Are you planning a trip to Mexico? Whether it’s your first time or you’re a seasoned traveler, there are some things you need to know before you go. In this blog post, we will share 40 travel tips that will help make your trip smoother and more enjoyable. From saving money to avoiding culture shock,
“Mexico is a mosaic of different realities and beauties”
Exploring Mexico: Travel Tips
Looking to explore a new and exciting destination? Mexico is a perfect choice! With its stunning landscapes, rich history, and vibrant culture, Mexico offers something for every type of traveler. Whether you’re looking for a quick weekend getaway or a longer adventure, here are some travel tips to help you plan your trip to Mexico.
Mexico Travel Basics
Mexico is a country with a rich and diverse history, and its currency reflects this. The official currency of Mexico is the Mexican peso (MXN), which comes in both coins and paper bills. Unlike some other currencies, the Mexican peso has no commonly used nicknames or abbreviations, though it is sometimes informally referred to as simply “the peso”.
At the time of writing, $1 is equivalent to approximately 19 Mexican pesos. This exchange rate can fluctuate over time, however, so it’s a good idea to check up-to-date rates before you travel. Some popular online tools for tracking currency conversions include XE and OANDA.
The electrical system in Mexico operates on a voltage of 110 V and uses the same plugs and outlets as the United States. This means that if you’re traveling from the US, you won’t need to bring any special adapters or converters for your electronics. However, it’s always a good idea to check the voltage requirements of your devices before plugging them in, just to be safe.
If you come from Europe (220V) you will need a converter. Most of the time, we use these inexpensive adapters
One of the most important travel tips for Mexico is to only drink bottled water. The tap water in Mexico is not safe to drink, and even brushing your teeth with tap water can lead to stomachaches or other illnesses.
To avoid getting sick, be sure to only drink bottled water that has been sealed and never accept open drinks from strangers.
We always have a refillable bottle with us, always handy in the warm temperatures.
When traveling to Mexico, it’s important to be aware of the local customs and etiquette when using public restrooms. One common difference in Mexican bathrooms is that toilet paper typically does not go into the toilet – instead, you should dispose of it in the trash can or sanitary napkin receptacle provided.
This tradition dates back to some older toilets being unable to handle large amounts of toilet paper, which could cause clogs and other problems. Today, many modern toilets in Mexico are able to handle bathroom waste just like those in other parts of the world. However, many people still follow this custom out of habit or for cultural reasons.
If you are unsure whether you can flush your toilet paper in a particular restroom, it’s always best to check for a sign or ask a local beforehand. In general, public restrooms in Mexico are clean and well-maintained, though you may want to carry some hand sanitizer with you just in case. Following these simple guidelines will help you navigate the local culture and avoid any embarrassing misunderstandings during your travels.
Tipping in Mexico
When traveling to Mexico, it’s important to be aware of the local tipping customs and etiquette. In many cases, a small tip is expected for services such as restaurant servers, hotel housekeepers, taxi drivers, and others. However, the appropriate amount to tip can vary depending on where you are in the country and what service you are receiving.
In general, it is recommended that you tip between 10-15% of your total bill at restaurants. This amount can be slightly higher if you have had exceptional service or if the gratuity has already been included in your bill. For hotel staff like housekeepers or bellhops, $2-$5 USD per day is an adequate tip for good service. For taxi drivers, 15-20% of the fare is typically sufficient.
When in doubt, it’s always best to ask locals or your hotel staff for advice on how much to tip for various services. Tipping in Mexico, also known as la propina, is not mandatory but appreciated by service providers. Keep these guidelines in mind during your travels to make sure you are prepared to show your appreciation for good service with a small tip.
Getting around in Mexico
When traveling to Mexico, there are a variety of transportation options available depending on where you are going and what your travel needs are.
If you’re looking for convenience and speed, renting a car can be a great option, especially if you plan to travel around multiple cities or take day trips outside the city center. However, keep in mind that some roads in Mexico can be unpaved or poorly maintained.
If you prefer not to drive yourself, public transportation is also an option in many Mexican cities. There are often buses and metros that run between popular destinations within each city, though these can sometimes be crowded during peak hours or less reliable than other forms of transport.
The ADO bus company is one of the most popular and reliable options. Tickets can be easily purchased online through the ADO website or Busbud, and reservations can be made for specific dates and times. For longer distance travel, taking a bus or flying are the most common options.
When to visit Mexico
When deciding on the best time to visit Mexico, there are a few factors to consider. The country experiences a wide range of climates and weather conditions throughout the year, making certain times more or less ideal for different types of travel.
For beach vacations, most people opt for the summer months from June through August, when temperatures are generally warm and sunny. However, this is also peak tourist season in Mexico, with higher prices and crowds at popular destinations like Cancun, Cabo San Lucas, and Puerto Vallarta.
If you’re looking for smaller crowds and better deals on accommodations, spring and fall may be better options. These shoulder seasons typically have milder temperatures that are perfect for outdoor activities like hiking or exploring local towns and cities. Additionally, many areas of Mexico experience rain during these seasons, so it’s best to plan accordingly and pack accordingly if you’re traveling during this time.
Accomodations in Mexico
There are many different types of accommodations available in Mexico, from luxurious resorts to more budget-friendly options like hostels and guesthouses. No matter what your travel style or budget may be, you’re sure to find a place to stay that suits your needs.
When it comes to budgeting for a trip to Mexico, it really depends on your travel style and what you want to do while you’re there. If you’re planning on doing a lot of sightseeing and activities, you’ll need to factor those costs into your budget. The same goes for food and drink – if you want to eat at nicer restaurants or try local specialties, those expenses will add up.
For those looking for an upscale experience, there are plenty of luxury resorts located in popular tourist destinations like Cancun and Puerto Vallarta. These resorts typically offer all-inclusive packages that include food, drink, and access to on-site amenities like pools, spas, and activities. If you’re willing to splurge on a once-in-a-lifetime vacation, a luxury resort in Mexico is the way to go.
For travelers on a tight budget, there are also many affordable accommodation options available. Hostels are a popular choice for solo travelers or those looking to meet other like-minded travelers. Guesthouses and homestays are another great option if you’re hoping to experience Mexican culture and hospitality firsthand. These accommodations are typically more basic than resorts or hotels, but they offer a unique experience that you won’t find anywhere else.
No matter what your travel plans may be, there’s sure to be a perfect accommodation option waiting for you in Mexico.
What to pack for Mexico
When packing for a trip to Mexico, there are a few essentials you’ll need to bring. First and foremost, be sure to pack sunscreen and insect repellent – the sun can be intense in Mexico, and mosquitoes are prevalent in many areas of the country. You’ll also want to pack light, comfortable clothing that can be easily layered.
And don’t forget to bring your swimsuit! Whether you’re planning on spending time at the beach or relaxing in a hotel pool, it’s always good to have a swimsuit on hand. Finally, be sure to pack any prescription medications you may need, as well as over-the-counter items like pain relievers and stomach remedies.
Other items you may want to consider packing include a hat or sunglasses to protect you from the sun, a reusable water bottle to stay hydrated, and a portable charger for your electronics. And if you’re traveling during the rainy season, be sure to pack an umbrella or raincoat.
With these essential items in your suitcase, you’ll be prepared for anything Mexico throws your way. Bon voyage!
Helpfull apps for Mexico
When traveling to Mexico, there are a number of useful smartphone apps that can help make your trip easier and more enjoyable.
One of the most popular travel apps is Google Maps, which offers accurate maps and driving directions throughout the country. This app is great for getting around unfamiliar cities or finding your way to specific destinations in remote areas with limited access to roads or public transportation.
Another handy app is TripAdvisor, which allows you to research local attractions, restaurants, and hotels before your trip. With ratings and reviews from other travelers, you can easily find the best places to visit and things to do in any region of Mexico.
How to eat & drink in Mexico
When to eat
Breakfast (desayuno) in Mexico is typically a light meal that consists of coffee or hot chocolate, bread with butter or jelly, and eggs.
It’s common to see street vendors selling breakfast items like churros (fried dough filled with chocolate), tamales (corn-based dough wrapped in corn husks and steamed), or tacos de canasta (fried tacos filled with meat and beans).
If you’re looking for a more hearty breakfast option, you can find restaurants that serve dishes like huevos rancheros (eggs served over a tortilla with salsa), chilaquiles (tortilla chips covered in sauce and cheese), or molletes (open-faced sandwiches on bolillo rolls).
Lunch (comida) is the biggest meal of the day in Mexico, and it’s typically served between 2:00pm and 4:00pm.
The most common lunch dish is a plate of rice, beans, and meat (usually chicken, beef, or pork), known as the comida corrida. This filling meal is often served with a side of soup or salad, and tortillas are usually provided so that you can make your own tacos.
If you’re not looking for a traditional Mexican lunch option, you can find restaurants that serve international cuisine like Italian, Chinese, or American food.
Dinner (cena) is typically a lighter meal than lunch, and it’s usually served between 8:00pm and 10:00pm.
Common dinner dishes include enchiladas, quesadillas, flautas, and tostadas. These dishes are often served with a side of rice and beans, and they can be made with either chicken, beef, or pork.
If you’re looking for something sweet to end your meal, you can find desserts like flan (a custard pudding), churros (fried dough filled with chocolate), or tres leches cake (a sponge cake soaked in three kinds of milk).
What to drink in Mexico
There are many delicious drinks to enjoy in Mexico, from refreshing fruit juices and smoothies to traditional alcoholic beverages like mezcal and tequila.
One of the most popular non-alcoholic drinks in Mexico is horchata, a rice-based beverage that is flavored with either cinnamon or vanilla.
Other popular drinks include agua fresca (fruit juice mixed with water), licuados (thick fruit shakes), and jamaica (a sweetened tea made from hibiscus flowers).
For adults, there are also a wide variety of delicious alcoholic beverages to try in Mexico. Some popular options include beer, mezcal, and tequila – all of which can be enjoyed neat or on the rocks.
With so many delicious drink options to choose from, you’re sure to find something to quench your thirst no matter what time of day it is in Mexico!
The official language of Mexico is Spanish, but you’ll also find that many people speak English – especially in the tourist areas.
In some parts of Mexico, you might also hear people speaking indigenous languages like Maya or Nahuatl.
Even if you don’t speak Spanish, you can still get by in Mexico as long as you know a few key phrases. Some useful Spanish phrases to know include:
- Hola (hello)
- ¿Cómo estás? (How are you?)
- Por favor (please)
- Gracias (thank you)
- Lo siento (I’m sorry)
- ¿Hablas inglés? (Do you speak English?)
With these few key phrases, you’ll be able to communicate basic needs and start conversations with the locals – even if you don’t speak Spanish fluently.
Top experiences in Mexico
There are so many incredible experiences to be had in Mexico! Here are just a few of the top things to see and do on your next trip:
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