Cancun and Playa Del Carmen are the most famous touristic cities of the Yucatan peninsula, on the Caribbean Coast. Both cities feature warm crystal blue waters and white-sand beaches next to large resort complexes and an endless offering of restaurants, bars and attractions. While Mexico has some crime-related issues which often makes the headlines, the Yucatan Peninsula has long been one of Mexico’s (and some say the Caribbean’s) safest areas. The major risks can be scammers trying to rip-off tourists, and petty theft in some parts of the cities. Wondering how safe is Cancun? SafeAround has compiled information from numerous sources make sure you have a safe trip while in Mexico, and be aware of all potential dangers.


Cancun: How Safe Is Cancun?

Cancun is divided in two parts : the hotel zone, a 14km strand of hotels, restaurants and beaches on the Caribbean sea; and Downtown Cancun which is a less touristic city center. The beaches are generally very safe, and there are flags indicating the swimming condition in front of every hotel.

There are many day trips from Cancun, like the Isla Murales, the ruins of Tulum, the Chichen Itza Mayan complex or the XCaret eco-park as well as all kind of water sports and diving activities. For those of the less “adventurous” type, there are various malls around the city. Cancun’s only source of revenue comes from tourism, and therefore all is done to prevent crime against tourists: Cancun is safe.  

The Hotel Area is safer than Downtown Cancun, which can have some rougher parts with no touristic interest. There can be some pickpockets in the Mercados (markets) of Cancun, and if you are renting a vehicle be sure not to leave anything of value inside.

Warnings & Dangers


Cancun is a very safe citiy within Mexico. With a rating of 44% Mexico, is ranked 114th out of 162 on the ranking of the safest and most dangerous countries.


There is nearly no pickpocket risk in Cancun, but be careful if you go to street markets. A few simple precautions will minimize your chances of being pickpocketed.

Mid Priority-96 MUGGING RISK : LOW

Cancun is a safe city regarding mugging and kidnapping risks, although some areas outside the touristic center are best to be avoided at night.

Mid Priority-96 SCAMS RISK : MEDIUM

As in any touristic place, there may be people trying to scam you in Cancun. Avoid people doing “magic tricks” around touristic area, people offering “free” massages or food samples, locals acting strangely or trying to distract you; and people offering help with your luggage at the airport.


Transports and taxis are generally very safe in Cancun.


There can be some occasional natural hazards (geological, meteorological) in Mexico (see the page about Mexico for more advice).

Mid Priority-96 TERRORISM RISK : LOW

Cancun is a very safe city in respect to terrorist threats.


Cancun is generally very safe for women travelers.


Useful Information

All visitors to Mexico will be issued a traveler’s permit upon arrival (costing about USD 15). Some nationalities require Visas, but citizens of the US, Canada, EU, Israel and Japan are exempted. is a useful website that can help you know if you need a visa or not based on your nationality and the country you’re visiting.
The currency in Mexico is the Mexican Peso or MXN M$. As of June 2016, 1 Us Dollar= 18.6 MXN. Mexico is an inexpensive country to visit, they are many cheap accommodations for backpackers and those travelling on a shoestring. There are also many options for those who want to spend more money on their trip. Expect to pay from 800 MXN to 2000 MXN per day.
Mexico City and other large cities can be visited year long. Between December and April is the country’s high season, particularly in the Yucatan peninsula. Cabo is best visited between October and March.
The main international airports are in Mexico City, Cancun, Guadalajara, Monterrey and Tijuana. If you’re looking for cheap flight deals, you can find some on JetRadar
As in any country, we advise travelers to get a travel insurance that covers not only medical problems but also theft and loss of personal items. Learn more on our travel insurance page