COVID-19 cases in Cancun have been on the rise and the Quintana Roo Governor, Carlos Joaquín González, has recently requested people in the region to wear masks indoors. On Friday, local Mexican authorities announced that, at the moment, there are over 300 daily COVID-19 cases while a month ago there were only 20.
“I want to reiterate the need to use the face masks indoors, to prefer open spaces over enclosed spaces. In places where there is no natural ventilation, there is a greater possibility of getting infected. Let’s use the mask in confined spaces, let’s use the mask in public transport”, said past Friday the governor Carlos Joaquín González.
There is a concern, especially at the airport where travelers aren’t wearing face coverings despite this measure being mandatory for a long time. A month ago, the mask mandate had been removed in Cancun and was no longer required indoors or outdoors in the Quintana Roo region, but highly encouraged in public transportation and still mandatory at the airport.
The State Ministry of Finance and Planning (SEFIPLAN) required all government employees to wear face coverings last week as a mandatory measure, and González also insisted on respecting this rule: “It is very important to do so to prevent this number of cases from continuing to grow and having an impact on the epidemiological traffic light, which today is still green”.
Face masks are also being required at schools and some companies and institutions in Cancun are requiring people to use face coverings. Due to the high interest in tourism in the area there is concern that local authorities might get more strict with these measures soon.
Wearing Face Masks In Cancun
It’s been hard for travelers to keep up with COVID-19 rules and measures considering that these are constantly changing and varying depending on the country, state, and even county. And it might be one of the reasons why some of them aren’t properly complying with local measures.
Just a month ago, face coverings were optional for everyone and now, in Cancun, wearing face masks is now highly encouraged and preferred indoors, but there haven’t been more official announcements —other than the governor’s public request— or details regarding repercussions or fines, only personnel in public services and government employees —including those who work in offices— have been officially obliged.
The use of masks also depends on the establishment. ADO, an important bus company in Cancun, has recently announced that wearing masks is mandatory in their buses and terminals. Travelers are not allowed to board without face coverings and employees are constantly reminding travelers to wear them properly.
There have been multiple complaints about tourists not following the rules and confusion with the measures. In any case, people with medical conditions are always encouraged to wear masks and keep their distance, even in open spaces.
Safety in Cancun
According to recent data, during spring break season, over 1.2 million tourists visited the Quintana Roo region —specially top destinations like Cancun, Playa del Carmen and Tulum— and the increasing number of tourists has also brought as a consequence a higher number of COVID-19 and crime cases.
The US Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently changed Mexico to level 3, High-Risk, from level 2, moderate risk. Also a few days ago, the US State Department issued a warning for US citizens in the Quintana Roo region, and advised travelers to remain alert, especially at night, due to the risks of crime and kidnapping in the region.
The agency informed that tourists haven’t been directly attacked, but have been victims of crimes and violent situations such as shootings between rival gangs. US travelers are advised to stay near touristic areas, avoid visiting dangerous areas, and not walk or drive in dark streets at night, and stay away from drugs.
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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling. Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories