When we ask our clients about their interest in Mexico, we almost always receive a very binary answer: love or hate. Excitement or avoidance. But, more often than not, those who veer away from considering the destination do so out of concern from what they’ve seen or heard about in the media, not necessarily firsthand experience. That’s where we come in. We do have firsthand experience with the destination, both from years of sending clients and from multiple work trips across the country.
Mexico tends to get a bad rep, but should it? We don’t think so.
From our experience, Mexico is an awesome destination for an excellent value for a number of different types of travelers and budgets. From multigenerational families to honeymooners, from moderate to luxury, there’s a little something for everyone – and, because of its central location and high amounts of tourism, it tends to be a much easier to reach destination. For example, for our travelers from Atlanta, you can leave from the airport in the morning and be on a beautiful beach before lunchtime.
Whether you’re up for the destination or not, it’s our job to inform and educate you on the facts that we’ve encountered. More often than not, travelers are concerned about one of the following three S’s: safety, spring breakers and seaweed.
Let’s take a look at each of these worries from the perspective of a professional, should any of these be holding you back from a great travel experience to this destination!
When we see Mexico in the news, it is typically related to safety concerns, which we do not take lightly. The majority of the crimes that we hear about are gang-related, typically very targeted acts that do not affect the areas that are high in tourism. The most important thing to know about Mexico is that it is a huge country with multiple states. Simply because you see Mexico in the headlines doesn’t mean that the entire country is riddled with that level of crime.
It’s wise to keep an eye on the US Department of State’s Travel Warning System (here’s the link specifically to Mexico), where you can read about the overall sentiment. At the time of this blog, Mexico overall was linked as a Level 2 Travel Warning, which is one of the most common ratings from the US on other countries, simply meaning to exercise increased caution, as you should when traveling anywhere in the world. Much of the Caribbean and Europe, for instance, are listed as Level 2 Travel Warnings.
Mexico’s initial negative reputation came from the throngs of Spring Breakers that used to fill the beaches. Because of the affordable price point, it was at one point the most popular destination for party-seeking college kids to visit.
To say Mexico has grown up from this scene is an understatement. While there are certainly still some hotels that cater to this crowd, there is so much more to the Mexico hotel scene than a cheap all inclusive. In fact, Mexico is home to some of the finest luxury properties you’ll find in North America, both all inclusive and non. The level of service and attention to detail in their luxury hotel scene are unparalleled. It’s all about where you stay, and that’s exactly why you should work with a travel advisor to guide you. When you stay at the right hotel, you would never even known Mexico had a spring break scene.
Over the past couple of years, Central America and the Caribbean have experienced unnaturally large sargassum seaweed blooms. In the summer of 2019, this bloom first affected the Eastern Coast of Mexico, leading to a number of doomsday headlines about Mexico’s ruined beaches. What you need to know about sargassum seaweed is the unpredictable nature of the occurrence: as quickly as it comes, it can quickly disperse as the tides change. This means that it can even move from beach to beach in the same area. The 2019 bloom was a freak occurrence that has gradually made its way out of Riviera Maya and in no way did it leave the beaches uninhabitable. While the seaweed was present, the luxury hotels in Central America and the Caribbean did everything in their power, including hourly raking, to lessen the affects. Once the seaweed had moved out, the beaches were as good as new – in no way damaged by the experience.
In fact, the Epperly Travel team popped down to several spots around Riviera Maya back in July and were pleased to report how much the seaweed had moved out by that point. In fact, certain spots along the coast managed to remain protected from seaweed because of their location – another great reason to work with an advisor who can steer you toward these areas, should future seaweed blooms be a concern.
To conclude, we believe that any and all travel concerns should be taken seriously, which is why we take the time to research and educate ourselves and, in turn, provide as many straightforward facts as we can to our clients when it comes to travel worries. Our team’s perspective is that of your travel partner: here to serve you as our client, address your concerns, and ultimately help you get to a place you’re going to love for your next getaway!