/ Modified nov 30, 2017 5:02 p.m.

Mexico Wants To Draw Tourists from US Aging Population

Tourism official sees assisted-living and medical tourism as an opportunity.

Rocky Point sunset spotlight (PHOTO: Arlene Islas, AZPM)
Mexico has grown into one of the top tourism destinations in the world, especially for American tourists seeking travel and adventure. But at the Arizona-Mexico Commission in Puerto Peñasco this week, tourism officials said now they’re focusing on older American tourists.

Mexico draws about 35 million tourists a year, each spending an average of $550. A top tourism official said the country wants to increase that by targeting the U.S.’s aging population with assisted-living tourism.

Teresa Solis, undersecretary for tourism planning, spoke at the annual Arizona-Mexico Commission’s summit in Puerto Peñasco.

"We know that there are many restrictions from insurance companies to have services in Mexico, but we also know that there are many people who do not have an adequate coverage of medical services in the states who could find in Mexico a good opportunity," said Solis.

She said about 2 million Americans travel to Mexico every year seeking some sort of medical coverage. While states like Jalisco and Guanajuato are popular with American expats needing care, she said the country’s northern states, like Sonora, are drawing those patients as well.

Fronteras Desk
This story is from the Fronteras Desk, a collaboration of Southwestern public radio stations, including NPR 89.1. Read more from the Fronteras Desk.
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