It was in March when the Texas Department of Public Safety issued what the Mexico Tourist Board described as an “unfair” travel warning to Cancun, right in the heart of Mexico's powerhouse bustling spring break season.
On Wednesday, the Mexico Tourist Board concluded its second face-to-face meeting with the Secretary of State of Texas to discuss better communication methods between the two destinations with hopes of avoiding another future travel warning, says Alfonso Sumano, regional director for the Americas for the Mexico Tourism Board.
“We basically presented them with all of the facts and figures in Cancun and in Mexico to show them that it was in fact very safe, as you know, to visit Mexico and that the warning was unfair because it was not specific enough,” Sumano told us during a phone interview roughly 10 minutes after the meeting concluded. “We basically said that they need to be very specific when talking about incidents in Mexico because a lot of people don’t truly understand how far away a lot of the tourist destinations are from the areas where these incidents have occurred.”
The Associated Press reported on March 1 that the Texas Department of Public Safety advised students to avoid vacationing in Mexico this spring break in light of the “ongoing drug violence that has tarnished the country’s tourism reputation for the last two years.”
The Mexico Tourist Board then promptly issued its own statement to keep the public informed that the “ongoing drug violence that has tarnished the country’s tourism reputation for the last two years” was in fact hours away from Cancun and Mexico's others tourism gems. In that statement, the Mexico Tourist Board cited, “Last year more than 22 million foreigners visited Mexico, including more than 2.5 million traveling by air from Texas alone."
The first meeting was held about two months ago, shortly following Texas’ spring break warning. This recent second meeting was a more in-depth tutorial on the current state of Mexico, essentially serving as a geography lesson to Texas in an effort to show how far apart the incidents were to the tourist destinations.
“It went very well and it was a very positive meeting,” Sumano said. “We told them what a great neighbor they have been to us and what a great neighbor we feel they still are to us. Our argument was just to be more specific and to communicate with us more before they issue a warning like this.”