Is Mexico safe? That's the question that gets a lot of media attention. When six tourists from Spain were raped earlier this month in Acapulco, speculation began anew.
But the tourism board in Cancun, 1,200 miles away and in a state for which the U.S. State Department has no advisory, wants the public to feel safe about visiting that region of the country, especially with the spring break vacation period looming. About 45,000 people visit during the spring travel season.
“Last year Cancun welcomed almost 4 million visitors, and while none of our tourists were victims of violent crimes, we understand that safety is always a concern when traveling to a foreign country,” said Jesus Almagauer, chief executive of Cancun Convention & Visitors Bureau.
”In response to that concern, and in an effort to dispel any misconceptions about the destination, we always amplify our security protocol during peak travel times to ensure the safety of every person visiting us,” says Almagauer, who adds that Cancun "has better safety records than most major U.S. cities."
Among the precautions the region takes during holidays is beefing up its lifeguard staff in the hotel zone and at popular public beaches such as Playa Delfines. The visitors' bureau also says special attention is given to main highways and cultural, sporting and recreational events.
Almagauer also recommends that visitors heed the following tips:
· Keep passports in a safe place
· Remember to save $23 for the airline departure tax
· Drive responsibly and never under the influence of alcohol
· Remember that life jackets are mandatory in certain water activities, such as snorkeling
Cancun, in southeastern Mexico on the Caribbean Sea, boasts that it is Mexico’s No. 1 tourist destination. Its shoreline recently underwent a $71-million makeover in which more than a billion gallons of sand were added to renovate the hotel zone’s seashore.