Mexico City is huge with the population of nearly 9 million people. This means two things, one is that you’ll never get bored when traveling to Mexico City. There’s something fun to do for everyone and so many sights to see, you’ll be exploring for weeks. The other thing is that it’s not the safest destination, so you need to prepare for your trip very carefully.

4 Safety Tips for Traveling to Mexico City

1. Know where to get help
Mexico City has the highest ratio of police officers to residents in the world. Therefore, you’ll be able to find a law enforcement officer quite easily. In the historical district, you can use the services of the so-called ‘tourist police’. These are the officers dressed in traditional clothing and patrolling the area on horseback. They are specifically trained to help tourists and will be your best source of assistance in case of an emergency.

You also should print out these phone numbers for Mexico City emergency services. Contact them first or go to the police depending on the situation. And don’t forget that the 911 emergency service works in Mexico as well and it can be contacted via a mobile phone.

2. Only go on tours with trusted guides
Tourism rocks in Mexico City so there’s a multitude of services for any kind of traveler. However, if you want to be sure you’ll have a safe and enjoyable adventure, you’ll need to spend a bit of extra time on research. Look up testimonials offering honest opinions on various tourist agencies in the city. Only deal with those that have a good reputation.

Note that trustworthy and reliable doesn’t mean expensive. You can easily get a great and safe free tour in Mexico City. Just be sure to check its reviews and reputation of the company that offers the tour.

To be on the safe side, be sure to leave your itinerary with someone you trust. This way, someone will always know where you’re supposed to be at any given time and have contact information of the agency you’re with.

3. Use the metro
Many sources with tips on traveling to Mexico City advise avoiding public transport altogether, and stay away from the metro in particular. However, the reality is such that going underground can be safer, cheaper, and faster than touring the city in a taxi.
The Mexico City metro is massive. It has 12 lines and connections to light trains and metro buses. The fare is ridiculously low (about 30 cents) and the trains run from early hours of the morning to midnight.

It’s true that the crowds are huge, so your ride might be uncomfortable. However, the metro is equipped with top-notch security measures. It also has a heavy police presence and a great security camera monitoring system. Overall, it’s the safest mode of public transport and will get you places much faster than a taxi in the crazy Mexico City traffic.

4. When you need a taxi, get a ‘Barbie’
‘Taxis Barbie’ is the way the locals call the newly relicensed taxis in Mexico City. They are painted pink and white and have a distinctive CDMX logo. These are the only taxis you should use while traveling to Mexico City.

There’s been an outbreak of taxi-related crimes in the city during the early 2000’s. Today the rate has gone down and mandatory licensing definitely has something to do with that.

If you speak little Spanish and don’t know the city well, you should avoid flagging down taxis altogether. Use a specialized app or contact your hotel to get a car for you. When using the licensed ‘pink-and-white’ vehicles, you can count on fair rates and safety.

You also should stick to using taxi companies whenever possible, instead of flagging down a passing car. These companies tell you the car’s details and fare over the phone or app.