Mexico and Central America Ride Planning and Road Wisdom

Discussion in 'Americas' started by Jeff Munn, May 30, 2006.

  1. pegsdeep

    pegsdeep slyteck

    Joined:
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    Location:
    vancouver BC...sometimes
    Apologies if it is hidden in here somewhere already but...

    I am planning to do my ride south in 3 or 4 legs.
    I work one month on then get one month off so the plan for the first leg is to get Vancouver to Costa Rica or southern mexico....lock up the bike with friends and fly back to work.
    Coming back to the bike in a months time to do it all over again getting to Peru next time....ect ect.

    Green on all this so hope one of you boys could tell me if I will have any problems with this in regards to customs with the bike?
    Once you import the bike into the country do you HAVE to leave with it? I have 2 passports (Can and NZ) so could use a different one to get out but thats a last resort as it gets complicated and risky.
    Anyone?
    Great thread, thanks for taking the time to post this stuff as it would be a steep learing curve without it!
    Many thanks!
  2. TRAVELGUY

    TRAVELGUY Old Traveler

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    Location:
    Georgetown, In / Costa Rica
    BEFORE YOU LEAVE GET A SECOND COPY OF YOUR DRIVERS LICENSE FROM YOUR STATE, tell them you lost the other one. Yes that is illegal in most states, do it anyway. Get two INTERNATIONAL DRIVERS LICENSES FROM AAA. That is legal and use them. My drivers license was lost or something by a Costa Rica offical entering country. Calls to my local BMV were a waste of time. I had photo copies of my drivers license with me but they were refused by all officials in all countries. Would have had to ship motorcycle back from Costa Rica if I had not been able to obtain a Costa Rica license. You won't have time to do that. Also get a dupicate copy of your motorcycle title from your state BMV. You now need a original vehicle title to enter some of the Central American countries, previous years you could use you registration but no longer. Any other information you may want feel free to PM me. Have a great trip. :clap
  3. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    Jeff,
    Your pdf with the info about CA was the most useful thing that I got from the web in my trip through CA.
    Very accurate.
    Thanks!
  4. Dilligaf0220

    Dilligaf0220 Miserablist

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    Which one was that?
  5. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    I'm talking about the pdf at the beginnig of this thread with a bunch of tips about all the borders crossing in CA

    "For those who wish to download and print these tips, you can find them here it in Adobe (.pdf) format. (Print version for download)"
  6. Jeff Munn

    Jeff Munn Just along for the ride..

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    Martincito, I just read your ride report on Pelicanparts and it was very inspiring. Great photography too! I am honored to have been able to help a fellow traveler on such an incredible trip.

    jeff
  7. Eduardo

    Eduardo Eduardo

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  8. felix_da_cat

    felix_da_cat Solo Rider

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    yes you do need original bike title and the moto permit you got at the aduana to get your bike on the ferry.
    did it this january 09

  9. GuiltyParty

    GuiltyParty drifter

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    this thread has been the most informative and well thought out thread i've ever read and not only does it apply to CA but everywhere. :deal

    thank you all for the contributions. i'm only hoping i can share my own stories, adventure and wisdom when i travel as much as is contained in this thread. this site has helped with the travelling though no doubt
  10. robd19

    robd19 Moto Sojourner

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    Jersey City, NJ
    Thanks again for a great post. I plan on heading down for the meetup in Colombia around halloween. I'm fluent in spanish. Anybody have any issues with traveling alone through Central America??

    Thanks,
    Rob
  11. MotoBoss

    MotoBoss Bad Influence

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    WOW what a post of fantastic interesting information! Thanks for the great read. Just a question;

    I was planning on going to Mexico for the Baja 1000 (November 19-22). Is all the listed "paperwork" required for me to ride my KLR into and around the race route? Do I have to "import in and out"? I have been no farther than TJ and that was crossing in my truck many, many years ago so I don't have a clue as to whats required now. Will not a passport, registration and license be sufficient? I just want to ride to the race, watching from several of the towns on the route and return home but I'm starting to think "is it worth it"

    Help me out, please:huh
  12. acejones

    acejones Long timer

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  13. Sjoerd Bakker

    Sjoerd Bakker Long timer

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    To visit the Baja 1000 race you will only be going into Baja California and the whole state is considered as frontier zone so you will not need to get any temp import permit. If spending more than 72 hours there in Mexico you should get your tourist card , but even that may not be stringently inspected .

    As for travelling alone through Central America- not a problem. Just mind your manners, stay sober and stay off the roads outside towns after dark . That advice serves equally well in the USA.
  14. jkabouwchilexplorer

    jkabouwchilexplorer www.chilexplorer.com

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    Road Wisdom

    Many of you are aware of beer :freaky money in Central America and a few many other, in order to cross a check point or road control.
    Advice for Chile, DON NOT do this!!!

    Have fun and drive carefully :clap
  15. GTOROCKS RACING TEAM

    GTOROCKS RACING TEAM RACING IN COLONIAL MEXICO

    Joined:
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    Hola Compadre,

    I am new to the forum but have done my traveling and have experience with customs, I majored in international business.

    Everything is possible, all you have to have is the proper docs

    I just posted something on this forum
    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=207964&page=9

    I have friends in Baja, lots of fun but its always better to have friends.

    USA, MEXICO, and South America is easy, well except for the darian gap, tried that already in 1994 but only made it to placencia belize, but on my last race to venezuela I think I met the right contacts to one day make it happen...like I said its all about the right contacts.

    Give me a call

    Ponce

    “Don't always walk on the smooth roads, walk ways that no one has travelled before, so as to leave behind traces and not only dust…”
  16. GTOROCKS RACING TEAM

    GTOROCKS RACING TEAM RACING IN COLONIAL MEXICO

    Joined:
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    Planet GTOROCKS, GTO MEXICO & Southen NORWAY
  17. MotoBoss

    MotoBoss Bad Influence

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    GTOROCKS Thanks for the invite. I will contact you when I get to the start of the race site. Thanks again for your generosity, muchas gracias mi amigo!
  18. GTOROCKS RACING TEAM

    GTOROCKS RACING TEAM RACING IN COLONIAL MEXICO

    Joined:
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    Planet GTOROCKS, GTO MEXICO & Southen NORWAY
    Right on Brother. Let me know with time so I can give you my Baja Cali contacts.

    Saludos desde Planeta GTOROCKS!
    Ponce
  19. big Sky

    big Sky n00b

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    Missoula, Montana
    My wife and I lived for five years in Mexico and Central America. Also into Columbia in South America. In the five years we never had a bad people experience with locals. The Key for us was to always stay calm and pleasent. Yes they do things differently and at a slower pace than we are used to but we are in their country and if we don't like it then we should go home. We saw many pissed off Americans there who never won the battle. They don't get made they just get even when you press them. Papers have a habit of always going to the bottom of the pile when you get pushy.

    On the whole the people in these countries are freindly and egar to please. Sometimes too egar as they will tell you directions that are completely wrong. It is not malicious but they want to be helpful. There are asswipes everywhere in the world but most of us are good guys.
  20. toyotatundra

    toyotatundra 2 exwifes club

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    Location:
    southeast idaho
    I dwelled all over honduras for more than a year in the early 90s, and even when there was considerable political heat abroad over everything from banana embargos, to the contra scandals, to turf wars between nicaraguan gorrilias and peacable farmers, as long as i never misrepresented who i was or what i was doing in the country and developed a huge ability to make small talk with locals, all went well. However you still need to keep your eyes open, and use common sense, and remember your not in countrys that are overwhelmilgly goverened by freedom, justice- or more notibly the "american" way.. lemme know if i can help any one planning a seriouos trip thru the central american region, maybe i can help. and ps, u.s. consolates locations are important to know incase there is trouble, they like to know where you intend to be in the country, and youre buisness there, so they can begin to look for you if things go wrong.. Its a good feeling to know they are there with military backing if needs be, as a us citizen we have certain rights in most countrys, often more certain by the host country to us than those granted to citizens of that country by theyre own goverment. good luck and enjoy, its an amazing part of the world, full of culture and history galore!