Last updated October 13, 2021

Today’s Status, Looking Towards Spring 2022 — Green

Mexico never completely closed airports or blocked entry of foreigners (and main tourist sites have been open since last summer).  Overall, the country was hit pretty hard with a surge of cases, but cases are now decreasing in all regions. We have volunteers in all of our Mexico programs for the Fall 2021 semester.

Check below to get more details on some key aspects that we’re watching. Our goal is to keep things current with weekly updates, so check back frequently.

Getting There

Although borders never technically closed through the pandemic, things really started to open up for Mexico in June 2020.

You don’t need a visa to visit Mexico, so no need to wait on that!

You could find consistent flights to and from Mexico before and through the pandemic. Now that the country is opened up, you’ll find regular flights from Mexico on airlines like Delta, American Airlines, United Airlines, and others (with multiple itineraries).

Daily Life

The education department in Mexico is currently requiring that all individuals working with children must be vaccinated. For this reason, ILP volunteers going to Mexico must be vaccinated.

Virus cases in Mexico have fluctuated, particularly by location — it’s a trend we see in many geographically large countries, like the United States. In mid-November 2020, Mexico saw the biggest surge in cases ever and despite increased restrictions, the number of cases and hospitalizations continued to increase for a third wave of infections — we’re now seeing a decrease in cases. We currently have volunteers abroad for all three program locations in Mexico. 

The nation is continuing their color-coded system to help manage the reopening of their country. The colored map of Mexico assesses states on four factors: case number trends (if new infections are increasing, decreasing or are stable), hospital admission trends for COVID-19 patients, hospital occupancy levels, and positivity rates (percentage of tested people who are confirmed to have COVID-19). 

Currently all ILP locations are Yellow under this system. 

As of October 13, Mexico reports 276.0 active cases per 100,000 people, which is considerably less than the United States (which has 2,947.0 active cases per 100,000 people). 

Schools where ILP teachers teach are allowed to remain open with in-person classes, but attendance tends to fluctuate for the locations where the Covid level is higher.

What daily activities and events are allowed are determined by the color-level of the individual state. In “Green” states, all activities are allowed.

Out & About

Restrictions have been determined by the color level of each state, and as virus cases have gone down, color statuses have changed.

Currently, 0 Mexican states are in Red, 1 is Orange, 22 are in Yellow, and 9 are Green — we’re happy to see at each evaluation, more and more states are shifting out of Red and Orange, into Yellow and Green.

It’s important to keep in mind that masks and social distancing are still required, and is taken seriously. In April, Mexico closed Chichen Itza for a short time due to tourists not abiding by local restrictions and regulations.

As far as traveling in-country, it seems like you’re pretty set. Bus is the way most volunteers travel around Mexico, and the major companies have pretty regular routes (and have had them for some time). Premier Plus and ADO have some restrictions, like reduced schedules and requiring all passengers to wear a mask while riding. There may be some itinerary restrictions based on State’s colors (for those who are still Orange).

That’s great news for locals and travelers looking to experience all the best parts of Mexico.

Mexico volunteers generally do not travel out of country because there is so much to see and do there! You may be able to check out places like Nicaragua and Costa Rica (pending individual country restrictions) but we think you’d like to spend vacation time checking out all of Mexico’s adventures.

Picture turquoise swimming spots, thick jungles to hike through, ancient ruins to explore, hot springs hiding in the mountains, colorful magic towns and more. Oh, and those dreamy postcard beaches, of course!

Can I still apply for Mexico?

Absolutely! We’re so thrilled to have volunteers here for the past few semesters. If you’re looking to apply for Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Summer 2022, or even Spring 2023, now is a great time for that too! We’d recommend applying ASAP to help you get a spot in this country (it’s a popular one). 

We are so excited for volunteers to be back in Mexico! 

What is traveling and living in Mexico like right now? 

For Mexico, we’re seeing similar precautions you’re taking at home (like wearing a mask and social distancing). Just like there is a risk to go out in Utah right now, there will be risks to traveling anywhere, including Mexico.