Mexico City - Safe?

Feb 12th, 2004, 05:13 AM
Original Poster
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Mexico City - Safe?

My wife and I leave for Mexico in 2 weeks. We planned on 3 days/4 nights in Mexico City prior to going on to San Miguele de Allende by bus for the rest of March. however my wife has been reading the warnings in guide books and has become paranoid about the dangers in Mexico City. Can anyone who has recently visited provide any words of assurance or should we just forget about Mexico City and go by bus straight from the airport to Queretaro for those 4 nights? Help please!
ERICE is offline  
Feb 12th, 2004, 05:44 AM
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Visited Mexico City many times without a problem. I just take the same precautions I would in any really large city.
RobertSDF is offline  
Feb 12th, 2004, 07:06 AM
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You definateley need to be aware of the precautions required for Mexico City and adhere to them. A friend's son ignored the warnings about VW taxis and was injured badly in a robbery. That said I have been to Mexico City several times, as recently as last June, and have not had any problems. I am quite careful however. It is an incredibly interesting place.
Dude is offline  
Feb 12th, 2004, 10:22 AM
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Hi, we were in Mexico City last year. It is a city so overpopulated that often gives you the feeling that it is not safe and I would say that you have to be extremely alert. Follow the rules.
Take a car called by the hotel or a reputable radio taxi, never onefrom the street( do not take the green and white taxis).
One more thing when you arrive at the Airport, take only the taxis that have a little plane on the door, you get a voucher at a booth, but be aware that there is another company that also has a booth, or shares the same booth, and charges double.
If I remember right the good guys the one with the little plane on the door
are called SITIO 300.
Do not leave anything of value in your hotel room, wear a belt, and be very alert. Otherwise it is a lovely city with a lot of wonderful things to do.
Where is your hotel located? May be you can call them and ask them how much you have to pay from the airport to the hotel.
Graziella5b is offline  
Feb 12th, 2004, 11:04 AM
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Yes, Mexico City is a dangerous place but you can go there and enjoy yourself with fairly minimal risk if you take the necessary precautions. Graziella5b has provided very good advice. I would also add that should you decide to take the Mexico City Metro (subway) you must be very careful. It is not unusual for people to be robbed on the train while other passengers look on. Get yourself a moneybelt before you go and use it.
JohnK is offline  
Feb 15th, 2004, 07:00 PM
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We went with our two teenage daughters and were pretty scared after reading all the warnings.

In reality, we found it to be like any big city, and certainly would not miss seeing this wonderful city because of it.

In addition to the other tips, I would add:
Use taxis from your hotel if possible

Plan ahead- have your taxi to dinner come back in a couple of hours to take you home. Get his cell phone number if possible.

If you have a great driver one day, hire him for your long day trips, such as to the pyramids. It is cheaper (and more comforting) to keep them all day.

For little jaunts around the city, we liked using the collectivo busses during the day. So cheap and there's safey in numbers as they say. Also found the subway very nice during the day.

We went to Oaxaca before Mexico City. You might consider going to SM d A first, so that you are more comfortable with the culture before hitting Mexcio City.
lcuy is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 08:02 AM
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Just returned from 6 nights in Mexico City with a dozen of our friends--a birthday celebration for my husband. We have been traveling to Mexico City for almost 30 years and have never had a problem if you take normal precautions as in any big city. Most of our friends had not been before, and uniformly were enthralled with Mexico City, and felt that their guidebooks had been over-emphatic in stressing crime problems, etc. To keep things in perspective, please remember that Washington DC crime rate is 220% higher than that of Mexico City!

We got our rooms at the JW Marriott through Priceline for $79! This is an absolutely lovely hotel in the Polanco area, very near to all the major museums in Chapultepac Park. Had no problems walking, using subway, hiring cars from hotel, and having taxis called from restaurants if late at night. But truly we never felt unsafe walking in Polanco area even late at night. Did always get a taxi from restaurants in Centro and Alameda area if after dark, but during the day these areas are perfectly safe.

The weather was beautiful--70s during the day, and sunny, with a bit of a wind in the evening. No trouble with pollution. Enjoyed using the rooftop pool at the Marriott.

Mexico City is so fascinating--world-class restaurants, incredible museums and buildings, etc.--it is a shame more Americans don't take advantage of a place that is so much easier to get to than Paris or Rome!
marilynl is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 09:42 AM
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I agree that Mexico City can be negotiated in saftey and is an interesting place to visit. However, a satistic that D.C. has a 220% higher crime rate? This does not correlate with any statistics I've ever seen, in paticular as Mexican crime appears to be highly underreported. Mexico City is an incredibly interesting place in which one must be very careful.
Dude is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 10:56 AM
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I was quoting from a paragraph in the Mexico City Handbook, published by Moon (sorry Fodors), which provided percentage comparisons, based (I think it said) on FBI indices, with Washington, Los Angeles, New York and Detroit. They also compared the number of reports by American tourists to US embassies/consulates, and said that for 1998 (the last full year for which statistics were available) the number of occurrences reported in Mexico City was only a small fraction compared to incidents reported in Paris and Rome (where, of course, I imagine there are many more American tourists, however).

I agree one has to be very careful, as in any large city, but I repeat that the reaction of 14 people visiting Mexico City last weekend was that they felt the guidebooks had been too emphatic with their cautionings. All of us were impressed, too, with the overall friendliness and helpfulness of most people encountered.
marilynl is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 03:53 PM
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Thanks to everyone who replied to my query about Mexico City. We are going to enjoy our time there with a greater feeling of confidence now.
Muchas Gracias!
ERICE is offline  
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