1. Travel
Send to a Friend via Email
Suzanne Barbezat

Is Mexico too dangerous?

By April 8, 2008

Follow me on:

I occasionally receive e-mails from readers who tell me they've decided they won't travel to Mexico because they feel it's too dangerous. I know that incidents of violent crimes that make the headlines may be scary, but I've lived in Mexico for ten years and I don't feel unsafe.

I do know that tourists are often targeted for crime (in Mexico and elsewhere), but there are some fairly simple steps you can take to avoid being a victim. Click through for some suggestions:

What do you think? Would you travel to Mexico, or is it just too dangerous? Please answer our poll and if you have anything else to add, click on "Comments" below.
Comments
April 8, 2008 at 1:58 pm
(1) paul w ehrbar says:

I have a destiny-like magnetism toward Mexico, but I think the country is very dangerous.(kidnapping, drug runners, marxists who hate all Americans, other violent crime) I don’t recommend my friends to go unless they must.—-Paul

April 8, 2008 at 6:00 pm
(2) ann price says:

I have traveled in Mexico many times and never felt threatened. I do tend to visit areas of interest rather than tourist areas where most of my time will be spent with other tourists. I leave my expensive jewelry at home and only have a drink or two.
I feel much more at risk in many major cities of the world where there is kidnapping, drug runners, and hate mongers of all varieties. I feel much safer in Mexico. Ann

April 8, 2008 at 7:17 pm
(3) Linda McWha says:

My husband and I entered Mexico after a disasterous flight, ending up in the wrong city with no luggage and four hours away from our destination. We decided to take a taxi from the airport and ended up in San Miquel at 4:00 in the morning. All our information was in the luggage that was missing, so we had no contact info. All our cash was on us. The people on the street were fabulous, very helpful and concerned for our welfare – and very few even spoke English. WIthin two hours, we were in the home we rented because the residents made every effort to get us there. Mexico is as safe as any other country. It is up to the traveller to stay out of places that are troublesome and stay away from crowds that attract trouble.

April 8, 2008 at 9:51 pm
(4) Darrel says:

Mexico is more dangerous than it has been in the past. That said, it is just like the US in that there are places you never go, other places that you only go in daylight, and places where it is safe at all times. Use your head, ask locals about safety issues/concerns and have a wonderful time.

April 13, 2008 at 1:31 pm
(5) Ron says:

Is there violence in Mexico? Yes. Could you be a victim of crime in Mexico? Yes. However there is also violence anywhere you travel and the United States does not have a good record in that regard either. Your chance of becoming a victim of violent crime is much higher north of the border than visiting our Mexican friends south of the border. As an example, the State Department issued a travel alert because 16 tourists were victims of violent crime in northern Baja where 60 million come to visit each year. In the same time period 26 tourists were victims of violent crime in California State Parks. So where is the travel alert for California??? Tijuana is portrayed as a dangerous and violent city yet there are many cities in the USA like Los Angeles, New Orleans, Chicago, Philadelphia and Baltimore where you are much more likely to be a victim of violent crime or even killed. I don’t hear anyone in the media warning travelers to any of those or other cities where tourists are attacked on a daily basis. The media has chosen to portray Mexico as a very dangerous and violent place by replaying over and over the pictures and videos of isolated events. Imagine if the media in other foreign countries were to replay over and over the videos of the multiple high school and university shootings and of police beating helpless subjects from events that had happened in the USA over time? We would see a big reduction in foreign tourism to the USA if that happened. Don’t just listen to the yellow journalism in the USA – talk to Gringos who actually travel to Mexico and the thousands who make Mexico their home today. Mexico offers a great climate, lower cost of living and ability to enjoy living in an ocean front community – a luxury out of reach by most in the USA. We need fair and biased reporting by the news media.

April 14, 2008 at 1:29 am
(6) gomexico says:

Thank you all for your comments. Linda’s experience is on a par with what most people have told me and my own experiences here in Mexico. I do agree that it’s important to take precautions and avoid some areas that are more prone to crime. But I think that in Mexico, as in most of the world, there are more people who want to help you than harm you.

April 19, 2008 at 1:32 pm
(7) Colleen says:

I have been to Mexico many many times and often travelled alone. I have never ever had a bad experience with anyone. On the contrary, I have found the Mexican people to be extremely helpful and kind. I am sure Mexico,like any country has it’s share of crime but I have never seen any. However, I am also careful as I am in any Country, including my own. Go, Enjoy, have fun!

April 27, 2008 at 2:27 pm
(8) xavier says:

Bravo for Ron’s comment!!
I’m 3rd generation Mexican-American and when I was a teen I always heard how dangerous Mexico is so I never wanted to visit. When I turned 20 I went for the first time and quickly became addicted to Mexico. I’m 29 now and I go Mexico at least 3 times a year. Crime is everywhere it’s a global issue and I find it humorous how many Americans think that this side of the lawn is much better. I live in S.F. and at least 3 times a week I read about shootings in Oakland. I always hear stories about how their perceptions change once they visit the country. Another thing, everyone thinks I look Indian or Middle-Eastern and I have walked countless of times in Mexico City and I never felt unsafe. The beaches are great but DON’T overlook the rest: Guanajuato, Morelia, Queretaro, Guadalajara..I can so much more.

September 1, 2008 at 10:38 pm
(9) Dollar Bill says:

I have traveled Mexico for the last 20 years and it has definitely changed . There is an undercurrent of anti -Americanism and it has an ‘edge’ that is hard to describe . I was going to invest in homes down there but have decided to pull the plug as the bad vibe and violence/drug problem has many worried . My family is ecstatic we are not going there ,not at all the same Mexico I have known .

October 16, 2008 at 7:57 pm
(10) Bill says:

I’ve lived in Southern California for 29 years. Going across the border was something I would casually do on weekends without much caution. My friends and I would party in Tijuana without much concern. Even though we partied and had great times, we were cautious, stayed fairly sober and did not behave like some of the loud and boisterous “anglos” that could be seen hooting and hollering about the town. However, today you could not pay me to go across into Tijuana. The experiences of other acquintances and one minor experience I had with a police officer are enough reasons to stay away. I will go back someday as things improve. Until such time, I will go to Puerto Rico. Though it’s a bit far from Southern California you cannot beat the convenience of vacationing there. Just think, NO PASSPORT is required; English is widely spoken by most everyone; the U.S. dollar is the used currency; one does not need to worry about corrupt police; you can drink water from the tap!!! Need I say more? Oh yeah, the women and beaches are gorgeous!!!

October 22, 2008 at 2:45 pm
(11) Peter Hanssens says:

I have traveled to Mexico 5 times now and as a Canadian have never felt that my life was in any danger.Having said that, there are areas, like in other countries where one must not venture and that is true of all countries.I found the Mexican people, on the whole, to be friendly and generous and always willing to help with directions.After having read some of the entries from other comments in this section I don’t see what the problem is and would recommend and have recommended Mexico to friends and collegues.

November 6, 2008 at 1:37 pm
(12) Bob Brent says:

Come you guys, Mexico can be dangerous but i hate Anglos ideas of the outer world. Mexico it’s a nice country to go for vacations, just beware for police man sometimes they see Americans and think they can make us fools and take money. But the thinking’s that can be dangerous is like thinking in Africa cars don’t exist or that they ride in donkeys or something like that. Jus use ur common sense and everything will be well.

November 6, 2008 at 1:41 pm
(13) ALison Wislow says:

LOL, USA has a Big bunch of cities full of danger, every day a lot of Americans and Canadians go to Mexico without no trouble

November 27, 2008 at 1:55 pm
(14) Tom says:

I have lived and worked in Mexico for 6 years, in a resort area. Do I feel safe? Well, as safe as many places in the US for sure. We had a couple of shootings over the summer, drug gangs going at each other. The main effect was that now the army throws up roadblocks and checkpoints and ties up traffic for hours…without actually accomplishing anything. The “crimes” that I have fallen victim to are the fraud and duplicity of Mexican developers and sales people when I recently bought a newly constructed home here. The workmanship was defitely 4th rate at best…cracks appearing in the walls, leaky roof, moldy walls, appliances that don’t function (the home cost about 1.5K). I am constantly told “don’t worry, everything is guaranteed for one full year”. But I have to threaten them with lawyers before the will fix even the smallest thing. And even IF they fix it, it still doesn’t work!! So…. tourists, no problems for you really. Home/condo buyers, be very very careful!!

December 9, 2008 at 10:40 pm
(15) Julio says:

I live in monterrey mexico for 21 years and i have to warn you to stay away, it is so dangerous you have to be watching your back at all times.

The kidnappings have increased tremendously, and ironically, most of them are made by the police!!

The drug war can sometimes be dangerous but if you are not into it then dont worry at all.

But then, thousands of crimes happen everyday, and most crimes are violent, they will literally kill you for 10 bucks, so i suggest to stay away, travel to other country, right now mexico it is actually more dangerous than war zones like iraq.

Just look at the news, criminals kidnap people and cut their heads and throw them on night clubs, i mean come on…

December 18, 2008 at 12:41 am
(16) John Paredes says:

Living in Mexico for 10 years and feeling safe means nothing. Times change, and Mexico sure has changed over the last couple of years. It has become far more dangerous. I would be very careful, especially along the border and Mexico City.

February 1, 2009 at 12:34 am
(17) pamela peterson says:

my husband and I live 250 miles from Arizona border in San Carlos (a beach resort), and we love it. All the people are very friendly and helpful, even the police are really helpful. In 2006 we traveled to 25 states in Mexico, covered almost 7000 miles, and 3 nights out of 4 slept in the back of our van (usually stopped in an all night Pemex gas station, never once did we feel in danger, even slept on the beach one night just in sleeping bags. However, with all the bad news lately I would hesitate to do it again. Here there is hardly any crime, very minor stuff, but Mexico City and the border towns are scary to me when I hear the news. But our experiences have been nothing but 100% safe. We find the people to be very helpful and in general honest. I think if you’re not hanging around with people you shouldn’t or going to places where drugs are you are okay. But it’s pays to be careful and not trust anyone. Unfortunately Mexico has changed but so has all places in the world. At least here I haven’t heard of any school shootings. Are we really safe anywhere today? Not even in US schools and universities are we or our kids safe anymore.

February 5, 2009 at 12:10 pm
(18) phbrassen says:

We are retired US teachers. We spend more than six months a year in Mexico. We have been traveling to Mexico for many years and have enjoyed the warm welcoming ways of the Mexican people. We are reasonably cautious when traveling as we are at home in NYC. We are aware of the damage caused by the drug cartels at the border and see evidence of this type of behavior in graffiti tags left by gangs in NYC as well as on Mexican walls. We choose not to live in fear but to be reasonably cautions both home and abroad. The joy of knowing other cultures far outweighs the risk. Come on down. LIfe south of the border is very good!

February 5, 2009 at 5:52 pm
(19) Gregory Sanoff says:

I have just returned from my 4th trip to Mexico. When making plans I tried to avoid known areas of kidnapping and violent activity. I travled alone and by bus once I arrived in Mexico City. Hotel rooms had been arranged in advance so I didn’t have to search for one in the dark after arriving in a town by bus. Caution and common sense are necessary where ever in the world one travels.
Of course some places are best avoided. I am currently studying my maps and tour books to plan my next trip to Mexico. So yes, visit and enjoy Mexico but be careful. Buen viaje.

February 8, 2009 at 4:36 pm
(20) Mark says:

While I appreciate the fairness of the resposes from our Americans, most saying that the U.S. is no better than Mexico in terms of crime, my response is “give me a break.” You are dealing with a Country where drug cartels assasinate judges and law enforcement officers with regularity and brazenly, a police force that is largely grossly underpaid and uses ancient investigative techniques, and an essentially corrupt legal system. I travel to Mexico frequently because I own interests there, but the suggestion that it compares to the U.S. in erms of crime, legal system, etc., is simply ridiculous. Look to the pay of most of their police and you will discern their problem. Most of these guys are so underpaid that it is no surprise they turn to shaking down tourists or outright robberies and kidnappings. Have fun, don’t drink to much, stay in nice places, and avoid large crowds or deserted roads and you should be okay. Don’t forget where you are.

February 18, 2009 at 1:34 am
(21) Kevin says:

I have been traveling to Mexico (Sonora) some 25 years now. Never have I been threatened. I have actually been a victim of the $20.00 payoff to the Federaly for “Speeding” a couple of times , but, my fault. Once, I happened to turn around in a neighborhood and realized there was a roadblock ahead. Once I had already committed to turning around is when I saw them getting into thier trucks and eventually chasing me and pulling me over. Very scary. Three trucks with about 12 policia had thier guns on me. Very scary. Once I explained to them I was just turning around and was looking for some taco’s, they saw I was not trying to avoid them. Apperently, there had been a shooting in the area previously, and they were just checking vehicles at the checkpoint.They were very nice to me and appologetic. I actually was impressed that they were going to such trouble to catch the bad guys. I still travel to Mexico with my wife and three kids. Like most of the other comments I have read here, Mexico is dangerous if you are looking for trouble. if you stay on the main roads and keep an eye out , you’ll be fine.

February 18, 2009 at 3:41 pm
(22) Rafael says:

I think people are concerned about going to Mexico or destinations in South America because of gangs like Ms-13,Sur 13 Etc…. But like some of the people have said if you stay out out of trouble and don’t travel with expensive things you should be fine.

February 25, 2009 at 12:08 am
(23) Jake says:

You could not pay me enough to cross the border into Mexico! It’s gotten progressively more dangerous in a short period of time.

Mexico should, by all rights, be one of the most advanced countries in the American hemisphere given its proximity to the U.S., its abundant natural resources, and its hard working people.

Unfortunately, it is a ceest-pool of unbridled corruption which is part of the culture.

As a result, I have no intentions of ever again visiting Mexico.

February 26, 2009 at 10:01 pm
(24) Pat says:

State Department Travel Alert, dated 02-20-2009.

The news even mentioned Cancun as being effected by the Cartel wars this morning.

February 27, 2009 at 11:43 am
(25) g doak says:

Anyone who would say that “unbridled corruption is part of the [Mexican] culture” is obviously an ignorant racist. If you don’t have anything smart to say, don’t say anything at all. And we wonder why they hate our stupid, arrogant overweight asses!

February 27, 2009 at 7:57 pm
(26) gomexico says:

In a related post, please check out Is Cancun Safe?

March 2, 2009 at 1:19 pm
(27) Eric says:

G Doak said,

“Anyone who would say that “unbridled corruption is part of the [Mexican] culture” is obviously an ignorant racist.”

Err, my wife is from Mexico and she says that corruption is part of the culture there. So are you going to call HER a “racist”?

March 2, 2009 at 2:49 pm
(28) Preston Moore says:

I took a road trip last year from Houston to a town just outside Mexico City. I drove the toll road a majority of the way and I had no problems at all. With that said, I am never doing it again! It is far too dangerous and the violence is not just isolated to the border towns. Several people had their heads chopped off less than 50 miles from where I was during my stay. Mexico is a wonderful country and the people are great, but the lawlessness is unreal.

“Just because it did not happen to you, does not mean it does not exist!”

March 5, 2009 at 11:00 pm
(29) Suzanne says:

Preston,
Those guys who got their heads chopped off were not tourists minding their own business, were they? There is violence in Mexico, but tourists are not the target. You say you had no problems at all on your trip through Mexico, but the news reports about drug violence is putting you off returning. I think that’s too bad – though I certainly respect your choice not to travel in Mexico again.

March 11, 2009 at 10:51 pm
(30) losangelino says:

People are quick to label others as racist simply for stating an opinion based on their own experiences. I find these types revolting and part of the problem. To “lure” people to Mexico at this stage is immoral. We KNOW that it has changed. I have visited it many times, most recently in December (Acapulco). The place is dangerous, end of report. Tijuana cops are criminals. end of report. The past 4 times I’ve visted TJ they’ve robbed me for simply standing, walking, riding and sitting. ENOUGH…

March 12, 2009 at 2:58 pm
(31) miguel says:

i’m planing on going visit my sister who is really sick in Reynosa, Mexico… But a lot of people at work are telling me not to go there because its too dangerous right now. I was born and raised there , do you think that I’m at the same risk as American people? i’m going there by car bye the way…

March 13, 2009 at 3:09 pm
(32) Mari says:

Great comment by Ron! Good on ya! Mexico is an enormous country spanning the entire width of the USA! We have all seen the media reporting on the drug cartel problems in the board towns of Juarez and El Paso, Texas. It saddens me to see that the US media have tarred the whole country with the same brush and are telling people that it is unsafe even to visit mexican tourist areas such as Cancun located thousands of kms away from the trouble areas. The mexican caribbean coast has always been a very safe place to visit with millions spending their beach vacations thee every year. The area is much safer to visit than most US cities and has crime statistics way below cities such as Pheonix for example. Would you ever fear for the safety of your loved ones on a vacation to Pheonix?! Didn’t think so! Losangelino does raise a point that some areas of mexico are dangerous. Stay away from those cities. The Riviera Maya, however, does not fall into that catagory.
For Miguel, the troubled areas appear to be the US/MX boarder towns so if you are set on driving to Reynosa and are dead set on driving then plan your trip very carefully and obviously stay away from El Paso.

March 25, 2009 at 1:57 pm
(33) Loren says:

My daughter is going on a honeymoon in June to Riviera Maya staying at a very nice resort. This was made way before all that is going on right now. If they stay at the resort and do not go off to Cancun or anywhere else will they be safe?? It is paid for but I am worried, it is not worth it. I dont know what to do?? Any advise?

March 26, 2009 at 12:41 am
(34) christinwagner says:

I will be traveling to Mexico in April 2009. There are inherent dangers anywhere you travel abroad, Mexico being no different. Despite the increasing drug violence, Mexico still has so much to offer to its inhabitants and its visitors. Tourists would be doing themselves and the good people of Mexico a disservice by avoiding this beautiful and culturally rich destination.

April 1, 2009 at 6:57 pm
(35) Carlos Andrés Jiménez Rovirosa says:

Myth: Drug violence is confined to the US border cities.
Fact: All 32 states of Mexico have seen drug-related violance, whether in the thousands (Chihuahua) or just dozens (Yucatan).
Myth: Drug cartels just kill each other.
Fact: The climate of violence and illegality has been exploited by all sorts of criminals, who may or may not be related to drug trafficking. Kidnappings, car theft, burglary, fraud, street muggings are all on the increase.
Myth: The media exaggerates about the amount of crime and violence in Mexico.
Fact: I have heard shootings late at night in Mexico City from my apartment. My house has been burglared. We decided to move out and rent it. The people who rented had their car stolen with violence, just outside the house. My father was kidnapped twice. My family was not rich just professional middle class. Maybe I’m just particularly unlucky? Official crime statistics reveal that 48 million Mexicans have been victims of crime in the last 3 years. You do the math. Mexico is beautiful, visit at your own risk.

April 2, 2009 at 1:56 am
(36) ANA says:

Paul w ehrbar MEXICANS DONT HATE AMERICANS THEY LIKE THEM!! THEY ARE REALLY PLEASED WHEN THEY VISIT!!
I THINK ITS ALL THE WAY ROUND!

April 9, 2009 at 1:01 pm
(37) BajaBrent says:

USA TODAY reported that 57 US citizens have been executed in mass murders in USA streets since 1/09/09. That represents MORE dead US citizens, than have been documented to have been killed in the ENTIRE MEXICAN DRUG WAR in the last 6 years. Houston Chronicle reported 200+ in Feb of 09; however, I researched the database and less than 1/3rd were id’d as US citizens, and of those very few were “innocent” (i.e. were connected to drug war in spite of citizenship); unclear if they were murdered in mexico or murdered in US and dumped over the border; and only a fraction MIGHT have been tourists! As a US tourist in Mexico you are safer than in the USA by far, any day of the week BUT be careful stay outta the barrios at night, dealing drugs (gee as if you’d do that in the USA!).

April 14, 2009 at 12:21 am
(38) Mara says:

I am mexican, I live at Mexico City. Mexico City and Northern Mexico are definitely really dangerous, other than that you shouldn’t worry about insecurity at mexican beaches and small towns (San Miguel de Allende, Oaxaca, Cuernavaca, etc). If you go to Mexico City I definetely recommend getting a tour guide or always asking a native white person (i know it sounds racist but that is the way mexico is) whether the place you are planning to visit is safe or not. PS. Please feel free to correct my grammar or spelling mistakes I want to improve my english.

April 24, 2009 at 7:23 am
(39) Emily says:

…this is such an american fear!! Back in Europe, Mexico is from far considered being a dangerous place. I feel a lot more confident traveling within Mexico than traveling across the US where you can get shot anytime anywhere.

Emily
UK

May 16, 2009 at 4:11 pm
(40) Patrick Pennington says:

My son was murdered tj beach area, on march 23rd, shane pennington. he was only 19, it has been very hard as a parent, to find this situation has hapened to my son stabed 6 times . so dont know what happened down there but sure would like to know???

June 6, 2009 at 4:39 pm
(41) Jeff says:

I like that one guys comment about Puerto Rico and not having a passport requirement. You’ll need a passport when going to Mexico.

June 11, 2009 at 2:54 pm
(42) Michelle says:

God, Patrick. I am so sorry about your son. A parents worst nightmare for sure.

July 2, 2009 at 2:15 am
(43) TRuer says:

Everybody have a part of the true. and I agree visiting Mexico is more dangerous now than for 15 years ago. Unfourtunately drugs and corruption are two big issues. The very high demand of drugs north for the borders, and the export from USA to Mexico of wheapons withouth any control. of course made the situation worst now, but i disagree with the Mexican girl than tell than only white people in Mexico is not corrupt. Maybe they practice another level and kind of corruption similar as that finded on developed countries . The typ of corruption more spread in Mexico have much to do with poverty and ignorance. the white collar corruption is only practiced for politicians and country Elite

October 1, 2009 at 1:11 am
(44) Missycal says:

My husband has Family in Mexico City. He is adamant about taking a family vacation there. We have an 11 yr old daughter and a 2 yr old son. I am white, my husband is Mexican (but looks white). We are planning on visiting between Christmas and New Years. Should I be afraid? Because I am scared to death.

October 2, 2009 at 12:42 pm
(45) gomexico says:

Missycal, I travel to Mexico City every chance I get – with kids in tow. There’s lots to do. Take them to Chapultepec park – lots of fun stuff for kids, like the Papalote kids museum. Just never let go of your 2 year old – that’s the same for travel anywhere! Leave any expensive jewelery and electronics at home, take a cheap camera. Don’t hail taxis on the street. Your husband’s family will take good care of you, I’m sure. It’s not half as bad as it’s made out to be. Sure there’s crime but there’s tons of great stuff to see and do as well.

October 6, 2009 at 10:30 pm
(46) Denise says:

What about Puebla? Is it safe for female college students with time on their own?

October 10, 2009 at 10:30 pm
(47) manuel says:

hi,denise
i am living in puebla and washington dc as well
i have been living in puebla since 1988 and the city has chenge a lot,”getting big very fast”
its the best schools city in the country
i think its safe enough,just avoid the traditional markets (mercados de abastos),police,and bad companies.
try to stay at school as much as possible,and for having fun at night,go with some male company.
people in puebla are not very polite but they like americans and do try to help.

October 15, 2009 at 5:24 pm
(48) Orlando says:

Hello There!

I am Mexican, however, I currently reside in the U.S. and let me assure all of you that Mexico is a safe country. As others have mentioned, if you are cautious you should be okay. Mexicans in general love Americans and will assist you if you have any problems. Most of the violent crimes in Mexico are related to drug trafficking, therefore, if you are not involved with that I can gurantee that you will be safe. The media in the U.S., including Spanish media, portray Mexico as a lawless country with rampant crime which is far from the truth. Please visit Mexico and let my country show you how to have a good time.

October 28, 2009 at 2:00 pm
(49) Stu says:

I stumbled across this site and am impressed by many of the comments, both pro and con, regarding travel to Mexico – so I thought I would run something by the readers.

Our son is going to be 50 this December so, as a special gift, my wife and I are taking the entire family – 1 set of grandparents, our son and his wife, our daughter and her husband, and our 4 grandchildren to Troncones, Mexico for a week over Christmas.

The owner of the villa that we will be staying at insists that it is perfectly safe to go there at this time. However, we are hearing from many of our friends that they are avoiding the general Zihuatanejo area of Mexico (where Troncones is) at this time because of potential dangers to American tourists there – including cancelling trips and forfeiting deposits. Some of these friends even own apartments there and are intentionally not going there at this time – even though they can’t cite particular instances where Americans have been harmed there.

Any advice?

November 21, 2009 at 7:46 pm
(50) Marie-Claude says:

I traveled to Mexico D.F. a few years back and experieneced the bitter sweet thing. I got robbed on the subway. Didn,t feel a thing and realised it when I was going to pay the bill at a restaurant. Where is the sweet in that? Well, the restaurant manager understood… let me go without paying (I was traveling alone, no one to lend me money!) Took a cab to get back to my hostel… found someone in there to lend me money to pay. The hotel manager let me stay for a couple days without having to pay (it was Easter and NOTHING was open for family members to send me money). I was STUCK! But because of the generosity of mexicans, I had the BEST time. Everyone invited me over and I was blessed with amazing food and great hospitality. Sweet hein!?

My husband and I are planning a 4 month trip to Mexico. We’ll be driving from Canada. I cannot wait to go back and enjoy the country to its fullest!

December 1, 2009 at 4:38 pm
(51) angus says:

Suzanne,
I don’t think your question is at all racist or uniquely “american” or somehow denigrates the Mexican people, as has been suggested. I think it’s a perfectly reasonable question to ask. I think any individual specimen of any species of animal either asks himself what is and isn’t dangerous, or doesn’t live long enough to produce progeny lacking the proclivity of asking such questions.
In the past, I have generally found mexicans to be helpful and kind. The culture is colorful and the people are passionate. And the land is rich and beautiful. I’ve visited at least 40 countries and I’d have to say that, besides my own country, Mexico is my favorite. Sure, the legal system is corrupt, the cops are underpaid, and the drug demand in places like Los Angeles and Dallas and New York City fuel a thriving underground economy in Mexico which causes hardship and death to many Mexicans, but unless you’re dealing with criminals you are unlikely to experience violent crime. As for petty crime, it may happen to you. Pickpockets and the like. But then that could also happen to you in Amsterdam or New York or Shanghai or anywhere else.
Obviously no one can promise you that you won’t be beaten or raped or robbed or murdered. But you can minimize your risks by using good judgment. Keep in well-lit areas at night. Avoid those green taxis in the DF, and avoid bus station areas at night, don’t carry more cash than you can afford to lose, and leave the good jewelery at home. Avoid bad neighborhoods. And be polite. Try to remember that most petty crime arises from wealth inequality and not some intrinsic malevolence. The world’s a big, scary place, but if you’re like most folks the advantages of getting to know it outweigh the occasional inconveniences you will undoubtedly encounter. I have found that everywhere I go the number of folks who love practicing English and like to help far outnumber those who would steal from me.
I have visited to the mexican republic many times, probably 35 or so times in the past 20 years. Been to 22 of the 31 estados so far, usually solo, once staying for as long as 2 months on a stretch, and I have entered from many different points in my own car, from California, Belize, Guatemala, and several spots in Texas, but I have only stayed in the DF twice. Once for three days (flying in) and once for five days (arriving by car from the south). I stayed at Hotel Congresso both times–a little sleazy, but the price was right–and enjoyed it. I never passed up the opportunity to sample the Mexican alcohol, get laid, or see some fantastic sights. And except for some nasty hangovers and some mad dashes through unfamiliar barrios to get away from some bimbo I’d gone home with the night before, I generally had a great time. I can see why some might be put off by the federal district. Asthmatics should probably avoid it during the dry season. And if you hate crowds you might opt for some deserted stretch of the Oaxaca coast rather than the Zocalo during Santa Semana. But with efficient public transit, informative museums, great shopping, and great food, most folks would have a great time in Mexico City. I know I did during my visits.
I’m very obviously a foreigner– pale pink skin, blue eyes, yellow (now graying) hair, and I usually am stoned or drunk and often wear floral shirts and such–so I know I really stick out as a tourist. I’ve come to accept long ago that in places like Mexico and China and most of the places I’ve visited I’ll stand out as a foreigner, and therefore as somebody who can afford, and will seek out, a good time. I get propositioned by whores and drug dealers everywhere I go, and yes it gets old, but I’ve never had any real problems in Mexico, or experienced any anti-Gringo hysteria. Been hassled by the cops a few times. La mordita. That sort of stuff, but honestly, I was usually doing something stupid. Something that I’d never do in the USA and if I were caught doing it here I know that the penalty would be much harsher, so I don’t complain about that. But I’ve never encountered any of targeted crime or racism or general insecurity that folks are commenting about. I realize that all this is anecdotal, and unscientific, and as has been said: just because it ain’t happened to me doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist. Still, I think that the crime must not be as prevalent as the newspapers would lead you to believe.
As far as the state department’s warnings, I’d say that they’re useful, but usually overkill. Not unlike the Material Safety Data Sheets you get with solvents. Ever read the MSDS of water, for example? If you really took it to heart you’d die of thirst.
Tell your readers to use common sense, but don’t let fear rule their lives.

January 3, 2010 at 4:54 pm
(52) Louie says:

We’ve visited Mexico 60-80 miles south of Tijuana for years and years with no problem what so ever. In 2007 however I was there with my wife and two adult kids. We rented a car to drive into Mexico and unfortunately it was a gold colored PT Cruiser that stuck out like a sore thumb. I was pulled over and accused of drunk driving (I was not) The Mexican breathalyzer was the cop holding my drivers license under his nose while I blew on it. In a nutshell I was forced to pay this guy and his buddy $140 to avoid being carted off to who knows where, and who knows the outcome. I no sooner forked over my dough and this guy was gone. We will not go back be as it only takes one event like this to spoil things. When you have no law to turn to you have nothing to do but get the hell out of dodge.
Its bad news- don’t let anybody let you think it is safe- its not.
Hope this message helps someone make a sensible decision and stay alive. Mexico is not what it was in the 70s, 80’s and 90s.
Louie..

January 4, 2010 at 10:26 pm
(53) michael walsh says:

according to recent media and web sites, the u.s., canada, and mexico will become the one country. (North American Union). and a new currency “the Amero” will begin to circulate in 2010. all of this is been witheld from the public. just imagine one of these days when you get up out of your bed and go to the atm and it dispenses ameros and the borders are gone. I hope this is all a myth, but it looks like its going to happen. I guss thats why the mexican border is so militarized as so to establish order when this goes into affect. and what about all this lawlesness in mexico. “god help us”

January 26, 2010 at 6:40 am
(54) David says:

I always said the same thing: Its not going to hapen to me.

I had been to mexico before, i was fine in rough places like qalqilyah, gaza, israel during the 2006 war, ive driven throughout the usa (im canadian)…. Australia and Europe all worked out fine…. then there was March 02 2008.

At 11am in the Hotel Zone I was buying my girlfriend a Cartier ring…. two guardas from the Kulkulkan Plaza (upscale store tourista mall) approached me and complemented my girl…. everything seemed fine but more arrived and they were jabbering on their radios…. The cartier store owner, a Swiss lady who saved my life (really), asked them what was the problem?

They said no problem and that they were just on break or something to that effect. I get the go-ahead to leave (it was a crown of 8 or 9 of them giving my girl odd looks) and just as we walk down the steps there appear 4 police pickups. They cuff me and hit me in the face with the butt of a baton of some kind…. it wasnt a gun…. this is in broad daylight at 11am in the nicest part of cancun…. the cartier lady comes out and starts yelling, my girlfriend is crying and im thrown into the open back of one of these pickups…. no reason given, i had no idea….

they took me to a station next to a fire station just 2 or 3 minutes away, extremely violently too.

They hit me repeatedly with some extendo-baton and tey searched everything I had and stripped me to my boxers after taking me to some random room.

I was scared out of my mind…. bleeding from the face and leg, and they were shouting in spanish.

they cuffed me to a pipe in the room and left me there for more than 2 hours (it felt like…. i cant describe it really….)

they came back and were arguing with themselves over what to do with me, they were holding a pack of ‘asparina 500′ (no codeine, this is otc regular aspirin in the green box u buy at the gas station)…. they looked concerned (I found out why later).

They then asked me where was my hotel, how long im staying, whats my job, etc…. but in a weirdly friendly tone.
Remember, they had just beaten the crap out of me and arrested me only to put me in a dungeon cuffed to the wall…. in the midstn of all these biographical questions they all sort of stood up and this fat bald guy walks in …. the cheif/jeffe or whatever. He scolds them in a very fake looking way and apologizes to me…. he uncuffs me and brings me to his desk.

He explains that I am lucky that she is there and that its as easy as signing a ‘declara’ or something to that effect (still have no idea what it said) and also I had to pay for the “protection” (yes, that’s actually what he said; i still dont get it at all).

This protection was 500$ USD, or so I thought. I had made a deal with another store selling silver in the same mall to buy in cash for half the price (yes im a moron, they saw the wallet had 1800 in it when they took it from me along with my clothes).

I said ok, anyhting to get out of there, and then he said its 500 per ? officer/his buddies? cause there were more than 4 police there….

anyway he was upset about the 200$ missing…. so he demanded to escort me to my hotel room…. which he did. He drove me there.

During the ride he again changed his tone and said he was going to make up for the beating by taking me to ‘chiliwili 21′. I had no idea what this was and it wasnt presented as an option. (its a strip club 50 mins outside of cancun on an empty highway…. !)

Im sorry this story could go on forever, I nearly died which I found out from the Swiss Cartier woman the next morning.

I went back because she had apparently called the Canadian consulate while I was in custody…. she went all out for me and she had photocopied my passport and confirmed my hotel room just before this all happened to make sure I wasnt scamming for the gift i had just bought (it was quite expensive).

The consul general had left the msg on the room phone about all this….

So the Swiss lady from cartier told me that if we didnt leave the hotel and get on a flight to Canada before this chiliwili 21 thing that I’d probably ‘disappear’ somewhere along the highway….

we left cancun for nyc within 4 hours of her telling me where and what chiliwilis was. G-d bless her.

Summary:
MEXICO HAS NO LAWS AND LAW ENFORCEMENT IS THE WORST OF ALL! STAY AWAY! Really though, do not go there…. what I had thought was major (being thrown from a private tour van by miitars at a checkpoint on the way to chichen itza and then told to ‘go’ when no drugs were found) turned out to be just the tip of the iceberg.

The country is not safe at all. At least in Gaza they have political reasons to want to decapitate you…. they have some messed up ideology in the middle east driving their violence.

In Mexico…. nada, they want money and they will maim and kill without any morals…. If the Lady from Cartier had not called the Canadian consul general then I would be yet another dead Canadian found in cancun (Senior Frogs Fiasco should drive the point home, pun inteded).

I still have a broken nose 2 years later too. Mex is messed.

February 5, 2010 at 2:42 pm
(55) Ramiro says:

No doubt that some people just post comments because they have internet connection, writing about Mexico but they have never been there. EVERY country in the world has its own problems and media always manipulate the available information in order to portrait what they want to show. I am Mexican and have lived in my country my entire life without any harm. Problems and violence exist everywhere and most of the times the victims of crime are people that expose themselves by going to dangerous places without caution. We have drug cartels and our police are underpaid, but our youth do not carry weapons to school and kill their classmates and people don’t need to keep fire arms in their homes to feel safe. Every country has its problems, I insist.

February 5, 2010 at 4:53 pm
(56) Roy says:

Just imagine a foreign parent that does not want to send his/her son or daughter to study in America because he/her will be killed by mad armed classmates. This kind of events had happened in America and the whole world knows that, but those are isolated events and do not mean that the whole country is a threat. The same logical thoughts could be applied while planning trips to Mexico or anywhere in the world. I have traveled to Mexico 3 times now and have never felt that my life was in any danger.

February 9, 2010 at 11:06 am
(57) Gianluca says:

Hello, as an Italian tourist I have been both in Mexico and United states. I have a lot of fun with my fidanzata while visiting the Yucatnan region (cancun) and some other places in the pacifico mar. No preoccupazione (problema) there.

In the United States we were in New York and somebody stole my portfolio in a McDonalds at the airport while I was paying the bill.

March 5, 2010 at 1:37 pm
(58) jeff says:

I take a group of college age young adults to Monterrey every year. We work with an orphanage over spring break. I have done this trip for almost ten yrs. We have never experienced any type of violence or problems. We have had the police stop us and question us while we where in cinega de flores. No big deal, I played dumb said I only spoke english. They tried to get everyone out of the vehicle to search it and I just kept telling them no. Then some of the local people came over and told them to leave us alone and they did. Intense moment, but nothing bad happened. Mexico is a beautiful country with alot of people crammed into cities. 7 mill. plus in mont. there is going to violence. Someone wrote an earlier email about buying jewelry and getting robbed. If you showed $1800 in Detroit or NYC Or LA or LV their is a good chance of you getting mugged or robbed. Wisdom is key where ever you are if you show off, flash money and jewelry you put your own self at risk. Don’t label a country out of your foolishness. I do say avoid the border towns as much as possible especially the bars and clubs. If you are looking for drugs then you will find them and the trouble that easily goes with drugs. 99.5% of the violence is drug related so if you fall into the percentage of people looking for drugs in MX then you are putting yourself at a high risk for death in MX and abroad. I think the key thing you have to understand is drugs = pain, violence and most likely death in MX or US or Canada.

March 19, 2010 at 6:07 pm
(59) scott says:

i was born in a mexican border town and i have grown up on the u.s. side. i have had good experiences when being pulled over by the military and the local police in matamoros. i have had bad experiences when being pulled over by the traffic cops. a few times however, i had actually broken some rule…i argued and then paid $50 bucks or so, then i later realized that if i had broken the same rule in texas, i would have paid much more than the $50 “go away” money. i think the biggest problem that americans have with mexico is that you can’t trust law enforcement. sure, l.a. and new orleans are dangerous, but you can always call the cops and feel better. right now, along the border, there is a cartel war. i hear that it is pretty bad, but i have been going weekly to visit the doctor, and i have not seen anything that looks out of the ordinary, except that the restaurants are empty. like everyone says, stay in populated areas, stay in groups and stay out of trouble!!

March 30, 2010 at 12:51 pm
(60) Klára Jezkova says:

I have lived in Mexico for almost 2 years and I really don’t feel that it’s dangerous here. As I used to travel a lot, many times I felt more danger in other countries than here. Of course people need to use common sense when traveling and don’t do things that they would not do in their own country. Mexico is one of the most beautiful countries in the world for its culture and history. The people are really amazing, friendly and helpful. What I am little bit disappointed about is that people judge Mexico just by what they hear in the news, even if they have never been here!!

April 17, 2010 at 8:05 pm
(61) Julia says:

My husband is from Mexico City and right now even he is unsure if we should travel there this summer. Mostly what concerns us is being caught in the cross fire. The violence is not just in border towns, just last night there were murders in Acapulco, but it was drug related and not targeting tourists. However, we almost went to Acapulco. If my native husband is afraid to be there, why wouldn’t I? I really don’t know what to do-should we stay or should we go??

April 21, 2010 at 4:07 am
(62) Armando says:

Hello
Im Family Guy, 38 years living in chihuahua , and its thru about the violence here, BUT if your are on drungs thing , Yes is dangerous for all of them!.

The Funy part of all this is the all the mexicanS is killing each other to send tHE drugs for all costumers in america.

Heres more then 20,000 people dead in 3 years !
But how many Americans die every day ? for drugs? for passional ? Robbery? etc… War?

Well we don`t have Nuclear Weapons!
We don`t produce arms!!
We don`t even be never of a global War!!!

YES WE ARE TOO DANGEROUS!!!

GOD BLESS AMERICA !!!

April 27, 2010 at 2:34 pm
(63) Arturo says:

I am mexican and I beleive that my country is safe. I have lived in canada for two years, in Spain for one year and I have traveled a lot in United states and in several countries of central and south america, mostly in Argentina and Chile. None of those places is safer than Mexico. I cannot speak about the rest of europe or asia since I have not been there. I have been assaulted only one time, and it happended in Spain, by a taxi driver.
Those news you have heard about a dangerous mexico are about isolated events related mostly with drug war and those killings are made by and against drug dealers. Unfortunately people that make tv news, newspapers and all that stuff wants to sell, and this kind of news are a good product to sell so they exagerate and highlithed those kind of events.

Mexico is the 5th most visited country by tourist in the world and all of them returned safe to their own places. And it is also safe for those living here. Of course we have poverty, dangerous neiborhoods and burglars, as any other country in the world, but if you do not put your self in risk you will be fine.
have a nice day

May 1, 2010 at 7:04 pm
(64) Phil says:

I am thinking of visiting Oaxaca early next year for a week. Does anyone have any feelings about that particular city? Would you recommend a visit? Should anything other than the usual precautions be taken when going there? Has some of the tension there subsided? Thanks for any insight you can provide!

May 28, 2010 at 8:42 pm
(65) concerned says:

Please do not travel to Chihuahua!! My sons 5 year old brother was kidnapped at gunpoint 2 nights ago! A car pulled up to them as they were walking and 2 gunmen got out , shot at the ground and grabbed him from his Dads arms! The kidnappers then fled the scene with the little boy. They are demanding a ransom, which his parents cannot afford. At this moment, they do not know if he is alive or dead. He is a U.S. Citizen and they were there to visit his sick Grandmother… PLEASE do not travel there!! Especially with children!!

June 1, 2010 at 9:03 pm
(66) concerned says:

I wanted to post an update for my last comment about my son’s 5 year old brother being kidnapped. It will be 1 week tommorow since he was kidnapped. They have not heard from his kidnappers since sunday night. Kidnappers
said if they don’t get the enormous ransom they are asking, they will start sending pictures of what they have done to him and if they still don’t get the money, they are going to kill him. This is how safe it is for U.S. citizens in Mexico…..

June 7, 2010 at 11:16 pm
(67) Elizabeth says:

why the hell would mexico be dangerous? any country could be dangerous or nice.

June 20, 2010 at 12:27 am
(68) ohioann says:

I went to Cancun in January 2010 and it was honestly the best vacation i’ve ever been on. We stayed at the Riu Cancun and it was absolutely beautiful! There was so much to do on a daily basis and upon going out to the nightclubs, my friend and I felt completely safe. We even made friends with some of the entertainment staff from the hotel that were responsible for taking hotel guests to the club. We got our own VIP areas in the club, and when my friend and I felt like we were too drunk to find our way home, some of the guys from the hotel entertainment staff would walk us back! They were so nice about everything, and I never once felt endangered. I even lost my ID in one of the night clubs, and one of the guys off the entertainment staff made some calls and helped me locate it! The Mexican people, from my experience, have been very helpful and sweet. We even took a bus to see the Mayan ruins at Chi Chen Itza, which were absolutely gorgeous. I recommend everyone that is in Cancun make time to go see them. The bus ride was comfortable, and entertaining. Never once did we stop to get searched. Even the service on the bus was accommodating and the people couldn’t be nicer. Cancun was an absolute paradise! Not to mention it was extremely inexpensive! The perfect vacation destination! I can’t wait to go back. I am just hoping that a lot of the drug-related violence does not make its way into the Yucatan area. Cancun, as far as I’m concerned is definitely safe and I would recommend it to anyone! You just have to keep your wits and your common sense about you!

August 5, 2010 at 8:54 am
(69) Tom says:

Contrary to what many people seem to think, Tijuana is much more dangerous than any US city. Some of the comments are based on media storytelling there’s a lot of misinformation out there.

Tijuana had 638 murders in 2008. New Orleans, with a similar population, had 250.

A good adage is ‘don’t believe everything you read’.

September 24, 2010 at 12:13 pm
(70) thania says:

i lived in mexico and it’s a great place beautiful people.

October 28, 2010 at 1:50 pm
(71) JOE says:

I HAVE JUST RETURNED FROM PUERTO VALLARTA MEXICO OCT 6 2010. I HAVE VISITED THERE MANY TIMES AND UNTIL THIS TRIP HAVE FELT SAFE. THEY HAVE A SCAM GOING ON AT THE RESORTS THAT I WAS INVOLVED IN. THEY GO INTO YOUR SAFE AND SOME MONEY, THE KEY IS THEY DO NOT TAKE IT ALL TO MAKE IT LOOK LIKE YOU THOUGHT YOU SPENT IT IT. I SPOKE TO MANY PEOPLE WHEN I CAME UP WITH CASH MISSING AND MANY OF THEM SAID THEY HAD MONEY MISSING THE AVERAGE ABOUT $75 TO $100. THEY SAID THEY WOULD NOT FILE A COMPLAINT FOR THAT AMOUNT. THEY DIDNT BUT I DID. THEY MADE ME FEEL LIKE I WAS THE CRIMINAL. WILL NOT RETURN TO THAT RESORT OR MEXICO UNTIL THINGS CLEAN UP. I WORK WITH SOMEONE FROM SAN LUIOS MEXICO AND HE SAID HE CANT BELIEVE HOW BAD IT IS GETTING AND IS TRYING TO BRING ALL OF HIS RELEATIVES TO THE STATES.

November 15, 2010 at 6:19 pm
(72) Taj Lena says:

Stats on Mexico vs. US shows that Mexico is much more dangerous than the US. Mexico has a murder more than twice that of the US at 11.6 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants; the US has a murder rate of 5.5 per 100,000 inhabitants. People in Mexico are blaming the media for sensational reporting, but the truth is that the everything that happens in the US is far more sensationalized by the media than anywhere else. I have lived in the US for over 30 years and besides having my car broken into two times in my life, I have never had any problems. When I have have traveled in other countries, I have been assaulted several times while traveling in India and one time everyone in our group was robbed while waiting at a train station in the Netherlands (except for me because I was clutching my luggage.) When I am at the train station or in public places in the US, I have never felt like someone could just come and assault or rob me like I do in other countries. There is law and order here. I have traveled all over the world and around the US and have felt safe in most cities in the US. No matter where you are in the world, street smarts are always key. What really scares me about Mexico is the rampant corruption added with the fact that the police and public officials are being murdered at an alarming rate. There is no sense of law and order or control in Mexico. Local reporters are even afraid to write certain stories about the violence there because the drug cartels have been known to go after them if they reveal too much about what is happening. In the US, the media can publish what they wish without fear of being killed or censored. This is not the case in Mexico and most countries, so I believe the problem in Mexico may be as bad or worse than we realize.

November 17, 2010 at 10:10 pm
(73) mom says:

Ok Guys! I am hearing all these comments and so far most of them are a LIE! I have traveled to mexico 6 times this year and thank God with no problems,…yes please dont ignore the Border issues but those are among them NOT US! i mean if we are at the wrong place at the wrong time well then i have nothing to say, but PLEASE people we make it what it is and dont stop traveling for their issues. I will continue to go and well if you decide to stop then that’s up to you. dont believe everything you hear or see…….mexico family keep our Mexico safe by respecting it!!! I was born in MEX but raised here in the USA! MEXICO I LOVE U!

November 18, 2010 at 10:50 pm
(74) Catherine says:

My husband is from Mexico. We used live in Mexico and since moving to Canada we travelled yearly even after having children. We love Mexico but it has become a very dangerous place and this danger is not limited to those involved with cartels. The violence also is not limited to certain undesirable areas. All my husbands family and many of our friends live in Mexico. We also have Canadian Mexican friends who have been shot at and actually shot while travelling on a major toll road near a tourist resort. My husband would never want me or our Mexican children to visit Mexico again (unless something changes – unlikely). He is even scared to visit is family on his own despite having grown up in Mexico. Trust me. This is not fear mongering but reality. Unbridled Corruption and Violence is now the norm!

December 23, 2010 at 1:29 am
(75) estrella says:

dont go to cancun, the place has been destroyed from being paradise. laws are not respected and the authorities are corrupt at all levels.

December 27, 2010 at 8:56 am
(76) Tom says:

I can confirm again that Tijuana as of 2009 has easily surpassed US murder capital New Orleans in murders and rate per capita, despite a slight drop. New Orleans is about the same as 2008.

2010 looks like the worst year for Tijuana on record.

January 5, 2011 at 6:02 pm
(77) tom says:

I felt safe in Cabo unless you count the timeshare bandits.
Read the state departments web site and register your trip.
Also Profeco’s site. If you want to attend a timeshare presentation for the goodies read mexicotimesharefraud.com

January 26, 2011 at 4:51 pm
(78) J says:

Gov of Mexico (GoM) recently released official figures for Narco-Related murders committed between 2006-2010. The 15,273 narco murders committed in 2010 is the fourth straight record (year over year) and brings the total to 34,612 drug related murders in Mexico since 2006 (remember, these are official GoM numbers). This isn’t just happening on the border either. Acapulco is listed as the 5th deadliest city during that same time frame. In January of this year there has been over 40 murders with 15 of those being decapitated. Two of those 40 were State Investigators that were murdered in a tourist area. Three more decapitations in December with their heads being skinned (Google it). Bottom line – STOP going to Mexico for vacations just because you can get a good deal. It’s not worth the risk to you or especially your family members.

January 28, 2011 at 1:14 pm
(79) Joe Green says:

30,000 dead! Mexico is too dangerous – if you need to stay on the main roads and only eat at the local “Carlos and Charlie’s” – then you are not visiting Mexico. If you can’t rent a car and safely drive down from Acapoco to Puerto Escandido without the worry of being kidnapped or shot – then it is not safe. Until this war ends – I would not look to Mexico as a destination to visit. Alot has changed in the last few years/ months – it is now more like Iraq than the Mexico of only a few years back.

January 30, 2011 at 6:19 am
(80) Steve says:

It’s just not worth the risk. How many Canadians have been killed in mexico in the past 3 years? There are far too many places that we can travel to than to go to a place where something “might happen”. I love how when there is something big that happens in the country, the reports from locals authorities and those actually there are 100% different. Just not worth the risk, i’d rather go to a country that doesn’t have all the BS following it.

February 23, 2011 at 1:25 pm
(81) Klara Jezkova says:

I have been living for three years in Mexico, Cuernavaca, having a normal life as I did in my country. I don’t see any problem down here. I met many foreign people here who really fell in love with this place. Mexico is one of the most rich countries for its culture and history and it is really pity that people are affraid to experience it and enjoy it. If you travel you should take precaution, no matter if you are in Europe, America, Asia, Africa, etc.. and use common sense. Don’t do things as you wouldn’t do in your home place. I feel Mexico safe and beautiful. I enjoy every single minute here in Cuernavaca or while I am traveling to he other destinations in Mexico.

March 5, 2011 at 5:23 pm
(82) Fred says:

I can’t believe someone who posted here would say Mexico is as safe as Europe. Warnings from not only the USA but other countries have been posted stating tourists should not travel to Mexico at this time. Thousands of Mexican citizens and others are being killed due to the Mexico based drug wars. How can someone say it’s safe to be in Mexico? I have friends who were living in Mexico and have returned to the US with horror stories. So feel safe in Mexico if you wish but carry a gun and don’t take your kids! It’s that bad.

March 19, 2011 at 3:58 pm
(83) Stephen La Rocco says:

I am American and I live in a rural town in Veracruz. It is very safe here. Remember, there are good and bad places everywhere in the world. Here it’s the border areas that are bad and some others. In the USA it’s East LA among others. In a border town the police took money out of my truck as well as in New york the police stole from me as well. Remember the Rodney King incident? There are good and bad “eggs” everywhere. I wouldn’t drive to the border again, nor would I drive through Compton or East LA. Remember one thing, Both the police who stole from me here and in NY never abused or threatened me. In fact, where I live everyone knows each other and the police actually offered to tow my car when I broke down. They even asked the local gas station if I could leave it there overnight. So, it all depends where one lives. Sure the drug problems are bad here with the Cartels, but both groups in each country are to blame. The losers here who make the drugs and sell them to the losers in the USA who buy them.
In fact, the military and the police here are so incredibly against the problem and are going crazy trying to fight it just like the mafia problems in the 20th century in the USA.
So in all, both countries have had, and still have good and bad people and problems as well as benefits.

May 13, 2011 at 12:57 pm
(84) Derrick says:

I am traveling to mexco city next week. Last feburary i went to ccabo and meet some amzing people and a very special mexivan girl. Her and a buddy live in mexico city. I will be stayibbe staying at rafiels place and seeing my mexican girl dadaily. I am kinda nervous travelling by my self there buty friends will take care of me . I am only 21 and definetly will be ddrinking . Of course not to much at the clubs. Any advice besibesides the regular common sense

June 1, 2011 at 5:21 am
(85) Daniela says:

PART 1

Hi, well I am from Mexico City but I leave in Germany…I must say Mexico has changed a lot in the past 3 years. In general, Mexico is definitely more dangerous now than before…but Europe is NOT the exception, just the past year, I have been twice to the police because I almost got attacked, the first time, because a psycho kept following me and wanted to grab me…fortunately I had my german shepherd and a pepper spray to defend myself…the second time: a teenager tried to bit me up just because I told him I wanted him to move to the sidewalk ( because I had my bike and he was on the bike side of the street)…anyways, in Gemany there is not poverty…and there is basically no corruption…but there are many mean people who think you are from Turkey or an Arab country and hate you for NO reason… Every country has good and bad things. Maybe in reach European countries ( like Switzerland, Germany, Sweden etc) is not that bad, but let’s remember that must European countries are also poor and also have corruption and mafia: Bosnia, Poland, Russia, Rumania, Check Republic, Italy etc…

Well, if you want to visit Mexico, try to visit the areas where there are not conflicts, don’t visit Tijuana, Michoacán, etc…is obvious right? even as a Mexican I would not go there!!.
I went last year to Chiapas, Mérida, DF and Riviera Maya with my husband for one whole month (my husband looks totally German: blond, really tall, blue eyes etc…) and we had a lot of fun, we had NO problems at all. Unfortunately we also saw bad things…we saw many young tourist really drunk or drugged, I mean, I don’t think is too intelligent to do that right?

June 1, 2011 at 5:21 am
(86) Daniela says:

PART 2

Guys, Mexico has a lot of potential (mostly because of its natural resources) however, we have had a corrupt Government and a terrible system for years, and now we are paying the consequences: crime, drugs etc.
However, must people are really friendly and do not want to kill you or something…criminals are everywhere!!! For example: I just saw a documentary where they explained that there are more than 1,000 radical racist groups in the USA (like: white brotherhood, neo-nazis etc..) who want specifically get read of (kill) Mexicans and blacks in the USA, and that 75% of the serial killers in the world come from the USA, but that does not mean that all Americans or the whole country is bad right?
And another thing…think about the attitude foreigners get in Mexico: still knowing that many Americans hate or don’t like Mexicans, and we have been terribly stereotyped (speedy Gonzalez, sombreros, that ALL illegal in the USA are Mexican, all Mexicans are poor, ignorant etc.) must Mexicans will treat Americans or other tourist kindly and will have must of the time a nice attitude towards them.

The world in general has changed a lot; every time is getting worse and worse…and bad people from all nationalities will pay what they are doing to decent people…be sure about it !!
Now, if you want to visit Mexico, just try to visit safe places, don’t do stupid things (like being drunk at 3am), and enjoy…and don´t forget to visit the pyramids in Yucatán, Campeche and Chiapas they are surreal !!!

PS. I apologize…I am still working on my English!!

June 1, 2011 at 5:30 am
(87) Joe says:

TRUE !!! I totally agree with her !!

August 4, 2011 at 3:47 pm
(88) Carlos G says:

Well. I am mexican-American and know all of mexico real well and from what i have experienced even though I speak fluent spanish is that the police are VERY corruct and there is always someone trying to take advantage of you. I would only go within a big group and always studie the area before hand. I am not saying that all of Mexico is bad but, why risk getting raped, robbed or even killed when all you are really trying to do is have a good vacation? I have been taken advantage by police around 5 times and was unable to get a CLEAR explanation fron the cops down there as to WHY i needed to pay!
Take my advice and the advice of all victims and stay away….

August 6, 2011 at 8:13 pm
(89) Feliz says:

This is my first time to Mexico. I am in Mexico City and enrolled in classes at CEPE to learn espanol and Mexican culture. I really did not know what to expect. Prior to coming here people were like,”Oooh be careful.” “I wouldn’t go there!” There were others, mostly from DF but lived in my city in the states, who reassured me that things were okay I just needed to use common sense and gave me some advice as to where to go and where to definitely not go. Upon arriving I have had nothing but good times and met wonderful people who have been extremely helpful. Maybe my situation is a bit different because I am staying with a family. I am also in a university setting and I am in Coyoacan which is a great area. It is more serene and feels safer than say up in Zona Rosa…or Zocalo area which I really think feels a wee bit on the seedier side. I go to yoga, I go swimming at the university, I browse the bookstores, get massages and live life like I do in the states just speaking Spanish. Which brings me to say that Mexico City is a very large city and with that brings the problems of urban living. I come from a large urban city in the states and implement the same street smarts here that I do in the states. I am a bit baffled about what I read. I have read and been told by my Mexican friends that there are dangerous places and if I were to travel in Mexico I would seek their advice and take their recommendations. Maybe I have been very lucky! If so that is okay by me. I would recommend Mexico City for a visit. There is so much to do here and lots of history to be learned. I think if you are prepared, come with an open mind, be smart about things and follow advice of people in the know then I think all is okay. There is always the chance something could happen but if you have taken all precautions and been smart and something happens then that is just bad luck and I am sorry!

February 1, 2012 at 12:16 am
(90) Hans says:

I wanted to see how tough these border towns are so I went to the one across from Douglas, AZ. They had alot of bars there so I got drunk, smoked marijuana and became abusive with the locals when I would knock on their doors to use their toilets. Nothing happened; even the cops were unsure and avoided me. It’s all about not being scared and showing courage (with the help of cerveza) and being direct in your actions.

March 8, 2012 at 9:41 am
(91) Oskar L says:

I’m blessed that our company has a condo in Puerto Vallarta and in all my travels (as recently as beginning of February 2012), I have never felt afraid for my, or my fiance’s life. People are incredibly nice, but most importantly the locals understand that if something happens to an American tourist there, their economy is DEAD! I mean their economy already suffers as a result of all the negative publicity, but frankly it’s very safe! So go crazy, and tell people what you saw!

March 24, 2012 at 1:48 pm
(92) mary says:

Going to Mexico first time meeting my friends on mexican border in san dieago crossing with Greyhound bus is it safe ?

April 7, 2012 at 7:31 am
(93) Pernell says:

For some reason I keep reading how Tijuana is safer than various US cities. Has anyone else seen this behaviour?

Having looked at official data, Tijuana (with just 50% more residents) has (in fact) over 5 times as many murders as New Orleans – the US murder capital as Tom above said (his stats still underplay TJ’s murder rate severely as they’re probably from the police) – so I don’t know who the hell is spreading these scurillous lies about TJ being safer than cities in the states.

April 16, 2012 at 11:35 pm
(94) Brenda says:

I’ve been living in Mexico City for almost a year now. I’ve never felt unreasonably unsafe. I make sure that if I’m going to be out after 9 or 10, I get someone to give me a ride instead of taking public transportation, and I’m always aware of my surroundings, especially when I’m traveling alone after dark.

Only once did I have a little scare–a guy was eyeballing me on the metro (subway). I moved down a few cars, and when I got off, I ducked into a 7-11 to make sure I wasn’t followed. When I was sure I wasn’t being followed, I walked the five blocks home without incident. It was about 9 at night.

I actually felt more unsafe when I visited New York City a few years ago than I have while living in Mexico. Sure, there are places I know not to go, especially at night, just as there are in any city. I take reasonable precautions such as not carrying a lot of money/valuables with me and dressing like a local. (the alabaster white skin and blue eyes are harder to deal with). Speaking Spanish also helps.

I’m considering moving back here once I’m married. I would not hesitate to raise a family here.

August 9, 2012 at 1:11 pm
(95) Karen says:

There are so many wonderful destinations in Canada why take chances with your life enjoy what we have!

August 9, 2012 at 1:50 pm
(96) Wilson says:

People tend to forget that Mexico is a 3rd world country, make no mistake about it, and their political apparatus is too incompetent (and corrupt) to deal with it. If you have any troubles there, as we did, good luck getting any help…they may as well openly admit they operate under the “Law of the gun”. Justice and injustice in Mexico is served up by the drug cartels….I will give their politicians some credit, you won’t hear them say they are in public life to serve their nation as our mental midgets will constantly opine….like politicians everywhere its all about the money and there is no reason for them to clean up the place. We could have had some help when we ran into troubles, but the public officials wanted their palms greased first!

October 1, 2012 at 4:42 pm
(97) Martino says:

Mexico dangerous, Ha. Depends on whose stats you are looking at.
London, with strict gun regulations and about the same population as Washington, DC, has twice the number of violent crimes every year.
Nothing, maybe not even Iraq, could be as dangerous as some suburbs of Detroit, MI and Chicago, IL.
Stay home…lol

October 31, 2012 at 8:39 pm
(98) dodel.pixnet.net says:

Wonderful beat ! I wish to apprentice even as you amend your
web site, how could i subscribe for a weblog website?
The account helped me a applicable deal.
I had been tiny bit acquainted of this your broadcast provided vivid clear
idea

November 29, 2012 at 1:48 pm
(99) Rene'e says:

I enjoyed reading all of the comments and totally agree with many some even made me smile the good and the bad as some of the bad were things that never should have done in the first place . No matter where you are someome is watching you every minute. Ron, Linda, Xavier, right on. I have traveled for probably 50 years in Mexico, I am a very old lady, I go alone, I drive between 7,000 -10,000 mile per trip. Yes the usual trafic cop things but usually I have done enough things I should not have that by the time I do get stopped I am more than past due ! Don’t be an Ugly American and flash your money if you have that much. I cross the border into Tijuana and to Rosarito Beach weekly and have a wonderfull day. I use the dentist and eye dr. in TJ. and have for years. Give TJ another try as they are really cleaning up Revolution and the area around 6th street with some nice clean young people bars great food , famous places are returning, strip joints are being replaced with high class restaurants and many, many art galleries.

February 24, 2013 at 12:15 am
(100) Jeff Gorvette says:

What a joke. I think you’d be alot safer to travel around Mexico than you would to go to school/college in the US. Unbelievably blinkered views. If you dont go near borders, dont mess with drugs, then you wont find any problems in my experiences.

May 24, 2013 at 8:14 am
(101) Akki says:

Hey I am from India
I am posted in Mexico for a job
I am coming here within next couple of months
Tell me guys how safe it is

Leave a Comment

Line and paragraph breaks are automatic. Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title="">, <b>, <i>, <strike>

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.