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Thoughts on Mexico

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Good afternoon.

In a couple of months, I will be traveling to San Diego from Wisconsin and was thinking about driving to Yuma, AZ then across the border to San Luis Rio Colorado, SON. From there, I would head west on MEX-2 and MEX-2D until Tijuana, where I would cross the border again at I-5.

I am well aware of the immense risk of traveling through Mexico (especially along the border) and I was wondering for anyone that has traveled in/through Mexico which steps I could take to mitigate the risks. I will be traveling alone (I don't really have friends that like to travel) and in a 2015 Ford Escape.

Any advice or information would be helpful, even if it's something as simple as "don't go." I am still not 100% sure I'll drive through Mexico yet.

I can't really help with any details, but I'm about 99.9% certain you will need a Mexican auto insurance policy.

^^ AIUI. the Mexican auto insurance policy is mandatory (short-term policies can be purchased in the U.S., at stores near many border crossings, and possibly online). The Mexican legal system requires immediate settlement of any claims should you get into an accident, and possible police detention until any claims are resolved. Mexican insurance companies are set up to deal with that, but U.S. insurance companies aren't, which is one reason they don't provide coverage in Mexico (unlike Canada, where your U.S. insurance basically works, but you should check with your company before crossing the border). The AARoads forum, who has several members who visit Mexico much more often than I do, can supply more details, including the rules that apply in Mexico (which probably wouldn't apply to you) if you drive outside the border area into the interior.

It helps that you drive an older car, which presumably has been paid off, so no potential hassles from your lender.

This decade-old trip report covers my 2013 trip from Tijuana to Yuma, similar to what you have in mind except done west to east.


--- Quote from: oscar on August 29, 2022, 04:33:04 am ---This decade-old trip report covers my 2013 trip from Tijuana to Yuma, similar to what you have in mind except done west to east.

--- End quote ---

Reading this really did help, thank you.

I do know about the auto insurance. I have done quite a bit of research regarding traveling to Mexico already. The only thing I am nervous about is the drive between San Luis Rio Colorado and the 2D toll road just east of Mexicali. The travel risk level is 3 for Baja California, specifically for the valley Mexicali is located in, due to crime and kidnapping and the cartel. It is to my knowledge that the border region of Mexico is nearly a warzone with everything going on. I was even thinking about stuffing a bunch of items into the passenger seat so it does not look like I am traveling alone. I also plan on filling up on gas and eating in San Luis, AZ that way I don't have to stop once through all of Mexico (apart from the border crossings which I am well aware I will be stopped at for hours).

Am I overreacting? When I look at the stretch of MEX-2 on Google Maps, it does not look too bad. I just think that a young Caucasian male driving a 2015 Ford Escape alone with a Wisconsin license plate through the border region of Mexico would be a little sketchy.

Then again, I am all for an adventure, even if there's risk involved.


If it was me, being married with kid at home, I wouldn't go.  Too risky.  That said, your plan to get fuel and not stop in Mexico does help mitigate the risk some.  But any American car stopped driving through that area will have a target on it.  Maybe run the traffic lights?


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