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Thousands of youngsters converge on the Riviera Maya for Cancun holidays during spring break

The Cancun Hotel Association has reported that the region is enjoying a tourism boost as thousands flock to the Mayan Riviera for their fun Cancun holidays this spring. Cancun remains unaffected despite wider concerns over drug related violence in Mexico

Thousands of youngsters converge on the Riviera Maya for Cancun holidays during spring break

With travellers heading to their fun Cancun holidays in the thousands, Cancun hotels are currently reaping the benefits of a bumper spring break holiday season. The Cancun Hotel Association reported that many hotels in Cancun are currently exceeding 85 per cent occupancy rates; an encouraging sign in light of the current concerns over drug related violence in Mexico. “Business is good. We've been packed for the past months, and our reservations look strong” noted Melissa Pearlman a hotel owner in the region during a recent interview.

Many have marvelled at the fact that despite the current climate in Mexico, tourism has remained largely unaffected; Ms Pearlman noted in her interview, “Down here we haven't had any problems of any kind — nothing”. The official travel advisories released by the U.S. would also indicate that travellers interested in holidays to Cancun have nothing to worry about. The April 2011 Travel Warning for Mexico put out by the U.S. State Department has been replaced by a new advisory released on the 8th February 2012 which now specifically states that “no advisories exist” for popular holiday destinations in Mexico on the Caribbean coast. That clarification would have no doubt served to boost confidence in the region as a safe holiday destination. “Resort areas and tourist destinations in Mexico generally do not see the levels of drug-related violence and crime reported in the border region and in areas along major trafficking routes” noted an announcement from the U.S. State Department in February 2012.

 Riviera Maya Beach Resorts
Image by: IDEE_PER_VIAGGIARE, on Flickr

Although the U.S. State Department has given its all clear in addition to assurances from Mexican officials, the state of Texas has advised its residents against travel to Mexico for spring break celebrations stating that drug related violence may affect some resort areas. The announcement was met with “deep concern” from the Mexican Tourism Board. Rodolfo Lopez Negrete chief operating officer of the Mexican Tourism Board stated, “This warning is exceptionally aggressive...To paint Mexico with such a massively broad brush stroke is simply outrageous”.

 Chichen Itza Ruins
Image by: worldtraveller5, on Flickr

From all accounts, it appears that it is business as usual in Cancun and wider Mexico despite the concerns expressed by the state of Texas. The Mexican government announced earlier this year that over 22 million travellers enjoyed holidays in Mexico in 2011. Historically, much of the country’s tourism has been driven by the appeal of the fun-filled atmosphere down in Cancun with nearly 200 000 students, many from the U.S., booking their annual spring break holidays in the Riviera Maya each year. According to Student City, a leading travel agency focusing exclusively on students, after a slight downward trend in the last couple of years, college students have once again named spring Cancun holidays as their top choice.

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