Is it Safe to Travel to Mexico in 2019?

Vacationers in Cancun

Many vacationers are questioning whether it is safe to travel to Mexico due to the highly publicized incidents of violence. With headlines about murders and drug cartels, it’s natural to be concerned about your safety. Here’s what you need to know.

The Safety Situation in Mexico

In 2018, Mexico experienced its highest number of homicides in history, with an average of 91 deaths per day. The country is plagued by drug cartels and criminal organizations, leading to a significant increase in federal crimes such as weapons possession, drug trafficking, and kidnapping. According to the U.S. State Department, more Americans are killed in Mexico than in any other country, with 196 U.S. citizens losing their lives there in 2018.

Assessing the Risks

While the statistics are alarming, it’s essential to put them into perspective. Carlos Barron, a 25-year veteran of the FBI, believes that Mexico is still a safe destination for travelers. He emphasizes that personal safety comes down to common sense. Taking precautions, such as being aware of your surroundings, locking your doors, and having emergency contacts and embassy information on hand, can significantly reduce risks.

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Travel Advisory and Dangerous Areas

The U.S. State Department has issued a level 2 travel advisory for Mexico, advising travelers to exercise increased caution. However, certain regions, including Michoacán, Guerrero, and Sinaloa, have a level 4 advisory, indicating “do not travel” due to high levels of drug cartel violence. Popular tourist destinations like Acapulco and Cancún have also experienced incidents of violence, with Acapulco being labeled one of the most dangerous cities in the world.

Safety Tips for Traveling in Mexico

Women Travelers

If you decide to travel to Mexico, it’s crucial to stay informed and take precautions to ensure your safety. Here are some practical tips:

  • Research the areas you plan to visit and stay informed about local health and safety conditions.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive alerts and make it easier for authorities to contact you in case of an emergency.
  • Avoid walking alone at night, especially in unfamiliar or deserted areas.
  • Keep a low profile, dress modestly, and avoid wearing flashy or expensive clothing and accessories.
  • Be cautious when accepting drinks from strangers and never leave your drink unattended.
  • Use official registered taxis or reputed radio cabs, and avoid public transportation at night.
  • Trust your instincts and be aware of your surroundings at all times.


Here are some frequently asked questions about travel safety in Mexico:

  1. Is it safe for women to travel to Mexico?
    Despite the high crime and murder rates linked to drug trade, many areas of Mexico are still safe for women. However, female travelers should remain cautious, especially in resort areas where incidents of assault have been reported.

  2. Should I cancel my travel plans to Mexico?
    Ultimately, the decision is up to you. It’s essential to weigh the risks and take necessary precautions. Staying informed, following safety guidelines, and being prepared can help mitigate potential dangers.

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Mexico, like any other destination, has its risks. However, with proper preparation and vigilance, you can still enjoy a safe and enjoyable trip to this beautiful country. Remember to stay informed, exercise caution, and prioritize your personal safety. Happy travels!

For more information about travel safety, visit iBlog.

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