¡Viva! Mexico Makes a Comeback

Phoenix, Mar. 3, 2014. After being plagued by cartel violence and the struggling economy, Mexico is making a comeback.

“Mexico has always been an appealing destination to Arizonans,” said Amy Moreno, senior travel manager for AAA Arizona. “It’s really no surprise that travel traffic to the country is starting to pick back up.”

Cruise traffic is especially booming. In fact, Arizona passenger bookings for Mexico itineraries on Princess Cruises are up 240 percent so far this year, according to AAA Travel, a full-service travel agency.

The popularity of Mexico cruises can be attributed to proximity, flexibility and affordability. Cruises can be as short as three days and generally depart from California, which make for a quick and convenient getaway for Arizonans. These itineraries also tend to be less expensive than others.

“If you haven’t traveled to Mexico before, a cruise is a great way to experience a few areas of the country in a safe environment,” Moreno said. “Another option is an all-inclusive. Mexico is also home to some fantastic all-inclusive resorts.”

But it isn’t all about cruising. Drive traffic to destinations, such as Puerto Peñasco, also known as Rocky Point, is also on the rise.

Mexico auto insurance, short-term policies that drivers buy before driving to destinations, like Rocky Point, increased more than 62 percent from 2012 to 2013, according to AAA Insurance. The full-service insurance agency sold more than 4,000 policies in 2012 – that number grew to 6,500 policies in 2013.

“As an insurance resource, AAA believes the increase in Mexico auto policies – which point to increase drive traffic– can be attributed to the improved economy and diminished fears about traveling to the region,” said Brad Oltmans, vice president of insurance for AAA Arizona.

AAA Travel and AAA Insurance suggest four tips to ensure a safe and enjoyable Mexico getaway:

1.     Use recommended crossings. U.S citizens visiting Puerto Peñasco should use the Lukeville, Ariz./Sonoyta, Son., border crossing. Travel should also be limited to daylight hours.

2.     Carry a passport. Citizens are required to have a passport to gain re-entry into the United States.

3.     Travel smart. Stay with your party at all times. Don’t share your itinerary and do not travel with valuables and expensive jewelry.

4.     Be insured. U.S. auto insurance is not valid in Mexico. Mexico auto insurance can be purchased at AZ.AAA.com/insurance/mexico.

AAA is the largest leisure travel agency in North America. For more information, visit AAA.com/travel. AAA is also a full-service insurance agency. For more information, visit AAA.com/insurance.

AAA Arizona, the Arizona affiliate of AAA, provides automotive, insurance and travel services to more than 850,000 Arizona members. Annually, AAA’s Roadside Assistance responds to more than 450,000 calls for help on Arizona roadways. The auto club also provides discounts and financial services to AAA members. Since its founding in 1927, AAA Arizona has been a leading advocate for the safety and security of all travelers.