Author Topic: Thoughts on Mexico  (Read 263 times)

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Offline Ib3kii

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Thoughts on Mexico
« on: August 28, 2022, 03:07:57 pm »
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.
-The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step... on the gas.

Offline ntallyn

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Re: Thoughts on Mexico
« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2022, 03:13:51 pm »
I can't really help with any details, but I'm about 99.9% certain you will need a Mexican auto insurance policy.

Offline oscar

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Re: Thoughts on Mexico
« Reply #2 on: August 29, 2022, 04:33:04 am »
^^ 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.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2022, 11:34:25 am by oscar »

Offline Ib3kii

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Re: Thoughts on Mexico
« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2022, 04:52:19 pm »
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.

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.
-The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step... on the gas.

Offline kjslaughter

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Re: Thoughts on Mexico
« Reply #4 on: September 01, 2022, 09:03:54 am »
https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/traveladvisories/mexico-travel-advisory.html

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?

Offline mapcat

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Re: Thoughts on Mexico
« Reply #5 on: September 01, 2022, 04:31:05 pm »
Sorry that so much of the response has been negative. But it may be warranted; I don't know. My own ventures into northern Mexico have been very short, and not TM-related, but the two most extensive ones benefited from traveling with someone else who knew the area: in one case, a friend of a friend (Mexican citizen), and in another, someone I met through work (American who crossed the border frequently). I met both of these people for the first time when they picked me up at the border and stayed with them for the entire day spent in Mexico. Since you are concerned about crime and violence--and obviously, so is the State Dept, so that's not entirely misplaced--maybe you should ask around to see if people you know have a trusted friend in the area who could help. Traveling in a car with Mexican tags would certainly make you stand out less.

The adventure could be amazing and educational, but won't be if you're so concerned for your safety that you can't relax and enjoy the experience.
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