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9 Tips for Staying Safe in Mexico City as a Solo Female Traveler (2024)

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I’ve got good news for you, girl. Contrary to what you may have heard on the news, Mexico City is, in fact, a safe travel destination (yes, even for solo female travelers). You may get strange looks from your friends and family when you tell them where you plan to visit, but hey, you’re a trailblazer and an adventurer at heart that knows there’s more to a place than intimidating news headlines.

But just like any large city, travelers need to keep their wits about them and be aware of particular precautions unique to the destination. So before you pack your bags and fly to the land of tacos al pastor, keep reading for our insider tips on how to stay safe in Mexico City.

Picking a Safe Neighborhood

First and foremost, you’ll want to make sure that the area you’re staying in is secure and has good vibes. The line can be very fine in Mexico City because popular tourist neighborhoods often border dodgy barios (sketchy neighborhoods).

  1. Picking-a-Safe-NeighborhoodKnow where to avoid: Neighborhoods you want to avoid include Roma’s neighbor Doctores (except for watching lucha libre wrestling) and the outskirts of Centro Historico. Centro Historico can be a tricky area to navigate because of the huge day crowds (especially on weekends or holidays), but then come nightfall, it becomes deserted, and it’s highly recommended you don’t walk around late at night.
  2. Choose a good neighborhood: Overall, the most popular neighborhoods to stay in Mexico City are Roma Norte, Roma Sur, Condesa, Juarez, Polanco, Coyoacan, and the heart of Centro Historico.These neighborhoods are very safe when taking the right precautions. They have tourist police standing at busy street corners in case you need any help, and there are always people (locals and foreigners) out and about, so you won’t stick out as a potential target for petty theft.As a solo female traveler, you can feel safe walking around these neighborhoods during the day by yourself.

Staying Safe at Night

While you shouldn’t walk around empty streets alone late at night, most tourist neighborhoods are safe to explore after dark – there are tons of cool bars and restaurants you’ll want to explore after all.

  1. Staying Safe at NightStick to busy streets: If you’re bar hopping on foot, it’s always best to be accompanied by a fellow traveler, but if you are heading out alone, be sure to stick to well-lit main streets. Avenida Alvaro Obregon in Roma Norte or Avenida Tamaulipas in Condesa are great options for going out at night because you can find an abundance of nightlife on either of these two streets so you won’t have to walk very far to get to the next place.
  2. Use Uber as your main mode of transport: When it’s time to call it a night, order an Uber instead of walking home. The key to staying safe when out late in Mexico City is not to wander empty streets because you will lack the safety in numbers that you have during the day. Ubers are trustworthy and affordable, so it’s best not to risk it and order a ride home.

Evading Theft

Staying safe while exploring Mexico City means being aware of potential pick-pockets and taking precautions to avoid being a victim of theft.

  1. Evading TheftNever keep anything in your pockets: Instead, keep your valuables (e.g., phone, wallet, or identification) secure in a neck wallet, cross-body bag, or belt bag. And when it’s time to sit down at a restaurant or cafe, do not leave your bag hanging behind your chair or out of sight.
  2. Stay alert: If you don’t want to be an easy target for theft, don’t look like one. Avoid walking around with headphones on, keep your eyes up and away from your phone, and overall just look alert so you don’t come off as someone that could easily be taken by surprise.
  3. Leave the valuables at home: While crime in Mexico City is relatively low, it still happens, so if you’d be devastated to lose a piece of jewelry or a camera, you’re better off not bringing it because it’s not unheard of for valuables to get stolen out of hostels, Airbnbs, and hotels too.

Avoiding Food Poisoning

One of the best parts of going to Mexico City is trying all of the incredible food, but the last thing you want is to fall victim to Montezuma’s revenge.

  1. Avoiding Food PoisoningSkip the raw veggies: While it can be exciting to try street food, it can also be risky. If you want to experience street tacos – go for it, but it’s best to skip the raw garnishes like cilantro and onion. This is actually a good rule of thumb for all cheaper dining options. What isn’t cooked has a higher likelihood of containing bacteria that could get you sick.
  2. Choose street food wisely: A lot of street vendors don’t have access to a fridge to keep food cold. With this in mind, it’s best to seek out stalls that attract a crowd because there is likely a higher turnover rate, so food won’t be sitting uncooked for very long.

Important Reminder: Don’t drink the water

Water quality is probably the biggest concern when it comes to food safety in Mexico. You do not want to drink tap water in Mexico City. You will have to buy bottled water or bring a reusable bottle with a built-in filter.

Mexico City Safety FAQs

  • 1. What is the safest way to get around Mexico City?

    What is the safest way to get around Mexico City?

    Uber is the most popular and safest way for tourists to navigate larger distances in Mexico City. If you don’t have a particular place in mind and just want to see the major sites, then the hop-on, hop-off Turibus is an excellent option. Don’t be afraid to walk around one of the safer neighborhoods previously mentioned or rent a bike or scooter from one of the many stations across the city to get around.

  • 2. Can I carry valuables with me when exploring?

    While many tourists explore with fine jewelry and camera in toe, if you can’t imagine having it stolen, don’t bring it. Stick to the bare minimum, like your phone and some cash or a bank card, and you’ll have everything you need.

  • 3. Is sexual harassment an issue for female travelers in Mexico City?

    Is sexual harassment an issue for female travelers in Mexico City?

    Fortunately, most female tourists don’t experience cat-calling or other forms of harassment when in Mexico City. If you want to reduce your risks of unwanted attention, it’s always a good idea to dress like the locals. In the case of Mexico City, women almost always have their legs covered with pants, jeans, or longer dresses during the day. Sleeveless tops or even crop tops are common and are a good option on hot afternoons.

  • 4. Should I worry about the Cartel in Mexico City?

    While the cartel is still very active across the country, they are not targeting tourists. Mexico City has very little cartel activity compared to other parts of the country, and any violence is contained between competing cartels.

  • 5. Am I going to get kidnapped in Mexico?

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    Luckily kidnappings have drastically decreased in Mexico over the past few decades, and tourists were usually never the targets of kidnapping anyways. Targets used to be children of wealthy, well-known business owners.

    Tourists are generally treated with kindness and respect as tourism represents a huge source of income for much of the Mexican population.

Conclusion

Hopefully by now you’ve seen how safety in Mexico City shouldn’t be a troubling concern for solo female travelers. Be smart, follow our tips, and listen to your intuition – you’ve got this girl! And if you need any more advice on preparing for your trip to Mexico City, be sure to check out our in-depth Mexico City packing list and our guide on all of the best places to stay in Mexico City!

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