Is Cancun Safe?

By Aaron Miller, Contributor

Ebola in Cancun? Updated December 05, 2014


Do Mexicans think Cancun is Safe?

According to Sergio Gonzalez Rubiera, President of the Mexican Association of Travel Agencies, the recent government warnings about travelling to Mexico do not include the Yucatan peninsula which is where Cancun is located. During a recent symposium in Mexico Mr. Gonzalez pointed this out in his remarks and insisted that Cancun is safe for all visitors. See the interview here:

Is Cancun Safe? Watch the full video

Ebola: Is Cancun Safe?

With global fears rising about the Ebola virus people are asking themselves "Is Cancun Safe?". Airport authorities are stepping up vigilance in Canada and USA when receiving travellers from Cancun and other locations. Like any busy tourist area Cancun carries an increased risk of exposure to most contagious threats. However, there is no evidence that Cancun presents a special risk case for Ebola exposure. There are some media reports about elevated safety risks in the Cancun cruise industry related to Ebola. Ebola, Is Cancun Safe? Cruise Ship Safety

Pervert in Cancun: How safe is Cancun?

The following indecent occurred outside of any hotel resort areas.

According to media reports a 41 year old man from Belize decided it was a good idea to force his way into a home and expose himself to a family including a young girl. An older family member living in the home contacted police who later captured the man.

More information about this Cancun safety incident can be found here: Is Cancun Safe? Indecent Exposure!

Is Cancun Safe Alert! Honeymoon ends in death.

A 55 year old man, Ray Cottam, from the UK was killed in an apparent hit and run incident in July while visiting Cancun with his new wife.

Is Cancun Safe Alert! Malaria in Cancun?

July 2012, In turns out that Cancun and much of the Mayan Riviera is regarded as a medium risk area for contracting Malaria according to the CDC (Center for Disease Control). When asking 'Is Cancun Safe?', many may be concerned about violence, drownings, and gang related crime in Cancun but there seems to be a small but real Cancun safety risk related to malaria. Malaria is a blood-borne disease caused by a parasite and is typically transmitted by mosquitoes. For more information about this 'Is Cancun Safe' risk read the complete article Is Cancun Safe? Malaria Risk. Want to see if Cancun is safe or a nearby area? Take a look at the CDC Malaria Map for Cancun here: Is Cancun Safe? CDC Malaria Map (zoom in on Mexico)

Is Cancun Safe Alert! What is Distraction Theft?

You are sitting on a seemingly safe bus in Cancun ready to depart for another city when a woman drops some coins on the floor around your feet. Of course you will help to pick the coins up right? Wrong. In this latest Is Cancun Safe update it seems that while a couple from the UK were graciously helping the coin dropping woman a pair of men were busy stealing their bags from the overhead storage area in the bus. They lost all of their money and passports. The details of this Is Cancun Safe alert story can be found here: Is Cancun Safe? Beware of Distraction Theft!

Is Cancun Safe Alert! Most wanted Fugitive Found in Cancun.

Remember this next time you see a person selling timeshares in the Cancun Airport. US Marshals have recently located a man who was on the most wanted list for decades. Turns out he was selling timeshares to Cancun visitors passing through the airport. Is Cancun Safe Tip: Walk straight through the airports arrivals area. You don't need to stop and provide anyone with information. The Cancun transportation, transfers,shuttle, and taxi service is outside anyone else trying to speak with you in the airport is trying to scam you. More information about this Is Cancun Safe Alert can be found here: Is Cancun Safe? Fugitive working airport!

Is Cancun Safe in June 2012?  June has been a quiet month for Cancun safety.

We are happy to say that there haven't been any widely published reports of violence against tourists in Cancun in June 2012.  We'll keep monitoring the situation and let's see if July brings any 'Is Cancun Safe' Alerts.  

There are local reports of scattered drug violence and typical crime continuing in the greater Cancun area but nothing stands out as being relevant to tourist safety this month.  Is Cancun safe? Well, it seems to be safe this month.  Enjoy!

Is Cancun Safe Alert! Shots fired at a Cancun Hotel and local businesses.

Recently a 3:00am attack on local businesses and a local hotel included shots from multiple weapons killing one person and damaging several businesses.  It appears that the attack was a warning to local businesses from certain criminal elements.  This incident occurred in downtown Cancun far away from the popular Cancun Hotel Zone.  This development doesn't appear to affect the safety of Cancun tourist populations and seems to be a local incident only.  For more info: Is Cancun Safe? Shooting Alert

Is Cancun Safe Alert!  Keep an eye on your drinks when in Cancun

There are various reports of Cancun tourists discovering that thier drinks have been tampered with.  The common suspicion is that unsuspecting guests don't pay attention to their drinks and someone else adds a drug causing them to become unable to resist or even unconcious.  In some cases the drugged Cancun guest is the robbed or otherwise assulted.  Who knows if the stories are true but it is becoming a common complaint.  So to help answer the question "Is Cancun Safe?",  it can be if you pay attention to who comes into contact with your drinks in Cancun!

Here is a link to one of the latest is Cancun safe stories: Is Cancun Safe? Tampered Drinks News Story

Is Cancun Safe? For 2012, here are some tips for tourists:

  • Cancun now has a 911 system for tourists but ask the hotel staff about the 911 system when you arrive to be sure your area is covered. Local residents typically dial 066 so keep this number handy too.  *** UPDATE: There is a new 911 system provided by Hop-on.  Read about it here: New: Is Cancun Safe & Safety 911 Services
  • Check your national government website for any travel warnings or a travel advisory to help you answer 'is Cancun safe?'
  • Bring the contact info for your consulate or embassy in Cancun. You may need it.
  • If you look for trouble you'll find it. Just like in any destination, don't look for prostitutes or drugs and you'll avoid 90% of the trouble in Cancun.
  • Need up to date info about if Cancun is safe? The USA Government has an info line for you to call: 1 888 407 4747 
  • Check with your doctor about getting a few vaccinations and immunizations before leaving for Cancun just in case.
  • Remember most deaths in Cancun are from drowning. This means don't get drunk and try to be Michael Phelps or attempt cliff diving in the hotel pool. In March of 2012 a Canadian man drowned in the Cancun surf.  Is Cancun Safe? Alberta Man Drowns in Cancun Beach Waves
  • Some beaches in Cancun have strong undertow and rip currents. To be safe in Cancun, ay attention to the beach warning flags and check with the hotel staff about the Cancun area beach conditions. The danger may not be obvious.
  • Use taxis that are flagged down by the hotel staff. They'll get one for you and the operators are usually well known to the hotel staff.
  • You need a safe shuttle transfer from the Cancun Airport to your hotel since taxis don't run at the airport. Book ahead and remember that they don't usually have child seats or handicap access vans.
  • El Centro or 'downtown' has a few bad areas so check with your hotel about the safe areas in Cancun's El Centro. If you want to enjoy real Mexican culture get out of the hotel zone but do it safely.
  • To help make sure your trip to Cancun is safe, get good travel insurance.
  • The weather in Cancun is usually beautiful but there are seasons and things to be aware of, especially UV index to avoid sunburn.
  • Typical victims of crime in Cancun have experienced thefts from hotel rooms, pick pockets, and minor assaults (usually tourist’s beer muscles at work). Sound familiar? Like any busy tourist place you need to guard your belongings and don't mouth off like you own the place.
  • Swimming pools in and around the hotels and resorts in Cancun are very nice and generally safe but the lifeguards may not be properly trained in CPR and the ‘on duty’ signs many times are a decoration only. There are numerous reports of lifeguards serving double duty watching the beach and the pools which can be hundreds of yards/metres apart. To be safe in Cancun, don’t assume anything and take care of your friends and family around the beaches and pool area.
  • The drains in the swimming pools may not be protected properly so keep youngsters away from them because nasty injuries, sometimes fatal, can happen when your get parts stuck in pool drains.
  • Avoid the temptation of going for a walk alone on the beach at 3 am. It may feel like a scene in a romance movie but it's a good way to get assaulted. Is Cancun safe tip: If you go out at night don't go alone.
  • Safety in numbers! Again, most bad things that happen in Cancun happen when the victim is alone.

Is Cancun Safe Video: Old Cancun Safe News Report

More info: Is Cancun Safe?

Considering the volume of people flowing through Cancun each year it’s quite safe, in fact the developed tourist areas of Cancun enjoy a higher level of safety then most areas in Mexico.


It’s unlikely that you will have any problems when having a safe Cancun vacation. Last year Cancun was the#1 tourist destination for Americans and hosted more than 20 million tourists.  Many can answer the question 'Is Cancun Safe?', with a resounding 'Yes'!


Every busy city has plenty of street crime, corruption, kidnappings, fires, drowning, and assaults. And comparatively Cancun, Mexico is safer than many big cities. The local population of Cancun is only about 600,000 people making it a large town by Mexican standards.


In 2010 millions of tourists from every part of the world visited safe Cancun. Most had a wonderful time but just like any other busy destination there are some idiots who cause trouble and there are innocent people who are in the wrong place at the wrong time. The risks are higher in Cancun because safety standards are sometimes lower than high-end first world destinations and for that reason you should consider yourself more vulnerable in Cancun.


Mexico as a culture tends puts a lower priority on some common sense safety precautions and the act of cutting corners stems from a desire to make more money. Mexicans, like everyone in the world, just want to get ahead and for some of them unfortunately the equation of safety = profit doesn’t add up.


So remember to pay attention and don’t show up with a sense of entitlement assuming that everything meets your native safety standards. You will have little success suing them if the railing on the balcony breaks, so don’t lean on it like it’s guaranteed to support you for example. A safe vacation in Cancun may be a refreshing exercise in how to look after yourself without trusting that someone else has ensured your safety.

Is Cancun Safe Video:Cancun Bar Fire

Is Cancun Safe Video:Cancun Victims

Is Cancun Safe Video:Cancun Beach Security

Is Cancun Safe: Drug cartel and gang violence in Cancun

How many tourists have been killed in Cancun as a result of drug cartel violence as of April 2011? Zero. In fact most of the tragic violence is happening in the North of the country. Cancun is safely over 1500 miles away from Juarez, Mexico and the Cancun timezone is even different than some of other drug violence areas in Mexico. Cancun is safely tucked away in the south-eastern part of Mexico and the Cancun coast is part of the Caribbean Sea. Cancun is generally not part of any major drug routes to the USA and there is very little cartel violence.  There is however a documented presence of the notorious Cartel 'Los Zetas' in the area so to enjoy a safe time in Cancun don't associate yourself with any element of the drug trade.

The most common cause of unnatural death to tourists in Cancun is drowning and a close second place cause is people falling from balconies.  so to increase your safety in Cancun, be careful on the balconies.

Where is Cancun?

Cancun Mexico is located on the southern tip of the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico.  Basically on the coast of the Caribbean Sea.