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Old 07-06-2008, 02:28 PM   #1
USC_Gamecocks
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Do I need a passport to go to Tijuana?

My family and I are going to California in a couple of weeks to Disneyland. We where headed to San Diego for a day and also like to visit Tijuana Mexico for a few hours to shop. Do I need a passport to go to Mexico for a few hours? And what other advice can I get about traveling to Tijuana.

Thanks.
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Old 07-06-2008, 02:33 PM   #2
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Are you sure you want to go to Tijuana?
It's gotten very dangerous for tourists to be there at night/evenings and it's not a good place for children at all.

I suggest finding a more tourist-friendly place to go in Mexico if you can.
Try the Baja area, and I hear Ensenada is a better bet for visiting than Tijuana.

I don't think you need a passport for Mexico yet, but it's never a bad idea, especially if you want to use it later. Better safe than sorry!
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Old 07-06-2008, 02:44 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cali_Sparrow View Post
Are you sure you want to go to Tijuana?
It's gotten very dangerous for tourists to be there at night/evenings and it's not a good place for children at all.

I suggest finding a more tourist-friendly place to go in Mexico if you can.
Try the Baja area, and I hear Ensenada is a better bet for visiting than Tijuana.

I don't think you need a passport for Mexico yet, but it's never a bad idea, especially if you want to use it later. Better safe than sorry!
Thanks for the info. We know that we want to go to mexico but not sure where. We will look into Baja.
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Old 07-06-2008, 03:03 PM   #4
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I work with CBP, but at an airport
Drivers licenses, Birth certs, and a 2nd photo ID, grab your SS cards also, to be safe. you know know what CBP agent your gonna get.

here's a link to our website http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel/id...eqs_mexico.xml

this one might adress your question more directly

http://help.cbp.gov/cgi-bin/customs....i=&p_topview=1

Click around for more specifics or call one of the contact numbers on the website.

I'll check with my CBP folks (i'm off today :D)



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Old 07-06-2008, 03:05 PM   #5
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You will need a passport for Mexico or a government issued photo ID as well as an official birth certificate with raised seal for each member of your party.

I would strongly suggest that you do not go to Tijuana. I have had several friends mugged and/or stopped by the police (who take all of your money). Things are not safe at the moment.
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Old 07-06-2008, 03:14 PM   #6
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Thanks for all the great info. We will have a rental car so we cant drive into Mexico. Is there any time of bus or tour that we could take to Mexico. Tijuana doesn't sound like a place that we want to go now. Any suggestions of where we sould go.
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Old 07-06-2008, 03:18 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RudemanRB View Post
I work with CBP, but at an airport
Drivers licenses, Birth certs, and a 2nd photo ID, grab your SS cards also, to be safe. you know know what CBP agent your gonna get.

here's a link to our website http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel/id...eqs_mexico.xml

this one might adress your question more directly

http://help.cbp.gov/cgi-bin/customs....i=&p_topview=1

Click around for more specifics or call one of the contact numbers on the website.

I'll check with my CBP folks (i'm off today :D)



Thank you so much.
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Old 07-06-2008, 03:31 PM   #8
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We go over the Texas US border often. Just last week my friend used her DL and raised Birth certificate. I have a passport. I wouldn't think there is a difference between Texas and California. Now if you fly, passport only. And I agree things are getting bad in all border towns so be careful
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Old 07-06-2008, 04:12 PM   #9
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Are you sure you want to go to Tijuana?
This was my first reaction, too. Tijuana was never a nice place and now it's really dangerous, with the drug cartels battling it out. Frankly you couldn't pay me enough to go anywhere in the Northern Baja peninsula these days, either. Personally I would just drop the whole Mexico excursion. The border areas are the pits.

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Old 07-06-2008, 04:59 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by USC_Gamecocks View Post
My family and I are going to California in a couple of weeks to Disneyland. We where headed to San Diego for a day and also like to visit Tijuana Mexico for a few hours to shop. Do I need a passport to go to Mexico for a few hours? And what other advice can I get about traveling to Tijuana.

Thanks.
I would highly reccomend you to avoid Mexico, Especially when kids. A friend of mine was just there for a concert, and the cab driver drove them to an alley where 3 guys were waiting in ski masks. Took everything they owned.

Tourism is down 90% in the past couple years. Their government is so corrupt that they will steal and do anything to get money.
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Old 07-06-2008, 07:20 PM   #11
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Thanks for all of the help everyone. After reading all of your post we decided it was better for us not to go. We didn't want to take the chance even for only a few hours.
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Old 07-06-2008, 08:54 PM   #12
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Having lived in Mexico for a while during my college years, I can honestly say I have spent a considerable amount of time traveling in Mexico and NEVER had one problem. In general, the country is full of considerate, kind and helpful citizens. I would not hesitate to take my children to Mexico for vacation or to live (which we have considered). However, with that said... the border areas can be dangerous. This is mostly due to poverty and drugs, same goes for towns on the US side of the border... especially if you hang in the "wrong" part of town. Although there is more crime in this area, as long as you stay in the tourist part of town... where a tour would likely go if you took one, you will be totally fine. As in any city in the world, there is crime... especially if you stray from the beaten path and you are not familiar with the city at all. Mexico has a tourist police department that generally patrols tourist areas. As long as you keep your wits about you (as you would anywhere) you should not have any problems. Most crime involving tourists (unless you are a drug dealer!) is theft. Pickpockets can be very tricky!

As to the story about the taxi robbery, that can happen. You just have to know which taxi company is safe... and which are not safe. If you do decide to go, just make sure to use a Radio Taxi. These are reputable taxis that operate through a large company. They must radio in their every move, which eliminates the crime that can happen with independent taxi drivers. Buses are an even better alternative.

Personally...I would go, even with my kids. But that is just my two cents on the matter
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Old 07-06-2008, 09:14 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by USC_Gamecocks View Post
My family and I are going to California in a couple of weeks to Disneyland. We where headed to San Diego for a day and also like to visit Tijuana Mexico for a few hours to shop. Do I need a passport to go to Mexico for a few hours? And what other advice can I get about traveling to Tijuana.

Thanks.
Anything out of the country now requires a passport. When my family went down to Mexico in the past it only required a US driver's license but now they have more restrictions. You better have it rushed if you want to have it in time, you know how efficient our government is
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Old 07-06-2008, 09:53 PM   #14
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Having lived in Mexico for a while during my college years, I can honestly say I have spent a considerable amount of time traveling in Mexico and NEVER had one problem.
I'm thinking you went to college awhile ago. Crime in Mexico has grown much worse in recent years and has accelerated dramatically in the past year. It is affecting visitors, even those who stay in formerly safe "tourist areas."

The US State Dept says "Some border cities have seen an increase in violence over the past year, some of which has been directed against U.S. citizens. Local police forces have been ineffective in maintaining security in some regions along the border. Drug-related violence has increased dramatically in recent months, and shows no sign of abating. While U.S. citizens not involved in criminal activities are generally not targeted, innocent bystanders are at risk from the increase in violence in the streets of border cities.

In Ciudad Juarez, Monterrey, Nuevo Laredo, and Tijuana, shootings have taken place at busy intersections and at popular restaurants during daylight hours. The wave of violence has been aimed primarily at members of drug-trafficking organizations, criminal justice officials, and journalists. However, foreign visitors and residents, including U.S. citizens, have been among the victims of homicide and kidnapping in the border region."

http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_p...s/cis_970.html
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Old 07-06-2008, 09:59 PM   #15
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It saddens me to hear that Tiajuana is no longer a safe tourist destination. I was there 10 years or so ago and my mom and I walked across the border and did some shopping. We felt very safe. But I have noticed increased warnings from the govt travel website regarding mexico and it gave me pause about booking a trip to Cancun. I took DD to Puerto Vallarta a few years ago and always felt safe, but things are changing and not for the better. It's really too bad.
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