Friday, January 12, 2018

Full Detailed State Department Mexico Travel Advisory and travel tips

By Chivis Martinez for Borderland Beat


After the U.S. State department’s 10.10.2018 Mexico travel warnings, many people were confused and wondered why a certain city or state was not on the list.  The fact is, main stream media chooses to highlight certain locals and only include a morsel of the overall listings.  For whatever reason seldom is the actual warning republished in full. I have uploaded the warning to my scribd page and embedded it in this post.  This gives you a total and accurate account of the advisory.

It lists states, cities, level of caution, with level 4 being the greatest warning, stating an entire state should be off limits regarding travel. It also gives specifics to each locale and what restrictions imposed on government employees.

As far as travel, some common sense actions should be followed, like the use of ATMs, or which taxis to use or avoid, but since narco violence is fluid, one really should check and know before you go.  
Advisory warning system

The travel advisory system the U.S. uses 4 warning levels and color codes marked on a map;

  • 1 Exercise normal precautions–No Color
  • 2 Exercise increased caution-Yellow  
  • 3 Reconsider Travel-Orange
  • 4 Do not travel-Red
Keep in mind that the warnings are based on all crimes and are not specific to crimes related to foreigners.  Also are not area specific, meaning the violence may be in a city but not in an area frequented by tourists.  Mexico places high value on tourism and it is typical for the federal government to send in the military to guard resort areas.

The State Department has reported “that major international tourist destinations in Mexico are safe" and have no travel restrictions.

Every country in the world is evaluated using this system.

As a country, Mexico was given a level 2, or "exercise increased caution," putting it in in the same category with France, Spain and the United Kingdom. A noted difference is that  Western European countries' advisories are based on terrorism, in Mexico it is based on criminality.

Click on any image to enlarge

Travel Advisory Map

Travelers can also use the color coded map state map.  The state of Quintana Roo [Cozumel, Cancun, Tulum, Playa del Carmen and Cancun] is outline in green meaning no advisory is in effect]
Last year there was a level 2 advisory for Quintana Roo stating "turf battles between criminal groups that have resulted in violent crime in areas frequented by U.S. citizens."

This year,  Baja California Sur, is outlined in yellow, color code for Level 2, with the State Department suggesting "exercising caution in of La Paz", and said that the state capital city registered its highest homicide rate since 1997.

However, elsewhere in Los Cabos in Baja Sur, there are no travel restrictions.

Other Tips

Check the State Department website.  

If information confuses, call the consulate ask for recent activity.

I advise that in most cases if you check the position of the U.S. government, regarding travel by government employees, that is a pretty good compass.

Check consulate/embassy websites for advisories and advice for specific travel.

Register with STEP. The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program is a free service to allow U.S. citizens and nationals traveling and living abroad to enroll their trip with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.  https://step.state.gov/step/ 
  • Receive important information from the Embassy about safety conditions in your destination country, helping you make informed decisions about your travel plans.
  • Help the U.S. Embassy contact you in an emergency, whether natural disaster, civil unrest, or family emergency.
  • Help family and friends get in touch with you in an emergency. 


Don’t rely on news articles.  They are grossly wrong or incomplete.  Examples; a recent story headline  “11 killed in Acapulco”  when in fact it was a ejido dispute with the government over 2 hours travel time away from Aca. [See the distance in the map below.]


Or the reporting on “Los Cabos”.  Headlines touting an incident “in the tourist mecca Cabos” without clarifying it was in San Jose not San Lucas.  A world of difference.   Although there are no advisories on either. Be aware, informed, careful, but also be smart in knowing what the truth is.

Remember, 20 million trips to Mexico by Americans each year with extremely little violence occurring.  And the state department tacks all incidents and are made public each year.  Drowning is a threat in places like Cabo San Lucas,  not physical harm.

The travel advisory document below,  can be adjusted for specific viewing by using the icons at bottom or linking directly to my scribd page using the link at top of the document and using the tools there.

63 comments:

  1. Over the last 15 years, I have traveled thru Tamuelipas between Matamoros and Ciudad Valles by bus and car over 50 times and never had a problem. This included early 2011 when Zeta/CDG split, which was a very scary time going through San Fernando and Mante. When and where have buses been attacked by the mania? With the exception of the gladiator stories and Commandante Kilo's reign of terror in San Fernando, there is no specific news of recent bus attacks. Also I hear nothing from locals or other tourists people traveling through that part of Mexico. I wonder if the State Department advisory is based on old news regarding buses being intercepted by CDG/CDN. Where can I get information on specific bus attacks?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If one bus is attacked with 50 people on board once a year it can still be concidered hazardous. NO buses should be attacked period!

      Delete
    2. I bet there are thousands of people that may see thing differently than your cheerleading butt.

      Delete
    3. 9:09; Im with you. I cross NL and drive thru MTY, Torreón, and then it’s getting close to dark in Durango. I continue on now the new 40D over the 2-3 hours in mountains, then hit 15 north and end up on NW side of Culiacan around 2-3am Done this last 18 years - before, during, after (if it is now after) the big drug wars and we’ve never had a single problem. 4 to 6 times a year and leaving at 5am tomorrow again - and can’t wait! Always driven new SUV or Lobo and never had problem once! I don’t know what Michoacan is like but NL, Tamps, Coahuila, DGO and Sinaloa isn’t out hunting for my family - and maybe it’s b/c we don’t look the part; but guarantee we look wealthy compared to most on highway in Mexico.

      Delete
    4. Well I have. including a huge balacera that killed 8 people. Good luck

      Delete
    5. "Tanto va el cantaro al agua,
      Hasta que por fin se quebra"
      That means: from going so much to the water,
      the mud pot finally breaks.
      It means like after every chance you take you get close to the last one, some say as long as chances keep getting smaller they will never end.
      Whatever works for you, I won't tempt the Lord,
      YOU BE HIS GUEST.

      Delete
    6. Through out my lifetime of traveling to Mexico, the only time I seen violence was the same night Z40 killed and hanged those people on a bridge in Nuevo Laredo. I believe it was April 2011.
      In early August of 2017 I had travel back to the states via nvo laredo. Days later I was on valor por Tamaulipas(website) they had report several shootings the same day I travel back to the states.
      Anyone who travels in Mexican toll roads will say it’s actually safe to travel even though out the night.

      40D & 85D are considered good toll roads in my books, id wish the Monterrey -Saltillo section would be improved.
      Sometimes I’m the only truck traveling in a pack of truckers.

      Delete
    7. Huh? Tamps is definitely the MOST dangerous state by far. Heck, the only way to drive to Matamoros and Reynosa is by following the daily
      Federal police escort.
      pinche madre, try driving the Death Highway 101 on your own, amigo.
      Veracruz is so dangerous i doubt DEA has zero agents in town.

      Delete
    8. 8:09 Cuando te bajes del toll way, Un dia de estos,
      andele güey! por andar ahi de caliente...

      Delete
    9. 9:09 ur a fucking idiot. Keep gambling with your life and youll find out. Tamaulipas is a fucking disaster. Entire families getting wiped out. Por pendejo.

      Delete
    10. When you are DEA or CIA, or work for Frontier Services Group, you are untouchable, nobody wants to get his ass fingered like El Amarillo Zapata zeta for murdering "ICE AGENTS" in mexico.
      All others pay with their ass sooner than later.

      Delete
  2. Noooo but sinaloa respectes Civilians!! That is where I bought my #701 hat! My heart😭

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think his booking number says something other than 701. I guess he can buy some doritos and cooking from the commissary with his cash..

      Delete
    2. You know Chapos prison number is now 978222K. I, have my hat with that number already.

      Delete
    3. 7:03 People still buy hats that read "Viva Cristo Rey"
      No problem.
      --US Presidents still pardon turkeys and their buddies,
      They ain't selling hats about that, though... THAT IS A PROBLEM!

      Delete
    4. @5:30 don't get your hopes up for a "Chapo is pardoned" cap anytime soon. Maybe your great grandkids can wear that sometime.

      Delete
    5. 5:30 . You got it . All chapo has to do is to get the person of his choice elected president . No big deal for a stepper like chapo . Don't know who it would be though . Bill Clinton is maxed out and Hillary may be needing a pardon soon herself .

      Delete
    6. 7:03 aint you cool . Bet chapo snot as proud of his number as you are .

      Delete
    7. @5:30 & 6:55 I, did not see you guys so depressed when Chapo was free and sending death squads all over Mexico killing even innocents who spoke against the narco trade. What just because you fuckers have wet dreams about him everybody should also now???

      Delete
    8. @7:03-That's funny shit!! Lmao!!

      Delete
  3. Why give travel warningz of mexico if the usa has mass shootings.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 10:50 On the US it is not government backed and inspired or pre-planned like in mexico, not even by the NRA...
      I hope that makes a difference for ya yayas.

      Delete
    2. Because mass shootings are complete chaos, at least travel warning give you a heads up so know when to stay away

      Delete
    3. Mass murdering events are not the way of life on the US
      Mass murdering is a way of life in mexico for its melitary and sicarios, polizetas and FUERZAS DELICTIBAS ESTATALES MANDO UNICO that must pay their employers in government for their uniforms and weapons with their daily quotas and fees.

      Delete
    4. Some terrorist events on the US like the tzarnaevs get complicated IF one of their teachers used to be CIA, OR if the WTC bought plenty billion dollar insurance policies "in case some airplanes hit the WTC loaded with thermite, or shit like that, say "Architects and Engineers for Truth 9/11"
      Timothy McVeigh who trained with Indiana Ku-Klux-Klan Klavern Militias to create fertilizer explosives was executed QUICK and kept from talking, but like most terrorists on the US their operations are private enterprise not US government like mexico's.

      Delete
    5. @10:50-Are u really comparing the US with Mexico in respects of danger? Come on weirdo!!

      Delete
  4. There's more killings in the US. Just check the news on the internet.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Exactly which is why you Mexicans better stay safe in your own country. Spread the word.

      Delete
    2. Agree. Should there be a travel warning for Vegas

      Delete
    3. I remember something. Some family members from Guanajuato got killed in chicago or somewhere in the us.

      Delete
    4. 11:41 those Mexicans were killed by a Mexican cousin in chicago, not gang or terrorist or government related, sometimes it is a pity that pendejos get to say their shit.

      Delete
  5. Great work Chivis.Should post this once a year or so or as revised or periodically at least.This is invaluable.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. State Department issues these alerts and although not perfect they are very credible. It is up to us to take self responsibility. I have had great cooperation with the consulate offices and they do respond to emails within a couple a days, or call. The media is the worse, which is why I decided to make a post. Even the narco violence news on BB can be deceptive because for travel it does not give a complete picture. It may be in Cancun lets say but in an area where tourist do not go and narco violence exists. However remember there are those bad people, just as in any tourist destination in the world who watch and prey on tourists for other crimes.

      BTW I am adding to the post

      Delete
    2. Absolutely no problem here in San Fernando Tamps. I am a US citizen, never, never have had a problem. By way the all u mexicans who left ur country, come back and fight for mexico. Viva Mexico

      Delete
    3. 1:57 Done did it, no problem.
      Specially since the city cleaned up everything close to the lake for some "special investors" under guise of "the Olympics".
      --Some people died, some were raped, many were innocent citizens, elderly, and women, but mobsters foreign to the city took over City Hall with kickbacks and retirement packages to Make Chicago Great Again with BILLIONS AND BILLIONS of dollars charged to the peepols' bank creditors...their great great grandchildren will owe a debt of gratitude IN CASH to the banks looong after the goldened promises of great wealth are all peeling off the great walls (graffiti may help them some) like the Taj-Mahal today...
      --But the Flores Twins may be ready to ride again by then, LOL.

      Delete
  6. I was in Taxco Guerrero for the New Years and I found a #701 hat and a CDG hat right next to each other with barba hats all at the same stand. To my knowledge isn’t this Rojos and Guerrero Unidos territory? How can they get away with CDG hat that actually says cartel de golfo on it? The 701hat is all over Mexico. I someone bought it as a souvenir and wore it , they definitely get in serious trouble. Not to mention going across the border.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Sorry about the state department map, they chose to shadow the text making it almost unreadable. I couldn't locate it on the website just a foto.

    ReplyDelete
  8. This comment, if it get accepted is to Chivis. I’m the one who asked the question about that midget, I see you deleted my question and your response.....pathetic in my view that you did that. It seems you pick and choose and dictate which comments are posted which is why if THIS comment isn’t posted, I will never post here again as I have for the last 7 years and will give up on the drug war problem as my only source is this website which I preach to anyone at work, home, friends who will listen.
    Thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Whaaaaaat willis? Are you serious? I answered your question but when you say you don" know spanish, what do you want? someone to transcribe the video about a Mexican "midget" for you?

      The only reason I deleted the comment was in respect to Mr. Berg, the comment was nothing near topic and childish.

      and BTW "midget" is a derogatory term.
      Yes we pick and choose comments. That is how it goes. and in this case I could not be happier with the decision.

      Delete
    2. Chivis, I don't think you even have to explain yourself.

      Delete
    3. dont worry about chivis or someonen else about deleting your comments, it happens to me too. Especially when i "blame" the mexican people. But just choose your words more carefuly next time. And you should do some translation work on your own like anybody else. Sure videos are difficult and some webpage too. But this how it goes.

      el rana

      Delete
    4. you are too nice to trolls chivis. he still does not get how disrespectful he was to the topic of the berg post. I saw the comment and wondered why it was posted. so the fool is obviously low iq but promises not to comment again and leave BB so no worries.

      Delete
    5. 5:15
      Bye Felicia

      Delete
    6. 8:15 looks like your crap got buffalo wings sooo biiig it will not fly no matter what...
      Why don't you try and find some turkey crowd that helps you lift up on the air?
      --Shitty shitty bang bang, and Godspeed, goodbye,
      au revoir, sayonara, hasta nunca comandante!!!
      I am sorry chivis, but since you are all mine now, what are we gonna do???

      Delete
  9. Just always smile, never carry a large amount of cash and you should be fine. The regular people in Mexico are very friendly

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. what is large amount of cash in mexico, 1kpeso, 10kpeso or only US$? riding accross the country - you need some money.
      Sometimes you cant pay with plastic money.

      Delete
  10. Mexico was really fun in the 1970s

    not so much now

    ReplyDelete
  11. I go to Houston. Its more dangerous than San Fernando tamps. And u know the most dangerous race is in Houston

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, sure, you better tell the 3 million Mexicans living in Houston that they are in mortal danger! I used to drive down to Monterrey back around 2003. No more. Even the Mexicans that I know with family there don't go back home any longer.

      Delete
  12. I’m in Vallarta every other month and never felt an ounce of danger. I drive far off the tourist areas and it’s always been a Comfortable feeling. Guerrero I have a different t gut feeling but I also go to Acapulco once a year but now I stay in the tourist Zone. I’m sure thesewarnings are legit but honestly driving around Jalisco has always been very normal and tons of grIngos would tell you the same who live in and around Vallarta. I. Sure something can happen and then it’s too late but I’m from NY we have murder and Muslim terror that can happen at any time. I have mixed feelings about some of these warnings. I’m 25yrs going to Mexico

    ReplyDelete
  13. My cousin in colima just got hit by a lost bullet in a restaurant last week,i guess they went to go kill the owner and a couple of people got hit by accident.now my cousin is holding on to his life.colima was a peaceful little state,good food,nice beaches and very nice people who would say hi to u while walking to the mercado,now people have to be inside there homes when it gets dark!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sad, I am sorry for you loss. Those are the heartbreaking ones. Innocent bystanders hit in the crossfire. :(

      Delete
    2. Thank u,appreciate it! For all u who wanna follow the road to being a narco,think twice...its rare to make money like top bosses,its like making the pros,rare! Most wanna be narco make little not even enough for lawyers,no money is worth hiding and not sleeping! The white man gives out years like people give out candy at birthday partys!

      Delete
  14. If it makes all you whiners feel better about it all. I’ll take all the blame. Aqua seafoam shame. - Sol Prendido

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 8:24 pinchi soleda siempre provocando a los hombres

      Delete
  15. Just spent 2 weeks in zacatecas , I didn't see anything that would alarm me or keep from going back again it was awesome , what I do know and heard was the from calera the airport and towards fresnillo was real bad , that's the areas to stay away from

    ReplyDelete
  16. In the process of planning 3 or 4 motorbikes to go down Baja this spring or following winter (# 13 or 14) with I of them never even been to the U.S. Let alone Mexico.No more night driving and it's not because of hitting goats or cattle.(last time I hit a huge black vulture that didn't get out of the way in time in the daytime but no wipeouts from my end or the bird's.Gotta do the grey whales or the whale sharks again depending on time there.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Worst place I have ever been through was Chilpancingo Gro. Masked men & women had taken over the toll booths....it was right around when the Normalistas went missing a few years ago...I have been all over and thru all of Mexico driving, I am a white girl. Usually with a Mexican man travelling...most places have been safe. I lived in Michoacán also for a while that was a scary place, Apatzingan. I am headed to Cancun in 4 weeks, should be ok my bf is working there, he's Mexican so not worried.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Interesting KG.We are all getting little travel tidbits of travelling through Mexico.Love it.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I’ve made two trips thru Baja and one to Nuevo León - in the last year by motorcycle... zero issues with close to 5,000 miles driven. I think it’s like a lot of places in the world, yes lots of trouble & potential for serious problems, so stay aware and don’t go asking for it! Same in the US by the way.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Hide valuables. Burglars know all about looking in the freezer for your jewelry, but would they think to look in that bag of potting soil in the garage? Hint: Tell someone you trust where you hid them...you'll remember all the great spots you considered, and you'll forget the one you picked. Travel

    ReplyDelete

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