Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria hit popular travel destinations. Mexico City had a large earthquake. In the wake of all this you may be wondering if it is safe to travel to an area recently hit by a natural disaster.
This is a reasonable question. Yet, just because a city had flooding doesn’t mean it’s unsafe, and continued tourism and the influx of money could speed up a city’s recovery time. So how can you safely travel after a natural disaster?
1. Find out if the area you’re traveling to was actually in the disaster zone
The recent earthquake in Mexico is a prime example of this. Only Mexico City was hit, and not even the entire city was affected. The local Board of Tourism has said that they are still welcoming visitors. If you’re still nervous, don’t travel to that area, but don’t let it put off your Mexico vacation.
2. Stay on top of the news
News outlets, especially local ones, and social media can be great assets when planning to travel to an area affected by a disaster. Keep on top of local sources to find out what’s going on at ground level and use your best judgment.
3. Check with local authorities
Police in all cities have a non-emergency number you can call. So after the initial disaster response is over, call to see if the authorities think it’s safe to travel there. As much as a city might want tourism dollars, they also want people to be safe, so they won’t recommend coming if the situation is unsafe.
4. Consider postponing your vacation
If you can’t travel to a certain area now, consider postponing your trip for a couple months. You’d be amazed at how resilient some of these places are, and odds are good you’ll be welcomed with open arms after the cities rebuild.