What To Do When The Worst Happens On Your Next Vacation
Vacations are supposed to be relaxing getaways, an escape from concerns and worries. But sometimes, it just doesn’t pan out that way, and the Mexican Caribbean is no different.
Millions of travelers visit the region every year with no issues whatsoever, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t prepare for the worst. Emergencies can and do happen all over the world, and knowing how to respond in an unfamiliar place can be the difference between a minor hiccup and holiday horror.
The prospect of something going wrong in Cancun or Tulum can be a massively intimidating prospect for most travelers. The language barrier, uncertain insurance coverage, different hospital protocols, and a feeling of isolation from your family and friends make the experience a daunting one.
Luckily, this can be solved by ensuring we’re prepared before we even step on the plane. There are a number of things we should be researching before any trip, so to make things easier on your next trip to Cancun or the Mexican Caribbean, we’ve compiled everything you need should things go awry on your vacation.
Imagine the scenario, you’re at the beach, and your son or daughter trips and falls. They’re in a lot of pain, and you’re worried it might be broken. But you didn’t check what the emergency numbers are in Mexico. Luckily, you already know it. The number in Mexico is still 911. No need for anything complex. Your American phone should work fine and make the call.
The problem will come in the form of a hit-or-miss chance of receiving an English-speaking operator. If you hit the jackpot, great, but if not, what then? If there is someone nearby who speaks Spanish, have them nearby as you call to translate if need be.
Sometimes a translator just isn’t possible, so what choice do you have? Preparation is key once again. Before leaving, make note of all the best hospitals in the region along with their direct emergency number.
In Cancun, Galena Hospital is one of the best choices for tourists. The center is widely regarded as the best hospital in Quintana Roo and is a major hub for medical tourism meaning many of the staff will be able to speak English or pass you quickly to someone who can. Calling them directly and asking for an ambulance could be a good idea.
Amerimed Cancun Hospital and Played Group are also excellent options for tourists who come across issues.
For a list of public medical centers in the area, look at the guest assist website where you will find addresses, numbers, and other information about every option available to you. It should be noted that the public hospitals may not function as smoothly or with as much English as private hospitals, which are geared toward tourists.
Crime is everywhere, and sadly, tourist hotspots are usually equally rife with petty criminals and worse. While most enjoy their vacation problem-free, others may find themselves a victim of crime. Whether a pickpocket or something more sinister, something should be done about it, and often a swift response is the best way to get results.
Once again, the language barrier may arise if 911 is called. Contacting the tourist police could be a safer bet and make the process much smoother. The tourist police are more likely to speak English, less likely to seek out bribes, and are there specifically for you. Their number is 01 (998) 885 2277.
Registering with your consulate before traveling is a great way to help guarantee assistance in the case of a major emergency. Hurricanes are prevalent in the region, and the American presence in the country will do what it can to assist its citizens. If they know you’re there, you’ll be on their list of priorities.
Keeping your hotel’s phone number handy at all times is important. The front desk can often help with any problems you have. Even in the case of an emergency, they could be the ones who make the call for you if you weren’t prepared.
Travel insurance is a must. The private hospitals that you’ll use in an emergency won’t function on your normal health insurance. Make sure you have a policy that covers you and your family. In some serious cases you may need to have transferred back to the states covered which can pricey if not prepared. Make sure to have any allergies, blood types, and other pertinent medical information easily available for doctors.
Emergency Services: 911
Gelania Hospital – +52 998 891 5200
Playamed Group Hospital – +52 998 140 5258
Amerimed Hospital – +52 998 881 3400
Tourist Police – +52 998 885 2277
US Consulate – +52 998 883 0272
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