Wed 21 Oct, 2009
We have lived in Ajijic, Lake Chapala for over 15 years. We hail from Toronto, Canada and when we were there I would not let my children go the Mac’s Milk store across the street on their own.
From the time we arrived in Ajijic, Lake Chapala our children have run free and I have never worried about their safety.
This is a community where church and family are the most important values and no one is going to hurt your children.
Obviously, there is going to be some crime as the ex-pats, for the most part, are wealthier than the Mexican locals. Having said that, the crime is largely one of theft of people wanting to feed their families and is usually non-violent.
Coming from a major metropolitan city we find the crime here very inconsequential and if you practice normal common sense you will be quite safe.
Yes, there have been some scams perpetrated such as the mustard scam whereby someone says you have bird droppings (which they have put there) on you and while they are helping you clean it off an accomplice might steal your purse. Another one is puncturing your tires at the airport and then when you have a flat tire they offer to help you and again an accomplice will attempt to rob you. These scams are well documented in the local papers so people can be aware and take the necessary precautions. Never ask anyone for help at an ATM.
Once in 15 years we had an intruder and he was quickly scared away by our barking dog which is your best defense against theft. Our house was wide open at the time as we had never had any reason to worry and we now lock up at night or when we are not at home.
A lot of people are only here seasonally thereby leaving their home unprotected. We suggest that you have staff keep an eye on your house or install an alarm system.
Keep your valuables in a home safe and don’t flaunt any expensive jewelry but the main things the would-be robbers seem to be after are electronics and silverware.
If you keep you wits about you and practice normal vigilance you will be quite safe here in Ajijic, Lake Chapala. Compared to any city in the US or Canada the crime here is neglible.
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