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Why Mexico Is Still Americans Favorite Holiday Destination

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There's just something about Mexico. The sun, the people, the diversity, the food, the great weather – there are so many reasons tourists flock to Mexico, and the numbers show that there’s no signs of stopping.

According to some of the latest statistics on the first quarter of 2022, international arrivals to Mexico have almost reached pre-pandemic levels. And of all the travelers who’ve visited Mexico so far in 2022, reports reveal that 77% of the tourists come from U.S., Canada and Colombia.

tourist from behind standing on a ruin overlooking Mayan ruins in Mexico, sunny day

Even despite the high seaweed levels in Cancun, despite the travel warnings and some negative headlines, travelers (including Americans) can’t get enough of Mexico.

So, exactly what makes Mexico everyone’s favorite holiday destination? We break it down for you below.

Travel To Mexico – The Diversity

When talking about travel in Mexico, it’s impossible not to mention its diversity. In a short flight within the country, you can be transported from the luscious lowlands of the Yucatan Peninsula to the desert paradise of Oaxaca state.

Then there’s Mexico City – the massive, fascinating, and ever-so cultural capital city that keeps travelers coming back for more (seriously, a few days there just isn’t enough).

beach in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico on a clear, sunny day

Along the Pacific Coast, travelers are blessed with so many options when it comes to bustling cities or low-key beach towns where you can take a step back and relax for a bit.

And let’s not forget about the Baja Peninsula, just a short flight away from many US Americans living on the west coast. I mean, can you find water as turquoise and as clear as in Cabo?

Sayulita is a village on Mexico's Pacific coast backed by the Sierra Madre Occidental mountains. It is known for beaches with strong surf.  Shot taken with Canon 5D Mark lV.

The Amazing Food

In Mexico, travelers can enjoy everything from humid nights with dinners of cochitnita pibil (Mayan style pulled pork) and margaritas to sampling homemade moles at a local market before heading to a hidden mezcaleria somewhere in the heart of town.

And, you can find mouth-watering tacos de pastor just about everywhere. Whatever region you may find yourself in, each day in Mexico is another culinary adventure.

Taking all of this into account, it's no surprise that Mexico is one of the most sought-after culinary regions for travelers (up there with Italy, France, Japan, and Thailand).

Mole Mexicano, Poblano mole ingredients, mexican spicy food traditional in Mexico

International Airports In Mexico See Arrivals At Record-Breaking Numbers

Throughout the past few years and even prior to that, Cancun has remained a consistently popular destination for tourists. It was even reported last fall that Cancun International Airport saw record-breaking numbers, with over 1.6 million tourists that reportedly arrived during the month of September alone.

For snowbirds looking to relax for a few months or travelers seeking a beach resort vacation, Cancun and the surrounding region of the Riviera Maya is everyone’s favorite winter hideaway.

But Cancun wasn't the only resort city that broke records in 2021. The Pacific coastal city of Puerto Vallarta surpassed its tourist arrival numbers from 2019 in August of last year, with mostly travelers from the US visiting the popular beach resort destination.

Visitors enjoy shopping on famous 5th Avenue in the entertainment district of Playa del Carmen in the Yucatan peninsula of Caribbean Mexico in Cancun.

Mexico's Carefree Travel Experience

The lack of strict travel restrictions in Mexico over the past few years has made the technical side of travel much easier for American tourists.

There’s never been on-arrival or pre-departure testing required for travel to Mexico throughout the pandemic, and international arrivals have only had to fill out a health declaration form for travel, which was scrapped in January of this year.

Despite the busy airports with potentially long waits for visitors, Mexico is a relatively stress-free destination to travel to.

Typical art nouveau house at Colonia Roma, a fashionable neighborhood in Mexico City

And not only is Mexico easy to get to for many US travelers, it's easy to get around once you're there. Upon arrival, the availability of clean, comfortable, and air-conditioned ADO buses, lots rental car companies, and cheap colectivos are there to take tourists where they want to go, whether it be to discover a new pueblo magico or re-visit your favorite Mexican stomping ground.

Cheap flights are also readily available to take you across different Mexican states, making it still relatively easy and affordable to get around such a large country.

sunset over the city in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

The (Relative) Affordability

Affordability is also another important factor in Mexico’s allure with tourists from the US.

While an increasing amount of tourists and expatriates have resulted in the recent rise of prices in certain areas, especially in some tourist-heavy regions, a night at a hotel, a decent meal, and a day tour is still much cheaper compared to the price tag you’d find at most destinations across the United States. (With the exception of 5-star resorts of course.)

Couple visiting Guanajuato from lookout on the mountain. Mexico

The Cabo Sun recently reported that inflation is Los Cabos reached a 21-year high this past April. In the popular region of Baja as well as other parts of Mexico, it's no longer possible to get those “rock-bottom” prices you’ve heard rumors about, but it is still very possible to have an unforgettable getaway in Mexico that doesn’t break the bank.

So whether it be the cheap and delicious eats, the easy travel, the beautiful nature or a combination of it all, Mexico has made its place as a beloved travel destination.

People shop and walk below colorful hanging flags at Plaza Santa Cecilia, a historic Mexican square in the heart of the city.

Read More:

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How Travelers Should Prepare For Busy Airports This Summer

Large Crowds Return To Las Vegas As Casinos Post Near Record Numbers

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Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.

John Newton

Monday 19th of June 2023

Very well said.


Friday 13th of May 2022

Very good article. Viva Mexico!