Is it safe to travel to Cancun? Mexico’s Playa del Carmen resort issued with US State Department warning following … - http://travelporn.info | luxury travel sitesApril 17, 2018 1:04 pm
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ESCALATING drugs cartel violence has rocked the Mexican holiday hotspot of Cancun after nine people were murdered in a 36-hour period.
More than 100 people have now been killed in the popular beach resort since the start of 2018. Here’s what you need to know before you pack your case…
Forensic doctors carry the body of a Canadian woman found with multiple stab wounds in Cancun
Is it safe to travel to Cancun and other tourist spots in Mexico?
Drug-related violence in Mexico has increased massively in recent years with murders now commonplace.
Morgues even closed down in the Mexican state of Guerrero after they were deluged with gangland victims.
Many fatalities are those killed in turf wars between the different gangs competing for trafficking routes into the US.
Cops are trying to protect tourist destinations like Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Cozumel, Los Cabos, Puerto Vallarta, Acapulco and Nuevo Vallarta.
Armed police arrive at another murder scene in Cancun
However, in the first three months of 2018 more than 100 people were killed in Cancun alone.
In one 36-hour spell in April 2018 NINE PEOPLE were murdered.
There is currently an increased police presence in the Cancun area, including in the hotel zone.
US authorities have issued a “Level 2” advisory which tells travellers to “exercise increased caution in Mexico”.
It notes that “violent crime, such as homicide, kidnapping, carjacking, and robbery, is widespread.”
American revellers pose during the Cancun Spring Break party
What can I do to stop falling a victim to crime?
The chances of a tourist being murdered are still very slim as most killings are gang related.
However, crime and violence are serious problems in Mexico and the security situation can still pose a risk for foreigners.
You should research your destination thoroughly and only travel during daylight hours when possible.
Monitor local media and inform trusted contacts of your travel plans, advises the UK Foreign Office.
When driving, avoid isolated roads and use toll roads (cuotas) whenever possible.
A body bag is used to carry away another victim yards from a beach
Keep car doors locked and windows closed, especially at traffic lights.
There have been a number of violent carjackings and robberies along the Pacific Highway.
Those travelling in large camper vans or sports utility vehicles (SUVs) have been targeted in the past.
If you suspect you’re being followed or watched, drive to a police station or other safe place.
Be particularly alert on public transport, at airports and in bus stations.
Theft on buses is common so keep an eye on your belongings at all times.
Passengers have also been robbed and assaulted by unlicensed taxi drivers including in Mexico City.
Marines are regularly seen patrolling Cancun following an increase of gun crime in the last decade
Is there any special advice to women travellers?
Women travelling on their own should be particularly alert when travelling on public transport.
There have been incidents of rape on urban buses (micros) on routes in the south of Mexico City.
Most attacks have occurred early in the morning or late at night.
Several serious sexual offences have also occurred in tourist areas outside of Mexico City.
Take care even in areas close to hotels, and especially after dark.
Don’t leave food and drinks unattended in bars and restaurants.
Travellers have been robbed or assaulted after being drugged.
There have also been reports of tainted alcohol causing illness or blackouts.
A body lies in the street in Cancun – as the town is gripped by violence and gun crime
How can I beat the pickpockets?
Street crime is a serious problem in major cities and tourist resort areas.
Pick-pocketing is common on the Mexico City Metro and other tourist hotspots.
Dress down and avoid wearing expensive jewellery or watches and limit the amount of cash you carry with you.
Keep a close watch on briefcases and luggage, even in apparently secure places like the lobby of your hotel.
Take care when withdrawing money from ATMs or exchanging money at Bureau de Change.
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It’s generally safer to use ATMs during daylight hours and inside shops or malls.
Be wary of people presenting themselves as police officers trying to fine or arrest you for no apparent reason.
If in doubt, ask for identification and if possible note the officer’s name, badge number and patrol car number.