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Old 12-27-2012, 09:22 PM   #1
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Travel into Mexico?

We're torn: living in Austin, TX means living 7 hours away from the Mexican border.
We're currently traveling in Arizona and thinking about driving to Baia de California a few hours south of Ajo.

It would be great to be able to take the Airstream into Mexico to visit Copper Canyon, Merida, Mexico City, Cancun, etc.

The big question of course is the safety.
Does anyone here travel into Mexico, and is it (relatively) safe once you pass the border area?
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Old 12-27-2012, 10:00 PM   #2
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My parents who are in their 80's go every year for about 3 months with their trailer.
They have not had any trouble at all. I would not linger near the border.
They generally go fairly far into Mexico.
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Old 12-27-2012, 10:14 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jornvango View Post
We're torn: living in Austin, TX means living 7 hours away from the Mexican border.
We're currently traveling in Arizona and thinking about driving to Baia de California a few hours south of Ajo.

It would be great to be able to take the Airstream into Mexico to visit Copper Canyon, Merida, Mexico City, Cancun, etc.

The big question of course is the safety.
Does anyone here travel into Mexico, and is it (relatively) safe once you pass the border area?
No its not very safe. They are taking trucks away form those living in the States going to visit all the time. The Marine that was chained to his bed in Matamoris for three months last week left his RV in Mexico. If the bandits or drug people don't rob you the Policia probably will.

There are communities of Americans scattered in a few places there but they have been living there for years and blend in. I have not taken a car into Mexico for 20 years always walk in or take a taxi.

The best way to see Copper Canyon is to ride the train in a escorted group.

I flew a private airplane into the interior in the early 70's and was a nervious wreck before I got out of Mexico. I had to pay people at the airport to guard the aircraft.

The owner of Sweetwater Metal was kidnaped on a hunting trip and had to pay a ransom to get out, and it is believed that they are still paying for their safety even being back in Texas. They originally owned Muller Metal Roofing and it was sold many years ago.

I have a friend who is fluent in Spanish that has been to Mexico humdreds of time and he will not go back into Mexico anymore he was a vet. and rancher. They used to cross at ranch crossings but it is illegal to cross the river anymore. A few years ago you could cross for a day trip safely in the Big Bend area but that crossing is now closed.

About the only safe areas is to fly to a resort and stay there without sight seeing. There was a incident last year with a cruise ship day Mian jeep tour.
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Old 12-28-2012, 04:55 AM   #4
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Doug won't go to Mexico, no way, no how, never, under any circumstances. He firmly believes it is unsafe and no reason to risk it. We're about to add a police detective to our family, and he says the same thing.

I, however, tend to be the fool who rushes in----fortunately, married to the voice of reason, calm and caution to a fault. I would love to go to Mexico.

When we were in Texas a couple of years ago, other RV'ers in campgrounds close to the border went in on a regular basis to shop, eat and get medications. They had places they felt were safe and experienced no problems. Doug still wouldn't go, I still wanted to. We didn't go.

We talk to people around the country who travel into Mexico, without problems. Others who, like Doug, would never go.

Might get yourself down into Brownsville and some of those places where winter Texans congregate, spend some time there talking to frequent fliers and get a better feel for things.

Mexico is one of those places where, when things go bad, they go very, very bad. All you need is once.

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Old 12-28-2012, 06:27 AM   #5
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There are several companies that lead escorted caravans down to the interior and Baja. Check out MexicoRVforums.com, and I know there are a few streamers that have done this as well. Safety in numbers. Have not been down to Baja in many years but would probably look into the caravan option if were going today.
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Old 12-28-2012, 08:26 AM   #6
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Yes it is safe in most areas of Mexico. We live in San Carlos Sonora for 9 months of the year. We boat in the Sea of Cortez and frequently anchor overnight in remote locations and have visited all but 2 Mexican states in various rv's. The tall tales about mordida hungry cops extorting every American and bloodthurster narcos looking for gringos to kill are ignorant blather. We have never been threatened by violence and have been stopped by the police only when we have violated a traffic law. Yes there is narco activity, but the last thing a narco wants to do is murder an innocent gringo. It is very bad for business because it mobilizes law enforcement.
With that being said, I have some advice.
1. Start small. Walk across the border, have lunch, do a little shopping. Walk back across the border before dark. If you are scared or uncomfortable, a trip to the Copper Canyon in your own r.v. will not be much fun.
2. Do a short trip first to one of the easier destinations. San Carlos is easy because it is close to the border, has a good rv park, has a good road and is the home of many Americans and Canadians. Rocky Point is even easier.
3. Get a book on rv travel in Mexico and buddy up with someone for your first trip. Taking a caravan is a good suggestion for one of the more ambitious trips such as the Copper Canyon.
4. Use common sense. Don't drive at night. Avoid the areas where violence is more prevelent. They are named in State Department travel advisorys.
There are thousands of Americans and Canadians who travel safely in Mexico in their boats and rv's every year. If you are bored with your usual destinations, like Mexican culture and have a little spirit of adventure come on down. You will enjoy the trip.
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Old 12-28-2012, 08:56 AM   #7
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I guess the mainstream media has scared me. I don't plan on wondering down south of the border. I feel there is way to much to see in the good old USA.

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Old 12-28-2012, 09:03 AM   #8
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A friend of mine drove there for the past 10 years. 2 years ago he and his wife got car jacked, he was shot, and their car and all their belongings were taken. This happened at a check point. When the guards saw the bandits coming they scattered. Make your own decisions, I will not go there. The shrapnel season in Syria might be safer.
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Old 12-28-2012, 09:05 AM   #9
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Everything is safe until something happens. 47,000 deaths last year alone related to drug wars including Americans tells me something has happened
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Old 12-28-2012, 09:33 AM   #10
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Its a no brainer, look what the US gov did to get back the marine, nothing......
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Old 12-28-2012, 10:33 AM   #11
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We are just a few miles from the border, in Ajo. A lot of snowbirds will stay here before going into Mexico. In all the years we've stayed, I've NEVER heard a horror story, though not driving at night is certainly a no-brainer!
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Old 12-28-2012, 11:45 AM   #12
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Its a no brainer, look what the US gov did to get back the marine, nothing......
This guy was no longer in the Marines, and the US gov did intervene to get him out. Mexico is "Off-limits" to active military.

But he was lucky, although his rifle and RV are still in Mexico.

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Old 12-28-2012, 01:13 PM   #13
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our 14th year

We have been coming to Mexico for fourteen years. We stay for 6 mt. We have a boat here that we use almost every day. Weather is great. There are more Mexican leaving the US and Canada than going, Some blame the gringo for their Job lost. WE WERE GOING TO STAY FROM NOV. -- MAY BUT HAVE CHANGED OUR MINES AND ARE LEAVING JAN 28 AND NOT COMING BACK. By the way it is not cheep in Mexico.
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Old 12-28-2012, 01:26 PM   #14
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I went to Mexico starting in the late 1980's and the last time in 2001. I have no plans to go back, since I started feeling uncomfortable.
The last two trips I noticed most of the resort areas had heavily armed guards. If they were not needed, surely the business would not employ them. I also notice increased police and military presence along the highways, also heavily armed with things like Jeep mounted machine guns and spike chains to stop vehicles. I don't feel safe where things like this are necessary. Granted there are many places where I do not feel safe here in the USA. My wife and I have agreed to limit RV travels to USA and Canada. (Australia and New Zealand are still on our bucket list)
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