Is Tijuana Tap Water Safe to Drink?

Water is one of the first concerns we search for when traveling to any destination. It’s essential for us, so we’d always like to find an excellent source of water that’s safe for drinking. While some areas have tap water safe for drinking, you may wonder if it’s the same for Tijuana.

Tap water in Tijuana isn’t safe for drinking. As such, you should avoid drinking it and opt for bottled water. Even locals in the city don’t drink tap water so you won’t find any establishments serving tap water. So if you’re visiting the city, always have bottled water.

Of course, tap water is used for simple cleaning and bathing. However, it’s best to avoid tap water in food-related uses for safety purposes. Whether you’re cooking, eating, or drinking, it’s best to use purified, filtered, or bottled water.

In this article, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about tap water in Tijuana and other health and safety-related concerns regarding this type of water. This way, you’ll know how to get around and stay safe by avoiding water problems.

Without further ado, let’s get into it!

Is Tijuana Tap Water Safe to Drink

Can You Drink the Tap Water in Tijuana?

We’re used to drinking water straight from the tap at home, but in other countries, drinking water straight out of the tap may not be as safe. 

Tap water regulations and infrastructure in many countries around the world differ significantly from those found in the United States, which has a better infrastructure for water purification.

Generally speaking, Mexican tap water, including Tijuana, is unsafe to drink. Even though the water from the taps is purified to a certain extent, you should refrain from consuming it. 

Mexico’s tap water distribution network does not meet the expected standards for sanitation. 

As a result, water will likely be contaminated before reaching the taps. It is even familiar for locals to drink bottled or filtered water instead of tap water.

What Happens if You Drink the Tap Water in Tijuana?

There’s no immediate danger in drinking Mexican tap water, but you’re more likely to get sick. As someone who’s only visiting the city, the last thing you’ll want is to get sick because of consuming unsafe drinking water.

Most travelers who experience an upset stomach drink tap water, which is why you should avoid such. While some people have systems that can tolerate tap water, others may have sensitive bodies easily affected by a sudden change in drinking water properties.

Tap water in Tijuana has a high chance of containing bacteria, viruses, and parasites. So with just one glass, you can develop all kinds of illnesses.

It is most common to get traveler’s diarrhea when drinking unpurified tap water. However, other illnesses may occur depending on the source of tap water you get from the city.

It is best to drink only bottled water to ensure your safety. Or, if you want to avoid buying bottled water every time, you can use tools like these Water Filter Bottles. These bottles are reusable; you can use them to filter the water you’re drinking.

Everyday Use of Tap Water in Tijuana

Since Tap Water in Tijuana isn’t ideal for drinking, you can use such for other purposes. Here are some of them:

Brushing Your Teeth

Although you can’t consume tap water in Tijuana, you can use it to brush your teeth and gargle with it. Tap water is doubtful to make you sick if you brush your teeth with it. However, avoiding swallowing while brushing is still a good idea.

Cooking (Still Risky)

Even though tap water is safe to consume after it has been boiled, it is still not recommended for cooking. Locals also tend to use purified or bottled water when cooking. You should also use bottled water when making coffee or tea, even if it’s boiled.


Water from the taps or showers in Tijuana is perfectly safe to drink as long as you don’t swallow it. Although you won’t be drinking tap water, you can still use it to clean most things, including yourself. For example, locals wash fruits and vegetables with tap water and an iodine-based disinfectant to keep them safe to eat.

Should You Refrain from Drinking Water While in Tijuana?

While you shouldn’t drink the water in Tijuana, you should only avoid water partially. Dehydration and sunstroke are far more likely to make you sick than drinking most of the country’s water.

Every establishment has safe drinking water, and nearly everything you drink and eat is made with purified water. 

Some locations have filtration systems, so even the ice will be safe. For this reason, you don’t have to worry about searching for a safe source for your water consumption. 

Still, when eating or drinking in Tijuana, you should exercise caution since not all establishments have the same hygiene standards.

How To Get Safe Drinking Water in Tijuana?

Water is effortless to find in Tijuana, so you don’t have to worry about dirty water. In addition, the water comes in large quantities, is cheap, and can get it anywhere.

For instance, most stores sell one-gallon drums for around five dollars or a hundred pesos, and you usually get a discount if you bring your empty drum back.  

You can even deliver safe drinking water if you pay a little extra. In essence, you’ll find some establishments anywhere selling safe drinking water. 

However, if you’re in a remote location, opting for sealed water bottles to ensure your safety is best.

If you’re near the border crossings, you’ll find plenty of establishments around you selling bottled water. As such, you don’t have to worry about running out of water. If you want to know more about the crossing, read Can You Walk Across The Border to Tijuana?


If you’re wondering if the tap water in Tijuana is safe for drinking, it’s not. Both locals and tourists avoid drinking tap water in the city, so you should do the same. Unfortunately, the city has no outstanding methods of water filtration system, which means the tap water’s safety is questionable.

Driyou’repurified or bottled water is best if you’re visiting the city. It’s also best to buy at storIt’so ensure the water is safe for consumption. Although tap water is usable for other purposes, you should avoid such consumption to avoid health problems.
If you want to know other safety concerns aside from tap water consumption, read Is Tijuana Dangerous?

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