Is it safe for Americans to go on vacation to Cancun? What travelers should know

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After the shocking shooting in Cancun, some Americans may be wondering if it is safe to visit the area.

The State Department has issued a level 3 travel warning for Mexico, meaning people should “reconsider travel” in the country. The warning was first launched in July due to COVID-19, according to the department’s website.

The current warning includes warnings about an increased risk of crime, including kidnappings, in parts of Mexico, including tourist areas.


Specifically, the State Department encourages travelers to “take extra precaution,” which is level 2 advice, when they visit the Mexican state of Quintana Roo – where Cancun is located – due to an increase in crime.

Mexico was marked with a Level 3 Travel Warning by the U.S. State Department due to the coronavirus pandemic earlier this year. (iStock)

On Thursday, two suspected drug traffickers were killed in a shooting that exploded in the beach area of ​​the Hotel Ziva Riviera Cancun in Puerto Morelos, Fox News reported earlier.

The U.S. embassy in Mexico issued a statement after the shooting, saying Mexican authorities were responding to the situation.


“We advise U.S. citizens in the area to contact family and / or friends to let them know they are safe,” the embassy said. “Affected U.S. citizens should follow the instructions of local authorities and call 911 if they have an emergency.”

The embassy also listed the actions Americans can take while visiting the area, such as monitoring local news, following directions from local officials, and avoiding congestion.

The embassy also said American tourists should “be aware of your surroundings” and “review your personal security plans.”


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has also issued a warning to travelers about visiting Mexico due to the pandemic.


The State Department also includes warnings about an increased risk of crime and kidnappings in Mexico. (iStock)

According to the CDC website, Mexico has a high level of COVID-19 cases. The agency recommends that people make sure they are fully vaccinated before traveling to the country.


According to Statista data, 21.73 million Americans traveled to Mexico in 2020 amid the pandemic, compared to 39.94 million in 2019.

Cancun saw a drop in visits from international travelers last year. In 2020, the city registered 2.3 million tourists, below the 6 million in 2019.

US News and World Report found that the best times to visit Cancun are between December and April to avoid “suffocating” fall storms and summers.


According to the crowded Numbeo database, Cancun has experienced a significant increase in crime over the past three years. The city is considered safe to walk alone during the day with risks that become “moderate” at night.

Meanwhile, about 2 hours and 40 minutes away, there is another popular tourist destination in Mexico: Cozumel. According to Numbeo, Cozumel has a low level of crime, although it has also seen crime increase at a high rate over the past three years.


However, the State Department advises visitors to the state of Quintana Roo in Mexico – where Cancun is located – to “take extra precaution”, which is level 2 advice. (IStock)

In summary, the State Department says that “violent crimes, such as homicide, kidnapping, car theft, and robbery, are widespread and common” currently in Mexico.

The two Mexican states where visitors can “exercise normal precautions” are Campeche and Yucatan, the department said.

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