Safety in the Yucatan Peninsula to Receive a $70-Million-Peso Investment

Although international media often portrays Mexico as a highly dangerous country, this is not the case in many of its beautiful states. We wouldn’t recommend wondering into places such as Guerrero, Michoacán or the northern border. But other destinations like Puerto Vallarta, San Miguel de Allende, Cancun, Playa del Carmen and Tulum are quite safe. In fact, it is so safe that many expats have chosen these major cities as their forever homes. Safety in Mexico has long been an issue. However, the government has put forward efforts constantly to keep tourist destinations as safe as possible. There is no need to worry for your safety in the Yucatan Peninsula.

Safety in the Yucatan Peninsula Comes First

Merida Mexico

Just recently, the Fund for Strengthening of Performance in Public Security Matters announced that they will be giving just over $70 million Mexican pesos worth of public security to the Yucatan Peninsula. They will be investing around $14 million of these in Merida alone. The four main municipalities in the state of Yucatan will receive just over $120,000 for security measures. This includes Merida, Progreso, Tizimin and Valladolid. The capital will be put forth for possessions to strengthen the presentation of the municipalities and the state of the public security.

Authorites are required to make the millions of annual tourists feel safe and protected in the tourist areas. This is because Mexico has experienced higher crime rates in certain areas, mainly amongst opposing drug cartels. Safety in the Yucatan Peninsula has risen concerns about whether traveling to the country is a good idea or not. However, tourist destinations are far from being dangerous.

Over the past 10 years only four major kidnappings have occurred in the state. Mexico certainly has some red-alert states. We cannot deny that. But in general, Mexico is quite a safe country in comparison to major cities in the United States or Europe. The efforts that the government is putting in to keep safety in the Yucatan Peninsula at bay are major. This is mainly due to its tourism-driven economy. That is why it comes as no surprise that places such as Merida, Cancun, Playa del Carmen and Tulum keep growing in tourism (a 4.3% in Quintana Roo, according to SEDETUR), and in real estate sales.

The Yucatan Peninsula is Still the Perfect Getaway

Safety in the Yucatan Peninsula

The southeastern region of the country continues to paint an image of relaxation, rejuvenation and of self-discovery. Here, you can find your dream home in the tranquility of the Mayan jungle, steps away from the turquoise Caribbean waters without ever having to second-guess yourself or your surroundings. The Yucatan Peninsula continues to grow and continues to put forth the life you’ve always dreamed of.


You Won’t Find This in the US! The Etiquette of Petty Thieves in Mexico

I’m always telling people that crime and safety, generally speaking, are not worse problems in Mexico than in the United States and most other countries – especially in the tourist areas.  Yet, it’s only fair (and helpful to any newcomers) to acknowledge that petty theft is in fact one of the few crimes that is worse in Mexico, and that people need to take some common-sense precautions to avoid it.

Basically, what it boils down to is don’t put your wallet in your back pocket, and don’t carry items of considerable value in plain sight.

However, this is not the point of today’s post.  The point is that in Mexico, in many cases, even petty thieves have a kind of an “etiquette” of how to treat the people they are robbing.

Consider this story that a friend of mine told me.

This (Mexican) friend of mine was in the old colonial downtown of Mexico City. (Mexico City is actually relatively low in crime, even compared to large U.S. cities, and  always listed on the “green light” list of safe places to travel in Mexico – but, again, that’s a side point.)

He and a group of his friends started off a friendly chat with some strangers.  At some point in the conversation, these strangers informed them that they were going to rob them! (You know, a nice friendly part of every daily conversation …) They were also informed that they had others waiting around the corners to get them if they tried to run away.  If they just cooperated and gave up their valuables, they would walk away safely.  Generally, in Mexico, cooperation is the best approach to take if you do find yourself the victim of petty theft, so these guys opened up their wallets, handed over their cash, their cell phones, etc.
hey got to this friend of mine. He didn’t have a cent on him.  The thieves took a look in his wallet to confirm that he was as cash-less as he claimed to be.  Satisfied that this guy really had nothing to rob, and didn’t even have a few pesos for lunch, he reached into his back pocket and pulled out a subway ticket.

“There you go, brother,” he said handing him the ticket, “now you can get home for lunch.”

The thieves made off with the valuables, and these guys were free to go home – without any cash, of course!

But imagine that; a thief feels sorry for you and gives you a subway ticket to get home!

I’ve heard other similar stories where a petty thief is convinced that their “victim” has less than they do, so they actually give that person something! It sounds ironic, but now and then, it does happen.

Now, I have to point out that someone who looks like a foreigner (most expats) will usually have trouble convincing a thief that he is needier than the thief.  Also, these stories are most certainly the exception rather than the rule.  But the point is, that as far as I have heard, this would simply never happen in the U.S., not even if the thief thought the victim was worse off.

Mexican petty thieves are not someone you want to bump into, but they do have their etiquette.


-by Thomas Lloyd
First Time Mexico Real Estate Buyer – 7 Steps

Travel Advisory Against Connecticut: American Woman Killed in Drug Conflict

“BREAKING NEWS: Travel Advisory against Connecticut: American Woman Killed in Drug Conflict”

“After a 40-year-old American woman was shot dead in a conflict involving the cocaine trade, U.S. Officials have issued an official advisory against travel to Connecticut, and have strongly suggested that Americans avoid New England …”

Sounds absurd doesn’t it?

Well, this would be only a little more absurd than many headlines that are thrown out there about Mexico.  The only part that’s more absurd is that if someone were killed in a drug conflict in Connecticut it would be taken for granted that it is an American.  Also, it would be impossible for the millions of Americans in the area to avoid such travel!
But there are two ideas we need to notice; one is that we don’t avoid going to Connecticut or the surrounding area because people are killed in drug conflicts. The other is that people do, in fact, get killed in drug conflicts and similar senseless crime on a regular basis there, as in many other parts of the U.S.

You can read the news story here.

Yet, if an American were shot in a drug conflict in Tijuana, it would be all over the news, and some Americans would be canceling their trips to Cancun.

People should always be careful when they plan their travels, whether it’s in Mexico or in the U.S.  But the best tool is to be informed by actual data and not by sensational news stories.

-by Thomas Lloyd
Mexico Closing Costs Kit

Are You Safe in Mexico? What about the U.S.? Australia Says “No!”

Just a little food for thought on this beautiful day!  It is no secret that Mexico has been the target of bad publicity over the recent years.  But why does Mexico get hit so bad without the mention that there is awful news happening all over the world?


It seems American’s are still incredibly fearful to travel to such an amazing place like the Riviera Maya, yet they remain content while crime is rising in their own back yards.  The fact is that no matter where you are things happen!  And that’s the truth!


But an interesting reaction that happened in the news struck me this week, after an Australian baseball player had been shot and killed, by two Oklahoma teenagers, while out for a normal training run.  Here’s the worst part – they said it was “just for fun!!” It seems we hear this kind of bad news more and more lately in the United States, yet the U.S. is never listed as a dangerous place to travel.

For what seems like the first time, a former Australian Deputy Prime Minister made a statement by encouraging a boycott against travel to the United States. Although this was not an official travel warning it was definitely a message pointing out that loose gun laws in the United States are offering more opportunity for these kinds of horrific scenes and it is indeed dangerous.


Remember Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut this past December?  The United States definitely has its fair share of life loss by innocent victims who were simply just in the wrong place at the wrong time.  I am not in any way bashing the United States, as I am American and love my country, but merely pointing out that their efforts to scare travel away from Mexico are not very justifiable when they have their own set of concerns.


And with that being said, I think that for the first time Australia made a bold move to point this out!


As an American living here in the Riviera for quite some time now I can honestly say that this is wonderful safe place to live and travel.  The type of crime that people are warned and afraid of in Mexico is restricted to other areas in which neither tourists nor expats are entering; and on top of that the specific kind of bad guys you are thinking of are not looking to kill or kidnap innocent bystanders, or to do it “just for fun” like the two kids in Oklahoma. This is a misconception that has been twisted by the media.


There are so many horrific things that happen in this world; killings, kidnappings, bombings, domestic violence, abuse of all forms but unfortunately there is no safe haven from those things. They happen everywhere and yes, even in the United States as you can see on the news every day!  I would encourage you to use your best judgment and listen to your gut all the time and everywhere.

Don’t refrain from an amazing country or city just because you heard a bad story on the news; you could actually be doing yourself a terrible disservice not discovering something so wonderful.


An American friend of mine recently expressed her feelings after coming back from Mexico City.  Her reaction was that she is sad that so many people in the United States will never know such an amazing beautiful city rich in culture, beauty, delicious food and fun, because the U.S. media has continuously worked to demolish its reputation.


I have to say I agree as I spent many years living, working and enjoying Mexico City as I do today in the Riviera Maya.


-by Thomas Lloyd
Mexico Real Estate Investment Kit

Where Is It Safe to Travel in Mexico? … to Live in Mexico?

Expats living in Mexico will almost invariably feel confident in the safety of the place where they live; being here in person allows people to experience first hand that life here is safe.

Yet many expats also want the experience of traveling to other parts of the country.  Those who aren’t expats yet (but are planning on it) will want to know which areas are statistically safe.

For these purposes, the US Department of State’s “Clear for Travel” list is useful.  I approve of this list, because it let’s people know that many parts of Mexico are safe for travel, and serves as a beginning of a balance to the negative travel advisories lists that have gained so much attention. (I also approve of the travel advisories list – people need to know where they shouldn’t go, too!)

As far as I know, this list isn’t exhaustive; if a place isn’t listed here, that doesn’t mean it’s not safe.  These are just the most frequently visited places that have been given a definite “clear.” So if the place you’re thinking of visiting is not listed here, do some extra research  before stroking it of your list.


The follow tourist cities and places continue to have no warning or advisories in effect:

Baja California Sur: No advisory is in effect.

Cabo San Lucas, San Jose del Cabo, La Paz, Todos Santos, Isla Espiritu Santo, Loreto, Laguna San Ignacio, Magdelena Bay


Campeche: No advisory is in effect.

Campeche City, Calakmul, Edzna


Chiapas: No advisory is in effect.

San Cristobal de las Casas, Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Comitán, Tapachula, Palenque, Yaxchilán, Bonampak, Toniná, Sumidero Canyon, San Juan Chamula, Zinacantan


Guanajuato: No advisory is in effect.

Guanajuato City, Leon, San Miguel de Allende



Acapulco, Taxco, Zihuatanejo, Ixtapa



Guadalajara, Puerto Vallarta, Tequila


Distrito Federal: No advisory is in effect.

Mexico City (Polanco, Santa Fe, San Angel, Coyoacan, La Condesa, Chapultepec Park, Bascilica de Guadalupe, Historic Center, Zócalo, Xochimilco, Teotihuacan, Templo Mayor, Bellas Artes)






Riviera Nayarit, Nuevo Vallarta, Punta de Mita, Sayulita, Bucerias


: No advisory is in effect.

Oaxaca City, Sierra Norte, Monte Alban, Mitla,  Teotitlán del Valle, San Bartolo de Coyotepec, San Martin Tilcajete,  Cuilápam de Guerrero, Tlacolula,  Huatulco, Puerto Escondido

Puebla: No advisory is in effect.

Puebla City, San Andres Cholula, San Pedro Cholula


Queretaro: No advisory is in effect.

Queretaro City, Bernal


Quintana Roo: No advisory is in effect.

Cancun, Riviera Maya, Tulum,  Playa del Carmen, Mayakoba, Akumal, Isla Mujeres, Puerto Aventuras, Cozumel, Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve,  Xpu-Ha





Tabasco: No advisory is in effect.



Yucatan: No advisory is in effect.

Merida, Chichen Itza, Isla Holbox,  Ek Balam, Valladolid,  Izmal, Uxmal


*There are advisories in effect for the state. The listed cities are okay for travel but you should exercise caution and stay within tourist areas.

(From the US Department of State, as listed in Journey Mexico.)

There are many safe places to live in Mexico, and even more great (and safe) places to travel to.


-by Thomas Lloyd
Mexico Real Estate Testimonials

How Does Mexico Compare to the 10 Best U.S. States for Retirement?

What’s the best place to retire in the U.S.?  A recent slide show at visualized and summarized the findings of a recent Bankrate survey.

You can go take a look at at, but a quick glance will show you that the results are … surprising.  The empty badlands and sprawling wheat fields of the Dakotas, the plains of Nebraska and the hills of the Appalachians – beautiful places, to be sure, but not exactly the sunny retirement that most people imagined.

So, what happened in this rating?  Is Bankrate just trying be counter-culture and shock people?  Actually, if you read the stats, they are just being realistic.  The classic favorites in the Sunbelt are simply too expensive for the average (or even above average) American.  To find a good balance of cost of living, health care, low crime and good services you have to look northward.

In my opinion, a much better solution would be to look southward – to Mexico that is.  Of the factors Bankrate considered, many locations in Mexico excel:

Cost of living – Mexico tends to be about half that of the U.S. on average.  I’m sure this means that most nice places in Mexico are noticeably less expensive than the states on that list.

Health care – Mexico’s healthcare has modernized significantly, and now has hospitals on par with private hospitals in the U.S.

Retire in Mexico Beaches

The beaches of Playa del Carmen

Modern services – Banks, supermarkets, transportation, etc. – these will be well run, modern and comfortable.

Crime rate – Surprisingly, many parts of Mexico are safer than many parts of the U.S.  Yucatan, for example, has a crime rate as low as Wyoming, one of the safest states.

Sunshine & warm weather – Many parts of Mexico enjoy sunshine over 300 days a year.  This includes beachfront areas and small lakeside towns in the hilly central highlands.

And … we can’t forget that with all this, you can still be on a beautiful beach, or perhaps a charming lake front if you prefer.  So, you can go digging up nice retirement towns in South Dakota, if you like.  I’m sure the people will be friendly and the landscapes will be beautiful … during the 3 months of summer, at least.

Or you could come down to Mexico and enjoy even lower cost of living, sunnier weather with most of the same benefits.  The beach will be much, much closer.

You choose.

-by Bea Lozano

Awa Condos Playa del Carmen