U.S. travel advisories for Playa del Carmen – a popular Mexico tourist destination between Cozumel and Cancun – have been revised, the State Department announced.
The revised restriction prohibits federal employees from traveling to Centro, Calica, Gonzalo Guerrero, Quintas del Carmen, and Villas del Carmen neighborhoods of Playa del Carmen. U.S. citizens are also advised to avoid these neighborhoods.
The previous restriction prohibited U.S. government employees from traveling to the resort areas in the Riviera Maya, including hotels, shops, restaurants and bars near Playa del Carmen. Those areas are now approved for travel, if they fall outside of the restricted neighborhoods.
Government employees are still prohibited from using ferry services between Playa del Carmen and Cozumel. U.S. citizens are advised to not use the ferries as well in the wake of two explosive devices discovered on vessels used by tourists. One of the bombs exploded, injuring five U.S. citizens.
The explosions prompted cruise lines to cancel excursions using the ferries.
The explosions remain under investigation.
According to the State Department, the ferry issue is separate from the neighborhood restrictions, which it said were due to “unspecified threats.” The threats prompted the temporary closure of the consular agency at Playa del Carmen; the office is set to reopen with additional security Monday.
The State Department recommends travelers in the area:
- Be aware of your surroundings and exercise increased caution.
- Purchase travel insurance that specifically covers you in Mexico and includes medical evacuation insurance.
- Contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate if you need assistance.
AL.com contributed to this report.