Mexico is marked negatively by the United States, and that will affect you and your family.
Get your attention? Hopefully that’s the case because reading this is going to open our eyes. First let me anticipate, do not take the negative warnings for traveling to Mexico personally. They are not.
The United States Government issues travel alerts for every country on the planet. The problem is that, in the case of Mexico, these warnings could dry up one of the most important revenues that our country’s economy has.
Tourism is not just an industry; it is the only one that offers the most possibilities for rapid and sustained growth. Seen from outside the country, this is a tragedy and no one with the power to affect these cycles seems interested in lifting a finger and at least trying to remedy it.
There are countries for which tourism is like sacred cows, simply untouchable. In Mexico we understand the concept, but I wonder if we feel that the lack of tourism can ruin the national economy. This affects all of us, even those of us who are not dedicated to tourism. And that is why the question remains: how long is organized crime going to make tourism one more victim?
When you read the travel alerts from the State Department below, you will realize that Mexico is extremely attractive to foreigners from all over the world. Because, despite the seriousness of these alerts, foreigners continue to visit us.
When the United States warns against traveling to Mexico, its intention is not to harm us; His intent is to protect his people from being harmed by the ignorance of traveling to an inherently dangerous place.
There are four levels of travel advisory:
Level 1 – Exercise normal precautions.
Level 2 – Exercise increased caution around yourself.
Level 3 – Reconsider traveling to that site.
Level 4 – Do not travel to that location.
Countries that the State Department in Washington assigns a travel advisory level of 2 or higher also assigns an indicator of high risk.
Today all of Mexico is from level 2 to level 4.
Read the abbreviated description that the US government makes of the six Mexican states that occupy level 4, which is the top of warnings not to travel:
Colima: “Violent crime and gang activity are widespread. Kidnappings of Americans.
Guerrero: “Crime and violence are widespread. Armed groups operate independently of the government. Kidnappings of Americans.
Michoacán: “Crime and violence are widespread throughout the state. Kidnappings of Americans are widely reported.
Sinaloa: “Violent crime is widespread. Armed groups operate independently of the government.
Tamaulipas: “Organized crime activity, including shootings, murders, armed robberies, vehicle theft, kidnappings, enforced disappearances, extortion, and sexual assaults.”
Zacatecas: “Violent crime, extortion, and gang activity are rampant in the state of Zacatecas. Kidnappings of Americans are widely reported.”
The News Nation Now portal recently published that more than 30 million US citizens traveled to Mexico in the first 11 months of 2022. Not only that, the AAA agency showed that international tourist trips in the high season to Mexico increased 30 percent compared to 2021.
But News Nation also reported that Mexico is a “volatile” area and listed FBI data with the cases of 625 US citizens who were kidnapped in Mexico in 2021.
Six hundred twenty-five (625) cases. Almost two cases every day.
It’s a scandal! And yet they continue to visit us.
France is the country that best understands tourism and that is why it is the first tourist destination in the world. France received 90 million tourists last year. Mexico in 2022, came scratching the figure of 58 million. It hurts, and a lot!
Because before the pandemic we had 88 million foreign tourists, almost as many as the most visited country on the planet.
Mexico will be very beautiful and will be full of charms for foreigners, but be careful, because like any business, the tourism that arrives in Mexico is part of market forces and in that market, we are beginning to feel the pressure of competition.
Mexico is cheap. But other world destinations have already become cheaper. Thus, the Riviera Maya is very beautiful. But Hawaii is shading him. You also have to consider that not all American tourists seek beaches. This year, Europe lowered its prices and for the average American tourist, the entire old continent is now a bargain.
Americans, as part of their culture, listen what their government tells them. They believe in it with such faith that in cases such as travel warnings there is no one who can convince them to reschedule a trip they cancel it at once.
Low prices affect, but what can inevitably harm one of the several golden gooses that Mexico has, are the warnings that our country is very dangerous.
The notices are coming now as young Americans are planning their trips for the traditional spring break, which began on March 20 and ends on April 21.
According to AAA, the American Automobile Association, which is the most consulted travel service by Americans, Cancun, the Riviera Maya, and Mexico City are some of their main destinations during spring break. Cancun and the Riviera Maya are in the state of Quintana Roo, where travelers are advised to “Exercise Greater Caution.”
The warning reads: “There are no travel restrictions for United States government employees in the state of Quintana Roo, which includes tourist areas in: Cancun, Cozumel, Isla Mujeres, Playa del Carmen, Tulum, and the Riviera Maya.”
“However, staff are advised to exercise increased situational awareness after dark in the downtown areas of Cancun, Tulum and Playa del Carmen, and to remain on well-lit pedestrian streets and tourist areas.”
As a rule, criminals in Mexico are careful not to kill foreign tourists. But that is not always true.
In Los Cabos, at the tip of the Baja California peninsula and the Caribbean coast, state and local officials have recently sought help from the United States to take on organized crime that threatens to scare away tourists.
The states of Baja California and Quintana Roo, already exasperated, asked the FBI and the DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) to share their intelligence information to combat crime connected to drug trafficking. This led to a pause in shootings between gangs in the tourist areas of Quintana Roo, and there are local reports that drug sales to satisfy foreign demand no longer take place on the streets, although they continue, but more discreet.
Most US and foreign tourists who travel to Mexico spend memorable vacations without incident. But that does not appear in the United States press. And less with the force that they have in the minds of the people, the warnings not to travel to a specific place.
If things do not change in Mexico, the warnings from the United States will become more serious. In addition, Canada and the United Kingdom are already issuing similar notices. That is why it was important to share with you what these warnings consist of so as not to travel to Mexico.
Source: El Economista