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MEXICO

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Facts Mexico

 

Capital - Mexico City

 

Currency - Mexican Peso (MXN)

 

Official Language - Spanish, various Mayan, Nahuatl, and other regional indigenous languages. You can get by with English in most major cities or tourist destinations, but much of the country is monolingual.

 

Religion - predominantly Roman Catholic 89%, Protestant 6%, other 5%

 

Electricity - 110V as in the United States and Canada. In reality, however, it may cycle more slowly and overheat your appliances. To compensate, select a medium or low speed on hair dryers. Many older hotels still have electrical outlets for flat two-prong plugs; you'll need an adapter for any plug with an enlarged end on one prong or with three prongs.

 

Business Hours - In general, businesses in larger cities are open between 9am and 7pm; in smaller towns many close between 2 and 4pm. Most close on Sunday. In resort areas it is common to find stores open at least in the mornings on Sunday, and for shops to stay open late, often until 8pm or even 10pm. Bank hours are Monday through Friday from 9 or 9:30am to anywhere between 3 and 7pm. Increasingly, banks open on Saturday for at least a half-day.

 

Tipping - Most service employees in Mexico count on tips for the majority of their income, and this is especially true for bellboys and waiters. Bellboys should receive the equivalent of 50 cents to $1 per bag; waiters generally receive 10% to 20%, depending on the level of service. It is not customary to tip taxi drivers, unless they are hired by the hour or provide touring or other special services.

 

Time Zone - Central Time prevails throughout most of Mexico. The states of Sonora, Sinaloa, and parts of Nayarit are on Mountain Time. The state of Baja California Norte is on Pacific Time, but Baja California Sur is on Mountain Time. All of Mexico observes daylight saving time.

 

Passports - All travelers to Mexico are required to present a valid Passport. You must carry a Mexican Tourist Permit (FMT), the equivalent of a tourist visa, which Mexican border officials issue, free of charge, after proof of citizenship is accepted. Airlines generally provide the necessary forms aboard your flight to Mexico.

 

Note: Children under age 18 traveling without parents or with only one parent must have a notarized letter from the absent parent(s) authorizing the travel.

 

Emergencies - In case of emergency, dial tel. 065 from any phone within Mexico. The 24-hour Tourist Help Line in Mexico City is tel. 01-800/903-9200 or 555/250-0151. The operators don't always speak English, but they are always willing to help. The tourist legal assistance office (Procuraduria del Turista) in Mexico City (tel. 555/625-8153 or 555/625-8154;) always has an English speaker available. Though the phones are frequently busy, they operate 24 hours.

 

Water - We strongly suggest drinking bottled water and avoiding ice. Most hotels have decanters or bottles of purified water in the rooms, and the better hotels have either purified water from regular taps or special taps marked agua purificada.

 

We strongly suggest you buy Travel Insurance before departing the US. Please contact us for more information, we can help you buy Travel Insurance in less than 5 minutes.

About Mexico

 

Land of contrasts, tradition, culture and fun. Mexico's vast surface area extends 758,249 sq miles and is divided into six very distinctive, yet well-defined tourism regions; Northern Mexico, Central Mexico, Southern Mexico & the Gulf of Mexico, the Yucatan Peninsula, Pacific Coast and Baja California Peninsula.

 

Its Northern border offers extreme weather conditions such as deserts, canyons, and rugged mountain ranges. Its Central heartland is full of picturesque towns and colonial cities. The tranquil waters of its Southern shores are a fishermen heaven also an ideal ecotourism paradise.

 

Yucatan offers the gateway to the Mayan Heritage world along the blue waters of the Caribbean Sea where white-sand beaches stretch along Cancun and the Riviera Maya.

 

The Pacific Coast surprises us with its rich cultural and culinary traditions combined with an array of water sports yet the undiscovered lands of the Baja California Peninsula blend well with the best golf and marine treasures from the Sea of Cortez.

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