Hurricane season in Mexico happens from the month of June until October. In some cases, the season can extend to November. This season impacts the Yucatan Peninsula (Cancun), Mexico’s Pacific coast, Mexico’s Gulf Coast, and from Baja California going south.
In other words, Mexico’s hurricane season starts in late spring and goes on until late autumn. Sometimes hurricanes can happen during summer or early autumn as well. The frequency of hurricanes starts to diminish as the overall temperature of the season goes down. Generally, hurricanes tend to be unpredictable. Thus, it’s difficult to determine how many storms will take place during a given year, their strengths, and whether they actually make landfall.
About Hurricanes in Mexico
Summer in Mexico is when the temperatures are at their highest. During this time, Mexico experiences a lot of hurricanes, which are storms that came from the oceans where they gather intensity and end up on land. These hurricanes usually hit the Pacific coast of Mexico and sometimes along the shores of the Yucatan peninsula or Gulf of Mexico.
Much like other natural calamities such as earthquakes, hurricanes can be quite unpredictable. More aptly referred to as tropical cyclones, a hurricane is one of the most intense types of cyclones thanks to its sustained wind buildup which can go up to 74 miles per hours. The hurricane becomes stronger as it moves across the ocean, but it tends to break up when it hits the land. But when it does take landfall, the hurricane has the potential to do lots of damage to property and structures, especially to the ones near the coast that it hits. Even after it’s gone, the hurricane leaves heavy rains and floods further into the land.
Although Mexico has its own hurricane season, it’s possible for some years to go by without any hurricane activity at all. Unfortunately, there are also years when hurricanes just come in quick succession at varying intensities.
One of the more notable hurricanes to ever hit Mexico was hurricane Wilma, which hit the Yucatan Peninsula back in 2005. The hurricane did a lot of damage to Mexico’s most popular tourist destination, Cancun. Another one would be Hurricane Patricia, considered by meteorologists as the strongest storm ever recorded. It made landfall on the Pacific coast of Mexico back in October 2015. Fortunately, the fears of damage and casualties never happened.
Right now, Mexico has employed some weather monitoring and communication technology, as well as better building specifications to help deal with the hurricane season. This will greatly reduce the amount of human risk which happens during storms. However, hurricanes remain to threaten both communication and power facilities as well as transportation systems.
Life during Hurricane Season
Those who live in regions often affected by hurricanes have learned to live with the hurricane season. They are usually prepared and know how to respond to a hurricane situation. Most common structures like hotels and homes are built to survive most storms. Of course, you can never really predict if a structure will be able to withstand the force of a hurricane, but the improvements on the infrastructure do mitigate lots of risk.
Homeowners in Mexico also make it a point to insure their homes in order to mitigate their losses in case of a hurricane. There are also warning systems as well as evacuation routines to help communities evacuate when necessary.
Travelling to Mexico during Hurricane Season
If you’re planning to visit Mexico, you should at least know if you’re going during the hurricane season. This will help you decide what to bring, what to do, and where to go during your trip. Note that not all tourist destinations are affected by hurricanes even during the peak season, so knowing the climate of your destination of choice is also important.
But you might be wondering why anyone would ever go to Mexico during hurricane season. The answer is that there are actually some advantages to planning your trip to happen during those times of the year:
- For one thing, fewer people will be travelling to Mexico, allowing you to huge crowds of tourists sharing the destinations with you.
- There are also a number of travel perks such as hotel and airfare discounts, allowing you to save up on a lot of travel expenses.
- The hurricane season also happens to fall within the summer holidays, which means that families will want to travel together.
Of course, the trade-off is that you’ll risk getting caught by a hurricane which can totally ruin your trip. But considering how most hurricanes don’t even make landfall and that they don’t frequent tourists’ destinations, it’s really worth the risk. The exception is when you plan on going to some beaches. After all, hurricanes hit the coasts first, so the chances of your vacation being ruined by a storm is a bit higher.
Before you go, make sure you do the following:
- Get travel insurance so that you’re covered in case your trips are canceled due to the storm. Make sure you know what the policy covers.
- Most hotels in areas prone to hurricanes have hurricane policies and guarantees. Double check that the hotel you’re booking has one. This will guarantee that you will get some form of help in case your accommodations are affected by the storm.
- Make it a point to monitor the weather patterns of the area you’re visiting. Check out the National Hurricane Center’s official website for reliable forecasts and other reports.
- Make sure you have soft copies of your valuable travel documents such as passports, flight tickets, driver’s licenses, hotel reservations, and more. This is so that you can easily print a copy in case you lose your documents to a hurricane.
Want to minimize the chance that you encounter a hurricane? Here are a couple of ideas:
- Pick an inland destination, since hurricanes don’t usually make their way into the inner parts of Mexico.
- Ride a cruise, since ships are capable of changing their routes and itineraries when they find that the original path is hit by a hurricane.
The truth is that most travelers can visit Mexico without experiencing a hurricane at all. But in case it happens, you’ll be glad you knew about these tips.