Is It Safe to Travel to Mexico City?
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We show you Safety Tips Before Travel to CDMX
Mexico City is an incredible destination with a vibrant culture, multifaceted history, and many fascinating places to explore. There are many good reasons to visit Mexico City and there is absolutely no need to avoid a visit for security reasons. As one of the largest cities in the world, it is clear that there is a crime, but you can take some precautions to make your stay in Mexico City pleasant and safe. Read tips to minimize risk on your next trip.
The US Department of State Travel Advisory lists Mexico City at level 31, indicating that travelers should be more cautious. Some Mexican states have higher levels of travel consulting, including the neighboring state of Mexico. Travel Advisory alerts travelers to a petty crime that occurs in tourist and non-tourist areas and the fact that the city sees a violent and non-violent crime. They advise caution, especially at night and outside of busy tourist areas where police and security routinely patrol.
Is Mexico City Dangerous?
Mexico City is not a totally safe destination, but travelers who take safety precautions are unlikely to encounter problems. It is important to use common sense, avoid certain areas, and employ the same strategies that you would use when traveling in any big city. There is a large police presence, especially in tourist attractions. The criminals are not specifically targeting tourists; victims are often targeted based on an appearance of prosperity, vulnerability, or lack of awareness.
The Centro Histórico, Roma, Juárez, Polanco, San Rafael, Condesa, Zona Rosa and Coyoacán neighborhoods of Mexico City are well visited and generally safe. You may want to avoid the Merced and Tepito neighborhoods or practice high levels of caution in these areas, and places like Nezahualcóyotl and Iztapalapa, which are not tourist attractions, should be avoided.
Some types of crimes that you should be aware of when traveling in Mexico City are express kidnappings and virtual kidnappings.
- A quick kidnapping occurs when a person (usually a taxi driver or someone posing as a taxi driver) temporarily abducts their victim and forces them to withdraw the maximum daily amount allowed at an ATM. They can hold the person until midnight to withdraw the full amount again the next day. In express kidnappings, the victim is not usually hurt: the kidnappers' goal is to get money so that they release the victim. To avoid being the victim of express kidnapping, use safe transportation instead of calling taxis on the street, always be aware of your surroundings and avoid going out alone at night. Also, do not carry additional credit or debit cards with you; leave them in your hotel safe.
- In a virtual kidnapping, no one is actually kidnapped. This is an extortion call and the victim is the person who receives the call. They are usually informed that a loved one has been abducted and there may be the sound of a crying/pleading voice, apparently, the person's loved one asking for help. The caller may confuse the victim and trick her into providing important information. Virtual hijackers can use information obtained from social media to target potential victims. To avoid being a victim of this type of crime, avoid posting your exact whereabouts in real-time on social media, keep your family and friends informed about your travel plans, and do not provide personal or family information over the phone.
Is Mexico City Safe for Solo Travelers?
Individual travelers report that they feel safe in Mexico City. Try to learn some Spanish before you go, at least some phrases that will be useful to you. Make sure a friend or family member has a copy of your itinerary and an idea of where you are, and that they have a set time to check-in. Focus on the areas frequented by tourists and keep an eye on your belongings when you are away from home.
Is Mexico City Safe for Female Travelers?
Female travelers generally feel safe in Mexico City, but it is advisable to take some additional safety precautions. Young women traveling in particular and any woman traveling alone can be booed and subjected to unwanted innuendo. As much as possible, travel primarily during the day. Carry your essentials in a crossbody bag instead of a purse. If you go out at night, opt for well-lit areas and where there are other people nearby. Be careful in bars - keep an eye on your drinking and be careful when accepting food or drinks from strangers.
Safety Tips for LGBTQ+ Travelers
Mexico City is, in general, a welcoming destination for LGBTQ + visitors. Same-sex marriage was legalized in Mexico City in 2009 and the law offers protection against discrimination based on gender identity. There is a thriving gay scene and travelers are unlikely to be harassed.
Safety Tips for BIPOC Travelers
Mexico City is generally a welcoming and safe destination for BIPOC travelers. Although 1.2% of Mexico's population identifies as Afro-Mexican or Afro-descendant, it has only recently been officially recognized in the Mexican Constitution, with the majority living in the states of Veracruz, Guerrero, and Oaxaca. Travel blogger Tina Hawkins writes about her experience of being black in Mexico City and having people point to her and comment on her hair and skin in a curious way, but not in a way that seemed threatening to her.
Safety Tips for Travelers
Mexico City is a wonderful destination that offers good prices, has a rich cultural heritage, and wonderful museums and places to visit. Travelers must take the necessary care at any destination.
- Taking the metro in Mexico City can be a convenient and effective way to get around. During peak hours, the crowds are intense, making it easy for pickpockets to steal items without you noticing. Do not carry valuables beyond what is necessary and make sure they are hidden and not easily accessible if you are inside a crowded subway car. On some lines, there is a car reserved for women and children in front of the train.
- Use an authorized taxi for transportation from the airport or the bus station. Instead of hailing a cab on the street, use Uber or ask your hotel to call a cab for you; They will write down the number of the taxi that picked you up.
- It is best to use ATMs at bank branches during business hours, and the second-best option is at the airport or at your hotel. Avoid using ATMs on the street or in isolated areas.
- Keep a low profile. Leave your valuables at home or use the hotel safe. Do not wear expensive jewelry, watches, or other items that look expensive and may attract attention. Keep your phone and camera hidden when not in use. Try to mix as much as possible.
- Know what to do in an emergency. The emergency hotline in Mexico is 911, and dialing it will connect you with a bilingual Angeles Verdes operator.
We hope you enjoy watching this video about Safety Tips Before Travel to Mexico City
Source: Dallas and Aimee
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