So, is Mexico City safe? Yes! Don’t get me wrong; it’s not the safest place to visit. If you are vigilant, you can have a wonderful time in this city rich in culture and history. 

Brief History of Mexico City and Why It’s Great for Travel

Mexico City, the dynamic and vibrant capital of Mexico, has a captivating history that beckons travelers worldwide. Originally established in 1325 by the Aztecs as Tenochtitlan, it became a thriving center of pre-Hispanic civilization.

With the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors in the 16th century, the city transformed, becoming a hub of colonial architecture and culture.

Beyond its historical allure, visiting Mexico City center boasts a bustling contemporary scene. Culinary enthusiasts indulge in a gastronomic adventure, savoring mouthwatering street food, delectable tacos, and gourmet delights.

Art lovers revel in the abundance of world-class museums and galleries showcasing the masterpieces of iconic Mexican artists like Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera.

The city’s festive spirit is contagious, with various fiestas and festivals celebrated yearly. Colorful parades, traditional dance performances, and pulsating music showcase Mexico’s vibrant cultural traditions.

But Is It Safe in Mexico City?

While Mexico City’s allure is undeniable, it is essential to address the issue of safety, which has become a concern for tourists and locals. In recent years (like any big city anywhere in the world), crime reports, including petty theft and occasional violent incidents, have garnered attention and raised caution.

Travelers are advised to exercise increased caution, especially in crowded areas and public transportation. Keeping valuable belongings secure and being aware of surroundings can help reduce the risk of becoming a target for opportunistic criminals (although most major cities have these problems).

Natural disasters like earthquakes and hurricanes are also a potential concern. Fortunately, Mexico City has invested heavily in emergency services to ensure prompt reactions during emergencies.

Staying informed about the current safety situation and following local guidance can go a long way in ensuring a secure and pleasant travel experience.

For locals, specific neighborhoods may present higher safety risks, and community efforts and government initiatives are in place to address these concerns and make improvements.

Despite these safety concerns, millions travel to Mexico City each year without incident. By adopting a cautious and responsible approach, travelers can still enjoy the city’s wonders while appreciating its cultural richness and warm hospitality.

Media Portrayal Versus Reality of Crime in Mexico City

The media often sensationalizes safety concerns in Mexico City, which can create misconceptions about its overall safety. While there have been isolated incidents, the reality is that millions of travelers visit the city each year without facing significant issues.

For instance, the portrayal of crime on the Mexican border might lead some to believe that the entire country is unsafe, but this is inaccurate. Most tourist areas around Mexico City are generally safe, and locals are welcoming and friendly toward visitors.

By being aware of your surroundings, following local advice, and practicing common-sense safety measures, you can have an enjoyable and secure stay in Mexico City.

National and Local Initiatives

The government prioritizes safety in Mexico City through national and local initiatives. Nationally, they combat organized crime groups and drug trafficking, creating a more secure environment.

Locally, community policing programs and awareness campaigns involve residents in safety efforts for Mexico City’s rising crime rate.

Investments in Law Enforcement and Infrastructure

The government invests in law enforcement, which helps enhance officer training and visibility in tourist areas. Infrastructure improvements, like surveillance cameras and better lighting, further contribute to a safer environment for all.

Mexico City takes pride in having one of the highest police officer-to-resident ratios globally, showcasing its unwavering dedication to ensuring security.

This unwavering commitment to safety extends to tourist areas, where incidents of violent crime are sporadic.

These combined efforts aim to continuously improve safety conditions in Mexico City and promote a sense of security for residents and visitors.

Safest Neighborhoods in Mexico City

  • Reforma: If Luxury had a postal address, it would be in Reforma. Home to some of the most opulent hotels in Mexico City, it’s the place where high-end meets heritage. And for our LGBTQIA+ community? It’s not just friendly; it’s a full-blown welcoming committee. So, if you’re looking for a rainbow after a drizzle, Reforma’s your spot.
  • Coyoacán: Imagine a place where time slows down, and every corner has a story whispered by the winds. That’s Coyoacán for you. Known as Frida Kahlo’s stomping grounds, it’s the kind of chill area where you half expect her to walk around the corner, eyebrow raised. It is one of the most popular tourist neighborhoods, perfect for those who want to soak in culture without the hustle and bustle.
  • Roma Norte: Ever wondered, “Is Mexico City safe for Americans?” Many expats in Roma Norte would nod vigorously while sipping their locally brewed coffee. It’s not just a residential area; it’s a community. Protected, vibrant, and oh-so-cosmopolitan, it’s the cosmopolitan heart of the city and perfect for exploring Mexico City. It is regarded as one of the safest areas in Mexico City.
  • Centro Historico: Walking in Centro Historico is like flipping through a history book, but way more fun. Its pedestrian-only streets are a haven for explorers and Instagrammers alike. While it’s a place where violent crimes are as rare as a unicorn sighting, those pesky pickpockets do lurk around. But with over 1,550 historic buildings to distract you, who can blame them for trying?
  • La Condesa: La Condesa is where you can feel the city’s pulse the strongest. With avenues as wide as the variety of its visitors, it’s a melting pot of cultures. From young professionals discussing the latest trends to travelers dancing the night away, it’s the place to be if you’re young or just young at heart.

Dangerous Parts in Mexico City

  • Iztapalapa: Ladies, and well, everyone really, should approach with caution. While Iztapalapa may have some charming spots, it is also known for less-than-pleasant incidents. It’s like the bad boy of neighborhoods – intriguing but potentially harmful. Certainly not safe to walk around at night.
  • Tepito: If you’ve ever wanted to experience the thrill of a black market without the actual danger, just watch a movie about it instead. Tepito is known as the unofficial “Wallet-Lightening Capital” of Mexico City. And by that, we mean pickpockets and petty theft galore. as
  • Tlalpan: Imagine Mexico City neighborhoods as characters in a mystery novel. Among them, Tlalpan stands out as the enigmatic persona with intriguing secrets. It’s wise to approach and savor its stories from a respectful distance.

Mexico City Safety at Night

While the allure of Mexico City at night is undeniable, solo nocturnal escapades outside the safer zones are a no-go. If the moon’s calling you to these areas, heed these tips:

  • Daylight is Your Friend: Make it a daytime affair if you must visit. The sun’s rays have a way of keeping things bright and breezy.
  • Blend In: Think incognito. Ditch the flashy sunglasses and jewelry. Dress simply and inconspicuously. You’re going for the “I’m just here for the tacos” look.
  • Buddy Up: There’s safety in numbers. Bring a friend or two. It’s not just safer; it’s also more fun!

Are you considering a nighttime stroll? Opt for a local guide fluent in Spanish. They’ll keep you safe and introduce you to the city’s nocturnal nuances. Fancy a guided walk under the stars? Give it a whirl!

Is Mexico City Safe for Solo Travelers?

Absolutely! With its rich history and vibrant culture, Mexico City makes many solo travelers feel safe to travel alone. The city’s bustling streets, colorful markets, and historical landmarks offer an enriching and memorable experience.

Regarding accommodation, a lively hostel can be a game-changer for solo travelers. These places are not only budget-friendly but also serve as social hubs.

Within a day, you might share intriguing travel tales over breakfast or even plan a spontaneous day trip with someone you’ve just met.

For those who prefer structured activities and enjoy shared experiences, Mexico City offers an array of group tours.

From delving into ancient ruins and tasting delectable street food to immersing oneself in the local art scene, there’s a group tour tailored to every interest. It’s an excellent opportunity to bond with fellow travelers and create lasting memories.

Additionally, the city frequently hosts local events, workshops, and classes. Participating in activities like salsa dancing or pottery can be fun to immerse yourself in the local culture. It also allows you to interact with locals and other travelers, enriching your solo journey.

However, safety should always be a priority. As with any major city, it’s crucial to remain vigilant. Stick to well-lit areas during nighttime, ensure your belongings are secure, and always inform someone about your daily plans.

With the right balance of caution and curiosity, solo travel in Mexico City can be an enriching experience.

Are Solo Female Travelers Safe in Mexico?

Mexico City welcomes countless solo female travelers each year, and many of them have incredible, memorable experiences.

As a solo traveler, you’re a testament to strength and independence. But, like any major city worldwide, consider certain precautions.

While many women navigate the city without any issues, they must be aware of potential safety concerns. Opinions on safety can vary widely, and while some women feel entirely secure, others might have reservations.

Here’s a distilled list of basic safety precautions to help you make the most of your trip:

  1. Trust Your Instincts: If something feels off, it probably is. Always trust your intuition.
  2. Choose Accommodations Wisely: Opt for reputable hostels or hotels. Read reviews, connect with other travelers, and consider female-only dorms if you prefer. I recommend checking out the reviews on Hostelworld and Booking.com.
  3. Opt for Female-Only Transport: Many public transport options, including the Mexico City Metro, have sections reserved for women. While it’s not necessary, it might offer an added comfort layer.
  4. Dress Modestly: While it’s essential to be yourself, remember that Mexico leans towards the conservative side. It’s a good idea to observe local attire and dress similarly.
  5. Avoid Walking Alone at Night: The city is vibrant and bustling during the day, offering plenty to explore. Nighttime ventures are best avoided or done in groups.
  6. Guard Your Drinks: Always watch your drink to prevent any unwanted substances from being added.
  7. Stay Alert at Your Accommodation: Don’t feel obligated to open the door for anyone. Let the staff handle guest entries.
  8. Stay Informed, Not Fearful: While being aware of potential dangers is crucial, don’t let them overshadow your trip. Stay alert, but enjoy your journey.
  9. Speak Up: If someone makes you uncomfortable, don’t hesitate to draw attention to the situation. Making a scene can often deter unwanted attention.
  10. Prioritize Your Comfort: Remember, you don’t owe anyone an explanation or politeness. It’s okay to say “no” or walk away if a situation doesn’t feel right.

Is Mexico City Safe for Families?

Mexico City, often celebrated for its rich history and vibrant culture, is a haven for solo travelers and a delightful destination for families. The city is surprisingly kid-friendly, offering many activities and attractions that cater to both young and old.

However, when traveling with little ones, there are a few things to remember. One of the challenges families face is the scarcity of baby-changing facilities. While this might be a minor inconvenience in some places, it’s a more pronounced issue in Mexico City.

Thankfully, chain restaurants and museums come to the rescue, often equipped with the necessary amenities to ensure a comfortable experience for parents and their babies.

Another unique aspect of Mexico City is its high altitude – over 2,000 meters above sea level. It may concern some visitors, especially those with young children.

Acclimatizing slowly, staying hydrated, and taking it easy for the first couple of days is essential. It will help adjust to the altitude and ensure that everyone remains in good spirits throughout the trip.

Is Mexico City a Safe Place to Live?

Mexico City is a vibrant and bustling metropolis that caters to different lifestyles, including those of expats. From modern condo buildings with excellent amenities to charming neighborhoods full of local character, the city offers a wide range of homes for rent or purchase.

When it comes to safety, Mexico City is no exception when compared to other cities worldwide. As with any urban center, certain areas are more dangerous than others. It’s best to research the neighborhood carefully before making any commitments.

Additionally, Mexico City has various cultural events and festivals throughout the year. These events help cultivate an international atmosphere while connecting locals and expats alike.

Many expats find Mexico City a safe and welcoming city to call home. It can be an excellent place to live and work with the proper precautions.

12 Safety Tips for Mexico City Travel:

1. Use Uber in Mexico City Instead of Taxis

The Uber app is very popular in Mexico City and has several advantages. 

It is typically more affordable than the taxis and not subject to price-gouging, commonly occurring when the driver detects you are not a local. 

They are convenient. In areas where you may need help finding a spot to grab a taxi, you can count on Uber to show up wherever you are in about 5 minutes or less.

It is much safer! You order the Uber, you get the driver’s name and license plate number, it shows you where you are driving on a map, and you can share your ride details with a trusted friend. 

2. Stay Alert in Crowds

This rule applies anywhere, especially when you are traveling. Pickpocketing is one of the most common issues to worry about in a crowd.

Pickpockets often look for unsuspecting travelers or tourists who are distracted or not paying attention to their possessions.

To minimize the likelihood of becoming a victim, one should stay vigilant when traveling through a crowded area by keeping their purse, wallet, or other small valuable items securely tucked away and in sight at all times.

Additionally, being aware of possible exits and escape routes in an emergency for petty crime is crucial. 

3. Always Double-Check Your Receipt

When handling a transaction, review the charged amount. Confirm the tip amount that you would like to include. The establishment could charge more than you agreed to pay, whether accidentally or intentionally. 

4. Beware of Scams

Always be on the lookout for scams. Easier said than done, right? People have creative ways to distract you to take something from you. Here are some of the commonly known scams in Mexico City

Mysterious Spill and Helpful Cleaner

You’re walking down the street, and suddenly there is a mysterious liquid on your clothing – ranging from “bird poop” to mustard and more.

Someone quickly comes along and is eager to help clean the stain off of your clothing. When they are gone, and you have had time to process, you realize your phone went missing.

That, my friend, is the liquid-on-you-and-helpful-cleaner-appears scam, where you are distracted by all the commotion and divert your attention from all the lovely valuables you’re carrying.

Don’t let this be you.

ATM-related Badness

You can be scammed in one of two ways:

You may stumble across a very conveniently located ATM. Where are you spending a night out? Watch out! It could be a fake ATM that can scan your card.

There may be a local who offers advice about the most cost-effective way to withdraw money and offers to help you. Some scammers may have a scanning device that records your card number for later use. 

Taxi Scam

Examples of scams targeting tourists include overcharging and express kidnapping.

There have been instances where taxis have unlawfully detained individuals and coerced them into withdrawing cash from ATMs against their will.

I emphasize the importance of exclusively using authorized taxis or a reliable taxi application like Uber.

5. Avoid Drinking The Tap Water

The tap water is perfectly fine to shower, wash your face, and brush your teeth. Please avoid drinking the water. You should always ensure that you receive only purified or bottled water. 

You will only be presented with a glass of water at a restaurant with the accompanying bottle it was poured from. You will never be served tap water at a food establishment. 

To be clear – the water is not poisonous. You CAN drink the water. The risk is water-borne pathogens that may not be adequately filtered from the water that cause illnesses like Traveler’s Diarrhea.

Traveler’s Diarrhea is typically due to pesky bacteria that disrupt the natural bacterial environment we have in our intestines, causing the person to have significant diarrhea and potentially dehydration.

Nothing is worse than being sick on vacation, especially if you are unfamiliar with the language or the country’s medical system. Please try always to have bottled or filtered water!

6. Take Shelter In An Earthquake

Mexico City was built over a lake that was drained during the Spanish conquest. As a result, the ground has relatively loose sediment that is more susceptible to earthquakes. 

If you are unlucky to be in Mexico City during an earthquake, always run for shelter against any potential falling/collapsing objects. 

Don’t hide underneath a doorway, as this part of the house is no more reinforced than the rest of the building in more modern-day homes. Seek shelter under something more sturdy like a desk, or hug an interior and windowless wall.

Avoid standing under anything like a light fixture that can crash onto you. Use an object like a bucket or pillow to protect your head.

Pro Tip: Get an Earthquake App – this will alert you to any potential seismic activity in the area.

7. Do Not Wear Any Flashy Clothing

Nothing says “Rob me plz” more than flashy, expensive clothing and accessories. Please be mindful when you go outside with any of these items. 

Alternatively, invest in modest clothing with a button or zip pockets for better protection against pickpockets. 

8. Be Mindful of The Roads

Mexico City’s drivers are very skillful at navigating the intense city traffic. For a pedestrian, this translates to hectic crosswalks where cars and motorcycles seem to zip past in any direction without warning. 

Always look before crossing, no matter what the walk signal indicates. 

9. Carry Some Form of ID

Perhaps it isn’t the best to carry your passport around everywhere. If you lose that, trying to secure another one for your return home will be frustrating. 

If you have some other form of ID on you, great. Consider photocopying your ID or keeping a pic on your phone. Law enforcement authorities can request this information, and failure to provide it could result in detainment.

10. Get Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is an essential part of any trip abroad. It is vital to protect yourself and your belongings in case of any unexpected events, such as lost or stolen luggage, canceled flights, medical emergencies, and more.

Travel insurance can also cover travel-related expenses like trip cancellations, emergency medical evacuation, and flight delays. Travel insurance can help you manage the risks associated with international travel.

So, if you plan to travel abroad, ensure you get adequate travel insurance coverage!

11. Be Extra Careful at Night

Be especially careful at night. Try to roam the streets with a friend, or consider an Uber ride directly to your destination. Avoid secluded areas and keep wallets and purses closed or hidden in zipped pockets.

Furthermore, visitors should know their surroundings and be prepared for any situations that could arise. Try to stay in well-lit areas and not accept offers from strangers who appear too friendly.

By taking these precautions, visitors can ensure they remain safe while exploring Mexico City’s wonders during the day and night.

12. Learn Some Spanish Phrases

Communicating effectively with locals will only work to your advantage. Learn some simple phrases to steer you to safety during a worst-case scenario. 

Do you know how to ask where you are? How can you get back to Airbnb’s area? Google Translate is a great resource — if your phone’s battery isn’t dead. 

Here are some essential phrases that can be of great help in emergencies:

  • ¡Ayúdame! (Help me!)
  • ¡Emergencia! (Emergency!)
  • Where is the bathroom? (Dónde esta el baño?)

13. Beware of Imitation Tequila

Some places might try to pull a fast one on you by serving knock-off tequila. Not only could this fake stuff have a questionable alcohol content, but it might also pose health risks.

Always ensure you’re sipping on genuine 100% agave tequila. Cheers to safe and authentic drinking!

14. Watch Out for Street Food

Street food in Mexico City is an experience in itself. The tantalizing aromas, the bustling vendors, and the authentic flavors are hard to resist. But, as with any culinary adventure, it’s essential to approach street food with a discerning eye.

The good news? Most street food is safe to consume, especially when freshly cooked right before you. Meat dishes, in particular, are typically cooked thoroughly, reducing the risk of foodborne illnesses.

The high turnover of popular street food stalls also means that food hasn’t been sitting out for extended periods, which is another positive sign of its freshness.

However, a universal rule applies everywhere, not just in Mexico City: cross-contamination. This occurs when cooked food comes into contact with surfaces or utensils touching raw food.

It’s a common concern in many kitchens, from high-end restaurants to humble street stalls. To minimize this risk, observe the vendor’s practices.

Are they using separate utensils for raw and cooked items? Are they wearing gloves or washing their hands frequently? These small details can give you confidence in the safety of the food you’re about to enjoy.

So, is Mexico City SAfe?

Just about any traveler can explore relatively safe Mexico City as long as they have a good head on their shoulders. Judging by the fact that you’ve made it this far, you’re already on the right track for your fantastic trip to Mexico City. 

Stay informed, trust your instincts, and immerse yourself in the city’s captivating charm.

Is Mexico City Safe For Travel? Yes! (2024)

Author Avatar

RELATED BLOGS

Check out related blogs below!

View of the Castell de Guadalest, one of the top itineraries to visit Guadalest.

Ultimate Guide to Visit Guadalest in Alicante, Spain (2024) 

If you’re in Alicante, you must visit Guadalest, a charming small town renowned for its stunning beauty. It is one of Spain’s hidden gems. You’ll be greeted by a delightful blend of old-world charm and natural beauty as you arrive. Visiting El Castell de Guadalest is like stepping back in time. You’ll be captivated by […]

Cape Cod Lighthouse view in Ptown, one of the best things to do in Provincetown.

20+ Absolute Best Things to Do in Provincetown, MA (2024)

Welcome to the captivating world of Provincetown, MA, where the unique charm of Cape Cod comes to life in 2023.  I’ve carefully curated a list of over 20 of the best things to do in Provincetown. These aren’t just typical tourist spots; they are gems where each corner of Provincetown adds a unique flavor to […]

Johannesburg cityscape at night, as part of best things to do in Johannesburg

44 Best Things to Do in Johannesburg, South Africa (2023)

This comprehensive list will highlight all the very best things to do in Johannesburg, South Africa. Plan your vacation today!