For the first time in five years, Mexico received fewer foreign tourists on summer vacations.
Data from the Bank of Mexico (Banxico) indicate that the country attended to 3,643,000 international tourists in July of this year, a decrease of 69,000 (1.9%) in relation to the same month of 2017.
It is the first decline since December 2013, when a fall of 63,000 visitors was reported.
Last week, the head of the Ministry of Tourism (Sectur), Enrique de la Madrid, acknowledged that “the growth of international tourism has fallen since the United States issued its alerts.”
On August 22 of last year, the U.S. Department of State updated an alert to its citizens about travel and safety in Quintana Roo, Baja California Sur, Baja California, Guerrero, Veracruz, Chiapas, and Colima.
However, on January 10 of this year, the same authority updated their travel alerts, by a system of recommendations in which it suggests “additional precautions” to visit Mexico and “not travel” to Sinaloa, Michoacán, Guerrero, Colima, and Tamaulipas.
After the modification, the department stressed that Cancun, Riviera Maya, Los Cabos, Puerto Vallarta, Riviera Nayarit, and Mexico City, destinations that concentrate eight out of 10 foreign tourists who visit the country, were exempt from restrictions and advisories.
Historically, the United States has been the main market for foreign tourists to Mexico, with six out of every 10 visitors.
Mexico not only received a smaller number of foreign tourists at the beginning of the summer, but it also attracted less foreign currency for the expenses incurred by travelers in the national territory.
Figures from Banxico indicate that visitors disbursed $1,946,000 dollars in July, $43 million less than a year ago.
Tourism is the third largest net source of foreign currency for Mexico, only after automotive exports and family remittances.