Monday, June 1, 2020

Is It Safe to Go to Mexico? Covid19

Covid-19 Map of Mexico as of 5/27/20

There is so much to see and experience in Mexico, but right now this wonderful country is off-limits for tourism.  Quintana Roo's beautiful Caribbean beaches are empty, markets are shut down, indigenous villages have blocked themselves off from the outside world for self-preservation and many, many other changes.

Akumal, Quintana Roo, MX

Othón P. Blanco, Quintana Roo MX
Crafts from Coba, Quintana Roo

Health-care in Mexico is much more limited than in the US and Western Europe.
In places like Mexico City there are first-rate doctors and medical facilities, but these are limited in number and many hospitals are over-crowded and not able to care for the volume of covid-19 cases they have been seeing. 

The situation is worst in rural areas, where the nearest health-care facility may be many miles away.  Some small communities have taken this situation in hand and, literally, sealed themselves off from the outer world.  This article tells of many small Maya communities in the Mexican states of Campeche have managed the pandemic.

Throughout Mexico, many small communities have sealed themselves off with roadblocks.

Urban centers such as Mexico City have very high rates of the infection and even though first-rate hospitals do exist there, there is not enough quality treatment to go around. 

There are some plans to re-open, at least part of the country.  Here is a brief overview-
There will be a phased re-opening as in the US, with resorts/beach areas among the first to open.  June 8-10 is a target date for the state of Quintana Roo, home to Mexico's Caribbean beaches.  However, this is just a target and it could change with conditions.  The June 8 date is just the beginning of the process of reopening. But on June 8, it will not be business as usual.

When you read Mexico's re-opening plan it is a very cautious one.  Moving from one phase to another will take time.

When you get there, do not expect the free-wheeling Mexico you once knew.  This article lays out opening steps in San Miguel de Allende, a wonderful art-filled colonial city and popular spot for tourists.  San Miguel has done well in the pandemic with low cases and deaths and hopes to keep it that way.  Their timetable for fully opening to tourism show that it will take a while.

The US is not permitting travel for tourism until June 22, so even if some beaches might technically be "open", they are not open for US citizens. This article from Forbes has a clear analysis of the situation-

Even when the country is more fully open, it is best not to rush into a Mexican vacation unless you are the type who can roll with the punches and are not on a strict time table.  The situation is fluid and it's hard to say when there might be a quarantine or something like that imposed.  During the pandemic flights from Mexico to the US have been subject to change and cancellation and you don't want to be delayed if you have important business to return to in the US.  If you have your heart set on visiting Mexico, keep doing your research and you will find guidelines that will make your vacation a great one. 

This blog will publish major milestones in Mexico's re-opening. 

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