Cancun Mexico Travel Information
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Mark every piece of luggage inside and outside with your last name and first initial only. Do not use a title [Mz.] Do not put your home address or destination address on the luggage unless your destination is a hotel or resort.


The Tale Of
The Newsboy

Once upon a time there was a little newsboy who was very, very poor and he only sold old newspapers because he didn't have enough money for new ones.

People didn't by his newspapers because they were all so out of date, and they wanted new newspapers.

So the little newsboy never sold any, and every day he accumulated more and more old newspapers.

What the little newsboy did was put up a paper recycling plant, and he became a millionaire, bought out all the newspaper businesses and the news agencies, prohibited publishing current news, and thus obliged people to read only news of the past.

In the papers on sale today, for example, you'd read that the Zapatistas are about to arrive in Mexico City and that they'll meet with the Villistas there.

You can't quite make out the date, but it seems to either 1914 or 1997.



Buckle Up!

Mexico now has
a seat-belt law.


By Jules Siegel


Downtown, on Av. Tulum, facing the first traffic circle as you enter town. Ruta 2 Hotel Zone bus stops near entrance. Plaza Las Americas; López-Portillo. Claims to have the lowest prices in town and tries hard to do it.

Hectic supermarket discount store

This big, unpretentious store has a little of everything at excellent prices. See description of San Francisco de Asis, below, for a fairly accurate comparison of downtown branch, which is not for the claustrophobic. Plaza Las Americas branch is cleaner and better organized. Good buys on dishes, housewares, cheap jeans and other clothing items.

La Comercial Mexicana

Downtown, facing 2nd traffic circle. Ruta 1 Hotel Zone bus stops at entrance. Good bargains on specials. Main store at Av. López-Portillo and Kabah has better prices and is less crowded.

Crowded and busy supermarket with all the usual stuff

Specials sometimes cheaper than San Francisco de Asis, better selection of goods in general, excellent delicatessen. Meat is edible. Good bakery section. About the best liquor selection in Cancun, especially good on imported wines.


Downtown, Cobá behind Seguro Social hospital. Ruta 2 Hotel Zone bus stops at entrance.

Clean, modern supermarket

Small, clean, with an assortment of mostly Mexican goods, this supermarket is a service of the Social Security system, but is open to the public. Prices are about routinely at least 10% lower than major supermarkets

San Francisco de Asis

Hotel Zone, Plaza Quetzal, across from Hotel El Presidente Prices higher than downtown store, no specials.

American-style supermarket in hotel zone

Arctic air-conditioning. Ample selection of Mexican brands, plus some American deli items. Small vegetable and fruit section and rudimentary meat counter. This is the best all-around shopping resource in the Hotel Zone, with a full assortment of Mexican and imported goods. The service, however, is quite irregular and it is always important to check dairy items such as cheese for freshness.

Super Genny

Downtown, Yaxchilán, one block from Hotel Caribe Internacional

Small, well-stocked neighborhood supermarket

You'll find a little of everything here at prices competitive with San Francisco de Asis. Considerably less hectic, but can get quite crowded, as there is only one checkout counter. Usually has better stock of American cereals, such as Cheerios, and other items at somewhat better prices than other supermarkets.


Downtown. Across from Tel-Mex. All taxi drivers know where it is. Ruta 2 Hotel Zone bus stops at entrance. Very competitive prices. Open 24 hours.

The classic Wal-Mart, well-translated into Spanish

Good prices in general, but specials at La Comercial are better. Has Price's American milk and other imported foods, including American beef. Best liquor prices in Cancun with a nice selection of Mexican and Spanish wines similar to La Comercial. Bakery has American-style cakes at budget prices. Best tortillas in Cancun.

This is the most reliable butcher shop in Cancun. Even the packaged hamburger is acceptable. Look for "molido sirloin," which will have fat content and beef quality similar to American supermarket hamburger. If you want the best quality, select the cut you prefer from the butcher counter and have it ground. When buying meat here, take advantage of the fact that labels carry time as well as date and select the freshest meat. Domestic cuts of beef will be very tough and are not recommendable unless you are accustomed to dealing with this. Pork and chicken are ok.

We do most of our shopping in Wal-Mart, which is probably shameful but lots of Mexicans agree with us.

Copyright � Jules Siegel 2001, 2006. All rights reserved.
Contact: for reprint permissions.

If you are planning a trip to Cancun, the following articles written by Jules Seigel are recommended reading. Jules has lived in the area for over 20 years.
A Quick Guide To Beach Hotels
Corruption Isn't What It Used To Be
Shopping in a Mexican Market


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The greatest asset Cancun has is its natural marine playground which sparkles with a warm sun more than 200 days of the year.

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