Mexico Tourism Devastated By Swine Flu

 Mexico Swine FluI was really struck by this Associated Press photo of the deserted Zócalo in Mexico City. It’s one of those places that is always teeming with people, that should be teeming with people.

The damage to Mexico’s economy from the swine flu outbreak has been massive, as the country has all but shut down for five days. In Mexico City the hotel occupancy rate is estimated at between 5 and 7 percent, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Cruise lines are canceling port calls and airlines are canceling flights.

But we would be mistaken to think that this is purely Mexico’s problem. The flu is here, as the BBC reports in an article quoting an expert from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

“Virtually all of the United States probably has this virus circulating now,” Dr Anne Schuchat said. “That doesn’t mean that everybody’s infected, but within the communities, the virus has arrived.” 

And while the rate of infection may have leveled off in places, the World Health Organization reminds us that “There is a high possibility that this virus will come back, especially in colder periods.”

I don’t think that means we should stop travelling — I’m flying to Hawaii next week myself, no matter what the vice president advises. It just means we have to stay alert, and recognize that viruses have no nationality.  


2 thoughts on “Mexico Tourism Devastated By Swine Flu

  1. BlastarrBXIII

    All this ‘Jet lag’ baloney.
    I bet over the years, the times I have had ‘jet lag’ is when I’ve picked up some flu virus on a flu virus incubator.
    In the UK, we had some Mexican Pilot pick it up, we were not told about it till he had cleared off back to Mexico.
    Totally suppressed in the newspapers.
    VP Biden is right, keep off the flu virus incubators.
    Who want’s to go to Mexico anyway.
    They throw 11 bodies in plastic bags off bridges over there.
    It’s in the news today, 4th May 2009.
    “Guerrero state police say the bodies of five men and two women were found in a river between the Pacific resort town of Acapulco and the city of Cuernavaca. They were wrapped in bags and dumped off a bridge.
    The other four bodies were found in a 600-yard ravine in the Guerrero state town of Pilcaya.
    Mexico….forget about the place!.

  2. Jeanne Leblanc

    Couldn’t disagree with you more. And I’ll give you an answer, even though it’s most likely you’re just trying to provoke an argument.
    First, Mexico is a big country, not a bad neighborhood. The drug violence in Mexico is not endemic nor does it target tourists. It’s the result of Mexico trying to confront drug trafficking at the urging of the United States, where our citizens are the ones consuming the illegal drugs. It’s also been shown that the guns and advanced weaponry being used against the Mexican police and army come from the United States. Mexico’s problems are intertwined with our own, and it’s not possible to forget that.
    When people are killed in drug violence in the United States, do you condemn our entire country? I have friends in Central America, by the way, who won’t visit New York because they are convinced it’s too dangerous.
    I’ve been to the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of Mexico and to Mexico City, where I was well-treated and had a terrific time. Mexico does have more than its share of problems, but it’s a big, beautiful nation full of friendly people. If you don’t believe that, stay home. Your loss.


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