Mexico is a diversified and culturally rich country that has it all: gorgeous beaches, historic ruins, bustling cities, and tiny colonial towns. With so much to see and do, it’s important to plan your trip carefully to make the most of your time. In this article, we’ll discuss essential things to consider before traveling to Mexico, including obtaining a tourist visa, managing currency, choosing flights, and more.
Tourist Visa from Natvisa
Before traveling to Mexico, the first thing to consider is obtaining a tourist visa. If you’re from a country that requires a visa to enter Mexico, you can apply for one through Natvisa, an online visa processing platform. To apply, visit their website and follow the instructions to submit your application and required documents. You’ll receive your visa electronically, which you can print out and present at immigration upon arrival in Mexico.
The official currency of Mexico is the Mexican Peso (MXN). Before traveling, research the current exchange rate to determine the best time to exchange your money. You can exchange currency at banks, exchange bureaus, and some hotels in Mexico. Keep in mind that it’s always best to carry some local currency, especially when visiting rural areas or smaller towns where card payments might not be accepted. Additionally, make sure to inform your bank about your travel plans to avoid any issues with card transactions.
PRO TIP: ATMs in Mexico are all over the place, but the most trusted I recommend are BBVA Bancomer, Santander, HSBC, and CitiBanamex (if you have a Citibank account, you can take cash out of these for free). You get the best exchange rate at a bank rather than taking loads of US dollars with you and looking for a place to exchange them (they all charge fees).
Flights to Mexico
With numerous international airports scattered throughout the country, Mexico is well-connected by air to the rest of the world. Major airlines like Aeromexico, American Airlines, Delta, United, Emirates, Qatar, and Korean Air all offer flights to Mexico.
To find the best deals, consider booking your flights well in advance and compare prices on different booking platforms.
Getting Around Mexico
Mexico offers various transportation options to suit all budgets and preferences. These include buses, taxis, car rentals, and domestic flights. For long distances, consider taking an overnight bus or a domestic flight to save time. If you prefer the freedom of driving, research car rental options and book in advance for the best rates. It’s also worth noting that ride-hailing apps like Uber are available in major cities, providing a convenient and often cheaper alternative to traditional taxis.
Mexico offers a wide range of accommodation options, from budget hostels to luxurious resorts. Research and book your accommodation in advance to secure the best deals and ensure your preferred lodging is available. Popular platforms like Booking.com, Airbnb, and Expedia can help you find suitable options based on your preferences and budget.
List of Destinations
With so much to see and do in Mexico, it’s essential to plan your itinerary carefully. Some must-visit destinations include:
- Mexico City: The bustling capital city boasts historical landmarks, world-class museums, and vibrant nightlife.
- Cancun: A popular beach destination known for its crystal-clear waters, white sandy beaches, and vibrant nightlife.
- Oaxaca: A charming colonial city with rich cultural heritage, renowned for its food and artisanal crafts.
- Guanajuato: A picturesque city with colorful buildings, narrow streets, and a vibrant arts scene.
- Chichen Itza: A UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most important archaeological sites of the Mayan civilization.
How much money will you need for your Mexico trip? You should budget roughly 1,743 MXN (97 USD) per day for your holiday in Mexico, as this is the average daily price based on other travellers’ costs. Previous visitors spent an average of 404 MXN (22 USD) on meals and 276 MXN (15 USD) on local transportation in one day. In addition, the average hotel room in Mexico costs 1,365 MXN (76 USD). So, a one-week trip to Mexico for two people costs on average of 24,397 MXN (1,354 MXN).
To give you a more concrete example, Your budget will depend on your preferences, travel style, and the destinations you plan to visit. Consider factors like accommodation, transportation, food, attractions, and activities when planning your budget. Research the average costs of these elements in your chosen destinations to help you estimate your daily expenses.
Mexican Food Must-Try
Mexico is known for its delicious and diverse cuisine, so be sure to indulge in local dishes during your visit. Some must-try Mexican foods include:
- Tacos: A staple of Mexican cuisine, tacos consist of a soft corn tortilla filled with various ingredients like meat, cheese, and salsa.
- Enchiladas: Rolled corn tortillas filled with meat, cheese, or vegetables, topped with a chili sauce and baked.
- Tamales: Steamed corn dough filled with meats, cheeses, or vegetables, wrapped in a corn husk or banana leaf.
- Chiles en Nogada: A traditional dish featuring stuffed poblano peppers with a walnut-based cream sauce and pomegranate seeds.
- Pozole: A hearty soup made with hominy corn, meat (usually pork), and various seasonings, garnished with lettuce, radish, onion, and lime.
Mexico’s weather can vary greatly depending on the region and time of year. Generally, the dry season runs from November to April, with the rainy season from May to October. Coastal areas tend to be warmer and more humid, while higher elevations experience cooler temperatures. Research the specific climate for your chosen destinations to help you pack appropriately.
Travel insurance is essential when traveling to any foreign country. It can cover unforeseen expenses like medical emergencies, trip cancellations, or lost luggage. Before your trip, research and compare different travel insurance policies to find the best coverage for your needs. The insurance I use when I travel abroad is SAFETY WING. You can check about their travel medical coverage here.
COVID-19 Testing Requirements for Entering Mexico
- Quarantine – Not Required
Quarantine is not required, however if you are symptomatic traveller, you may be required to be quarantined upon arrival in Mexico.
- Pre-departure Covid Test – Not Required
Proof of pre-departure COVID-19 test is not required. Travellers don’t need a COVID-19 test before travelling to Mexico.
- Proof of vaccination – Not Required
Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is not required for Mexico. Travellers don’t need proof of COVID-19 vaccination before travelling to Mexico.
While Mexico is generally safe for tourists, it’s important to be aware of any potential risks and follow safety protocols. Stay informed about local news, avoid traveling alone at night in unfamiliar areas, and keep your personal belongings secure. In addition, research any region-specific safety concerns or travel advisories before your trip.
A well-planned trip to Mexico can provide a memorable and enriching experience. By considering the essential aspects discussed in this article, such as obtaining a tourist visa, understanding currency, and planning your itinerary, you’ll be better prepared to make the most of your time in this vibrant and diverse country. Remember to stay informed about local customs, safety protocols, and weather conditions, and always travel with appropriate insurance coverage for a safe and enjoyable journey!