico. Some parts of Mexico are incredibly safe. They’re probably the parts you’re considering. While other parts of Mexico will get you kidnapped, held for ransom, and made lighter by at least 3 fingers. I highly doubt you’re considering those as vacation destinations. So let me help you to determine which areas to stay away from, which areas you need a bit more travel smarts for, and where those of you who really should just be going to Florida, but want to go to Mexico anyway, should go.
You’re As Safe As You Are In New Orleans
Here’s the thing, being a drunken idiot will get you in trouble anywhere in the world. If you find yourself blackout drunk in Piedmont, North Dakota, you’re asking for problems. No matter where you go, Spring Break or Family Vacation, remember to mind your surroundings, belongings and who you’re with. That said, places like Cancun, Acapulco, Cabo San Lucas, La Paz, and Puerto Vallarta are all standard American destinations for a reason. They’re beautiful, they’re safe, and they’re generally all inclusive getaways that don’t feel all too different from America. It’s a less muggy Miami or a more drunken Malibu. The only danger here is you. So drink responsibly, don’t leave your purse or wallet unattended and be kind. American arrogance is generally what gets us into the most trouble anywhere outside the States.
Go If You Know What You’re Doing
Tijuana actually isn’t as scary as most people would like to give it credit for. As a matter of fact, if you stay in San Diego and cross the border either by foot or by car, you’ll probably be pleasantly surprised. The same can be said for Mexico City or Rosarito, but it’d be best stay within the city itself. You’re going to want keep your travel daylight-related, as most issues like car jackings and robberies happen at night. Neither Mexico City nor Tijuana are places to be flashy. Anything from your new pair of Nike Air Jordans to your 2 carat engagement ring could be targeted if you’re not paying attention. In reality, if you speak Spanish, this is going to be a pretty great trip. If you don’t, you might be charged a little more for your poncho (the same would happen in Spain or Italy), but as a whole, you’ll have had a far more authentic look at Mexico than your Spring Break counter parts in Cancun.
Stay Away Unless You Want To Be A Hostage.
Why are you even looking into visiting Juarez or Nogales? Nuevo Laredo, Chihuahua and basically any other border town that doesn’t border California is a bad idea. America might have a Bible belt, but Mexico has a drug trafficking belt and it’s synched tightly across our border. If you’re a fan of “Sons of Anarchy,” just know that their story lines aren’t far from headlines. I’m as big a fan of adventure travel as anyone, but let’s just go ahead and keep you safe instead of dead on this go ‘round.