The U.S. State Department has issued a Travel Alert to Mexico. People are now wondering, is it safe to travel to Mexico? The Travel industry says absolutely yes, as long as precautions are taken.

The U.S. state dept issued this Travel Alert

This Travel Alert updates security information for U.S. citizens traveling and living in Mexico. It supersedes the Travel Alert for Mexico dated October 15, 2008, and expires on August 20, 2009.

“While millions of U.S. citizens safely visit Mexico each year (including thousands who cross the land border every day for study, tourism or business), violence in the country has increased recently. It is imperative that travelers understand the risks of travel to Mexico, how best to avoid dangerous situations, and whom to contact if one becomes a crime victim. Common-sense precautions such as visiting only legitimate business and tourist areas during daylight hours, and avoiding areas where prostitution and drug dealing might occur, can help ensure that travel to Mexico is safe and enjoyable”.

The State Department is advising travelers to avoid areas of prostitution and drug-dealing. The problem is increased violence near the U.S. borders due mostly to drug cartel wars. Americans have been kidnapped, injured or killed during violent attacks, mostly in non tourist areas. Its important to note that 20 million tourists and travelers visited Mexico last year, without a problem and had a wonderful experience. For the most part tourists have not been targeted.
However, When I hear clients say that they want to visit out of the area places when they travel to see “how the people really live” I want to SCREAM!!!! That is when tourists have the potential of encountering trouble.

Recently some colleges have issued warnings to students to avoid Mexico altogether during Spring Break. After all we know they usually do not go on organized tours.

Here are some suggestions for you to have a fantastic and safe trip to Mexico
~Travel on main roads and travel only during daylight hours
~Stay in known tourist areas
~Exercise caution in unfamiliar areas and always be aware of your surroundings.
~Avoid traveling alone
~Do not wear expensive looking jewelry
~Do not carry large amounts of cash or valuables
~Book excursions and tours directly from your cruise lines or Resort concierge – They will use legitimate vendors and the tours will be in safe areas.
~Leave an itinerary with family or friends who are not traveling with you
~Check and see if your cell phone carrier is capable of roaming or GSM or 3G international networks.
~Cooperate official checkpoints while traveling on Mexican highways

Following the above suggestions and using plain common sense will help you have a safe and grand Mexican Vacation!
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