How Mexico Drug Violence Impacts Tourism Stats Worldwide: Tripadvisor 2014 Travelers’ Choice Awards

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Vacationers are still afraid of Mexican drug wars, cartels, and violence, despite the fact we don’t read as much in the media these days about deaths related to drug violence as we did say three years ago (of course aside from the recent Guerrero mass murders).

Every year, Tripadvisor, the world’s largest travel and tourism website, publishes Travelers’ Choice Awards rankings for worldwide, countrywide, and regional tourism preference in a number of categories. The 2014 awards numbers clearly indicate that vacationers are still leery of visiting Mexico, but that they do take solace in the comfort, safety and security of Mexico’s all-inclusive resorts, and prefer them over others around the globe.

Mexico did not rank at all in the World categories for Best Small Hotels, Best B & Bs and Inns, Best Destinations on the Rise, Favorite Restaurants, or in the more general category of Best Destinations. It did get one rating under the category of Best Beaches in the World, as number ten of 25 for Playa Norte in Isla Mujeres. Similarly it did make the grade under Best Hotels in the World, but only for The Saint Regis Punta Mita Resort in Punta de Mita. And presumably because of the dollar/peso exchange rate, it placed number 21 and 25 for Bargain Hotels in the World, with respectively The Bungalows Hotel (Cabo San Lucas) and Luz en Yucatán (Mérida).

However, it is in the category of Best All Inclusive Resorts in the World that Mexico indeed shines, suggesting when viewed within the context of its lack of placement in the other categories, that yes the public still fears for its safety because of Mexican drug violence, cartels and wars, but that vacationers feel safe and secure when they stay at an all-inclusive resort, isolated from day-to-day Mexican life.

In the category of Top 25 All Inclusive Resort in the World, Mexico took 11 rankings, including the top five of eight places. Here are the impressive results:

1) Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso (Playa Paraiso)
3) The Beloved Hotel (Playa Mujeres)
5) Excellence Playa Mujeres (Playa Mujeres)
6) Le Blanc Spa Resort (Cancún)
8) Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancún (Playa Maroma)
16) Excellence Riviera Cancún (Puerto Morelos)
17) Live Aqua Cancún All Inclusive (Cancún)
19) Club Med Ixtapa Pacific (Ixtapa)
21) Secrets Silversands Riviera Cancún (Puerto Morelos)
22) Cozumel Palace (Cozumel)
25) Sun Palace (Cancún)

Mexico is generally a safe country in which to vacation. Just stick to anywhere aside from where there is noted rampant violence related to drugs and drug gang turf wars. Of course the naysayers who have never even been here would disagree. Consider for example safe havens such as Chiapas, Oaxaca, San Miguel de Allende and similar expat enclaves, Yucatán, the Pacific resorts… and yes the all-inclusives. Be no more and no less prudent than you would vacationing in any other developing nation, and on balance you should be fine; and better yet enjoy your travel to Mexico as much if not more than other vacation spots.

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