Tulum Region ‘Taxi Cartels’ Earn U.S. State Department Security Alert


When drug gangs are vying for control in an area with booming growth and rampant corruption, what can be done?  And how many travelers are aware of this danger?

A note from the writer: The goal of this article is not to inflame prejudice or promote fear. Rather, it’s the idea that the people of Mexico deserve to thrive and that the violence, rampant corruption and inaction by local and international agencies to curb these continuing dangers needs accountability.

Colombian Keisy Suarez went on holiday with her American boyfriend to Tulum. Romance and relaxing were the items on their agenda for the week, so when she accidentally left her cellphone in their taxi the holiday got off to an unfortunate start. What happened after turned it into a nightmare. Being scared of your personal safety is never on a holiday plan.

Even though she got her cellphone back she told me emphatically, “I will never go back to Tulum.”

So what made it so bad? Encounters with something travelers are calling ‘taxi cartels’.