Why Mexico is Safe!
Mexico has a bad PR problem! Some regions in Mexico are definitely not safe, and we won’t be anywhere near those. (Ciudad Juarez, Tijuana, Acapulco, for example–see below for distances.) But in many cities, towns, and rural areas, local residents and tourists safely go about their daily business without any problems, far from the violence of the drug cartels.
Oaxaca City and the surrounding areas have a low crime rate, and we have always felt very safe walking around day and night, with kids and alone. The biggest news out of Oaxaca has been the teachers’ strike, which has ebbed and flowed over the past 7 years. Demonstrations in Mexico are not uncommon, and usually are not violent. While generally they are simply annoying–blocked roads and difficult access– we will always be watching out for possible protests and if any occur during the course of our trip, we will make every attempt to relocate both for ease of travel and everyone’s peace of mind.
As for health, we will provide specific recommendations for eating and drinking, and with some care everyone should be able to stay healthy. In the event that a member of our group needs medical care, Mexico has some world class hospitals. In Oaxaca, there are a couple of excellent private health care facilities, and Mexico City is only a 40-minute flight away.
The health and safety of our groups is always our first concern, no matter where we are in the world. Wherever we travel we always have locals keeping an eye on things, and we are registered for alerts with the US Consulate and other relevant organizations. If we encounter a situation that may jeopardize our safety, or if we feel uneasy about any development, we will immediately make changes in the itinerary. And remember, Footprints staff bring their own children on our trips, so we will be thinking not only as professionals, but also as parents.
For some perspective on distance:
- Oaxaca to Ciudad Juarez about 1500 miles
- Oaxaca to Tijuana 2000 miles
- Oaxaca to Acupulco 654 miles
- Mexico City to Ciudad Juarez 1200 miles
- Mexico City to Tijuana 1700 miles
Resources for further reading on safety issues:
The US State Department travel advisory on Mexico offers a detailed safety breakdown of every state in Mexico.
This Lonely Planet article describes relative crime rates from a good selection of sources.
How Safe is Mexico also puts Mexican crime into perspective.
This article from the Seattle Times summarizes the US State Department advisory and adds some good resources.
Contact us with questions or concerns! Email 617.651.1013