H1N1 SWINE FLU UPDATES

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The #1 place in Puerto Vallarta for up-to-date H1N1 Swine Flu coverage. 

AS OF MAY 31, 2009, THE SWINE FLU SCARE IS OFFICIALLY OVER.

As the Mexican government, the CDC and the WHO are no longer issuing updates on the worldwide swine flu scare of 2009, we will no longer be updating this page.  There never was an outbreak of swine flu in Puerto Vallarta, but now there is nothing to worry about at all.  There has been no mention of Swine Flu now since May of 2009.  However, we'll leave this page up here just for your reference if you're wondering what happened.

CUT THROUGH THE INFLUENZA A (H1N1) SWINE FLU HYPE!

As usual, the media, especially the cable news channels, are working diligently to raise their ratings by scaring the public.  You have probably seen the word "Mexico" on your TV screen so many times to scary music, catch phrases and flashy graphics, your head is spinning.  What you may not know is just how the Swine Flu scare really affects you and your travel plans to Puerto Vallarta.   Here we present you only with the facts.  How you use them is up to you.

THE LATEST SWINE FLU UPDATES

FINAL UPDATE
Updated: 5/31/2009  12:00 PM

Number of Confirmed Cases of Swine Flu in Puerto Vallarta:  3
Number of People in Jalisco WITHOUT swine flu:  6.75 Million
Percentage of Municipalities in Mexico With No Swine Flu: 89.4%
Number of Confirmed Cases in all of Mexico:  5029 (out of 110 Million)
Number of Confirmed Cases in the USA:  8975 (out of 300 Million)
Number of Confirmed Cases in Canada:  1118  (out of 33 Million)
Number of People in USA who Died from the flu last year:  56,000
Number of Confirmed Deaths Worldwide from this Swine Flu:  99
Miles from Puerto Vallarta to the Mexico City Outbreak: 800+
Source:  World Health Organization (WHO) and Salud (Mexican CDC)


 

CURRENT STATUS OF SWINE FLU IN MEXICO

 

WATCH THE VIDEO ABOUT SWINE FLU IN PUERTO VALLARTA - May 19, 2009 - PVVA

 

The Mexico swine flu scare has passed.  All the major countries, including the USA, Canada, UK, WHO and the European Union have issued the all clear for travel to Mexico by dropping any warning or ban against travel to Mexico.  Cruise lines such as Carnival and Royal Caribbean have already announced their returns to Mexico, as have major UK tour operators like Thompson and Thomas Cook, Canadian airlines such as Air Canada, and international airlines from countries like Ecuador, Argentina, and Switzerland. They have done so because swine flu is on the decline in Mexico, while spreading widely throughout the USA (which has many more cases of swine flu than Mexico) and Canada. 

 

The swine flu has turned out to be no worse than the regular seasonal flu, and has never been found in many of Mexico's tourist resorts such as Cozumel, Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan, and Zihuatenejo.  As people realized that they had more chance of catching it in their own countries than Mexico, and that even if they got it, they were no more at risk than a regular old run of the mill flu bug, the public outcry brought the governments to remove their restrictions.

 

The only difference now between Mexico before the scare and Mexico now is the lack of tourism.  Although it is steadily increasing back to normal, the economy in Mexico has taken a beating from the character assassination by the mass media and fearful governments, despite never actually having any swine flu in most Mexican resort towns, and a 100% recovery rate among the few tourists that have contracted H1N1, usually in a day or two like the regular flu.  The flu bug is very rare in Mexico's resort communities, and has been non-lethal.  Tourists have known for a while that there was more risk of being struck by lightning than dying from swine flu, but now the governments have obtained the political cover they need to do what the WHO has been saying all along.

 

There have only ever been 3 cases of swine flu in Puerto Vallarta since the beginning of all this.  All have recovered fully, just as you would from any bout with the flu.  The US, Canadian, and UK governments all agree with the WHO that there is no reason not to travel to Mexico.  Come and join us for some fun in the sun this year in beautiful Puerto Vallarta.

 

FACT VS. FICTION - THE BASICS OF SWINE FLU

 

Swine Flu is milder and less dangerous than the regular seasonal flu that everyone has had at one time or another.  13,000 people so far this year in the USA have died of the regular old seasonal flu.  15 have died from swine flu, all with severe underlying health problems.  In fact, most people that have had swine flu at all have severe underlying health problems.  It is estimated that approximately 1 Billion people worldwide suffer from the regular flu every year, and up to 50 million people in the USA alone.  So far 15,000 have had swine flu worldwide.  The US Government has even announced that swine flu is not worse than the regular flu.  You are more likely to die from a lightning strike than from swine flu.

 

Despite the international isolation of Mexico during this outbreak, there are nearly 75% more cases of swine flu in the USA than in Mexico.  The resort communities of Mexico have been almost completely without cases of swine flu, but have had their economies devastated by the fear created by the media and governments with their unwarranted travel warnings (though nearly all have now been dropped).   In Mexico City, with over 55% of all cases in Mexico, .0004% (4 ten-thousandths of one percent) of the people have had swine flu, and the tally is way less in all other areas of Mexico.  Cruise ships diverted passengers up and down the US and Canada coastlines, where hundreds of cases of swine flu exist while boycotting Mexican port towns like Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan, Cozumel and Costa Maya where there has yet to be a single case of swine flu confirmed.   It is cited that 85 people in Mexico have died from swine flu in a population of 110 million people, 60 million of whom live in poverty, as an example of why Mexico is scary - think about the real reasons behind this.  Then consider that up to 500,000 people worldwide are estimated to die from the regular seasonal flu every year.  85 people have died from swine flu.  The hype surrounding this is crazy - the facts speak for themselves.  To us, swine flu is not news.  It's not even something we would take into consideration when deciding where to travel, and certainly not something we'd worry about during our vacation.  The WHO has always said that there is no rationale for travel restrictions.  Too bad in the media-hype fearmongering, few people are listening..

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Q:  I'm scared.  Should I cancel my trip?
A: 
We suggest reading the Myth-Busters below before making any decision.  You should make the best decision for you.  Right now, in our personal opinion (as well as the opinion of the World Health Organization and the Pan American Health Organization, as well as the governments of the USA and Canada, the UK and the EU) we see no reason to cancel a trip to Puerto Vallarta because there is no swine flu here, and it is no worse than the regular flu in any case, but if you want to cancel, some of the airlines and hotels are offering you the ability to reschedule and a few are even letting you cancel.  Cancellation policies have pretty much returned to normal now that travel to Mexico is returning to normal, so be sure to talk with your provider to see what they offer in terms of flexibility.

 

Q:  What if I come to Puerto Vallarta and get Swine Flu?
A: 
The odds of this are miniscule.  There have been only 3 confirmed cases of swine flu in Puerto Vallarta, (all were mild cases and the people are fine) and only .0001% (one ten-thousandth of one percent) of people in Mexico have had swine flu.  If you were to get it, every hotel has a doctor on call, but usually it will just go away on its own like any flu bug.  Puerto Vallarta has plenty of supply of Tamiflu.  Symptoms are basically the same as the regular flu that everyone has except fever can be a couple of degrees higher.  This is nothing like the bird flu.  Also remember that the USA now has many more cases of swine flu that Mexico does.  Dreams resorts in Puerto Vallarta is so confident you won't get the flu here that they are offering you three free vacations if you get it while staying there!

 

Q:  If I come to Puerto Vallarta, will restaurants, bars, etc be open? 
A: 
Yes. All hotels, restaurants, bars, tours, etc are running like normal.  The only difference is that there are still fewer tourists due to the scare.  Mexicans and tourists alike are going on about business as normal.  No masks, no deserted streets.  Just fun in the sun in beautiful Puerto Vallarta.

 

SWINE FLU MYTH-BUSTERS


MYTH #1 - SWINE FLU IS RAMPANT IN PUERTO VALLARTA
FACT:
Contrary to what you may have read in Media reports, there has only ever been a grand total of 3 confirmed cases of swine flu in the resort towns of Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan, Cabo San Lucas, Cozumel and Zihuatenejo combined.  Mexico City, where the main outbreak was, is over 800 miles away.  This is about the distance from New York City to Chicago. 

 

MYTH #2 - IF I TRAVEL TO MEXICO, I'LL GET SWINE FLU
FACT:
The World Health Organization is still advising against any travel restrictions to Mexico.  See Notice Here.  All major governments are also advising against travel restrictions, including the USA, Canada, and the UK.  There is no swine flu currently in Puerto Vallarta, and only 3 cases ever confirmed - it is over 800 miles from here to Mexico City.  There are now significantly more cases of swine flu in the USA than Mexico.

 

MYTH #3 - I WILL BE MUCH SAFER IN THE USA THAN IN MEXICO
FACT: 
There are significantly more cases of swine flu in the USA than in Mexico.  There are currently 8975 confirmed cases of swine flu in the USA and 5029 confirmed cases in Mexico. See the Report.  Of course, the combined population of the two countries is about 415 million people, so there are 414.997 million people in the two countries who do not have swine flu vs. only a few thousand that do, which makes this really a silly point in any case.

 

MYTH #4 - IF I GET SWINE FLU, I'LL DIE!
So far, out of the nearly 7 billion people in the world, 99 have been confirmed to have died from swine flu.  That is 1 out of every 70 million people.  In all the rest of the cases, people have recovered within a few days, much as you would with the regular flu.  500,000 people are estimated to die from the regular flu worldwide every year vs. 85 with swine flu.  56,000 people died of the regular seasonal flu in the USA alone in 2006 (the most recent year data is available). 15 people have died due to the swine flu in the USA out of a country of 300 million people, all with severe underlying health problems.  According to the U.S. government, the swine flu is no worse than the regular flu.  94 people every day die in a car crash in the USA alone.  8 people every month are killed by lightning in the USA.  Chicken Pox kills an estimated 600,000 people every year.  99 for swine flu.  Just think about these numbers for a minute.
 

MYTH #5 - I DON'T WANT TO HAVE TO WEAR A MASK ON VACATION!
The only mask anyone is wearing in Puerto Vallarta is a snorkeling mask.  People are going on about their lives like normal.  Swine flu is not a concern for the residents of Puerto Vallarta, as it is nonexistent, and less to worry about than the regular flu.

 

MYTH #6 - THIS FLU IS FROM PIGS SO I SHOULDN'T EAT ANY PORK.
The A(H1N1) virus that is currently called "Swine Flu" is not passed on by pork - it is a human virus just like the regular flu.  The WHO has officially changed the misleading name to Influenza A(H1N1).  You cannot get the virus by eating pork products.  It is passed human to human.  Some countries are incomprehensibly slaughtering all their pigs, and banning pork imports despite this.   We have no idea why.   See the WHO statement.

RECENT NEWS ARTICLES

5/31/09 - Deep discounts are luring tourists back to Mexico
5/29/09 - Fearless travelers can cash in on Mexico's post-flu deals
5/29/09 - Cuba drops travel restrictions to Mexico
5/22/09 - With a clean bill of health, Mexico goes on sale
5/22/09 - On my Mexico beach vacation, swine flu was a no-show
5/21/09 - Mexico City ends swine flu alert, no new cases in a week
5/19/09 - Canada drops travel warning to Mexico - gives ok for travel
5/19/09 - UK tour operators Thompson, Thomas Cook, etc return to Mexico
5/19/09 - Swine flu panic - is it overkill?
5/19/09 - Hawaii swine flu scaring off tourists
5/19/09 - USA tops Mexico in swine flu cases
5/19/09 - H1N1 flu seems to be waning
5/19/09 - Lots of deals in Mexico after travel warning is cancelled
5/19/09 - As Mexico travel ban is eased, the country's best resorts are on sale
5/18/09 - Swine flu: tourists to return to Mexico
5/18/09 - Sweden, Denmark give the all-clear for travel to Mexico
5/18/09 - Swine flu is virtually everywhere in the USA now, CDC says
5/17/09 - Canada considering dropping travel warning to Mexico
5/17/09 - Mexico very close to containing flu spread - no risk for tourists
5/17/09 - Swine flu fears ease, making travel to Mexico inviting
5/16/09 - Over 100,000 Americans may have swine flu
5/16/09 - As flu panic subsides, it's time to ask questions
5/16/09 - Media needs a flu tutorial
5/16/09 - Carnival to resume stops at Mexican resorts
5/16/09 - Swine flu fears see tourists steer clear of Mexico's coastal jewel
5/16/09 - Ecuador lifts restrictions on charter flights to and from Mexico
5/16/09 - Singapore lifts quarantines against Travelers from Mexico
5/15/09 - Swine flu fears ease, making travel to Mexico inviting
5/15/09 - CDC lifts warning on Mexico travel
5/15/09 - Mexico travel restrictions lifted after fall in new swine flu cases
5/15/09 - UK FCO gives OK for travel to Mexico, drops travel warning
5/14/09 - Argentina drops ban on Mexico flights
5/14/09 - Flu fears fading
5/14/09 - Mexico flu slowing, death toll unlikely to reach 100
5/14/09 - Carnival chief urges CDC to lift travel advisory
5/14/09 - ASUR sees swine flu slump in Cancun as less severe than Wilma
5/13/09 - Switzerland drops travel advisory for Mexico - says flu is mild
5/13/09 - Puerto Vallarta's bars allowed to open early because of no swine flu cases
5/12/09 - Dreams: Flu-Free Guarantee!  If you get flu, we'll give you 3 free vacations!
5/12/09 - No swine flu in Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos, Mazatlan, Cozumel or Zihuatenejo
5/12/09 - Mexico tells tourists: don't fear the flu
5/12/09 - Is Mexico dangerous?  A journalist from New York's point of view
5/12/09 - Swine flu alarm shocks Mexicans
5/11/09 - Harvard University to keep trips to Mexico
5/11/09 - PAHO: It is safe to travel in Mexico
5/11/09 - To hear the media, swine flu was far from routine
5/11/09 - Travelers visiting Mexico despite flu
5/11/09 - Mexican Health Secretary Cordova praised for flu response
5/10/09 - Don't let fear keep you at home
5/10/09 - Declining Mexico tourism means great travel discounts
5/10/09 - Flu, what flu?  Great travel deals to Mexico await
5/10/09 - Flu outbreak in Mexico affected by poor waiting too long for treatment
5/08/09 - Jalisco's governor closes bars & clubs again
5/08/09 - More Swine Flu Cases in the USA than in Mexico
5/08/09 - Swine flu spreads in U.S., world, winds down in Mexico
5/07/09 - First cases of swine flu in Jalisco, still none in Puerto Vallarta
5/07/09 - Apple Vacations fights back with sale on Mexico packages
5/07/09 - Spirit Airlines announces $8.00 airfares to Mexico
5/07/09 - Flu overhyped?  Some say officials cried "swine"
5/07/09 - CDC: Most U.S. cases of swine flu have no link to Mexico
5/06/09 - H1N1 flu under control
5/06/09 - Travel continues despite swine flu concerns
5/06/09 - Mexican leadership on swine flu saved thousands
5/06/09 - WHO praises Mexico's response to swine flu
5/05/09 - Mexico plans for return to normalcy
5/05/09 - Swine flu outbreak costs Mexico $2.2 Billion
5/05/09 - Poverty, tendency to self-medicate help drive up flu deaths in Mexico
5/05/09 - Swine flu pales compared to other viruses: Experts
5/05/09 - Mexico gets some bustle back after flu shutdown
5/05/09 - Health officials begin to ease public alerts about swine flu
5/04/09 - Still no swine flu in Puerto Vallarta or Jalisco
5/04/09 - Swine flu no worse than regular flu, says Napolitano
5/04/09 - Swine flu danger possibly overrated
5/04/09 - Phillipines lifts agri-ban on Mexican Pork
5/04/09 - Mexico lowers swine flu alert level
5/04/09 - Mexico plans to lift swine flu shutdown
5/04/09 - Mexico's economy set for more damage as flu wanes
5/04/09 - Mexico breathes easier in flu epidemic
5/03/09 - Mexico says the worst is over, might be no worse than regular flu
5/03/09 - Swine flu wanes in Mexico, rises other places
5/03/09 - Mexico flu epidemic in it's phase of decline
5/03/09 - Hysteria over swine flu is the real danger, some say
5/02/09 - Mexican officals say flu's ability to spread may be low
5/02/09 - Scope of swine flu in Mexico might be smaller than feared
5/02/09 - Hope aired as swine flu virus seen as less lethal
5/01/09 - CDC: 56,000 people dead from regular flu in 2006
5/01/09 - H1N1 (swine flu) risk in Puerto Vallarta: Hype vs. Reality
5/01/09 - Swine flu virus starting to look less threatening
5/01/09 - Mexico Sees Swine Flu Outbreak Easing
5/01/09 - Swine Flu May Have Originated in California
5/01/09 - Mexican flu outbreak may be mild
5/01/09 - WHO: No rationale for travel restrictions
5/01/09 - Mexico encouraged by fall in new flu cases
5/01/09 - Swine flu a fairly mild strain, doctors say
5/01/09 - Hyping swine flu may not be healthy
4/30/09 - Number of new swine flu cases stabilizing in Mexico
4/29/09 - Canada's Mexico travel advisory earns criticism
4/28/09 - Regular flu has killed thousands since January

TRAVEL PROBLEMS

 

AIRLINES:  All U.S. airlines are still flying into Puerto Vallarta, though due to the drop in demand the routes are fewer.  If your airline drops your route, just switch airlines.  Canadians can still fly down using U.S. airlines like Delta, Northwest, Alaska, and American Airlines, and Air Canada has announced its return to Puerto Vallarta.

 

CRUISE SHIPS:  Carnival Cruise Lines and Royal Caribbean have announced that they are resuming their regularly scheduled ports of call in all Mexican ports.  All cruise ships previously scheduled to port in Puerto Vallarta have diverted to the USA and Canada until June.  An interesting decision since there have been only 3 cases of swine flu in all of the Mexican Riviera port towns combined, but thousands of swine flu cases all up and down the west coast of the USA and Canada.  Must have been too many people cancelling their trips in the heart of the hysteria, so they had to do it for financial reasons, because it clearly isn't for health reasons.  See Current USA Cases and Current British Columbia Cases.
 

HOTELS:  All hotels in Puerto Vallarta are open for business as usual.
 

RESTAURANTS & BARS:  All restaurants, night clubs and bars are open for business as usual.
 

TOURS:  All tours are running as normal.  Some are having great sales too - such as LaVista Canopy offering 2x1 canopy tours or the pirate ship at 30% off!
 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *
 

These are the facts as they stand right now regarding Swine Flu.  That said, make sure to monitor sites like the WHO and their swine flu map, as well as those from your travel agency and the CDC (though we believe the WHO is less prone to politics and therefore more reliable).  Please don't depend on the ratings-based cable news channels for your information, it is the least reliable source of verifiable information.  You can also find current reports from locals and current visitors on the TripAdvisor Forums for Puerto Vallarta.  See also our updates on Swine Flu in Cancun.

Have new information to report, photos to submit, or even questions?  Contact Us.
 


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