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Old 05-23-2013, 12:43 PM   #15631
SchizzMan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PirateJohn View Post
Dood, take it up with him. Every time I write something the silly SOB expects me to qualify my comments.

Then again he never got around to telling the OP whether he thought Mazatlan was safe or not. Too busy trying to diss me to concentrate I guess......

John, I've never resorted to the personal abuse or patent dishonesty you are known for here. And you've never challenged the facts as I (or Trice) have presented choosing rather to respond with petty personal attacks and adolescent name-calling. I'm sure your tactics have a chilling effect on anyone tempted to call BS on you but to me you're just diminishing yourself.

My reason for challenging you is simple: you literally inundate this informational thread with scavenged data, irrelevant personal anecdotes, offensive boasting of violently humiliating fellow travelers, and various misinformation that presents a serious threat to the validity and appeal of this thread. And you do so as a person utterly bereft of any personal credibility as a Mexico traveler as Tricepilot so accurately detailed.

Why would anyone want to post pix and accounts of personal experiences riding Mexico only to see it scrolled straight away into oblivion by your incessent posting about about things you have no actual first-hand knowledge of or are simply lacking in relevance?

I'm not saying you're a bad person. You're just not being a genuine person. And what's the point in that? Just be yourself and quit pretending to be someone you're not. If you would simply restrain yourself to civility and offer only what you truly have to offer then you'd be held in much higher regard than you currently are. And what's wrong with that?
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SchizzMan screwed with this post 05-23-2013 at 01:19 PM Reason: spelling
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Old 05-23-2013, 12:48 PM   #15632
slowoldguy
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Is Mexico Safe?

John and schizz. I caused the confusion. I mis-spoke. Mine was not a "prepaid" data plan. It was a $30 chunk of data. But I could monitor data usage and adjust. I don't remember excess data being "punitive".
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Old 05-23-2013, 01:12 PM   #15633
SchizzMan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slowoldguy View Post
John and schizz. I caused the confusion. I mis-spoke. Mine was not a "prepaid" data plan. It was a $30 chunk of data. But I could monitor data usage and adjust. I don't remember excess data being "punitive".
What service AT&T offers for international roaming data in Mexico is pre-paid chunks of data, as you say, which exist specific to a given billing period (hence the caveat about 90 days for billing use) and when consumed return the customer to the standard rate for data use which is obscenely punitive, IMO. It would be nice if it worked like John assumed in that your data roaming turns off when the data plan is consumed, but clearly AT&T has no financial incentive to offer such a service. And data roaming charges billed to the account later would still incur the punitive rate. It's simply the way the system is set up.

I turn off data capability when I'm not wifi connected. Don't care much about text fees or occasional brief calls at, IIRC, $.79/minute. For the serious budget traveler there are prepaid phone options and VOIP options. My kin and a number of my friends living in Mexico have resorted to tablets with VOIP and no longer carry phones. The Banda Ancha SR posted about sounds interesting to me and I'll check it out this weekend in Mexico City.

EDIT: the problem I had with the pre-paid data package is that the iPhone4 only reports data usage without regard for wifi connection. So there's no good way to monitor off-line data usage against the pre-paid data plan.
That and the 90 day billing issue which can really burn you with a big bill. DAMHIK.
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SchizzMan screwed with this post 05-23-2013 at 01:26 PM
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:06 PM   #15634
D K
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Awesome advice

Thank you.

Would you say 250 miles is more realistic?



Quote:
Originally Posted by rockymountainoyster View Post
I spent a night in Mazatlan. On 3/17/13 before I took the ferry to LaPaz. Zona Dorada and the whole beach front are very nice...many nice hotels in a range of prices. At the recommendation of Skip Mascorro of Moto Discovery I stayed at Playa Mazatlan. If you book on line you get a credit voucher to use for food there. Brings the price down to under $100USD. It was the most I paid for a hotel in 4 months of traveling in Mexico and it was worth every penny. Summer may be cheaper due to "off season".

Are you going to Oaxaca City or Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca? If the latter, routing would be/could be different. Boat? Where? No boats in Oaxaca, Oaxaca. Some missing details of beginning and ending destination make advising difficult.

500-600 miles por dia on a moto on Mexican highways, even carreteras es muy dificil y peligroso. I don't think you have time to cover that distance during daylight hours even in the summer. Rule 1 here is don't ride at night. The things you can't see will hurt you. You have to stop for gas, for food, to pee, to pay tolls, and you need to drink lots of water...it is hot and the wind over your body sucks it out of you. 2-3 liters might not be enough over 12 hours of riding. Out on the carreteras it can be remote, hard to find a hotel, no help if you have a problem and at night you are a prime "target of opportunity". My GS likes to do 75-80 miles an hour as long as there is gas in the tank...my aging body not so much. Those sustained speeds work reasonably well on US freeways in the Southwest...the cuotas in Mexico are a different story, some are two lane, some have very uneven road surfaces, the lanes of the divided roads often do not have the lane and shoulder width that we are used to, even at 70-80 mph car drivers come up on you very fast and expect you to move to the right on what we would think of as the "shoulder" of the road and at that speed you come up very fast on "doble semi remolques" sometimes without adequate or any taillights. Good luck with that.

As Jimmex and maybe others reported Mex 200 between Puerto Escondido and Zihua is hot and there are hundreds and hundreds of topes. I did not find it all that boring but the topes are a pita. Hot yes and even hotter now... High speeds...no way...that is why there are topes. The routes through the Sierra that were suggested to me sound great...again not 75-80 mph roads. It is easy to hurt yourself in Mexico, it is less easy to get help, when you are riding solo you are really on your own...lots of friendly people will find you to be a curiousity and will help you to an extent but resources are pretty limited down there even if your language skills are reasonably good there is only so much they can do...even at hospitals.

Might be a good plan to consider letting gf and boat be satisfied with slightly indefinite arrival over never arriving. I found that a tight schedule and a moto don't work so well in Mexico. Too many good opportunities and the chance of less good ones. Others may have found differently as you may. You also have to factor in rain and hurricane season now.
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:06 PM   #15635
MikeMike
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"Violently humiliating fellow travelers"? Seriously, have you ever had breakfast with the Craneguy or the Mystery Rider?
Try telling either one of them (or both just for the helluva it) that they crossed the centerline!
All I ever get for my respectful and responsible riding is abuse.
Abuse and more abuse.
Then while I head off to the can, they go and eat all the tortillas and tell the waitress to ignore me.
A gringo, a grown up gringo, sitting tortillaless (now that is a new word) is an object of scorn and ridicule at a roadside eatery.
I try to be nice about it but it often hurts my feelings. I think this is why I want a KLR, so people will leave me alone.
All because I try my hardest to be a respectful and responsible rider and not cross the centerline.
Now, how's that for some good Televisa telenovela drama?
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:17 PM   #15636
slowoldguy
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Is Mexico Safe?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SchizzMan View Post
What service AT&T offers for international roaming data in Mexico is pre-paid chunks of data, as you say, which exist specific to a given billing period (hence the caveat about 90 days for billing use) and when consumed return the customer to the standard rate for data use which is obscenely punitive, IMO. It would be nice if it worked like John assumed in that your data roaming turns off when the data plan is consumed, but clearly AT&T has no financial incentive to offer such a service. And data roaming charges billed to the account later would still incur the punitive rate. It's simply the way the system is set up.

I turn off data capability when I'm not wifi connected. Don't care much about text fees or occasional brief calls at, IIRC, $.79/minute. For the serious budget traveler there are prepaid phone options and VOIP options. My kin and a number of my friends living in Mexico have resorted to tablets with VOIP and no longer carry phones. The Banda Ancha SR posted about sounds interesting to me and I'll check it out this weekend in Mexico City.

EDIT: the problem I had with the pre-paid data package is that the iPhone4 only reports data usage without regard for wifi connection. So there's no good way to monitor off-line data usage against the pre-paid data plan.
That and the 90 day billing issue which can really burn you with a big bill. DAMHIK.
Well. The best thing we have done is to make people aware of the existence of the AT&T data plan and its pitfalls. The worst ? Confused the shit outta everybody. IMO the purchase I made would not work for a 30 day ride and I would never purchase it for that, but for a one week ride? IME it worked great but I used my net book to connect to wifi at the hotel so monitoring data plan usage was easier.


I also pre-ordered a block of voice calls. I did not get too close to the limit on either.

BTW AT&T coverage was significantly broader than Verizon in the Mexican states we traveled. Terrapinneck was not pleased with Verizon. And we were wifi-less at 50% of our hotels.

Of course, at El Oasis not only were we without wifi ...or cell.....a damn sat phone couldn't and didn't find it's way outta that canyon. lol
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:18 PM   #15637
rockymountainoyster
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Get Offs

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwj - Donnie View Post
I would tell you how many times I dumped my KLR, but I can't count that high!
Funny Donnie! And honest. When you posted about one of your "minor mishaps" it gave me a lot of relief that it happens to riders with the experience and skill that you clearly have. It's a motorcycle, they tip over, DUH David.
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:19 PM   #15638
mark883
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To further muddy the waters on phones & data:

I bought a disposable AT&T gophone (payasyougo) for roaming on Telcel in Mexico. (Walmart, $20) Its a GSM phone. GSM is what everyone except the US uses, for the most part. Verizon & Sprint are CDMA. They may work in spots in Mexico, but the cost is terrible. Telcel has excellent coverage in Mexico, based on my past experience.

AT&T has excellent rates for the use of your prepaid gophone in Mexico. Last time I used it, it was 25cents / minute, compared to $1.49 for Sprint. I think AT&T might even have a better Mexico package now.

Recently, for data, I bought outright ($150) a AT&T data 'aircard / hub' with sharable WIFI. (no data plan- no 'free' device, but no monthly bill) AT&T sucks where I live, but sometimes I work where I need their data service. 1gb data in the US costs $50 whenever I need it and is good for a month. I can also buy a 800mb 'international' plan for $120 or 300mb for $60. AT&T calls its their DataConnect pass, and they hide it I think, since most people want the free device, and monthly bill. But I'm a bit 'fiscally conservative' and have enough freakin' cell phone bills.

I imagine that TelCel is cheaper for residents of Mexico, but DataConnect may be good enough for the rest of us occasional short-term explorers.

NEVER data-roam in Mexico (or Canada) without a Mexico plan- there are some real horror stories.
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:21 PM   #15639
rockymountainoyster
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Miles in Mexico

Quote:
Originally Posted by D K View Post
Awesome advice

Thank you.

Would you say 250 miles is more realistic?
250 is quite comfortable, time to sightsee, have a nice lunch, look at stuff... 300 is easy, 350 you start wondering WTF.
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:24 PM   #15640
jonas_mx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SR View Post
Nice work Jonas! It's always sad when people take the boring route up HW 45 through QTO, GTO, AGS. Maybe to visit Guanajuato? but both HW 23 and HW 54 from JAL-ZAC are much more fun rides up from Central Mexico.
Yeah, for years I've been using the boring route, but now I highly recomend the long and "dangerous" path haha
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:25 PM   #15641
pilot815
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Last week when I was in Mexico I had my Sprint phone with me. They used to have fantastic service in Mexico. I have their international direct connect plan since I call my dad there. However, that has changed. Before I had free texts, free direct connect calls, and free data in Mexico. This time around I called to check to see if there were any changes on the day I was leaving. They had changed all that. Now data was real expensive, and the texts were $.50 to send and $.15 to receive. Voice was like $2.29 a minute. Now that they have gotten rid of Nextel in the states and they use data to make the direct connect calls, those call were no longer free either. Everywhere we stayed had wifi, although some places didn't work too well. On one of the days we were on the highway we stopped at a Subway connected to a gas station and they also had wifi. It's becoming more and more common to find wifi service.

A note on the Banda Ancha from telcel. It works as long as the area you are in has 3G service. If the area does not have 3G, you will barely be able to send emails, and very little web browsing. Need to do anything with pcitures? Forget it!
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:35 PM   #15642
dwj - Donnie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeMike View Post
"Violently humiliating fellow travelers"? Seriously, have you ever had breakfast with the Craneguy or the Mystery Rider?
Try telling either one of them (or both just for the helluva it) that they crossed the centerline!
All I ever get for my respectful and responsible riding is abuse.
Abuse and more abuse.
Then while I head off to the can, they go and eat all the tortillas and tell the waitress to ignore me.
A gringo, a grown up gringo, sitting tortillaless (now that is a new word) is an object of scorn and ridicule at a roadside eatery.
I try to be nice about it but it often hurts my feelings. I think this is why I want a KLR, so people will leave me alone.
All because I try my hardest to be a respectful and responsible rider and not cross the centerline.
Now, how's that for some good Televisa telenovela drama?

Dem KLRs is serious motos for serious hombres!
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:39 PM   #15643
D K
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Communication in Mexico

Having been here for -x- months, I can offer my findings.

First of all, no one carrier is very reliable except in major cities.

Get an unlocked phone!

I have Telcel on my iPhone (because I had to..) and I have iusacell in my iPad. Iusacell is much faster and has been more reliable in remote areas. Telcel goes out a few times a day here.
I had Movistar for a while, but if you have a problem, its a pain trying to find a store.
Telcel doesn't offer mini sims for pay as you go (afaik), so you have to cut it yourself. Easy enough to do.
iUsacell has an iPad specific plan that is 500 pesos for 5 Gig!!!! That's a steal. And it doesn't stop at 30 days.

Viber - is good, but both sides have to have the app. You need either wifi or medium quality 3g signal.

Skype - only required on your side. Need wifi or EXCELLENT 3g. Otherwise, forget it (algorithms too old...)

WhatsApp - good for texting, sending pics and having group chats.

There is also Ovodo. I haven't tried it yet. I think I'm pretty much covered for my comm needs.

D
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:48 PM   #15644
SchizzMan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mark883 View Post
To further muddy the waters on phones & data:

I bought a disposable AT&T gophone (payasyougo) for roaming on Telcel in Mexico. (Walmart, $20) Its a GSM phone. GSM is what everyone except the US uses, for the most part. Verizon & Sprint are CDMA. They may work in spots in Mexico, but the cost is terrible. Telcel has excellent coverage in Mexico, based on my past experience.

AT&T has excellent rates for the use of your prepaid gophone in Mexico. Last time I used it, it was 25cents / minute, compared to $1.49 for Sprint. I think AT&T might even have a better Mexico package now.

Recently, for data, I bought outright ($150) a AT&T data 'aircard / hub' with sharable WIFI. (no data plan- no 'free' device, but no monthly bill) AT&T sucks where I live, but sometimes I work where I need their data service. 1gb data in the US costs $50 whenever I need it and is good for a month. I can also buy a 800mb 'international' plan for $120 or 300mb for $60. AT&T calls its their DataConnect pass, and they hide it I think, since most people want the free device, and monthly bill. But I'm a bit 'fiscally conservative' and have enough freakin' cell phone bills.

I imagine that TelCel is cheaper for residents of Mexico, but DataConnect may be good enough for the rest of us occasional short-term explorers.

NEVER data-roam in Mexico (or Canada) without a Mexico plan- there are some real horror stories.
Thanks! That's some good "mud". Sounds like I need to revisit the local AT&T sales rep and give 'em a good grilling on what's available. Although my current method is serving me quite well.
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:54 PM   #15645
SchizzMan
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Location: Austin, Tx.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by D K View Post
Having been here for -x- months, I can offer my findings.

First of all, no one carrier is very reliable except in major cities.

Get an unlocked phone!

I have Telcel on my iPhone (because I had to..) and I have iusacell in my iPad. Iusacell is much faster and has been more reliable in remote areas. Telcel goes out a few times a day here.
I had Movistar for a while, but if you have a problem, its a pain trying to find a store.
Telcel doesn't offer mini sims for pay as you go (afaik), so you have to cut it yourself. Easy enough to do.
iUsacell has an iPad specific plan that is 500 pesos for 5 Gig!!!! That's a steal. And it doesn't stop at 30 days.

Viber - is good, but both sides have to have the app. You need either wifi or medium quality 3g signal.

Skype - only required on your side. Need wifi or EXCELLENT 3g. Otherwise, forget it (algorithms too old...)

WhatsApp - good for texting, sending pics and having group chats.

There is also Ovodo. I haven't tried it yet. I think I'm pretty much covered for my comm needs.

D
I still use Skype from time to time. Both sides must have the app for free use I think. Sr. Slim's wifi bandwidth doesn't serve Skype video calling very well in my experience. For a paid Skype plan you can call phone numbers directly.
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