Disclosure: If you are in the high-risk category of COVID-19, I do encourage you to follow the protocols set by the CDC. Traveling right now is always a risk, and is unfortunately not for everyone. Please look at your lifestyle and health before deciding to travel for leisure.
This past year has been rough. With the pandemic and quarantining, it gets to a point of when you have to ask yourself, “am I ever going to be able to travel again?” That’s the question that my husband and I thought about and decided to answer with “yes”.
We were planning to go to Thailand for our honeymoon, but decided that type of international travel should wait until after the pandemic. So we decided to put that honeymoon fund in savings and go somewhere closer that we could still have a fun while staying safe. After some research, we decided to stay at an all-inclusive resort in Los Cabos, Mexico, and we were very impressed with what we saw.
This resort was immaculate. They had COVID-19 procedures down to a science that everyone adhered to. This wasn’t the case for just the resort either. All of Los Cabos followed these protocols, and my husband and I couldn’t have felt safer. I’ll walk you through a play-by-play of our stay so that you can decide if this is a trip for you.
Disclosure: There may be affiliate links throughout this article.
Arriving to Los Cabos. This is the big thing for everyone right now, being in an enclosed space with strangers for hours at a time. We flew from DFW to Phoenix, AZ then caught a connecting flight to Cabos with Southwest Airlines. The flight from DFW to Phoenix was a completely full flight, with no open middle seats. We had a lady sit next to us and none of us removed our masks for the entire 3-hour flight (This is when I encourage you to make sure this risk is okay, because there is a chance that you could contract COVID from full flights. Luckily, this was not the case for us).
The flight from Phoenix to Cabos was a completely different story. Our flight was at 60% capacity and there was plenty of space to social distance. We got a whole row to ourselves and there was no one in front or behind us. With the layover in Phoenix, it took about 6 hours for us to arrive in Los Cabos, Mexico.
Returning to DFW. The flight back was tricky, we came back the day that the new protocol for U.S. citizens went into affect. This protocol requires all U.S. citizens traveling internationally to present a negative COVID-19 test, no more than 72 hours prior, BEFORE checking-in to their flight back to the U.S. I had been looking at protocols every day up to our trip, so we were prepared for this. We emailed our resort prior to leaving and they assured us that they would offer a complimentary Antigen COVID Test during the allocated time before we leave.
However, a lot of people did not do their research and our flight from Cabos to Houston was at 20% capacity! Good for us, but sucks for them. They had a station set-up at the airport to do tests for those who did not get them prior, but it would take up to 10 hours before they would get their results (hello one more day in Mexico).
So what happens if you test positive?! Well I can only speak for our resort, but they actually would house those guests who tested positive free of charge until they are negative again. They had a block of rooms designated for the quarantined so that they are away from other guests. I did hear that a lot of resorts were doing this, so make sure you check prior to departure.
- Research protocols everyday starting a week before your scheduled trip.
- Email your resort/hotel prior to leaving to ensure they are accommodating to your travel requirements (On-Site COVID testing, positive test protocols, pricing if any).
- Make sure you are in good health prior to boarding any flight.
- Have a plan just in case you do test positive on your trip (Do you have enough PTO? will your pets/kids be taken care of? Is staying longer in your budget? etc.).
Since this was a mini-moon for us we decided to splurge and stay at an all-inclusive resort, the Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos. We booked personal transportation to and from the airport, and upon arrival to the gated resort, the driver had to give them our information before letting us in.
As we walked up the stairs, we had to get our temperatures checked and had to disinfect our shoes by stepping into this substance and cleaning them off. They also took our luggage and disinfected it before bringing it to our room.
We stayed in their “Swim Up Master King” room and it was worth it. We walked outside of our back patio and there was our own little part of the pool to enjoy (also great for social distancing).
This is the first thing we saw when we got to the door of our room, they literally put a safety seal on it so that we would know the room was disinfected and no one has entered since. Each complimentary set of items had their own wrapping and disinfected sticker on it. From the toilet paper remaining in their coverings, to the TV remote being packaged up….they disinfected EVERYTHING. They also did this every day. Whenever we returned to our room, everything was new and wrapped up with a new sticker.
The resort had a variety of restaurants to go to but you had to make reservations prior due to limited capacity. I wished I could tell you the food was out of this world, but it was typical all-inclusive resort food. The only thing that did stick out was the breakfast buffet because they had everything you could ever wanted, fresh pan dulce (Mexican sweet bread) and a variety of freshly squeezed juices (pineapple was my fave). The hibachi was pretty delicious as well, and they brought over a whole fish they caught that day to serve fresh sashimi! They also had 24-hour room service for late night nom sessions and a super cute coffee shop that had some amazing Macchiatos.
As far as alcohol goes, it was all included except bottles of wine. Our room had a mini fridge that was replenished daily with Tecate (Mexican beer brand), sodas, juices, travel sized liquor bottles, and some snacks.
The resort had a schedule of events for the whole family. We had three excursions booked so I only participated in the morning beach yoga. The weather made this yoga session amazing, but also, doing yoga on a beach is harder than it sounds. Even if you’re a yogi like me.
Speaking of excursions, we were able to book them at the resort. Ask if they have any deals running, they ended up having a buy two get one free deal and we definitely cashed it in. UTV Off-Roading, Luxury Whale Watching, and Dolphin Swimming made our trip so much more fun (keep an eye out for those blog posts coming soon).
All-in-all, this was the perfect mini-moon for us. We enjoyed ourselves tremendously and the staff at our resort went over and beyond to make us feel welcomed and safe. We left on a Tuesday, and they scheduled us to have a complimentary COVID Antigen Test the Sunday before so we could have results before getting on our flight back to the U.S. They even had someone serving us snacks and drinks while we waited for our turn, and printed out the results at the front desk when they came in!
We had fun, stayed safe, and made memories as new married couple.
Mexico Travel Tips
- If you are not going to exchange your currency upon arrival (USD/MXN) make sure you carry small bills (mostly $1 and $5 with a few $10). It is hard to get change for large bills, and you will most likely get a mix of MXN and USD.
- If someone is trying to talk to you on the street, just keep walking. I know this sounds rude, but it’s most likely a scam or a sales tactic that will keep you there for a half hour or longer until you say yes.
- When booking excursions, book through a legitimate and trusted source (we used Cabo Adventures). Ask your resort for suggestions.
- Be aware of your surroundings, wear your mask, be safe, and have fun.
Fun Cabo Suggestions
- Fish Grill – Plaza de Pescador – this place had a variety of ceviche and shrimp pozole I would die for.
- Cabo Adventures – UTV Off-Roading Adventure
- Cabo Adventures – Luxury Whale Watching
- Cabo Adventures – Dolphin Signature Swim
- Lovers Beach/Arch of Cabo