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New Time Zone for Mexico’s Bahía de Banderas


Published 22-Apr-2010

Puerto Vallarta now shares the same time zone as Bahía de Banderas.

Beautiful sunset in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
The Church of Guadalupe's bell tower in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
The Church of Guadalupe's bell tower in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, is pictured above. Puerto Vallarta now shares the same time zone as Bahía de Banderas.

The Mexican municipality of Bahía de Banderas recently synchronized its clocks to be on the same time as the Puerto Vallarta municipality. Also known as the Bay of Banderas or the Bay of Flags, Bahía de Banderas has shifted from being in the Mountain Time Zone to the Central Time Zone.

New Time for Bahía de Banderas

Like many other parts of Mexico that observe the Central Time Zone, including the state of Jalisco, which includes the Puerto Vallarta municipality, the Bahía de Banderas municipality is currently on Central Daylight Time (CDT), which is five hours behind Coordinated Universal Time (UTC), or UTC–5, during daylight saving time (DST).

The time zone change was made when Mexico’s clocks sprang one forward for DST on Sunday, April 4, 2010. Both municipalities will be move one hour back to Central Standard Time (CST), or UTC–6, when DST in Mexico ends on the last Sunday of October, which is Sunday, October 31, in 2010.

Reasons for Change

Bahía de Banderas (Bay of Flags) is both a bay and a municipality in the Mexican state of Nayarit. The Puerto Vallarta municipality includes the city of Puerto Vallarta, a Mexican city on the bay. The Puerto Vallarta municipality falls within the state of Jalisco. So whilst both municipalities are geographically close, they are in different states and were in different time zones.

The time zone change came in light of both municipalities’ commitments to integrate the region’s development. Being geographically close, the Bahía de Banderas municipality and the Puerto Vallarta municipality share mutual business and community links.

Mexico’s Senate and Congress requested the change, hoping to see continued growth for tourism and other related activities that would sustain economic growth and development for the region. Nayarit’s Governor Ney González Sánchez advocated the time zone change at a tourism-related event recently.

Previous Time Zone Differences

Being in the state of Jalisco, the Puerto Vallarta municipality observes the Central Time Zone, which means that it is on Central Standard Time (CST), or UTC–6, during the non-daylight saving period and springs forward to Central Daylight Time (CDT), or UTC–5, during DST.

However, Bahía de Banderas, being in the state of Nayarit, was in the Mountain Time Zone prior to the recent clock changes, which meant that it was one hour behind Puerto Vallarta all year round.  It was on Mountain Standard Time (MST), or UTC–7, and sprang forward to Mountain Daylight Time (MDT), or UTC–6, during daylight saving time. Bahía de Banderas and Puerto Vallarta no longer have a time zone difference.

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