CDC tells Americans to cancel vacations to Mexico over ‘worrisome’ surge in coronavirus cases

Danielle Zoellner
·2-min read
Americans are advised to cancel all travel to Mexico amid a surge in coronavirus cases (AP)
Americans are advised to cancel all travel to Mexico amid a surge in coronavirus cases (AP)

The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has called on Americans to cancel any plans to Mexico, as coronavirus cases surge amid an increase in travel bookings.

Mexico was placed in the Level 4 risk category, the highest travel advisory the CDC can place on a country, due to its high Covid-19 risk. The travel advisory says that visiting Mexico may “may increase your chance of getting and spreading Covid-19.”

If anyone travels to Mexico, the CDC advises them to get a coronavirus test one to three days prior to returning to the United States and another test about three to five days after travelling back. It was also recommends for anyone traveling between the two countries to wear a face mask.

World Health Organisation Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Monday that Mexico “is in bad shape” due to the rise in cases, hospitalisations, and deaths from the novel virus.

Mexico's death toll rose to 106,765, as of Wednesday morning, making it the fourth highest in the world. The country has also recorded more than 1.1 million coronavirus cases since the start of the pandemic.

“The number of increasing cases and deaths in Mexico is very worrisome,” Dr Ghebreyesus said during a Monday press conference.

He went on to criticise the country’s leaders for not leading by example by wearing masks and following other coronavirus guidelines. Mexican President Andrés López Obrador has often not worn a mask in public.

“We would like to ask Mexico to be very serious,” Dr Ghebreyesus said. “We have said it in general, wearing a mask is important, hygiene is important and physical distancing is important and we expect leaders to be examples.”

The warning comes as an increase in travel to Mexico has risen in the United States, as Americans plan vacations to popular tropical places amid the pandemic.

In November, Mexico was the “clear leader” of US-international travel, according to Airlines for America (A4A).

The likely reason for travel to Mexico is that the country does not require people to show a negative coronavirus test prior to entry, like Hawaii or other tropical locations. Most of Europe, as well as other places around the world, has also been closed off to Americans due to the increased number of Covid-19 cases in the country.

The US has far surpassed recording the most cases and deaths from the novel virus compared to other countries. As of Wednesday morning, the US had more than 13.7 million cases and over 270,000 people died from the novel virus.

Health experts implored Americans to stay home over the holiday season and only celebrate within their immediate household, but that advisory has not halted all travel.

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