Destinations across Mexico are making their official reopenings, most with certifications from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) after meeting its standardized health and hygiene protocol based on the guidance from the World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention with the support of the World Tourism Organization. Here’s a roundup of top tourist destinations.
The Los Cabos Tourism Board started its phased reopening plan on June 15 with statewide safety protocols in place. The government of the state of Baja California Sur announced a new color-coded classification to be given to local establishments, such as hotels, restaurants, bars, tour operators and convention centers, that determine the level of safety they can offer and whether or not they are able to open to the public. The color categorization will be based on density and capacity levels, as well as the establishments' ability to follow the social distancing protocols that were previously announced by the state.
The tourism board has also been working alongside the WTTC to obtain its global safety stamp of approval that recognizes safe travels protocols.
The United States is Los Cabos' main inbound market contributing 80 percent of all of its international travelers. As states continue to ease travel restrictions, Los Cabos is working with airline operators to resume travel connectivity to the destination following its phased reopening approach. On June 20, Los Cabos will start welcoming flights from Los Angeles, San Diego, San Jose, Dallas, Phoenix, Chicago, Charlotte, Houston and Chicago with airlines including American Airlines, Alaska Airlines, Delta, Southwest and United Airlines with Spirit Airlines returning in July. On July 4, Eastern Airlines will launch its first direct flight from New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport to Los Cabos operating twice a week.
To celebrate the reopening of the destination and recognize the progress made by Los Cabos' travel and tourism industry on its swift implementation of the destination's health and safety protocols, Los Cabos Tourism Board, in partnership with American Express, will be hosting its first live concert with the Los Cabos Symphonic Orchestra overlooking the Bay of Cabo San Lucas at Sunset Monalisa. The concert will be streaming live on Sunday, June 21, at 8 p.m. MST at visitloscabos.travel.
On June 14, the state of Jalisco received the WTTC’s “Safe Travels Global Safety & Hygiene Stamp,” just a day before Jalisco announced the latest reopenings. As of June 15, beaches located immediately in front of hotels opened for guests use, hotels are permitted to operate at 25 percent capacity and restaurants and cafes that apply established sanitation and safety protocol may operate at 50 percent capacity. Note that hotel gyms and spas will remain closed.
At airports, some of the activities required to achieve “Safe Travels” designation include offering health assessments and screenings, having hand sanitizer in high traffic areas, mandating use of face masks by travelers and staff, and ensuring appropriate table spacing. Some of the hotel protocols include clear signage of enhanced cleaning protocols, use of social distancing and appropriate table spacing, and evaluation of innovations for cleanliness and disinfection, such as UVC light and Environmental Protection Agency-based air filtration.
All residents and visitors are encouraged to maintain social distancing practices when outdoors and use a mask when social distancing is not possible.
According to the Riviera Nayarit Conventions and Visitors Bureau, the destination reopened and is ready to welcome back international travelers. As of June 15, hotels, restaurants and businesses in Riviera Nayarit’s tourism sector can reopen, strictly abiding by protocols and health measures put forth by state officials and operating at 30 percent capacity to ensure safe social distancing on property including in common areas and pools.
Some businesses and services in the tourism sector are gradually reopening in the upcoming weeks as they finalize preparations to safely welcome back visitors. Travelers should contact preferred service providers directly to confirm dates and details before booking.
Air connectivity from the United States to Riviera Nayarit’s nearest airport, Puerto Vallarta International Airport, is gradually being reinstated with airlines operating flight routes, including daily flights on American Airlines, Alaska Airlines and United Airlines, and weekly flights on Delta Air Lines. Additionally, Puerto Vallarta International Airport will be temperature-monitoring all passenger arrivals and departures via thermal imaging cameras.
After careful review of the Riviera Nayarit’s Tourism Wellness and Best Practices Guide, the destination joined the list of global destinations that have earned the World Travel & Tourism Council’s "Safe Travels Stamp."
Lastly, the State of Yucatán received the “Travel Safety Stamp” from the WTTC for its adoption of new protocols to protect the health of travelers.
Mauricio Vila Dosal, governor of the State of Yucatán, said in an official release that the state is preparing properly to receive visitors, who can be assured that the endorsed tourist establishments are applying strict hygiene measures in all their processes and facilities.
State Tourism Minister Michelle Fridman Hirsch added, “In this new stage of post-COVID-19 tourism, the certainty that we can provide visitors in terms of best sanitary practices will play a fundamental role in travel decisions.”
Note: The U.S.-Mexico border will remain shut down to non-essential vehicular and pedestrian traffic through June 22 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.