Once you approach the agent, simply drop some money into the tray and announce in Spanish how many tickets you would like " uno " for MXN5, " cinco " for MXN25, " diez " for MXN50, and so on. You do not need to say anything about where you are going, since fares are the same for everywhere in the system. There are plastic Metro cards also that cost MXN10 and work on other public transit systems in the city, where you can put a desired amount of money and spend it at turnstiles. Once you have your ticket boleto it is time to go through the turnstiles but make sure to confirm your route on a map first!
The stiles are clearly marked for exit or entry but if you are confused, simply follow the crowd. Insert the ticket into the slot it does not matter which direction is up or forward and a small display will flash, indicating you may proceed. You won't get the ticket back. Frequent Metro users usually use Metro cards instead of tickets, so if you see any turnstiles marked with " solo tarjeta " " card only " that means the ticket reader is broken; just move to another turnstile.
Line 12 accepts only Metro cards if you enter at a station belonging to this line you can still enter another line with a ticket and freely transfer to Line 12 at a corresponding station.
Past the turnstiles, signs that tell you where to go depending on your direction within the Line are usually clearly marked, as are signs that tell you where to transfer to a different line. There is no standard station layout, but they are all designed to facilitate vast amounts of human traffic, so following the crowd works well, as long you double check the signs to make sure the crowd is taking you in the same direction.
On the platform, try to stand near the edge. During rush hours when it can get pretty crowded, there is sometimes a mad rush on and off the train. Although for the most part people are respectful and usually let departing passengers off first, train doors are always threatening to close and that means you need to be moderately aggressive if you don't want to get left behind.
If you're traveling in a group, this could mean having to travel separately. At the ends of the platform, the train is usually less crowded, so you could wait there, but during rush hours some busier stations reserve those sections of platform exclusively for women and children for their safety. While on the train, sometimes you will see a steady stream of people walking through the carriages announcing their wares for sale.
Act as if you are used to them that is, ignore them, unless they need to pass you. Most often you'll see the city's blind population make their living by selling pirate music CD's, blaring their songs through amplifiers carried in a backpack. There are people who "perform" such as singing, or repeatedly somersaulting shirtless onto a pile of broken glass and expect a donation.
There are also people who hand out candy or snacks between stops, and if you eat it or keep it you are expected to pay for it; if you don't want it, they'll take it back before the next stop. It can be quite amusing, or sad at times, but don't laugh or be disrespectful The best thing to do is observing how others around you behave, but you can usually just avoid eye contact with these merchants and they will leave you alone.
Since December , such activities have been made technically illegal in the metro and the number of vendors decreased, although has not disappeared. If the merchants weren't enough, the trains are usually just crowded places to be. You may not get seats if you are traveling through the city center during the day, and even if you do, it's considered good manners to offer your seat to the aged, pregnant or disabled, as all cars have clearly marked handicap seats. In keeping with the mad rush on and off the train, people will move toward the exits before the train stops, so let them through and feel free to do the same when you need to a " con permiso " helps, but body language speaks the loudest here.
A few words of warning: Keep your belongings close to you; if you have bags, close them and keep them in sight. As long as you are alert and careful you won't have any problems. Women have complained of being groped on extremely crowded trains; this is not a problem on designated women's wagons, or any other time than rush hour. When exiting, follow the crowd through signs marked Salida. Many stations have multiple exits to different streets or different sides of streets, marked with a cardinal direction and should have posted road maps that show the immediate area with icons for banks, restaurants, parks and so forth.
Use these to orient yourself and figure out where you need to go. A good tip is to remember what side of the tracks you are on, these are marked in such maps with a straight line the color of the metro line you are traveling. There are two kinds of buses. Make sure to pay with exact change as they don't give change back. The second kind of buses are known as "Microbuses" or "Peseros". These buses are private-run and come in small and bigger sizes, all rather ominous looking.
Peseros cost 3. Full-sized private buses are 3. Both type of buses usually stop at the same places, which are totally random and unmarked stops just before intersections. Routes are also very complex and flexible, so be sure to ask someone, perhaps the driver, if the bus even goes to your destination, before getting on. Also, though the locals hang off the sides and out the doors, it is generally not recommended for novices. Riding RTP buses is probably a safer and more comfortable way than the private franchised and smaller microbuses who are known to have terrible driving habits.
All buses display signs on their windshields which tell major stops they make, so if you want to take a bus to a metro station, you can just wait for a bus that has a sign with an M followed by the station name. Buses can be packed during rush hours, and you have to pay attention to your stops buses make very short stops if there's just one person getting off, so be ready , but they are very practical when your route aligns with a large avenue.
There's usually a button above or close to the rear door to signal that you're getting off; if there isn't one, it's not working, or you can't get to it, shouting Bajan! Line 4 runs through the city center and to the airport. Plans exist for additional routes.
It costs 6 pesos to ride, but a Metro card must be bought in advance 15 pesos at vending machines. There are stops approximately every m. Expect it to be crowded around the clock, but its a great way to get up and down these two major thoroughfares very rapidly. There are reserved areas indicated on the platforms for women. There are 15 Trolley bus lines that spread around for more than km. They usually do not get as crowded as regular buses, and they are quite comfortable and reliable. They can be a little slower than regular buses, since they are unable to change lanes as quickly.
There is a flat fare of 4 pesos, and bus drivers do not give out change. For tourists, it is useful if you plan to visit Xochimilco or the Azteca stadium. The rate for a single ride is 3 pesos, and while the ticketing system works very similarly to the Metro, the tickets are not the same. You must purchase light rail tickets separately; they are sold at most stations along the line. The Metro card works for the light rail. There are more than , registered cabs in the city and they are one of the most efficient ways to get around. The prices are low, a fixed fee of about 6 pesos to get into the cab, and about 0.
Some taxis "adjust" their meters to run more quickly, but in general, cab fare is cheap, and it's usually easy to find a taxi. At night, and in areas where there are few taxis, cab drivers will often not use the meter, but rather quote you a price before you get in. This price will often be high, however, you can haggle.
They will tell you that their price is good because they are "safe". If you don't agree on the price, don't worry as another cab will come along. Although safety has in recent years substantially improved, catching cabs in the street may be dangerous. Taxi robberies, so-called "express kidnappings", where the victim is robbed and then taken on a trip to various ATMs to max out their credit cards, do sometimes occur, but there are some general precautions that will minimize the risk:.
Having a good data connection and tracking your route on google maps while in a taxi is a great way to know if you are being taken for a ride. Different Taxi meters incredibly start at different starting points obviously because of taxi drivers fiddling around with the meter. Catching a cab in the Centro area usually gives you a fair ride but many other places you could get ripped. Most taxi drivers don't speak english so knowing some spanish would go a long way!
Mexico City is so large, and many street names so common that cab drivers are highly unlikely to know where to go when you give only a name or address of your destination. Always include either the name of the colonia or the district i. You will probably be asked to give directions throughout or at least near the tail end of the journey; if either your Spanish or your sense of direction is poor, carry a map and be prepared to point.
The two most common recommendations for a safe cab riding experience are to make sure you take an official cab, and to notify a person you trust of the license plate number of the cab you are riding. The free service is called Taxiaviso . For those travelers that have the Uber app on their smartphones, they can also request a ride in Mexico City. Cabify an uber-like service is also recommended. The Turibus  is a sightseeing double-decker hop-in hop-off bus that is a good alternative to see the city if you don't have too much time. Your ticket is valid for all routes. Be prepared to spent a lot of time in traffic jams, hence start your tours early.
Each tour takes quite a long time, between 2hr and 4hr. If you get absolutely lost and you are far away from your hotel, hop into a pesero mini bus or bus that takes you to a Metro station  ; most of them do. Look for the sign with the stylized metro "M" in the front window. From there and using the wall maps you can get back to a more familiar place. Driving around by car is the least advised way to visit the city due to the complicated road structure, generally reckless drivers, and the 3.
Traffic jams are almost omnipresent on weekdays, and driving from one end of the city to the other could take you between 2 to 4 hours at peak times. The condition of pavement in freeways such as Viaducto and Periferico is good, however in avenues, streets and roads varies from fair to poor since most streets have fissures, bumps and holes. Most are paved with asphalt and only until recently some have been paved using concrete. Since the city grew without planned control, the street structure resembles a labyrinth in many areas.
Driving can turn into a really challenging experience if you don't know precisely well where are you going. There is only one company that has been able to map the entire city, Guia Roji . Shortcuts are complicated and often involve about six to eight turns. Street parking Estacionamiento in Spanish is scarce around the City and practically nonexistent in crowded areas. It is possible to park in other streets without meters but is likely there will be a "parking vendor" Franelero in Spanish which are not authorized by the city, but will "take care of your car".
Hoy No Circula Today You Do Not Circulate is an extremely important anti-traffic and anti-pollution program that all visitors including foreigners must take into consideration when wishing to drive through Mexico City and nearby Mexico State with their foreign-plated vehicles, as they are not immune to these restrictions. It limits vehicle circulation to certain restricted hours during the day depending on the last digit of your plate number plates with all letters are automatically assigned a digit. Currently, Mexico City, but not the State of Mexico, offers a special pass good for 2 weeks, that allows someone with a foreign-plated vehicle to be exempt from these restrictions.
The visitor should take into consideration the following tips when driving: Continuous right turn even when traffic light red is allowed. Seat belts are mandatory for both front seats. Police generally drive with their lights on, but if you're stopped by a police car, it is likely they will try to get money out from you.
It is up to you if you accept to do so, the latest government sponsored trend is to refuse giving them anything. Biking is probably the best way to get around, for trips of a reasonable distance of course. You can't get stuck in traffic. So it might be the only form of transportation besides walking that will reliably get you to your destination on time. And you don't have to squeeze yourself into crowded trains or buses. There is a public bike system called ecobici.
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For the longer, better priced membership you need to have a Mexican bank account, or someone with a Mexican bank account to sponsor you and put down the deposit. It may be worth it to open an account with a bank that charges little or no fees to do so. Once you've done that, the fastest way to get started is to visit one of ecobici's offices. On Sundays Paseo de la Reforma, one of the main streets of the city, is closed to cars and many people bike and walk there. The city sets up places where you can rent a bike for free. A map is here. You can rent it for up to 3 hours and you need to leave your passport.
More information is here. Downtown Mexico City has been an urban area since the pre-Columbian 12th century, and the city is filled with historical buildings and landmarks from every epoch since then. It is also known as the City of Palaces, because of the large number of stately buildings, especially in the Centro. In addition, Mexico is the city with the largest number of museums in the world without taking into account art galleries , with New York 2, London 3 and Toronto 4.
Mexico City is full of various plazas and parks scattered through every neighborhood, but the following are some of the biggest, prettiest, most interesting, or best-known. Mexico is the city with the largest number of museums in the world, to name some of the most popular:. As the world's sixth largest city, Mexico City offers something for everyone and for every budget. Attractions in Mexico City focus less on lazing on the beach there are no beaches in Mexico City! The typical "must-see" sites for the foreign visitor are the sites of interest in and around Centro Historico and Chapultepec Park, a visit to the ruins of Teotihuacan in the outskirts of the City and probably a visit to Xochimilco, though there are many other things to see if you have time to really explore.
If you're into sports, then Mexico City has plenty to offer. Soccer is a favorite sport and Mexicans go crazy about it. The city was host to two FIFA world cups, one in and the other in Another important sport in Mexico City is baseball, with many Mexicans playing professionally in the US. The city has been the only Latin American host to an Olympiade in , when the majority of the city's sport facilities were built.
Matches are usually held on Saturdays and tickets can be bought on the day of the match at the ticket office on the front of the building. Be aware that tickets for rows higher than row 8 are on the balconies. Don't buy tickets from the vendors outside, they will overcharge you and tell you there are no more tickets available at the booth.
Note that if you let the host show you your way to your seat, you have to tip him. No cameras are allowed inside, phone cameras are fine though. Like many other things in the country, Mexico City has the largest concentration of universities and colleges, starting with the UNAM, one of the finest in Latin America and the second oldest university in the American continent after the Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos in Lima,Peru founded in You can learn Spanish in Mexico City as there are various schools offering courses for foreigners, for example:.
Mexico has very strict immigration laws. In order to work you should obtain a permit known as FM2 or FM3 which is very hard to get unless you're marrying a Mexican citizen or you are an expat working for a multinational company. Most foreigners working without a permit perform jobs such as language teachers, waiters or salesmen. Others own a restaurant or shop. If you're working without a permit and an immigration officer finds out, it could mean a fine, deportation or spending some time in a detention facility of the National Immigration Institute. Mexico City is famous among Mexicans for its huge malls, streets like Presidente Mazaryk offer haute couture stores.
Mexico City is a huge city , so all individual listings should be moved to the appropriate district articles , and this section should contain a brief overview. Please help to move listings if you are familiar with this city. Here you will find most of the fashion malls sorted by area. Although street vendors can be found almost anywhere in Mexico City, the following are more "formal" flea markets selling handcrafts, furniture and antiques. If you're staying longer you may want to buy groceries and food at any of the hundreds of Supermarkets.
These are some of the most common:. For generally hard-to-find ingredients, such as vegetables and spices that are unusual in Mexico, try the Mercado de San Juan  Ernesto Pugibet street, Salto del Agua metro station. You can even find exotic meats here, such as iguana, alligator, ostrich, and foie gras. Go to the cheese stand at the center of the market, and ask for a sample— the friendly owner will give you bread, wine, and samples of dozens of different kinds of cheese.
Many food products in Mexico including milk are kosher compliant. If you're looking for specific products, try some stores in the Polanco neighborhood. At some Superama branches you would find kosher departments, especially the ones in Polanco, Tecamachalco and Santa Fe neighborhoods. Although it is easy to assume that Mexico City is the world capital of tacos, you can find almost any kind of food in this city.
There are regional specialties from all over Mexico as well as international cuisine, including Japanese, Chinese, French, Polish, Italian, Argentinean, Belgian, Irish, you name it. Another great experience is to dine in an old converted hacienda: There are Mexican chain restaurants that can be assumed to be safe and similar no matter where you are, including Vips , Toks , and the more traditional Sanborns , all reminiscent of Denny's in the United States.
If you're on a budget, you can also try one of the myriad comida corrida set menu restaurants, frequented by many office workers. Perhaps the most ubiquitous type of food almost anywhere in Mexico city are fast food outlets, located on the ground floor of a street-facing building, or puestos , street stands located on a sidewalk or almost anywhere there is room.
If you want to stuff your face with lots of real Mexican food at cheap prices then head over to La Merced the central market, located on the pink line of the subway at the stop "Merced". There are several restaurants as well as stands serving up some delicious food. It is full of food stalls offering all the Mexican favourites, but find the one opposite the small bakers, which is located by one of the rear entrances on Calle Delicias , which serves the Torta Cubana.
The people running it are amazingly welcoming and the food, especially the Cubana, is excellent. If you want something safe and boring, most American fast food chains have franchises here. Reforma and Insurgentes Avenues have Starbucks around every other corner. El Globo , a French-style bakery, has locations throughout the city selling both French and traditional Mexican pastries, like orejas little ears , eclairs, empanadas, and rosca during New Year's.
It can't be beat for a quick snack or bagful of pastries to eat later. Do not miss the chance to go to Pasteleria Madrid calle 5 de Febrero, one block south off the main plaza in downtown Mexico. This is a very old and typical bakery, they will usually have fresh bread twice a day, but if there are a lot of customers they will bake as many as four times a day. Asian food restaurants are abundant, and the quality is good, and caters from cheap Chinese cafeterias to expensive and very good Japanese food.
Most sushi places, however, put far too much rice on their sushi rolls and not enough fish. Vegetarian vegetariano in Spanish alternatives are commonly available at larger restaurants, but don't expect much from street vendors. The magic phrases, for vegetarians or vegans, are "sin pollo" no chicken , "sin carne" no meat , "sin huevo" no eggs and "sin queso" no cheese.
If you can communicate this and then gesticulate to the menu, the waiter normally will give you suggestions. In regular restaurants, they will even try to edit an existing dish for you. Just make sure you are clear. Chile Rellenos are a definite standard in any restaurant for the vegetarian.
There are also now many vegetarian restaurants in the city and many more restaurants that are explicitly vegetarian friendly. If you want to try the famous street food of Mexico City, there are at least two excellent and totally vegan options: Gatorta tortas and tacos and Por Siempre tacos.
Both are in Roma. You can tip less or not tip at all for poor service. In Mexico, there is no difference in prices if you sit inside or outside, it is the same if you eat at the bar or sit at a table.
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They also sell pastries and other food. This place is incomparable to Starbucks. There are several locations in Coyoacan due to its evergrowing popularity. For a quick snack you can always try a tamal steamed corn dough with chicken or pork bought on the street or specialized shops, accompanied by a cup of atole hot chocolate corn starch drink , which is the breakfast of the humble on their way to work. The typical Mexican place to go to drink is the cantina, a bar where food is usually free, and you pay for drinks exact policies and minimums vary.
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Cantinas serve a wide range of Mexican and foreign drinks, with prices usually reasonable compared to prices in the US, and you'll be continually served various Mexican food, such as tacos you should ask for 'Botana'. If your tolerance for Mexican music mariachi or otherwise , smoke-filled rooms, and lots of noise is low however, this may not be your kind of place.
Cantinas are open moderately late, usually past midnight at the very least. However some cantinas, like La Victoria, near the Plaza Garibaldi, are also open at midday for lunch. In Mexico City you have an almost endless choice of options to party.
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Traveling by yourself at night in Mexico City is not a good idea, especially in Plaza Garibaldi where pickpocketers are ever ready to relieve you of your unguarded cash. One of the ways you can check out the night life safely is by doing a Night Club Tour. These tours will typically take you to a few clubs and include transportation. Mexicans are for the most part very friendly and enjoy socializing.
These bars tend to close around AM. Club music mainly falls into three main categories, pop, rock and electronic music. The pop places generally play what's on the music charts, Latin pop, and sometimes traditional Mexican music, and are frequented by a younger sometimes very young audience, and are often more upper class.
The rock places play rock in the wide sense, in English and Spanish. Most people are at least over 18 in these places. The electronica clubs, which attract everyone from Mexico City's large subculture of ravers and electronica fans, of all ages. The best bet used to be the Zona Rosa, which has a large number of street bars with rock bands playing and a large selection of clubs, especially strip clubs and gay bars.
South of Zona Rosa you can find the Condesa area, with many options of bars and restaurants. Be forewarned - entrance is judged on appearance and to get a table a minimum 2 bottle service is required, unless its a slow night [min. Posh and upper scale night clubs can be found in the Lomas area, particularly the Hyde, Shine, Sense and Disco Lomas Clubs, but be warned some of these could be extremely expensive, where the cover charge could range from pesos upwards and bottles start at USD. In addition, getting in could very difficult, as these are the most exclusive in town.
Gay friendly bars and clubs can be found clustered in the Zona Rosa, on Amberes street, and in the historic centre, on Republica de Cuba street. Both of these places are great for bar hopping, as most places don't have a cover charge. This is considerably more fun if you're a somewhat competent dancer, but even complete beginners who don't mind making fools of themselves will likely enjoy it. Most dance places close late, AM is common.
The legal drinking age is It is illegal to consume alcohol in public "open container". This is strictly enforced and the penalty is at least 24 hours in jail. Mexico City has hundreds of hotels and some sublets in all price ranges, though the district you want to stay in will be a good indicator of price and quality. A wide variety of hotels can also be found along Paseo de la Reforma. Local designers and architects are feeding a new generation of sublets where detail and variety are proving that globalization does not mean uniformity.
If you are on a low-budget, you can find hotels as low as USD7 if you take a room with a shared bathroom. Most are centred in the Centro Historico and are very decent. Hostels are more expensive than getting your own private room with full facilities like a TV and restroom, but the cheap hotels are not listed on the internet and many foreigners jump into the hostels for a much worse value. The hostels are a good place to meet people but you should only stay there if you don't mind noise and sharing a restroom.
There are plenty of other places to meet people besides hostels so be sure to look around before deciding to stay at one just because it has a sign in English. If you want to make a long distance call out of Mexico, you should dial the prefix 01 for national calls followed by the area code. If you are making an international long distance call, you must dial 00 followed by the country code, for example, if you're calling the U. If you want to use your cellular phone you can get your phone unlocked before you go.
Then you will get a Mexican Cell phone number. Remember this is a prepaid cellular option. You get free incoming calls from inside the city, but the roaming charges can easily build up if you travel to other cities. People calling you from long distance will need to dial in this format: Mexico city, Guadalajara and Monterrey have 8 digit numbers, and 2 digit area codes.
The rest of the country has 7 digit numbers and 3 digit area codes. If you are calling to a mobile with a different area code, i. Acapulco area code then you use the prefix , then the three digit area code, the seven digit mobile i. This might seem confusing at first but you get easily accustomed to it. These kits start at around 30 USD and can be purchased at the thowsands of mobile phone dealerships, or at OXXO convinence stores, and even supermarkets.
Mexico City has amazing access to the internet considering the availability in the rest of Latin America. There are several internet cafes throughout the city, many of them in Zona Rosa. Price varies from 10 to 20 pesos an hour. Hot spots for wi fi connection to the internet are available in several places around the city, particularly in malls, coffee stores and restaurants. Most if not all of them are operated by the Mexican phone company Telmex through their Internet division Prodigy Movil. Cards can be bought at the Sanborns restaurant chain, Telmex stores and many stores that offer telephony related products.
Unfortunately there are no full-time English spoken radio stations in Mexico, however these are a few options to listen:. With the exception of "The News", you won't find newspapers in English or other foreign languages in regular newsstands, however, you can find many at any Sanborns store. Many U. You can find a detailed crime map based on official statistics here. Travel in Mexico City is generally safe.
Areas around the historic center are generally well-lit and patrolled in the early evening. Much of your travel within the city will be done via public transportation or walking. Mexico City is an immensely crowded place, and with any major metropolitan area, it is advised to be aware of your surroundings. Ask locals or hotel staff about places to avoid. If a neighborhood is considered unsafe and dangerous, just don't go there.
As simple as that. Avoid walking alone especially if you are female traveler at night and call a taxi never hail one out on the street to take you safely back to your hotel or place of residence. Mexicans are usually very friendly and helpful but again, use your common sense and don't trust or follow someone if you do not feel comfortable with them. However if you are victim of an assault, do not resist and hand over your items.
Never try to start a fight or try to argue because even "simple" muggers may be armed and they will use their weapon if you do not cooperate. Avoid getting drunk in public, this can be both dangerous and unrespectful and, on the other hand always keep an eye on your drink in bars and clubs just as you would do in any city. Taxi robberies, so-called "express kidnappings", where the victim is robbed and then taken on a trip to various ATMs to max out their credit cards, do occur, although safety in the city has improved in recent years.
The free service is called Taxiaviso. Protect your personal information. There are pickpockets in Mexico City. Purses and bulky, full pockets are quite attractive. Do not keep your passports, money, identification, and other important items hanging out for someone to steal. Place items in a hotel safe with a proper locking mechanism, or tuck them away inside your clothes. The "Metro" subway system can get extremely crowded, which creates opportunities for pickpockets on cars that are often standing room only.
Watch out for small groups of "interesting" people playing "magic" tricks near the entrances to Metro stations as these can be a ruse to have tourists gather round while others in the "troupe", acting as audience members, bump and push for a view of the "magicians" but in fact may be reaching into your bags or pockets. Do not show money in front of others as this generally attracts pickpockets. Use ATM's inside a secured place such as in a bank.
In crowded public places such as the North and South long distance bus terminals, be sure nobody is following after you after you've withdrawn money from the ATM. Do not leave anything of value inside your car, always use the trunk, even things that could be considered to hold something of value for example, an empty gift box will attract unwanted attention to your car and might prompt a broken window. Plan ahead, and know where you are going and how you will arrive. Mexico City is quite hospitable, and people who work for hotels and other hospitality-oriented businesses will help.
This will help in avoiding confusion, becoming lost or stranded. Also, you can ask a local for advice to get somewhere, though you should speak good Spanish to do this. In the Polanco, Sante Fe and Lomas districts, some police officers and many business people and younger people speak English, as it is common in these affluent areas for children to learn English in school.
One of the keys to maximize your safety is to blend in. Do not try to stand out or wear clothing that scream tourist. Take it easy and go with the flow. Just keep in mind the basic safety tips you have read in this section and enjoy your stay. Police officers in Mexico get paid a third of what New York City police officers make, and some rely on bribes and corruption to make more money however, never offer a bribe first since usually an officer will at least go through the formality of assessing a fine.
The historic center and other major sites often have specially trained tourist police that are more helpful than ordinary transit cops. Keep in mind that most locals will advise you to keep away from the police as much as possible. It is in Victoria Street 76, Centro Historico. Multilingual staff are available. Don't forget that in case of any emergency or problem, your embassy is also there to help you, so don't hesitate to get in touch with them during your stay.
Some people may consider Mexico City to have a bad reputation, in terms of crime statistics, air pollution, and on more contrived issues, such as earthquakes. However, crime and pollution levels are down over the last decade and you shouldn't face any trouble within the tourist areas. As in any large city, there are areas that are better to be avoided, especially at night, and precautions to take, but Mexico City is not particularly dangerous.
When walking in the city you could be approached by people. Usually they are just trying to sell something or begging for a few coins, but if you aren't interested, it is not considered insulting to just ignore them. Also, if someone of importance such as a police officer approaches you, they will definitely let you know.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you do get approached by a police officer, understand that there are three different types: If you are cruising around town and don't want to look like a tourist, avoid wearing shorts. It gets hot here, but it is remarkable how few locals in the capital city wear shorts. Some churches won't even let you walk inside if you are wearing shorts. Being a predominantly Catholic country, if you wish to avoid looking like a foreigner then always dress conservatively. In general, it is wise to ensure that your shoulders, collarbones and midriffs are covered, and that your shirt has sleeves.
The locals can disapprove of tourists wearing clothing considered more 'provocative', and avoiding this helps avoid negative reactions. If you are visiting nicer areas of the city, such as the public parks or any museums or government buildings, proper expected dress by the locals for both male and females is to wear a collared shirt and slacks. Young children less than 8 or 9 years old can get away with wearing tee shirts, however, they should not display anything that could be considered non-Catholic.
Generally, for museums and government buildings, the expected dress a button-front shirt with slacks for men and a blouse and skirt or slacks for women. Children in these places if they are allowed in will be expected to dress the same. In the parks, the public is more forgiving, and you don't have to dress up or wear anything out of the ordinary but it is advised not to dress too lenient. Sometimes, you will be permitted to underdress particularly in restaurants if it is demonstrated enough of your party has full or partial Spanish proficiency. Mexicans may be used to seeing foreigners who do not speak the national language and speaking it may surprise or impress them.
At one time it was advisable to avoid wearing jeans in the city, especially in restaurants or areas where you are expected to dress nicely see above. Jeans are sometimes associated with the poorer people towards the north of the country who perform manual labor and wearing them may stir negative connotations, especically if you are male and American. Today, jeans are common and you should be alright to wear them in most casual situations.
However, there is a general class consciousness among the people of Mexico City that makes it a good idea to dress a bit more formally than you would in most areas of the United States. Mexicans in general will kick you out of churches, museums, restaurants, etc.
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- Mexico City - Wikitravel?
Remember most Mexicans are very curious in regards of foreigners and are willing to help. If in need for directions or even if you are unsure on what to wear, try to ask young people, who may speak a little English. Many locals not all of them, of course have very aggressive driving habits as a result of the frequent traffic jams in the city. Some traffic signals are more an ornament than what they were made for, such as Stop signs, although most people respect traffic lights and pedestrian ways.
Prince George's County PS. Pasco School District. The official Pasco School District app. Columbus City Schools - OH.