Mexico is a country of extremes. In many aspects, and in some places a lot more than in others, Mexico is still a developing country.
Tourism can be a tool of development, but the benefits are sometimes unevenly distributed. Besides, tourism can damage or even destroy the natural environment and/or cultural traditions.
Therefore, we would like to make you aware of the vulnerability of some places and people you might come across during a stay in Mexico.
In various ways, tourism can generate positive impacts and even serve as an instrument in the combat against poverty.
Just by buying local products instead of imported goods or eating in locally-owned restaurants instead of international chains, you can contribute to regional development.
Tourism can also contribute to the protection and maintenance of host communities’ culture, traditions, values, and natural environment.
Specific experiences may contribute to the strengthening of local cultural identity. Always try to remember that small amounts can mean a lot more to your host than to you.
But, even though it sometimes takes a hard heart, we don’t advise giving money to children as it might dissuade their parents from sending them to school.
You can help to respect and care for the natural environment in many ways. Don’t pick wildflowers or plants, dispose of litter responsibly, and stick to set paths to preserve natural habitats and leave animals undisturbed.
If your hotel has a policy for reusing sheets or towels, try to support this as much as you can. Remember to turn off lights and electrical equipment in your hotel room if you are not using them.
Responsible travel doesn’t mean that you have to compromise on the enjoyment of your trip. Just be conscious about your behavior, just like you are expected to do when you are not on holiday.
Don’t inadvertently intrude into the privacy of local residents. Please keep in mind that not every local resident appreciates being close-up in your picture without first being asked for permission. When visiting communities or engaging in local culture, take an adaptable, sensitive, and tolerant attitude.
To make the benefits of tourism development sustainable, tourists themselves are an essential stakeholder and thus carry responsibility.
Tourists must be aware that they, as individuals, can make a difference with their behavior. Keep in mind that your lifestyle often sharply contrasts with the local way of life.
Consider adapting to local cultural practices where/when appropriate but don’t be patronizing. Openness and a willingness to learn about cultural differences can open many doors.
Traveling with respect earns you respect and often generates more authentic experiences. Thank you very much for your understanding and co-operation.
Read more on how to be a responsible Tourist from the World Tourism Organization
Contact us for more information about this topic or any other information you would like to know before your trip to Mexico.