What to Expect in Cancun

After traveling to Cancun with no idea what I was getting myself into, and spending five weeks there, I have decided to compile a list. This list will help the next traveler with their eyes set on Cancun to know what to expect a little better than I did. Hopefully it will also cause some laughs with the people who have already been to Cancun and know what I am talking about.

  1. The Smells of Cancun

Warning, you will not smell fresh air while in Cancun.  Half of the city smells like tequila and bad decisions, and that’s the good half. The other half is indescribable sewage and pollution.

My favorite was the time I was riding the bus and there was an American family onboard in front of me. Their daughter, probably about 6 or 7, was sitting in front of me holding her nose making gagging noises the entire bus ride. Her brother was across the aisle and they kept yelling back and forth, “Do you smell that?” Yes kids, we all smell that, it is the smell of Cancun.

  1. The Cancun Cough

I thought my boss was crazy when she first told me I had the Cancun Cough, but that shit is real. Of the 30+ people I was working with, we all had it at least once, some of our coughs lasted the entirety of the trip. It got to the point where students would come complaining about their coughs and I would diagnose them with the Cancun Cough and send them on their way.

I guess it’s because of the stale air conditioned air that you are constantly in while you’re there. But I definitely think the air pollution is another factor. (See Smells of Cancun above.)

  1. Mexican Road Rage

These people make Massholes look like professional drivers. Never in a million years would I rent a car in Cancun and try to drive alongside these people. And it’s not even the cars you need to watch out for, it’s the buses.

I swear the bus drivers don’t even believe in stopping. They pretty much come to a rolling stop while passengers hop on and off. There were two times during my trip where a bus hit another car or bus. Honestly, I rode the bus back and forth to work almost every day so I guess this percentage is not really that bad.

  1. The Children of Cancun

These children grow up hustling the crowds outside the club. I mean that literally, there are moms walking around selling homemade crafts with their infant strapped to their chest. As soon as these kids can walk they are given a handful of homemade bracelets to sell.

And it actually works because who could say no to those adorable faces? You feel bad that these children are out trying to make money at 3 a.m. and then they look at you with those eyes and then all of a sudden you are out 5 dollars on a bracelet worth 50 cents. Trust me, I worked until 4 a.m. at the clubs and they were still out working when I was off to bed. (And yes, I have two bracelets.)

  1. Coco Bongo

“Tickets to Coco Bongo?” I don’t know what it is about Coco Bongo but everyone wants you to go there. Good luck walking through the club zone without at least five people trying to sell you tickets to this club. I say club zone, but even some of the hotels have people trying to sell tickets to Coco Bongo right in the lobby.

This was one of the two clubs on the strip that I did not go to so I can’t even tell you if it is worth it. It claims to rival Vegas night life but who knows?

  1. But most importantly, Cancun is actually a really good time

Seriously, go to Coco Bongo, buy a bracelet from a child, take the bus, and enjoy the smells of Cancun. I had the time of my life in Cancun and all of these minor things, and so much more, adds up to great memories that you will never forget.


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