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Post by CanuckBob on Tue May 19, 2015 9:10 am

But nice to have if you do get stuck on the highways after dark. If the "wrong element" is in the area I don't think LED lights are going to make a difference either way. I regularly drive to/from the airport/Guadalajara after dark and wish I had these too.

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Post by Playaboy on Tue May 19, 2015 9:12 am

Portland to Laredo is approx 2500 miles

Portland to Chapala, via Nogales, approx 2500 miles

No brainer to me.

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Post by Jreboll on Tue May 19, 2015 9:43 am

For years we used to take the Los Indios-San Fernando-Cd.Victoria-SLP route to Michoacan. It was the shortest, no tolls and good roads. Went through it by bus last year. It is one of the loneliest roads I have been through.
Last year I was in Michoacan for Fiestas de San Cayetano. In prior years thousands of Michoacanos would drive down from California. Now the ones who do come down fly in. They say there are a lot of car jackings along that route. Laredo seems like a good option to me

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Post by Jreboll on Tue May 19, 2015 10:23 am

Pedro, it is the same route. Look at your maps. Michoacan is just around the lake from you

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Post by Woody on Tue May 19, 2015 11:39 am

tictoc wrote:   <SNIP>  On the other hand I do listen to people like playboy but that doesn't mean their advice is right for me and my situation...
 TicToc : As a fellow pacific NWestener, we wish for you a safe trip down filled with good memories. Regardless of the route you choose, I'm still curious about how you will deal with US plated van/trailer and a permanemete visa approval in hand. That sounds like it could be much more of a hassle than the extra miles to Laredo.
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Post by tictoc on Tue May 19, 2015 12:01 pm

Woody wrote:
tictoc wrote:   <SNIP>  On the other hand I do listen to people like playboy but that doesn't mean their advice is right for me and my situation...
 TicToc : As a fellow pacific NWestener, we wish for you a safe trip down filled with good memories. Regardless of the route you choose, I'm still curious about how you will deal with US plated van/trailer and a permanemete visa approval in hand. That sounds like it could be much more of a hassle than the extra miles to Laredo.
Thanks you. At this point based on all our options and advice we have received. We have decided to go the 30 day temp route (E.G. we will have 30 days to actually become Permanente (paperwork)). We may decide to keep it down (not drive it) and wait for the nationalization thing to get sorted out but for now, we plan on returning it NOB before 30 days and selling it.

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Post by Ms.Thang on Tue May 19, 2015 3:16 pm

I am feeling grateful all over myself that this is not me, but someone else, making this trip.

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Post by RVGRINGO on Tue May 19, 2015 3:42 pm

Tictoc: Returning the car and trailer before you get your Residente Permanente will be required, but will involve purchasing an “exit letter“ from INM for that short time outside of Mexico, while your Tramite is in effect and you have no immigration document for travel across the border and back. You will want to make it a quick trip, as you will have to be present in Mexico to go back to INM when they notify you for payment, signatures, pick-up, etc.
If you wait until the visa card is issued, it will probably be beyond the 30 days and the vehicles will have become illegal and subject to confiscation and possibly invalidating your insurance in the event of an accident with an illegal vehicle.
Remember; both the vehicle and the trailer must exit together and within the 30 day window or your deposit is forfeit; the least of your worries in this scenario.
Waiting for “nationalization to be sorted out“ is probably not a wise choice.

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Post by tictoc on Fri May 29, 2015 12:25 pm

I want to thank every one who has contributed positively to this thread. And yes, even if I don't agree with you for our personal reasons, I thank you as well. I look forward to meeting some of you soon.

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Post by phxfunguy on Fri May 29, 2015 2:58 pm

I wish you luck with your trip down. RVGringo's advice about consequences of doing this adventure incorrectly with INM above is spot on and I would follow it to the letter. There are too many horror stories about folks who did it "my way" and it did not work out well for them.
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Post by sambrit10 on Sat May 30, 2015 9:50 am

I know you say you have reasons of your own for your route but I'm putting in a vote for coming down through Nogales. We are currently in California after driving north from Ajijic on that route and stayed overnight in Mexico two nights (Mazatlan and Ciudad Obregon) and always felt perfectly safe, plus enjoyed exploring the Mexican towns in the evenings.

But I would never drive after dark here. Too many people / animals crossing the unlit roadways.

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Post by tictoc on Sat May 30, 2015 11:27 am

RV, That is our plan as of right now for the car.

As for the route, I would like to take the other one but unless our issues change (hopefully they won't) we really need to try and do Mexico in 1 day. I have done the math and it only adds 8.5 hours (1 day) to a 4 day trip (5 days). This is fairly insignificant IMO. The way I have it planed, I don't foresee any issues and if we do have issues, I have backup plans for most of them. I believe we can make it to Ajijc before dark without any problem. Worst case, we can get to the south side of Guadalajara and I have driven that in the dark already (not to say that there isn't risk still).

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Post by David on Sat May 30, 2015 12:24 pm

I drove down here from Portland and the Nogales route is the easiest and best. Leave Nogales and in a few miles (or kms) you're on Route 15 straight to Guadalajara. Easy peasy.
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Post by RVGRINGO on Sat May 30, 2015 2:15 pm

We drove it northbound, Chapala to Tucson, last October and stayed one night in Culiacan.

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Post by slainte39 on Sat May 30, 2015 4:04 pm

It would take some terrifically compelling reasons for me to come through Laredo as opposed to Nogales coming from the west coast.
Not only the distance, time, and the gasoline expense, but the cities you pass through on the west coast of Mexico are a lot more pleasant, and probably safer than Laredo, Monterey, and SLP.  Also, right now Texas is a mess because of flooding, tornados, and outlaw biker gangs.

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Post by Rosa Venus on Sat May 30, 2015 10:15 pm

When we moved down from Seattle in 2008, we drove through Nogales. At that time, some "expert" suggested we hug the US until arriving in Laredo, said we should come in that way. I was like, "But…..WHY would I do THAT?" Driving that route sounded entirely unappealing to me, for a lot of reasons.

Whatever. To each their own. Everybody gets to make their own choices for their own reasons. Good luck on the drive tictoc.
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Post by Playaboy on Sat May 30, 2015 10:35 pm

Tictoc, How much time have you allotted for getting your TIP and to clear INM and Aduana? Too much time at the border in the morning taking care of business can mean a lot of night time driving later on.

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Post by tictoc on Sat May 30, 2015 10:57 pm

Playaboy wrote:Tictoc, How much time have you allotted for getting your TIP and to clear INM and Aduana?  Too much time at the border in the morning taking care of business can mean a lot of night time driving later on.
Ah yes... and in there lies the rub... I have not allotted a set amount of time, other than hitting it early (already have the TIP). Depending on what time we make it to our first gas stop will dictate if we go choice one (drive) or two (stop for the night).

P.S. Playboy, check your P.M.'s. sent you one the other day...

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Post by shirley on Sun May 31, 2015 9:05 am

Another option, depending on your route...the last two trips we have driven to Saltillo in the afternoon, clearing customs easily, then stayed at the Holiday Inn in Saltillo for pretty much the same price as a motel stay in Laredo. The next day's drive down Hwy 54 nice and easy, arrive lakeside early enough for dinner. The hotel is on the main road going in to Saltillo, easy to find and drive to.
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Post by Playaboy on Tue Jun 30, 2015 10:42 am

tictoc wrote:RV, That is our plan as of right now for the car.

As for the route, I would like to take the other one but unless our issues change (hopefully they won't) we really need to try and do Mexico in 1 day. I have done the math and it only adds 8.5 hours (1 day) to a 4 day trip (5 days). This is fairly insignificant IMO. The way I have it planed, I don't foresee any issues and if we do have issues, I have backup plans for most of them. I believe we can make it to Ajijc before dark without any problem. Worst case, we can get to the south side of Guadalajara and I have driven that in the dark already (not to say that there isn't risk still).

Tictoc, It sounds like you had a rough go. How about a trip report?

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Post by helohfe on Tue Jun 30, 2015 1:51 pm

Me thinks tictoc is too tired and stressed to answer...You can lead some horses to water but............!

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Post by gringal on Tue Jun 30, 2015 4:08 pm

helohfe wrote:Me thinks tictoc is too tired and stressed to answer...You can lead some horses to water but............!

A few pages ago, some of our more aggressive posters were giving tictoc some grief over the route he was choosing as well as the business about not wanting to overnight in Mexico. Maybe he is just pizzed off. Rolling Eyes

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Post by viajero on Tue Jun 30, 2015 5:46 pm

gringal wrote:
helohfe wrote:Me thinks tictoc is too tired and stressed to answer...You can lead some horses to water but............!

A few pages ago, some of our more aggressive posters were giving tictoc some grief over the route he was choosing as well as the business about not wanting to overnight in Mexico.  Maybe he is just pizzed off. Rolling Eyes
He got good advice from people who have made the trip many times,he chose to ignore it..
He pulled an overweight trailer with bad tires,(three blowouts),it's a miracle he didn't have an accident .
The Joads made it from Oklahoma to California with fewer problems..
And he ended up "overnighting" twice in Mexico on his way down... to Mexico.. Rolling Eyes

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Post by Playaboy on Tue Jun 30, 2015 6:29 pm

I have had a couple of trips from hell during my travels around Mexico.  It happens.  

If he shares his experiences with us maybe others can avoid the same kinds of trip Tictoc had.  At least he knows more about the roads for his trip back North in a couple of weeks to sell the van.

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Post by tictoc on Thu Jul 02, 2015 1:34 pm

viajero wrote:
gringal wrote:
helohfe wrote:Me thinks tictoc is too tired and stressed to answer...You can lead some horses to water but............!

A few pages ago, some of our more aggressive posters were giving tictoc some grief over the route he was choosing as well as the business about not wanting to overnight in Mexico.  Maybe he is just pizzed off. Rolling Eyes
He got good advice from people who have made the trip many times,he chose to ignore it..
He pulled an overweight trailer with bad tires,(three blowouts),it's a miracle he didn't have an accident .
The Joads made it from Oklahoma to California with fewer problems..
And he ended up "overnighting" twice in Mexico on his way down... to Mexico.. Rolling Eyes

Sorry, I have had far more important things to deal with than this board... Sun and good food. Your report while slightly accurate is a strange interpretation of events. I would have loved to give my account but it seems that the people here have gotten all the information they need from other places...

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Post by tictoc on Thu Jul 02, 2015 1:38 pm

P.S. the only real problem I had was finding a proper tire in Mexico. If I had found one from someone who didn't want to ripoff the grengo, things would have been much better. Unfortunately, I didn't find said person and said tire until after I had to call for assistance.

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