Mexican Rivera Travel Alert Concerns

Joined
Aug 10, 2017
We are booked to go on the 7day Mexican rivera Cruise at the end of April. The state dept has issued travel alerts for all three ports, but Mazatlan is at Level 4 (Do not travel) and Puerto Vallerta is a Level 3. I called DCL to find out procedure in this situation and they denied knowing anything about the alerts. I responded by saying that they are publicly posted by the State Dept. She just repeated what she had already told me and they would email me if they need to re-route the ship. It was not helpful at all. I am really worried. Our last Disney Cruise was sorta a bummer bc it rained the entire time. We were not even aloud off the ship at Castway Cay due to lightening. (So close, yet so far away )... I really don’t want this cruise to be ruined too. I don’t know how these alerts would actually affect the cruise/port adventures. Has anyone had this happen before on this cruise? What ports would they even re-route us to?
 

remlap

DIS Veteran
Joined
Aug 3, 2008
Thats how we ended up on a DCL Cruise to Alaska. Booked on Mexico cruise then The State Dept warning. Disney dropped one of the ports, so we changed to Alaska a few months later.
 
Joined
Aug 10, 2017
Thats how we ended up on a DCL Cruise to Alaska. Booked on Mexico cruise then The State Dept warning. Disney dropped one of the ports, so we changed to Alaska a few months later.
We are only like 6 weeks out now... would they let us make a change like that this close to sail date? This is only our second cruise so still a newbie lol
 
  • ajo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 26, 2015
    Just had friends return from a land trip to Cabo. It is a level 2 warning and they had no issues or concerns during their trip.
     
    Joined
    Aug 10, 2017
    Just had friends return from a land trip to Cabo. It is a level 2 warning and they had no issues or concerns during their trip.
    Yes, Cabo seems fine... like a standard warning. However, Mazatlan is level 4 do not travel and the last stop is level 3. Those are the ones I am worried about. Would they stay in Cabo more then one day maybe? Does that ever happen?
     

    Curt Sole

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 11, 2019
    I am on the April 21st Mexican Riviera. I am also interested in what you learn here. We had planned to stay in the boat in Mazatlan due to past issues. I didn't realize it had gotten this bad again.
     
  • cats mom

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 25, 2000
    Have you looked at specific restrictions for government employees? That can give you an idea of problem areas.
    Even if there's a general advisory I'm betting port areas are not restricted and are considered safe, especially if you take reasonable precautions.

    We usually venture out on our own, and often far from the the port area. Depending on the what and where of the warnings I might reconsider doing that. But unless an area I was considering going to was specifically named as being dangerous (not a city / state in general) I wouldn't have a problem wandering around areas near the port and/or going on an organized excursion. I'm betting cruise lines monitor the local situation pretty carefully. ie: cruise lines using ferries between Cozumel and Playa del Carmen cancelled those excursions after the explosion there.

    I realize everyone has a different threshold for risk though.
     

    pixiedustedme

    Planning is half the fun
    Joined
    Mar 4, 2019
    If a port is listed as Do Not Travel, I would not get off the ship even if DCL docks there. Certain areas of Mexico have very high levels of organized crime and violence, even in tourist areas, due to the drug wars. I'm a Texan and grew up being able to stroll around various Mexican border towns with no safety concerns. Those days are long gone. Better safe than sorry.
     

    jdb in AZ

    It could end up curdled
    Joined
    Feb 11, 2011
    Yes, Cabo seems fine... like a standard warning. However, Mazatlan is level 4 do not travel and the last stop is level 3. Those are the ones I am worried about. Would they stay in Cabo more then one day maybe? Does that ever happen?
    DCL has been known to change itineraries before. They should keep you updated if they decide to skip Mazatlan. Several cruise lines, including DCL, stopped visiting Mazatlan years ago, then things improved enough for them to return. sounds like the problems are back.
     
    Joined
    Aug 10, 2017
    [GALLERY=][/GALLERY]
    Have you looked at specific restrictions for government employees? That can give you an idea of problem areas.
    Even if there's a general advisory I'm betting port areas are not restricted and are considered safe, especially if you take reasonable precautions.

    We usually venture out on our own, and often far from the the port area. Depending on the what and where of the warnings I might reconsider doing that. But unless an area I was considering going to was specifically named as being dangerous (not a city / state in general) I wouldn't have a problem wandering around areas near the port and/or going on an organized excursion. I'm betting cruise lines monitor the local situation pretty carefully. ie: cruise lines using ferries between Cozumel and Playa del Carmen cancelled those excursions after the explosion there.

    I realize everyone has a different threshold for risk though.
    I have. Both places have restrictions for government employees. My threshold for risk to my kids is probably considered pretty low lol!! Mazatlan is way more serious and another person posted that they weren’t planning to get off there even before I mentioned the travel alerts. I wasn’t happy with the port adventure selections so I had booked a restaurant walking tour through the old town in Puerto Vallerta through Viator, and I was so excited about it! I have no idea what roads it would take us on though. There are restrictions on what roads to travel. The news reports in the last two-three days warn that not even resort areas are safe right now/exercise increased caution. Apparently, kidnappings are a huge problem. I wish DCL would send some correspondence about it. Like we are aware is the alerts, this is what you need to know. The first person that replied said they ended up changing their cruise to an Alaska cruise bc of such travel alerts. I don’t know how that sort of change would work - by what date/money wise etc. I called the main number and she literally had no info for me. Is there is a better number to call to speak to someone who might have actual info? Like not just a call center type

    Like is it unreasonable to ask what the back-up plan is lol?!
     

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  • minniebeth

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 3, 2006
    I can’t speak to itinerary changes-
    But we just got back from Cabo and did several excursions.
    While we did notice a pretty strong security presence (military and police) in some areas, we felt safe and I would not hestitate to get off the ship in Cabo.
    The local people there are so friendly and hospitable. We found everything to be clean and pristine. We even had someone in our group who unfortunately ended up in the hospital emergency room and had a very positive experience being treated.

    Mazatlan is a different story- we did not have good experiences there even a few years back and I would not be getting off the ship there if I were cruising that itinerary. That’s just me-
    That was not on a cruise though, so perhaps organized excursions there would be fine.

    I can’t speak of Puerto Vallarta.

    I realize that the ports of call are a big part of the cruise, but I think you can enjoy the whole package and flavor of the journey despite not getting off at all of the ports if you are not comfortable with it.

    I wouldn’t stress about itinerary changes but rather do your own research and weigh in on what you are and are not comfortable with. Look up the offered excursions and local areas to visit on trip advisor and the like to get a feel for others’ experiences.
     

    ImDMous

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Dec 1, 2011
    We did the Mex Riviera cruise about a year and half ago. I would not go to Mazatlan again. My opinion is not security related, we did a trolley tour around town and felt safe everywhere, I just didn't feel like the town was really ready for tourists. They were gearing up for some big international conference and had many construction and street projects underway, but I think a lot more work needed to be done. And our bus/trolly was a disaster and broke down at one of our stops. Thankfully, an awesome policeman helped our driver fix it and get on our way.

    We've been to Cabo and Puerto Vallarta on 2 DCL cruises and really enjoyed them both times.
     

    RAD

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Dec 15, 1999
    Just got off the WBPC which stopped at Cabo and Puerto. In Puerto we did a bus tour, making a couple stops in older sections and then at a tequila tasting, never felt unsafe. I also walked from the port to the WalMart across the street, again, no problem. In Cabo we just stayed in the port area, did a whale watching excursion, and didn't have any problems there.
     

    pezgirlroy

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Aug 29, 2016
    Granted it was a year ago but we spent a week in Puerto Vallarta. Stayed at a resort but went all over and to non touristy places. Never felt unsafe for a minute.
     

    ChicosWife

    The Caribbean DCL Life For Us!
    Joined
    Jun 29, 2015
    We are only like 6 weeks out now... would they let us make a change like that this close to sail date? This is only our second cruise so still a newbie lol
    I would say if you are this worried about it, you really aren't going to enjoy your experience as much. It may just be worth it for your to rebook, where you feel safer. I sympathize with your feeling, because we also had a MR cruise booked, but I felt unsettled also (especially since our kids will be with us), so we changed it to the EC cruise instead. If Disney does feel like there are viable safety concerns, I have heard they will not stop there. That should provide some comfort. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee either way. :guilty:
     

    cats mom

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 25, 2000
    [GALLERY=][/GALLERY]

    I have. Both places have restrictions for government employees. My threshold for risk to my kids is probably considered pretty low lol!! Mazatlan is way more serious and another person posted that they weren’t planning to get off there even before I mentioned the travel alerts. I wasn’t happy with the port adventure selections so I had booked a restaurant walking tour through the old town in Puerto Vallerta through Viator, and I was so excited about it! I have no idea what roads it would take us on though. There are restrictions on what roads to travel. The news reports in the last two-three days warn that not even resort areas are safe right now/exercise increased caution. Apparently, kidnappings are a huge problem. I wish DCL would send some correspondence about it. Like we are aware is the alerts, this is what you need to know. The first person that replied said they ended up changing their cruise to an Alaska cruise bc of such travel alerts. I don’t know how that sort of change would work - by what date/money wise etc. I called the main number and she literally had no info for me. Is there is a better number to call to speak to someone who might have actual info? Like not just a call center type

    Like is it unreasonable to ask what the back-up plan is lol?!

    I don't think it's unreasonable to ask at all.
    I don't think you're going to have much luck getting to the people making the kinds of decisions you're talking about through the reservations line though. Even if you're able to work your way up the chain far enough they probably won't be all that forthcoming. You'll likely just get a safety of our guests is important and we're watching current developments type statement. JMHO

    I was curious so I looked up specific restrictions:

    "There are no restrictions on travel for U.S government employees to: Guadalajara Metropolitan Area, Riviera Nayarit (including Puerto Vallarta), Chapala, and Ajijic.
    Mazatlan: U.S. government employees may travel by air or sea only. U.S. government employees are limited to the Zona Dorada and historic town center, and must use direct routes when traveling to and from those locations and the airport and cruise terminals."

    Since travel to port areas is not restricted I wouldn't expect DCL to make changes to itineraries unless things really escalate and/or there are specific incidents.
    ie: last time DCL removed Mazatlan it was after a shooting at a hotel in the tourist area.

    For what it's worth we had sailed to Mazatlan about a month before DCL removed it last time. We ventured over to Stone Island, had a great time, and never felt unsafe. There was a travel advisory in place at the time, but it was before the level system they use now.

    I'm betting normal cancellation rules would apply if you initiated an itinerary change. You might be able to escalate to a supervisor who would make an exception for you based on your concern over the travel advisories, but that would likely be very YMMV.

    As someone else stated I think you just need to figure what you are and are not comfortable with, and that's going to be a very individual thing.

    When I told DH about this post we had to laugh about some of the crazy adventures we've dragged our kids on over the years, but you said your risk threshold when your kids are involved is pretty low, so I'm sure our decisions would be different. That's OK though. It doesn't make one of us right and one of us wrong, just different.

    Good luck with your decisions and planning.
     

    CarolynU

    <font color=CC0000>Proud Mum twice over<br><font c
    Joined
    Feb 28, 2002
    I too have only just got off the WBPC and from chatting to different folks onboard they all seemed to have a fab day as did we.
    We took local cabs to and from a beach resort. It was lovely with super polite and friendly staff. Others did various DCL excursions and all pronounced their day great.
     

    cruisehopeful

    Wishing I was taking a nap on a ship.
    Joined
    Oct 25, 2015
    I remember reading a trip report years ago that where they omitted a couple of the ports and spent an extra day at Cabo and an extra sea day. That was right before they stopped going to west side of Mexico for a while.

    DCL should contact you ahead of time if they know that they are going to change ports. I believe the cruise contract has no guarantees on any ports, so they may or may not work with you on changing cruises. They are not obligated to let you out of the cruise, but maybe they will anyway depending on the severity of the changes.
     

    mama&me

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    May 17, 2017
    Mom and I did the Mexican Riviera cruise this past October. We had a wonderful time. We did the Folkloric Show and enjoyed it. The performance was good and they passed out Mexican treats and I think did balloons and maybe face painting with the kids. Afterward we saw some young locals cliff dive. They were friendly and DM even took a picture with them. We always felt safe.
    I really hope it works out for you.
     

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