Recently, on the afternoon of November 16, a foreigner was found dead inside his camper in Playa del Carmen. Playa Del Carmen is an idyllic seaside resort town in the Yucatan Peninsula. It is famous for its diverse coral reefs and tropical beach scenery. Its main street, 5th Avenue or Quinta Avenida, is lined with shops, bars, and restaurants patronized by tourists. Despite presenting itself as a paradise, it is not also immune to unfortunate incidents that may concern tourists.
The expat, who authorities stated to be German, was familiar among residents of the Luis Donaldo Colosio neighborhood as he had lived in the area for four years inside this same recreational vehicle.
The suspicion started when the Franeleros noticed that the camper is parked on 70th Street, between 5th and 10th Avenue, blocking a residential driveway. In Mexico, Franeleros are civilians who guard parked vehicles on the street. For the past four years, the German tourist parked his camper on the same spot along CTM Avenue until the day of the incident, which caused curiosity among Franeleros. CTM Avenue leads directly to Carmen Beach and bounds several real estate properties that usually host foreign tourists who want to have direct access to the beach. It is also connected to Quinta Avenida, which is usually filled with tourists looking to shop or dine.
After the gentleman parked his camper in an unexpected spot, the homeowners called for him to move but received no response. They then contacted the municipal police. During the inspection, the police found his lifeless body inside the camper. Authorities have identified his passport to be European. The next step is for the State Attorney General to confirm the identity of the tourist and notify the German Consulate in Mexico so they can retrieve the body and pass the difficult news to relatives.
The death of the German expat is presumed to be from natural causes, although the Prosecutor’s Office has yet to conduct an investigation and issue an official report before ruling out possible crime from this incident. In the past, a tourist was also found dead in his hotel room located in the same neighborhood. The cause of death has yet to be determined, whether it was a medical condition, drug overdose, or crime-related. As of now, no official report has been released to this date.
Playa Del Carmen Recent News
With Playa del Carmen and Cancun expecting to break their tourist record numbers this winter, security measures are in place to ensure the safety of tourists and stop crime rates from growing up. Recently, violent crimes in Playa del Carmen related to extortion have been reported, though local authorities are quick to respond and assured the public that offenders have been arrested.
In addition, 200 Navy officers were deployed in the Mexican Caribbean region to bolster the confidence of tourists that Mexico is a safe destination for everyone. An online platform, Guest Assist, was also launched where travelers may directly contact the police to report suspicious activities or even raise complaints about services in Quintana Roo.
Mexican authorities even began rounding up illegal vacation rentals to prevent fraud and tax evasion and to put basic safety features in place. This means that rentals online, like Airbnb or tour packages that can be booked online, need to be registered under the National Tourism Registry to be considered an official hospitality provider. Starting next year, fines can be issued against illegal property owners who operate without certificates. Fortunately, if you stay in hotels, you can be assured that they are already recognized by this new regulatory framework.
With the emerging cases of crime affecting tourists in popular destination sites in Quintana Roo, the U.S. Travel Advisory is cautioning tourists to stay vigilant in these areas. Rest assured that there is room for fun on your vacation in Mexico.
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