Almost everyone who calls us about dental work in Tijuana will ask if things are safe here in Mexico. As an American, who is living in the Tijuana area, traveling the streets daily, shopping in the stores, eating out in the restaurants, I believe that my experience and knowledge of Tijuana is a lot better than someone who has never been here and who is just repeating the rumors that they have heard. Believe me when i say that Tijuana is safer than many US cities. I have never seen anything here that has made me feel threatened or insecure. I love it in Mexico, and especially here in Tijuana. Please read the articles below for a better perspective, and for some tips on how to travel safely in Mexico.
Safe Travel in Tijuana, Mexico
The biggest fear that people have when considering going to a Tijuana dentist for dental work is whether or not it is safe in Mexico. They hear a lot of misinformation through the media and many people are scared stiff. they have an image in their mind that all of Mexico is a war zone, and that most people who venture into Mexico are going to walk into trouble. when people call me up and ask about the violence, I usually answer them that no, it is not Tijuana where the violence is, but rather in Los Angeles, CA., or in Oakland, or Memphis, or Chicago. The truth is, there is not any more violence in Tijuana, and perhaps a lot less violence, than in any major US city. We hear wild accusations on the radio and TV all the time that are grossly exagerated and almost certainly deliberately slanted to give Tijuana a bad name. People talk who have an agenda, or through total ignorance. Mexico, because there is a language barrier, and a different culture, seems like a strange place and people are apprehensive. Nevertheless, what you will find in Tijuana is that the people are friendly, the culture is colorful, and that honesty is highly valued. I have been involved with bringing people to Tijuana dentists for four years, and have never had a patient who has had any problems what so ever. Not only that, I have been living in Tijuana for a year and a half, and have never even seen anything that made me feel fearful. We live in Tijuana, and love it. When talking to people about going to see a Tijuana dentist for dental work, more and more the question arises, “Is it really safe to go to Mexico?” My answer is always YES! I feel quite at home in Tijuana, but like anywhere, you have to use common sense while traveling in Mexico. Below are some common sense tips for traveling in Mexico.
I have traveled into Mexico dozens and dozens of times. I have been very often to Tijuana, Juarez, Reynosa, and other border towns. I have also been in many Latin American countries, and have lived for several years in South America. I have NEVER had an incident where I felt in danger. However, I used to live in Denver working for the cable company, and have been threatened with bodily injury and have felt very intimidated on several occasions. I even had to call the police in order to complete my work in someone’s back yard because they had threatened to shoot me when I went to shut their cable off!! I feel safer in Mexico, than in certain areas of Denver. And what is Denver compared to L.A.? Or Washington D.C., or Miami?
Tips for Traveling Safely.
If you think about it, the tips noted here would be practical sense for traveling in an anywhere.
1: Learn to be discrete, and don't go around flashing a big wad of money. If you need to count out your cash, for goodness sake, don't do it out on the sidewalk in plain sight. I would suggest keeping a good part of your money hidden in a front pocket that you can zip or button down.Just keep a limited, small amount of cash in your wallet. It would also be smart to put all credit cards, your passport, and drivers license in a separate wallet is different pocket. A money clip or a rubber band would also work well to put around those documents. Also, it isn't wise to bring a whole bunch of credit cards, but rather just a couple of them, the ones you want to be using to charge your hotel, restaurants, and for emengencies. if something happens, and you loose a card, it will be a lot easier to know which one it is so you can report it right away. For paying your dental bill, we prefer cash, but will accept travelers checks, money orders, and bank issued cashiers checks. In case your estimate varies a little from actual work that is done, there are nearby places where cash can be taken from an ATM machine. At Dental Art, we do not have a credit card terminal because the bank fees and taxes make the cost a lot higher, and we can't eat those charges,
2. We recommend that you park on the US side of the border and walk across the border. We don't recommend driving into Tijuana, because it can be confusing. There are safe parking lots in the US, and the cost is only $7 per day. Unless you are planning to stay for several days, and would like to site see, it takes a lot of stress off to not to have to keep an eye on your car, or to have to maneuver in Mexico traffic. I always hate been stuck in the long line to cross back into the USA. It is liberating to just leave the car parked in the USA. Since the clinic is just a block from the border, you can easily walk to the clinic, and then take taxis back and forth to your hotel. If you do drive over, NEVER leave valuables, like your camera or purse, in plain site in the car seat. If you do, you might be inviting a break in. That is not just true in Mexico! Also, if you drive in, make sure you keep your vehicle locked, and ALWAYS put a manual locking device, like the “Club”, on your steering wheel. At Dental Art in Tijuana, there is an off street parking lot that is secure, but it is still a good idea to use a locking device.
3. Don't go out drinking and dancing at night, just relax in your hotel room. Keep your night life to a minimum If you are concerned about safety, Remember that not only in Tijuana, but in L.A. as well, most crimes are committed late at night. Common sense is a must! It is in the night clubs and bars where the bad elements hang out in any city.
Most people enjoy everything they see in Tijuana, as it is a colorful place. the food is very good, and the people are warm and friendly. Many of our Tijuana dental patients come to Tijuana, and enjoy a little dental vacation while the are having our Tijuana dentists do their dental work. We do everything we can to take care of our Tijuana dental patients, and have even had a number of senior citizen ladies come down, who never felt unsafe for a moment. Coming to see a Mexico dentist should not be something to be afraid of, and we can even give you references of other patients that you can ask for yourself, to see that coming to a Tijuana dentist is a safe and good experience.