Ready to Go to Mexico
Daily Life in Puebla and La Preciosita
About Puebla & La Preciosita
You can find information about Puebla here.
La Preciosita is a rural community of just 700 inhabitants situated in 740 acres of forest (part of which is a nature reserve owned by the people). Like many other communities in Mexico, it has been particularly affected by citizens’ migration to the United States.
Housing & Meals
Please review the information found on our Mexico Housing Information page.
Weather in the region during May and June tends to be warm during the day (in the 70s Fahrenheit) with temperatures dropping into the 50s at night. Rain is common especially in June so be sure to bring a good rain jacket, and a sweater or fleece for cooler temperatures.
Internet & Phones
You will have access to internet via computer labs while at in Puebla. In La Preciosita, internet is not commonly found in the community. You will be able to access internet in a nearby town, but participants are expected to actively participate in activities and be fully present in the community while in La Preciosita.
Your US mobile phone may work in Mexico, but you should check with your service provider to learn about roaming charges, service availability, etc. Students will not have cell phone service in La Preciosita.
We list the following guidelines as precautionary measures, rather than to alarm you. All of the destinations we offer are located in areas that are, statistically, less crime-prone than the average American urban area.
Still, it is important to protect yourself and use common sense. Americans are easy targets. We dress differently, speak loudly, carry backpacks and have a distinct accent. Thus, the people you meet may see you with stereotypical eyes and an occasion may arise where someone may want to become friends with you in order to obtain in one form or another your money or your passport. This has happened in the past and is a serious problem.
- Don't stand out as a group or individual. Try to blend with your surroundings.
- Do not participate in political activities, angry groups, or demonstrations.
- Do not give out information carelessly about students or events. Do not share your address with strangers.
- Always be in contact with your site director and contact our in-country or Glenside office for help anytime. Keep emergency numbers handy.
- Know basic help phrases in the native language.
- Be careful of persons wanting to make your acquaintance very quickly, as they may have an ulterior motive.
- Meet people in public places during the day, preferably with a friend or two of yours.
- Avoid travel to any sensitive political areas.
- Remain alert and never leave your bags unattended.
Special Considerations for Women
A woman traveling on her own may encounter more difficulties than a man by himself. Some of the best ways to avoid hassle are to fit in and try to understand the roles of the sexes in the culture in which you are traveling. Flexibility means observing how the host country's women dress and behave, and following their example. What may be appropriate or friendly behavior in the US may bring you unwanted, even dangerous, attention in another culture.
Try not to take offense at whistles and other gestures of appreciation, regardless of whether they are compliments, invitations, or insults. Realize that, in many countries, these gestures are as much as part of the culture as is the food, history and language.
But if a situation is dangerous – if you are made to feel uncomfortable – then act as if it is. Be extra careful when giving your trust. This applies generally, but is especially important when traveling alone. Avoid being out alone at night in unfamiliar territory — on the street, in parks, on trams, on trains. If, for example, at night you suddenly find yourself alone in a train car, move to another one where other people are sitting.
AIDS, Safe Sex and Relationships
If you are sexually active, take care of yourself and practice safe sex. Be aware that any type of relationship, whether heterosexual, bisexual or homosexual, entails the risk of a sexually-transmitted disease. Entering into a relationship overseas should, therefore, be approached with the same precautions you would use at home. The charm of a once-in-a-lifetime romance in another country may be tempting, but consider any relationship carefully and remember that you are only in your host country for a short time. There are different cultural values regarding dating and relationships.
When traveling abroad, be aware that some countries may require HIV antibody tests. Travelers should also know that some countries may not have the resources to screen blood adequately or provide sterile needles or medical facilities. We recommend that you take normal, everyday precautions to avoid putting yourself at risk. Do not use intravenous drugs. Practice safe sex. Think carefully about administration of CPR if you are trained to do so. Do not share personal care items, such as razors, with others.
LGBT Life in Mexico
For information on study abroad support for LGBT students and to identify in-country resources, see LGBT Resource Guide, the website for NAFSA: Association of International Educators Rainbow Special Interest Group. The site includes important considerations for LGBT students as well as a bibliography of books and websites.