How Safe Is Nogales for Travel?

Nogales, Mexico
Safety Index:

Nogales, located on the US and Mexico border, is one of the most important ports of entry for U.S. tourists.

The downtown area consists of bars, strip clubs, hotels, restaurants, and many curio stores, where tourists can buy a large variety of handicrafts, leather art, handmade flowers, clothes. Local dishes commonly available in restaurants include many types of Mexican food.

Nogales’s proximity to the U.S. border and the abundance of inexpensive labor make it an efficient location for foreign companies to have manufacturing operations.

Сompanies that have established maquiladoras (factory in Mexico run by a foreign company) in Nogales include Continental AG, The Chamberlain Group, Walbro, General Electric.

Warnings & Dangers in Nogales

Overall Risk


Kidnapping is common in Nogales, people can be detained for a long time and forced to withdraw money from an ATM. Being on the street at night is quite dangerous, it is also better to move around the city only in groups.

Transport & Taxis Risk


Travelers should avoid public transportation in the Nogales based on the lack of safety on it. Use only certified taxi services or call it from the app.

Pickpockets Risk


The risk of being robbed by a pickpocket is possible here. Don't flash with valuables and cash, keep an eye on your belongings and you'll be safe.

Natural Disasters Risk


Mostly Nogales can suffer from floods. Explore proven sources on this subject prior to your visit to the city.

Mugging Risk


The consequences of careless behavior in the city can lead to kidnapping, carjacking, and even murder. Travel in a group and do not show up on the streets late at night.

Terrorism Risk


Nogales does not suffer much from terrorism so the risk of it is minimal here. But due to poor border controls and a bad criminal situation in the city, you must always be on the alert.

Scams Risk


There is not much risk of scamming in the city, but you should be careful when withdrawing money ATM and communicating with local people.

Women Travelers Risk


Nogales district is quite unsafe so women traveling alone have a great risk of falling into an unpleasant situation where they can not fight back. Female travel alone is not recommended in this city.

So... How Safe Is Nogales Really?

Nogales is not a tourist city.

The tourists crossing into Nogales are going to visit the dentist or pharmacy, not for having a travel inspiration.

Locals stare at travelers, here you can only be treated like a wallet on your feet.

Often people can come up and ask for money without hesitate.

Nogales is safe enough, but here, every foreigner is closely watched, as if under a magnifying glass.

Travelers can safely walk in the city daytime, but it’s not recommended going for a walk at night.

You can become a target for robbery.

Roads and sidewalks are in bad condition.

Everyone should be watchful to avoid harm yourself, whether you are walking or driving.

Drug cartel-related violence continues to dominate as the motive behind many of the homicides and violent crimes in the Nogales district.

Most crimes in Nogales are armed robbery, assault, and burglary, also the city suffers from homicide, vehicle theft, home invasion, and rape.

But all these crimes occur in this area after dark. Travel throughout the city only during daylight hours.

Avoid walking after dark in Nogales.

Useful Information

  • Visas - No visas required for tourist proposals to enter Mexico for many countries of Europe, US citizens and so on. You should have a valid passport and a tourist permit. The maximum possible of stay is 180 days. For a longer stay or other options, you should visit the Mexican embassy.
  • Currency - The Mexican peso - is the official currency in Mexico. There are one hundred Mexican centavos to every peso. The symbol for the Mexican Peso is $, so you can see MX$ or MN$ in banks and exchange points.
  • Weather - The best weather here is during the month of March and November. The hottest season is in May, June, July, August, September, and October. Most rain month is July.
  • Airports - Nogales International Airport is an international airport located at Nogales, Sonora, Mexico, near the U.S.-Mexico border. It handles national and international air traffic for the city of Nogales.
  • Travel Insurance - The medical travel insurance is required for travelers in any country as well as Mexico. On the border, any traveler may be asked by a customs officer to show insurance.
Click here to get an offer for travel insurance

Nogales Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan 8° C
Feb 10° C
Mar 11° C
Apr 14° C
May 18° C
Jun 24° C
Jul 26° C
Aug 25° C
Sep 23° C
Oct 17° C
Nov 11° C
Dec 9° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

Where to Next?

1 Review on Nogales


    I am curious as to where you got your information from about Nogales. I would visit, as a white female, the city very often from 2013 – 2018 alone, with no issues. I made many friends over the years of visiting. I would also sometimes stay at a hotel on the Mexican side of the border, again alone, with no issues. The town is no more dangerous than any other city in the U.S. after dark. You are not watched “as if under a magnifying glass”. Most of the people who live in Nogales are more helpful than harmful. I ended up moving here in August of 2018. I lived on my own for almost a year before moving in with my boyfriend, who was born and raised in Nogales, Sonora. Are there issues with crime? Of course – like any city. Are there Cartel? Yes – but you don’t have the problems like the U.S. government and media would like one to believe. Additionally, the Cartel fights and Cartel and they try to avoid getting innocents, especially the tourists, involved. This is a beautiful town with beautiful people. I have now been here for 2 years, and I can honestly say I feel safer here than I did when I lived in Phoenix, AZ.
    Also, you do not need a tourist visa to visit Nogales if you are going to stay within the “border zone”, which most tourists do. You do not need proof of medical insurance. Even driving across, I have only been asked once for proof of car insurance and it was with a rental car. There is no international airport. One has to fly into Tucson (about an hour away) or Hermosillo (about 3 hours). I am rarely asked for my passport coming into Mexico, even when I get the red light.
    Nogales is an amazing town to visit. The food is great, the people are amazing and you can have a lot of fun with the shopping. You do not need to exchange your U.S. dollars, as just about everywhere will accept the U.S. currency. I have many friends who have businesses that have suffered from false information about Nogales, especially with the current President, and then COVID hit. As long as you are not acting like an idiot (crazy drunk, fighting, etc) and you pay attention to your surroundings (like you should EVERYWHERE), you will not have any issues in Nogales.

Rated 5 / 5 based on 1 user reviews.

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