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Is Cabo San Lucas Safe: 2024?

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Is Cabo San Lucas Safe? Everything You Need to Know Before Your 2024 Trip

One of the things people ask us when we’re heading to Cabo is, “Is Cabo San Lucas Safe?” In this blog post, we’ll dive into the safety situation in Cabo San Lucas, dispel common myths, and provide practical tips for ensuring a safe and enjoyable visit to this stunning destination. Hopefully, once you’ve read the article you will feel much better about making Cabo San Lucas your next vacation destination.

Understanding Safety Concerns:

Is it Safe to Travel to Cabo San Lucas? Cabo San Lucas, like many tourist destinations, has its share of safety concerns. However, it’s essential to understand the reality behind the headlines. While isolated incidents may occur, overall, Cabo San Lucas maintains a comparable safety record to other popular destinations worldwide.

If you’re looking for a scary story to show you spouse because you don’t want to go to Cabo San Lucas and they do…this isn’t that story.

Travelers need to recognize that safety concerns in Cabo San Lucas are often exaggerated or misrepresented in media reports. While there have been instances of crime, the vast majority of visitors experience a safe and enjoyable stay in the region.

By taking reasonable precautions and staying informed, travelers can minimize their risk and focus on the incredible experiences Cabo San Lucas has to offer.

Before going we suggest checking the US Department of State website for travel advisories. When it comes to Cabo San Lucas and the state of Baja California Sur, the State Department said this about Spring Break in Mexico:

Event:  Spring Break Travel
Location:  Mexico

Travel Smart – Be Informed:  Each year, thousands of U.S. citizens visit Mexico during spring break.  While the vast majority travel safely, visitors should consider the following when planning their vacation or traveling in Mexico:

Crime:  Crime, including violent crime, can occur anywhere in Mexico, including in popular tourist destinations.  Travelers should maintain a high level of situational awareness, avoid areas where illicit activities occur, and promptly depart from potentially dangerous situations.  See the

Mexico Travel Advisory  for specific information for each Mexican state.  U.S. citizens should exercise increased caution in the downtown areas of popular spring break locations including Cancun, Playa Del Carmen, and Tulum, especially after dark.

You will notice there is no mention of Cabo San Lucas or Baja California Sur. That doesn’t mean things can’t happen in Cabo, it’s just not as prevalent as other destinations in Mexico.

How Safe is Cabo San Lucas? Crime Rates and Tourist Safety:

Crime in Cabo San Lucas has been declining in recent years, thanks to increased security measures and efforts to promote tourism safety. Most reported crimes are non-violent, such as petty theft and pickpocketing. Tourists can mitigate these risks by remaining vigilant and taking precautions such as securing belongings and avoiding secluded areas, especially at night.

Of course, with any destination in Mexico, the biggest question on everybody’s mind is, “Is Cabo San Lucas safe from drug cartels?” The news would lead you to believe that cartels are an issue everywhere in Mexico, but Cabo San Lucas is not one of those areas at the moment. There are many theories on why that is, but maybe it’s because the tourists in Cabo are a great customer base and they don’t want to scare away their customers.

“Is Cabo San Lucas safe?” We love our staycations in Cabo!

While it is essential to be aware of potential risks, it’s also important not to let fear dictate your travel plans. With proper precautions and awareness, visitors can safely explore all that Cabo San Lucas has to offer. Additionally, travelers should take comfort in knowing that tourist areas are generally well-patrolled and monitored, providing an added layer of security.

Tourist-Friendly Areas in Cabo San Lucas:

Sticking to tourist-friendly areas is key to ensuring safety. Downtown Cabo San Lucas and popular attractions are generally safe, with a visible police presence. These areas offer well-lit streets, bustling activity, and amenities catering to tourists, providing a secure environment for exploration.

You should still watch for the typical tourist scams you’d find at tourist destinations worldwide. Keep your personal belongings in a spot to deter pickpockets and pay attention when getting the correct change from taxis and other transportation. 

Travelers should take advantage of resources such as hotel concierge services and local tourism offices to gather information about safe areas to visit and recommended activities. Additionally, group tours and excursions can provide a structured and secure way to explore the region while minimizing potential risks.

Is Cabo San Lucas Safe: Travel from Los Cabos International Airport to Cabo San Lucas

When it comes to getting safely from the Los Cabos International airport to Cabo San Lucas, you have a few options.

If you didn’t know, the Los Cabos International airport is approximately 43-50km or 27-31 miles from Cabo San Lucas, but ultimately depends on where you are staying.

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Mexico Highway 1

The first option you have to get from the Los Cabos International Airport to Cabo San Lucas is staying on Mexico highway 1. This means you’ll be driving through the busy Baja California city of San Jose del Cabo.

This is still a very safe route and you will get a more Mexican experience. However, you will experience heavy traffic and tons of stop lights.

During one of our recent “stay-cations” in San Jose del Cabo, we opted for this route when we stayed at the Hotel Posada Real.

Let’s just say it wasn’t our favorite place we’ve stayed.

I will say that it was fairly handy to downtown San Jose and it was CHEAP!

If you are staying in the hotel corridor in San Jose del Cabo this is not a bad option at all and doesn’t require tolls.

If you are staying in the Cabo San Lucas Resort Corridor this route will take longer. This option is safe, but it can be pretty hectic will lots of traffic and stop lights.

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Los Cabos Toll Road to Cabo San Lucas Resort Corridor

If you’d like to skip a lot of traffic and get to your destination faster, the Los Cabos toll road will be your best bet.

It will probably make those, “Is Cabo San Lucas safe” people in your party, feel much better.

The toll is a few dollars USD as of the writing of this article and is worth the time savings.

This will be a great option for anybody staying in any of the Cabo San Lucas resort corridor hotels. There will be less traffic and you’ll still enjoy an ocean view while enjoying the ride to your final destination.

If it’s whale season, which is December through mid April, you might even see some whales along the way!

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Los Cabos Toll Road to Cabo San Lucas

The third option is taking the Los Cabos toll road all the way from the Los Cabos International Airport to Cabo San Lucas.

It’s faster, it’s the safest option and you avoid most of the Cabo San Lucas resort corridor traffic. Traffic is heaviest on weekends and holidays. If you arrive at any other time, you’ll have even less traffic woes.

At the time of this writing in 2024, the toll was approximately $6-7 USD. This is a great value for the time savings you get.

On our last staycation, we stayed at the SOLMAR RESORT. This was our route of choice cutting off all of the traffic of San Jose del Cabo and the Cabo San Lucas resort corridor.

If you’re staying in Cabo San Lucas and want to get the party started quickly, take the toll road!

Drinking Water In Cabo San Lucas

The water in Cabo San Lucas is treated, but drinking water in Cabo that comes from a tap isn’t recommended. One of the reasons for this is aging pipes and limited water quality data. Even Mexican people don’t drink the tap water. The systems in Mexico have yet to catch up to modern water purification programs in the US.

You should drink bottled water or purified water (agua purificada) wherever possible. If you carry a water bottle that purifies your water you should be fine.

Of course, there are many places in the USA where you shouldn’t drink the tap water. We have experienced many areas in the United States and Canada that were in a “boil your water” situation when we visited.

Always ask the locals about the water no matter where you are traveling.

People will tell you to request all your drinks be made without ice, but most restaurants are using filtered water these days for their ice cubes, so most are safe. You can always ask or look around the restaurant and see what everybody else is doing. Order your drink without if ice if that makes you more comfortable.

Just like any nightclub, any where in the world, if you are out partying at night, watch your drink at all times. Getting your drink spiked will ruin the best of vacations.

Tips for Staying Safe While in Cabo San Lucas:

To ensure a worry-free trip, consider the following expanded tips:

  • Keep belongings secure: Use a secure bag or money belt and avoid displaying valuables in public. There is no reason to display all your bling on a night out in Cabo San Lucas nightclubs. When dining out or exploring crowded areas, keep bags and backpacks close and zipped securely.
  • Stay aware: Be mindful of your surroundings, especially in crowded areas, and trust your instincts if something feels off. Avoid distractions such as excessive phone use and maintain awareness of your surroundings at all times.
  • Use reputable transportation: Opt for licensed taxis or recommended transportation services. Avoid unlicensed taxis or individuals offering rides, as they may pose safety risks. Additionally, consider using ride-sharing apps that provide driver and vehicle information for added security.
  • Respect local laws: Familiarize yourself with customs and laws, including alcohol and drug regulations. Remember that laws and cultural norms may differ from those in your home country, and ignorance of local regulations is not an excuse for non-compliance.
  • Stay connected: Keep emergency contact numbers handy and share your itinerary with a trusted person. Ensure that your cell phone is fully charged and that you have access to local emergency services in case of need.
  • Stay aware of your surroundings when pulling money out of an ATM.
  • Utilize hotel safes: Store valuables in hotel safes when not in use. Avoid leaving unattended cash, jewelry, passports, or other valuables in hotel rooms or common areas. We think this is a good practice regardless of where you are vacationing.
  • Stay informed: Monitor local news and weather updates and adjust plans accordingly. Stay informed about safety advisories and travel warnings issued by relevant authorities.

Is Cabo San Lucas Safe Right Now?:

As of 2024, Cabo San Lucas remains a safe destination for travelers. While staying informed about safety advisories is crucial, there is no reason to cancel or postpone your trip solely due to safety concerns. Travelers should exercise the same level of caution they would in any other destination and take appropriate precautions to ensure their safety and well-being.

A great resource is US Department of State website for travel advisories

We live a short drive away in Los Barriles, B.C.S. and Cabo San Lucas is a quick trip for us. We always feel safe when we make the trip over for a “stay-cation” and we do it quite often.

We stay in different Cabo San Lucas hotels each time, but our last stay was in the SOLMAR RESORT and we really liked it. The hotel itself was a bit dated, but it is directly on the beach on the Pacific Ocean side. We were able to whale watch from the beach or pool area. It was within walking distance of the marina, the club district, and many downtown restaurants.

Additional Safety Measures:

In addition to the above tips, consider the following expanded safety measures:

  • Engage with hotel staff for local insights and recommendations. Hotel employees are often knowledgeable and can provide valuable information about safe areas to visit, which nightclubs are okay, transportation options, and recommended activities.
  • Utilize travel insurance for added peace of mind. Travel insurance can provide coverage for unexpected events such as medical emergencies, trip cancellations, and lost or stolen belongings. Be sure to review your policy coverage and understand any exclusions before traveling.
  • Avoid excessive alcohol consumption, which can impair judgment and increase vulnerability to potential safety risks. Drink responsibly and be mindful of your alcohol intake, especially when traveling alone or in unfamiliar environments.

Is Cabo San Lucas Safe for Travel; The Conclusion:

As with many tourist destinations world-wide, your safety in Cabo is dependent on many different things.

Here are 15 things you can do to make your trip to Cabo San Lucas, or any tourist destination for that matter, much more safe.

1. Be smart with your money

keep your money safe

Every resource for Cabo safety information will inform you that it’s never the best idea to carry huge amounts of cash on you. What you can do instead, is open a bank account with an international bank or credit card company so you can use local ATMs. Tourist in Cabo tend to still use US dollars and they wind up paying more for everything because the exchange rate at bars and restaurants is usually terrible. If you feel the need to keep large amounts of cash with you, leave most of it locked in your hotel or hostel safe and carry only what you’ll need for the day.

When using ATMs, it’s best to use the ones that are in or around a bank because these are less likely to have been tampered with by scammers.

Never keep your cash in one place. Keep your credit cards and cash in a few different places so that you aren’t completely wiped out by one isolated incident.

2. Be aware of tourist scams

Before going anywhere you should know what the local scam artists are up to. It may be the most unlikely person because they may use children or older people to play on your sympathy. If you’ve heard about them ahead of time, you are less likely to fall this type of thing.

3. Keep important documents in digital format

passport photo

When you travel, the most valuable thing you carry, will most likely be your passport. If your passport is stolen, having a digital copy will help make getting a replacement easier.

4. Try not to stand out

It’s well known that tourists carry larger amounts of cash and valuables, making them more vulnerable to scams. Try avoiding being the “typical tourist”. 

It might not be easy in some locations, but try to dress as the locals do. Don’t make it too apparent that you’re a tourist by stopping in the middle of busy streets to take photos. If you get lost, try not to make it apparent. If you need to ask for directions or consult a map, step inside a coffee shop or store.

5. Leave the bling at home

This is part of the “trying to blend in” thing. Wearing expensive, flashy jewelry will make yourself a target for thieves. Lock it in the hotel safe or better yet, leave it at home so you don’t have to worry about it. Especially if you plan to travel to crowded areas where pickpockets can have a field day!

6. Drink responsibly

I know, “what’s the point of heading to Cabo if I can’t drink.” But this has to be one of the most important safety tips for traveling to Cabo.

Many people come to Cabo for the vibrant night and we say, “GO FOR IT!” But just know that you are setting yourself up for vacation disaster if let your drinking get out of control while in a foreign country.

When you aren’t familiar with an area you are more likely to end up in a dangerous situation, and being fall down drunk makes you an easy target for scams, robbery, or worse. 

And for you ladies, don’t forget the key to safe drinking in public: keep an eye on your drink at all times!

7. Ask locals for advice

When checking into your hotel or hostel, it’s the perfect time to ask for information about which neighborhoods are safe and which are not so safe and mark places to avoid on your map.

8. Put local emergency services number in your phone

It’s always a good idea to look up the emergency services number for your destination, even before you get there. You also want to know the number for your country’s nearest embassy before you travel. Store them in your phone or write them down and keep them with you. You’ll need quick access to them in the case of an unforeseen emergency.

9. Safely carry valuables

Instead of using a hand bag or should bag, consider using a cross-body bag. A cross-body bag makes it harder for people to do a quick snatch and run. There are tons of anti-theft cross should bags, made specifically for travelers. Look for something with RFID blockers, slash-proof straps, locking zippers.

Investing in a good travel bag could save your vacation!

10. Bring travel locks

Come prepared with your own lock if you plan to stay in a hostel. Regardless of where you stay, a travel lock can secure your bag to your seat or chair in a restaurant or during travel.

11. Research reputable transportation companies

It might seem odd to have to research taxi companies, but you should. Ask your hotel about local taxi companies when making your reservations. Better yet, use a ride-sharing app like Uber or Lyft. Always double check your driver’s vehicle information and verify their name before you get in the car with them.

This is good practice whether you are traveling or at home.

Be aware that some hotels in the Cabo area do not allow Uber and Lyft to pick up or drop off at the lobby. Verify this information with your hotel when booking.

12. Do your friends and family know where you are

Before leaving on any trip, let someone know your itinerary, and update them if your plans change. You can check in every now and then and get them to watch your social media for any deviations.

A good habit is to make one final check in at the end of each day. 

This may be overkill, but if something were to happen, you’ll have help on the way much faster.

13. Be aware of your surroundings

As we mentioned earlier in this post, being aware of your surroundings may be the most important thing you can do. Always pay attention to what’s going on around you. It’s just good practice to know what’s going on around you in a crowded tourist spot or even more so when walking down an empty street. 

If you look distracted, lost or just unaware of your surroundings, you become a target to scam artists and criminals. This is even more important for solo travelers, especially solo female travelers.

14. Trust your instincts

Have you ever been somewhere and you just feel uncomfortable? That is a sign that you should leave that situation immediately. Our subconscious is pretty good at picking up on this kind of thing. Don’t second guess it and blindly walk down the dark alley anyway.

You’ve heard of trust your “gut feelings”? Listen to those feelings and they will help you stay safe.

Cabo San Lucas offers a safe and enjoyable experience for travelers, with a range of measures in place to ensure the safety and well-being of visitors.

By taking the precautions we mentioned above, staying informed, and respecting local customs, you can enjoy a memorable trip to this beautiful destination.

So, pack your bags, book your tickets, and embark on an unforgettable adventure in Cabo San Lucas

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