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Rising drug violence causes tourism in Mexico to fall dramatically

November 4, 2017  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
Rising drug violence causes tourism in Mexico to fall dramatically

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Guests in Mexican hotels have canceled 35,000 reserved nights in the upcoming year, as hotel occupancy decline 10% this year. The reason is an explosion of violence near popular tourist areas.

Although the Mexican peso is weak, which is usually an indication for increased bookings, U.S. tourists still want to stay away from Mexico.

Armed cartel members opened fire at a Cancun nightclub back in November, and an ice cooler with two severed heads inside was discovered at a Cabo San Lucas resort.

Homicides have quadrupled in Los Cabos and doubled in Cancun so far in 2017. Mexican officials recorded 2,234 murders in June, making it the country’s deadliest month in at two decades.

For the first six months of this year, Mexican authorities launched 2,155 murder investigations, which is a 31% increase compared to the same period last year.

Slaying increased in Baja California Sur, Veracruz and in Mexico City, the places which had been long considered a haven from cartel violence.

In August, the U.S. State Department published a travel warning, stating that “U.S. citizens have been the victims of crimes, including homicide, kidnapping, carjacking, and robbery in Mexican states.”

“Group tourism went down the moment the warning hit,” Carlos Gosselin, the direction of the hotel association for Cancun and Puerto Morelos, told Bloomberg in an interview.

According to the report, hotels like Hilton Worldwide and Marriott International are spending millions to make guests come back. However, Marriott told the press that “Mexico continues to be a desirable destination for visitors from around the world and we’ve had few cancellations for the Holiday season due to this.”

Barclays added that the decrease in tourism could cost Mexico half a percent of its gross domestic product. The country typically receives roughly $20 billion a year from tourism.

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