(Closed) Tell me about your travels in Mexico…

posted 6 years ago in Travel
Post # 3
Member
2866 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

I haven’t vacationed there, but I do travel around there for work and I just have to say : don’t be afraid. I promise you, it is not scary. What is scary and dangerous is the border which are NOT resort areas and you as a tourist will never see. The news does a good job on reporting the dangers, but what isn’t clear, especially to people unfamilar with the area, is that yes Mexico is dangerous but not as a whole. Resorts are not areas where drug smugglers will or want to be. 

Like I said I have never actually vacationed there, but we are going there for our Honeymoon most likely. My pricing will be different since I am so close to Mexico, but from my searching ( in Cancun and Coz.) a week in a 5 star resort with a pretty upgraded room would be around $3k. Being open on when you will go and where in Mexico you will go helps a lot. A good site to look at so you can play around with all the option easily so you can get an idea of is the flight going to be way more flying to X than Z or is going 2 days earlier chaper is cheapcaribean.com 

Post # 4
Member
2866 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

Sorry for the typos, I’m still half asleep. 

Post # 5
Member
598 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

I haven’t been there, but i live in Texas.  I know around here everyone is warned not to go to Mexico right now.  If you were to go I would recommend an all in clusive resort and not venturing out anywhere.  It’s really volitile down there right now. 

Post # 6
Member
13099 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2010

Darling Husband and I spent 10 days in Cozumel and Cancun in November and a bunch of my family went to Playa Del Carmon after Christmas.  Never felt unsafe at all!

The border towns are really where the big concerns are, not the tourist areas.  Obviuosly, like anywhere, be aware of your surroundings and don’t go too far off the beaten path.  But I have zero concerns with travelling to Mexico.

We stayed in Moon Palace for the Cancun part of our trip but I can’t tell you about costs because my ILs booked it as our X-mas present.  But the resort was really nice and all-inclusive.  We also went off resort to go deep sea fishing one day.

In Cozumel, we stayed at Fiesta Americana but we were scuba diving all day there and, while the resort is all inclusive, it is more geared towards divers and has a lot less frills for the relaxing vacationer.  It was perfect for what we were looking for though.  We also explored downtown Cozumel (by the cruise ship piers) one evening but that kind of stuff isn’t really our cup of tea.  Too touristy since it is geared towards all the cruise ships.  And again, price doesn’t really help because we were paying for diving (which isn’t cheap but you wouldn’t have to worry about).

I would definitely go back to Mexico again but I do also prefer to go to new places so it may be a while before we do.

Post # 7
Member
2394 posts
Buzzing bee

  1. What area did you choose and why? Playa del Carmen (The Royal). We loved the proximity to Cancun but that it wasn’t as touristy as Cancun. It is also a short ferry ride away from Cozumel.
  2. Did you feel safe when you were there? Yes, completely safe. And we stayed at a resort that was right off the main avenue in town. We didn’t want a totally secluded resort. We wanted something near town so we could explore it when we wanted. We felt safe walking around 5th Avenue. Obviously you have to be careful and smart but there were police officers patroling the area at all times. They realize they have to keep it safe or tourists won’t visit
  3. Did you leave the resort and explore a bit on your own? We walked around 5th Aveune quite a few times. We also took a tour down to see the ruins at Tulum. My parents went to Cozumel and my inlaws took a tour of Chitzen Itza.
  4. Would you recommend the resort that you stayed in (please elaborate)? Absolutely, we LOVED The Royal. Extraordinary service and food. Adults only. Close to town. We definitely want to go back in the future!
  5. Roughly, how much did the whole trip cost you? Well, ours was an interesting trip as it was our wedding/honeymoon. We stayed two nights at the Gran Porto (a sister resort of The Royal) across the street then seven nights at The Royal. The 10 day/nine night trip, including flights from St. Louis, was $4,000. My parents stayed for five nights and their trip, including airfare from NYC, cost $2,400.
  6. Would you go back again? In a heartbeat! Actually, my sister-in-law is going back to The Royal with a couple friends in August! 

Post # 8
Member
2866 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

@furtureffcaptwife:  I think what you are confusing is not driving over the border and/or staying in a border town and avoiding Mexico as a whole. There are no travel advisories anywhere saying to avoid Mexico. A tourist flying in will never see or go near a border. I’m sorry, this just really bugs me. People spreading fear when there is no need to have fear as long as you are smart about your travels which you should be vigilant anytime you leave the country. 

 

Post # 9
Member
2065 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: December 2011

I got engaged in Cabo in early 2011 and it was absolutely beautiful!

Honestly, those warnings have been around what seems like forever. Stay away from the border towns, where the violence is. Tourist areas are so heavily populated and tend to have more police around the area. I’ve been to Cozumel and Cabo San Lucas and never once felt unsafe.

In Cozumel, we didn’t stay, it was a cruise, but we wandered around on our own and felt totally fine. We didn’t stay at a resort in Cabo. We went with a group and rented a villa through cabovillas.com. Every day we’d call a cab and go into the main area of town by the water. Again, never felt unsafe, walked around all day with just me and my now husband. I mean, as long as you don’t go wandering down random back alleys at midnight and have some common sense, you should be ok. The resort towns that are full of tourists are generally pretty safe.

Post # 10
Member
6512 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

I went to Playa del Carmen (about mid-way between Cancun and Tulum) with my best friend a couple of years ago, and I absolutely LOVED it!  The area is absolutely gorgeous, beautiful beaches, and a much more grown-up vibe than spring-break-y Cancun (which I honestly did not like).  Playa has a more worldly feel, with lots of European travelers, and on the average night out on the main strip (Fifth Avenue), the crowd tends to be in their mid to late twenties.  It is such a fun place, and moreover, we always felt completely safe.  We stayed at the Royal Haciendas, which is not all inclusive, so we were out on the town almost every night.  Even when we were drunk and stumbling around the streets late at night, we never felt unsafe or even uncomfortable.  And that includes when we left the main strip! 

Playa is just fantastic, and the resorts are mostly secluded, so you will have absolutely nothing to worry about there.  When you do go into Playa (and you totally should!), you can stick to the tourist-friendly Fifth Avenue and have plenty to do.  Once you get there and see how lovely and welcoming it is though, you might venture out a bit more 🙂

Post # 11
Member
485 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2012

Mexico is scary in the same way that Manhattan is scary.  Mostly it’s safe.  Mostly it’s fabulous and Mostly you’ll have a great time.  Just don’t be dumb about it.

The same rules apply in Mexcio as in Manhattan.

When you leave the aiport just ignore all those homeless dirty people trying to be your friend.

Don’t follow a guy who looks “shady” down a back alley to “get a deal”.  He’s not REALLY an authorized Louis Vuitton or DeBeers distributor and no matter what he says… those aren’t real.

Don’t leave your hotel drunk and alone in the middle of the night and walk around.

Don’t give your money to little kids peddling fruit or pictures “because they’re cute”.  They’re not.  They’re scammers.

Don’t get in a cab that doesn’t have a Taxi medallion or the Taxi ID documents posted.  Always negotiate the fare up front.  Getting a cab from a hotel stand (even if it’s more expensive) will generally be safer than hailing a cab on the street.

DO utilize your hotel concierge.  They will know the local spots that are safe and can probably arrange transportation.

Ice is made from water.  The ice in your drink at the hotel or resort is fine.  The ice in your drink at the local bar is probably not.

Ask if you should brush your teeth with bottled water.  Even though the ice may be filtered and purified, the water in the room might not be.

 

That being said….. I’ve been to Cancun / Riviera Maya / Playa del Carman several times.  We stay in an all-inclusive resort (and really, any of them are fine) and plan leaving the resort  1 day to the tourist shopping area and then another *night* to a local restaurant for dinner.  The rest of our trip is usually diving or just lounging at the pool.  Typically your hotel can provide transportation from the airport to the resort.

My sister goes to Isla Mujeres (which is the upper class island off the coast of cancun) and loves it.  That’s a little out of my budget, but if you can swing it…. it’s probably nicer than cancun.

I would also throw out that any of the Virgin Island resorts and/or islands in that area are fantastic.  Also Grand Cayman is phenomenal.  I prefer them to Mexico and the flight is pretty much the same distance.  What I would REALLY recommend is the Marriott resort on St Kitts.  That island is VERY small and beautiful and there is virtually NO crime.

Have fun.

 

Post # 12
Member
1815 posts
Buzzing bee

    1. What area did you choose and why? We went to Playa del Carmen, MX. We had friends/family visit and recommend it.

      1. Did you feel safe when you were there? Yes. Absolutely. We never felt unsafe.

        1. Did you leave the resort and explore a bit on your own? Yes. We went into the town several times to shop/explore. We also went on a dolphin swimming excursion that was about 30 minutes away from the resort.

          1. Would you recommend the resort that you stayed in (please elaborate)? The resort we went to was beautiful, but it wasn’t all-inclusive. It was the Grand Mayan Riviera Maya.

            1. Roughly, how much did the whole trip cost you? Our trip was a part of a time share, so this won’t really help you. Our flights were $360 each, roundtrip to Cancun. We only had to pay for food while we there, and we had a $300 resort credit. We spent about $350 on food/drinks. So I think it was around $1,500 when you add up the flights, tips, food/drink, excursions, and shopping.Our trip was 5 days.

              1. Would you go back again? ABSOLUTELY. We loved playa del carmen!We would definitely stay at an all-inclusive next time, though.

              Try looking at allinclusiveoutlet.com, they have lots of great deals that include airfare! You can also filter results by adult only/couples only..if that interests you! We almost booked through them before going with the time share from a family member. Playa del Carmen is about 30 minutes from the airport (fly into Cancun) and looked a little nicer than Cancun. Cancun is a great spot for partying, where Playa is nicer for relaxing.

              Post # 13
              Member
              900 posts
              Busy bee
              • Wedding: November 2011

               I’m also a texan, and a lot of areas of Mexico are fine. I would agree that if you want to be super safe, to avoid the border towns for now, but I do know friends from both Nuevo Laredo and Jaurez and they still go home (driving across the border) all the time and are fine. 

               

              The past 2 summer in a row, I have traveled…..solo…as a female guerra 😉 all over Mexico and Guatemala and the worst thing that’s happened to me is somerude mariachis catcalling nasty things while I was walking at night in D.F. (mex city) and 2 ass grabs in different cities in Guatemala.  I flew into Gudalajara and traveled by bus to Guanajuato, Morelia, D.F., Oaxaca, Veracruz, San Cristobel de las casas, and a few more places that i’m leaving out here. Yup. traveled alone. on public transportation. and it was AMAZING. I never went out alone at night (but i wouldnt walk around in a strange city at night here either) and never had anyproblems whatsoever. and i didnt even stay in resorts–just hostels and local hotels.

              Post # 14
              Member
              6248 posts
              Bee Keeper
              • Wedding: August 1900

              Fiance and I are headed to Mexico for the first time for our honeymoon.  We spoke to several AAA agents about safety in the country.  They said most of the cartel violence is near the border, mid-country, and the Pacific side.  The Caribbean tourist spots are generally pretty ‘safe’ (as safe as most tourist spots).

              There are a few maps of the violence that we found when doing our own research:

              http://www.cancunissafe.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/MEXICOMAP4.pdf

               

              http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-10681249

               

              This one is a Google map.  You can click on the markers to see how many deaths in that area.   (From this website, in case the link doesn’t work.)

               

               

              Post # 16
              Member
              853 posts
              Busy bee
              • Wedding: June 2012

              We’re going to Puerto Vallarta – Hotel Bárcelo – it’s insanely cheap. We have our all-inclusive hotel AND flights for five nights at about $2000.

              I haven’t been there yet, so I can’t answer a lot of your questions, but there are THOUSANDS of reviews for this place online. Most are about 4-5 star ratings from people on TripAdvisor. We’re OK with them not all being 5 star ratings, because we’re pretty easy to please and we’re not staying at a 5-star resort. With that said, we can’t wait!

              We’ve heard really good things about safety in PV. I have lots of family and friends who have been to the city and rave about it.

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