You’re finally here and we hope you ready to begin your journey through Mexico! In order to make your trip as enjoyable as possible there are a few important issues that we’d like to bring to your attention….
Mexico is generally a safe and friendly country with people as warm and helpful as any on the globe. While you may have been warned about banditos, and other unavoidable perils that lurk around every corner, with a little common sense, you have no reason to fear the land of Mariachis and margaritas any more than you might your own home town, city or country. The one big difference is that everything is new here, so don’t leap before you look. Stick to well lighted areas with lots of people. Keep your valuables on your person or safely locked in the hotel safe at all times. And remember, if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask us, that’s what we’re here for!
Health, Food and Water:
The stories of Moctezuma’s Revenge, El Turista, and a slew of even scarier diseases may have been presented to you as arguments for why you shouldn’t go to Mexico. Well good for you, you didn’t listen to your less intrepid friends and family and you’ve made it to the land of the feathered serpent Quetzalcoatl, and yes, unfortunately traveler’s diarrhea. The single most important thing you can do to avoid getting sick has to do with water.
- Drink! At least two liters a day and more if you are on one of our more active adventures. Always drink purified water, agua purificada, and if you’re unsure, ask. In general, Mexican’s are quite aware of the importance of drinking pure water and ice, but it never hurts to ask and it’s good practice for your Spanish!
- Eat! One of the most enjoyable aspects of Mexican culture is its varied and world renowned cuisine. Please enquire about the best places to taste some street food to ensure they have the proper sanitary quality.
- Wash! Make sure to wash your hands often and definitely before eating and after using the facilities. It’s good to have some antiseptic gel for those times when soap and water isn’t available or convenient.
Now a day, the best way to get cash is using an ATM card at one of the thousands of bank machines found even in quite rural towns. If you have arrived here with cash and wish to change it, the best place to do so is at a Casa de Cambio. American dollars are accepted widely, although the further from accessible changing locations the worse the exchange rate. Other currencies should be changed in major cities at large multinational banks or their affiliates (Banamex, Santander, Bancomer).
If you are on one of our set departures your maid, porter, and wait staff tips are included in your trip fee. If not, the following are guidelines: maids US $1.00-$2.00/night/room; porters US $1.00/bag/movement; wait staff 10%-15% of the total check. In Mexico it is customary to tip your local guides between $5 – $10 U.S. / person / day or $3 – $5 US / person for a half day tour. If you are traveling with one of our premium “through guides” who accompanies throughout your stay and assists you beyond predetermined ½ day or full day tours, we recommend between $7 and $15 / person for each day of the trip. Of course, it is completely up to you to decide how much you would like to give; there is no obligation to pay a tip and it is completely at your discretion.