RVing in Mexico - Safe or Dangerous?

by Jenny R 8. March 2010 07:28

Thousands of RV’s cross into Mexico each year and there are many RV owners that love to travel to Mexico for RV Vacations.  And why not?  With Mexico RV Vacation prices as much as 60% less than in the United States and the warm year round weather, a Mexican RV Vacation can be wonderful.  Not to mention that people are starting to receive cheap medical and dental care just across the border.

However, with all of the benefits of buying an RV and heading south of the border to Mexico, the question remains, is it safe?  There are many indications lately that RVing in Mexico isn’t as safe as it once was.  What originally got me thinking about this topic is an episode of 48 Hours Mystery that I saw a couple of months ago.  In this video, a family in their RV is within visual distance of their home in San Diego when they are pulled over by “police”, surrounded by a gang of people, put through a night of turmoil, robbed of their possessions, and almost assassinated:

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After seeing that, I wondered, “Is Mexico a safe place to go RVing?”  So, I researched the topic a little more thoroughly and found that the U.S. State Department issued a travel alert for Mexico.  Originally issued in 2009 and then updated in 2010, the U.S. Embassy travel alert encourages U.S. citizens to delay unnecessary travel to certain parts of Meixco and to advise U.S. citizens residing or traveling in those areas to exercise extreme caution.  Another report issued by the Consulate General of the United States issued a warning about gun battles and kidnappings in Reynosa, Mexico.  Lastly, I found another news story from just last week speaking of a Canadian couple that was attacked by apparent fake police while vacationing in Mexico.

With all of these reports and warnings out there, why are people still RVing in Mexico? Even with all of the warnings out last year, many college students still spent spring break in Mexico.  Even with all of the warnings, many United States citizens drive their motorhomes across the border every week to pursue medical care.  Even with all of the alerts, some family friends recently kept their scheduled RV Vacation to a Mexican resort. 

So, is the risk of RVing in Mexico overstated?  Some people seem to think so.  In this article, Dennis Jacobs says that Mexican travel can be as safe or as dangerous as you like.  Basically, he says that if you take the standard safety precautions for safe travel to pretty much any destination, you will more than likely be fine.  Jacobs suggests doing your research, practicing self-restraint while in Mexico, understanding laws & social norms, and staying in groups. 

Another proponent of Mexican travel from the Full Time RV Blog, says “In fact it is statistically much safer than the USA and actually even Canada. Right now the USA is on the list of some of the most dangerous countries in the world to travel in.”

What do you think?  Are you staying out of Mexico and RVing elsewhere?  Is Mexico just as dangerous as you make it?  Is the United States just as dangerous or more dangerous for RV Travelers?  Leave a comment and let us know what you think.

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