Tom Schweich from Washington University in St. Louis warns that Mexico may not be that safe. "Once you get out of the main cities, and once you get into smaller towns and poorer areas, there are more gangs, there are more drugs, and there's more violence. And that's particularly true if you're going to the northern part of the country."
It's precisely the drug-gang violence in the northern part of the country, especially along the U.S. - Mexico border, that prompted the state department to issue this alert last week.
In it, the government warns travelers that Mexican and Foreign bystanders have been injured or killed in violent attacks in cities across the country demonstrating the heightened risk of violence in public places.
"Although there's a lot of bad things in the news right now about drug cartels, about kidnappings and all those things, i think you just have to take care of yourself while you're traveling," says Ana Maria Galvez, college student.
More than 100,000 high school and college students travel to Mexico for spring break every year, lured by the warm sun, pretty beaches and lower drinking age.
Officials from campuses around the country are doing what they can to emphasize safety.
The University of Illinois is running an ad in the student newspaper. While the University of Arizona has gone so far to encourage its students to stay out of Mexico altogether.
"Know where you're going. Know your surroundings. Don't put yourself in a situation that you might regret. It's that sort of thing. They're common-sense practices," says Tom Bauer, Northern Arizona University.
Considering the circumstances, even Mexican authorities are pushing common sense as well.
"I think it's safe to go. Again, bad things happen everywhere. And the same holds true for Mexico," says Mexican Embassy's Spokeperson, Ricardo Alday.