Mexico is a beautiful country with rich culture and history.
It’s also full of violence, drug cartels, poverty, and crime.
So if you’re going to Mexico alone – be careful out there. It’s not as safe as it seems.
Especially because the United States has tightened its borders in recent years – so now it’s much harder for Americans to travel south of the border without a visa or passport than before 9/11.
Here are some tips for traveling safely:
Rent a car.
Don’t leave that rented car alone at any point during your trips and always keep it locked up tight when parked outside. 3) If you’re not stopping for food/drinks along the way – don’t stop where other cars are parked, look for isolated places to park.
Never bring any valuables with you to Mexico, leave them in the U.S. and only take enough cash to last a few days at most – then deposit the rest into a bank account or use Paypal (you lose less money if your credit card is stolen).
Always stay within touristy areas of Mexico City and Cancun – and try to avoid the border towns.
Carry a very weak flashlight with you at all times, it’s not good for much but if someone approaches you at night from behind – shine it in their eyes and ideally run the other way.
Realize that most of these precautions don’t apply to Mexico City, which is quite safe and where I say the country’s pulse beats.
Never trust the locals – they’re polite to a fault, but always look out for yourself first and don’t let your guard down.
Don’t go out of your way, to have beers with random people you just met at the bar – and if someone invites you back to their house or hotel room, be wary.
If you’re a girl – don’t wear short skirts or walk alone at night.
Don’t think using drugs is cool because it’s not and avoid them if possible.
Here are my rules for traveling to Mexico: Take out travel insurance (just in case). Use Paypal for most of your money transactions in the country, and only bring enough cash with you for a few days, if that. Dress smart – especially in Mexico City and Cancun, where safety is not an issue (but still be cautious). Never have any drugs on you or drink too much at the bar/restaurant.
Put all of your valuables (passport, credit cards, etc.) in your carry-on luggage – they’re less likely to get stolen that way. Always keep an eye on where you’re going and where everyone else is going, especially at night (it’s very easy to walk into a dark alley alone).
Keep the car doors locked when driving through Mexico City , or any major city for that matter. Only sleep at hotels/hostels or friends’ houses that you already trust, and if possible – try to avoid staying in Mexico City, Guadalajara , or Cancun unless you have no other choice.
More importantly: ALWAYS be aware of your surroundings
Mexico is a beautiful country, but like any big city in any country – there are risks to take into consideration.