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Old 10-27-2013, 05:20 AM   #1
Thomas B. OP
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Location: Switzerland and around the globe
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Baja questions

Hi guys,
we are starting to seriously planning our Baja- trip this winter and there are questions showing up. I hope the specialists con help us.

1. Has anyone used the border crossing San Luis Rio Colorado in Arizona?
Is it ok?
2. Do we have to make reservations for the ferry from Baja to mainland Mexico?
3. Does anyone know of a usfull OSM for Baja that has more than only the tarmac roads on it?

That´s it for the moment. I´ll probably be back with more questions later.
Thanks for all your help.

Cheers Thomas
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Old 10-27-2013, 05:52 AM   #2
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I can only give an answer to #2
No you do not need a reservation. In fact when I tried to make a reservation for a cabin the website would not let me. I spoke to others with the same issue. I went to the ferry terminal on a Thursday to get my TVIP and buy the ticket. Then I went to Cabo for a few days and returned for the Sunday ferry.

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Ferry Terminal Instructions:
The easiest way to get there is to just stay on the main road as you enter La Paz. Watch for signs that say La Paz Centro which take you along the coastal drive by the shops and restaurants. You can’t miss the ferry terminal and as you approach there are a bunch of food vendors on the right. Turn left into the parking lot and an immediate left into the pay parking area where you’ll get a ticket (you’ll pay 22 pesos on your way out). The big building on the right has the banjercito and the ferry ticket office. Find the banjercito wicket and hand over your passport, registration, and Tourist Visa. They will want a copy of each which can be obtained around the corner in a small office for 6 pesos. Sign a bunch of documents and pay a deposit of up to $400USD. You’ll receive a receipt and a guarantee that you’ll get the deposit back if you cancel the TVIP when you leave the country. Also given to you will be the windshield sticker which I was told does not have to be on the windshield but be prepared to show it to authorities. That’s it, now just buy your ticket and off you go.
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Old 10-27-2013, 08:06 AM   #3
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1. I recommend San Luis Colorado. Not busy and safe parking. You can get a TVIP while you are there.

2. You can also go to the Baja Ferries office in LaPaz to make a reservation and pay for your tickets. Cute girls work there

3. Baja Alamanac has the best maps but not always available. Try Google.
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Old 10-29-2013, 05:26 AM   #4
ow, my balls!
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San Luis is a decent crossing. Algodones is a little nicer IMO because its quite a bit smaller, doesn't really matter though.

OSM for Baja isn't detailed. Bicimapas has a pretty nice Baja GPS map, and like was mentioned, Baja Almanac is a great resource if you can get one. This is a good paper Baja map as well at a good price.
Riding the Americas: No Fumar Español

crashmaster screwed with this post 10-29-2013 at 05:33 AM
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Old 10-29-2013, 09:16 AM   #5
Dr. Benny
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Borders is getting new border crossing reviews posted every few days. Have a look and plan then post your own review when you get back
Motorcycle Mexico - The easy way to prepare for your first motorcycle ride south of the border.
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Old 10-31-2013, 11:24 PM   #6
Thomas B. OP
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Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Switzerland and around the globe
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Hi everyone,
thanks alot for all your answers and help.

Next questions came up: where do you get your insurance for the bike in mexico? Online or is it possible at the border? Where do I get it cheap? Any recommendations?
How do you make your trip planning? specially the offroad part? I cann't find many tracks or other information on the net. Is anyone willing to give us some tracks of their travels maybe with a few words about the difficulties and if it is worth going there. Just send a pm.

Thanks allready for all your help.

Only 6 weeks till we're on our way.

Cheers Thomas
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Old 11-01-2013, 11:43 PM   #7
ow, my balls!
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I generally don't buy insurance if I'm staying mostly off-road, but for a combo off-road/road trip, I get liability insurance from, Or you can buy at the border, but I like to have it in advance to minimize my border time. I have actually used the baja bound insurance for my truck when a city bus hit me in Ensenada and it worked well, so I just use them all the time now, loyal customer thing and all that. The coolest part is that you have a phone number that will put you in touch with an attorney or legal services, and that's a nice thing to have when you're dealing with the cops after an accident. I believe the Mexican underwriter is ACE Seguros. They sell their product to many US vendors, I just happen to use Baja Bound. I would have been screwed without it. But if I was on a bike and got hit by a bus, insurance would probably not have helped too much.

One thing to note about Mexico law. If there is vehicle contact of any kind, you are required to stop and dial 066 to report the accident. I've had a few fender benders in Mexico over the last 20 years or so, and of course I always stop, but sometimes I am able to work it out with the other party without dialing 066 and involving the cops, which could open another can of worms possibly. If you have an incident/accident, try to work it out with the other party yourself first. That would be my recommendation, but others may have a better/more informed experience, especially the folks that live in Mexico full time, so hopefully they chime in here.
Riding the Americas: No Fumar Español

crashmaster screwed with this post 11-01-2013 at 11:54 PM
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Old 11-02-2013, 03:36 PM   #8
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I've crossed at San Luis 3 or 4 times. It's been one of the easiest each time. And Yuma has cheap motels.
If your goal is the hwy down to San Fiip, know ahead that the scenery will suck - there is none, all ag land.
Might as well choose Mexicali for making fast time south, unless you like Yuma.
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