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Moving from Seattle to GDL, best way to move/ship household goods?


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Hi there,

This is my first post to the board everyone so apologies if I mess something up. I did do a fairly lengthy search looking for advice on this specific case, which I would have thought would be kind of common but maybe not?

I currently live in GDL and have a RT visa via my employer. My mom plans to come down and live with me initially on a tourist visa while we work out how she can get a permanente.

My circumstances are this: My mom is basically getting rid of all of her household goods except for some papers, linens, dishes, and CDs/DVDs, DVD player and a TV and printer. That's literally the whole list. She will be driving down from Seattle. Oh, one other pertinent piece of info, she'll be bringing a cat. We've gone through getting his papers before, I think that part is pretty straightforward.

My questions are: 

1. Where would you advise she cross the border? Some folks from the lake have said that crossing at Nogales or Laredo is best, rather than straight down through California.

2. She would like to travel "light" - she wants to ship as much of that list as she can. I did see there's Strom-White, but she's not going to lakeside nor is she coming from Laredo. She was hoping to do something like FedEx or DHL. Is this feasible? What are the gotchas I should be looking for? Trying to navigate FedEx's international shipping site is... trying.

Your guys' help would be invaluable - I've been directed here several times, finally taking up that advice!

Regards,

Ronan

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Sounds like the little she is bringing can all fit in her car. Have the cat in a carrier and they won't even give it a look. Just have your current rabies paperwork just in case. Make sure she has a GPS (I prefer Garmin with lifetime North American maps that include Mexico). It is only about 100 miles longer to drive to Laredo vs Nogales and you can make it in one day to GDL from Laredo vs 3 days from Nogales. 

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Another reason not to cross at Nogales:

Remember that nearly new toll road between Durango and Mazatlan that was touted by the government as being state of the art and a wonderful piece of construction?  I rode it three weeks ago out of Durago.  It is literally falling apart in only two years.  Huge potholes everywhere.  Coincidentally it is loaded with trucks and of course there are no truck scales.  

It was so bad I got off early and used the free road.  Between the trucks and the potholes the thing was a nightmare to drive.

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If coming from Seattle...we lived there many years.....come straight down via Nogales...a very easy crossing at the Mariposa exit.  She can stop in Navajoa for the night at the Best Western which accepts pets....its about half way to Mazatlan....spend the night there....then another 5-6 hour drive to GDL.  Very simple.

Hope she enjoys her new life...it's great here!!!

 

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2 hours ago, tomgates said:

Sounds like the little she is bringing can all fit in her car. Have the cat in a carrier and they won't even give it a look. Just have your current rabies paperwork just in case. Make sure she has a GPS (I prefer Garmin with lifetime North American maps that include Mexico). It is only about 100 miles longer to drive to Laredo vs Nogales and you can make it in one day to GDL from Laredo vs 3 days from Nogales. 

This is great advice! Thank you so much, it really helps to give structure to an otherwise overwhelming set of decision making.

If she were to decide to ship some of it, do you have any idea what the best method would be?

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I agree with the route Willie suggests, as the easiest. I also suggest that she bring only what can fit in her car. Shipping costs more than replacement in many cases.

Enjoy!

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Moved from Oregon via Nogales which was very easy. People seem to forget that to drive from Laredo you first have to pass through half of Arizona, New Mexico and a large piece of Texas! But it sounds like she plans to stay, moving all her belongings, and if so, it's much better to apply for a temporal visa in Seattle which allows her to import her personal goods. It can also be renewed every year, or several years at a time, for up to 4 years, after which she would need to return or apply for a permanent visa. Is she traveling alone? It's a good idea to have a co-driver to help navigate, even with GPS - I know it's shocking to say, but GPS are not always accurate or reflective of detours etc. Good luck to her.

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After 4 years as a Residente Temporal, she DOES NOT have to return to the USA to apply for Residente Permanente. She will make that transition with INM in Mexico.  However, before becoming Residente Permanente, she, or someone, must take the US plated car out of Mexico and get the deposit refunded and the permanent receipt for her to keep on file.

Navigation is easy: From Nogales, take 15D all the way to Guadalajara, then follow the big green signs for the Aeropuerto.  Pass the airport and continue on the same road to Chapala. 

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From Seattle, it is only 300 km longer via Laredo. At times when people use a courier for some boxes they never clear Customs at the GDL airport.

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When I drove from Portland I went across Oregon, half of Idaho, through Salt Lake and Phoenix to the border.  2500 miles. 

Check with DHL and others about cost of shipping boxes of stuff--it's pretty expensive because everything comes overnight or 2nd day--there is no ground service to Mexico.  I had a bit too much for my car so I sent a pallet of stuff through Green Transportation (which may also be in the Seattle area), or you can use any freight company to get stuff to Laredo.  Then you drive to Laredo to retrieve it.  Or contact Strom-White to get an estimate for shipping the entire way.  There are several way to accomplish what she wants.  The only questions are how much does she want to spend and how much stuff does she REALLY want to have in Mexico.

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Hi everyone! Your answers have been UNBELIEVABLY helpful, we've now mapped out a route (via Nogales, due to the presence of better hotels so she can feel safe), set dates, and decided on additional stuff to keep or toss so that she can fit everything in the car or mail ONE small box via DHL if needed. You guys are great. Thank you :) 

Oh and, she's calling the Mexican Consulate in Seattle tomorrow to start the RT visa process. That'll let her pass through more easily if she gets questioned, plus she won't need the trip across the border every 6 months.

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I think if she drives down with a pre-approval for RT they will only give her 30 days on the car permit (which corresponds to the number of days she has to report to INM when she gets here and then she will be expected to drive the car back to the border before that 30 days is up and re-enter with the vehicle under her RT, which will be good for the length of her RT. If she goes the tourist route, they will give her a 180 day permit. BUT if she has the RT pre-approval from the consulate, she must definitely not enter as a tourist.

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I think time of year greatly affects the route one chooses, especially as winter is approaching.  I moved from Washington State in December of 2005.  Because of the time if the year I would not risk driving cross-country to Laredo.  I just wanted to make it over the Siskiyous without any snow.  It was very cold that first night in Weed but at least there was no now.  I stayed in Motel 6's in the US as they accept pets.  I helped my sister move from Washington to Californi and we did the Motel 6 thing too as she had two cats.  

I took I-5 south from Weed then cut across to Bakersfield. From there I drove to catch I-10 near San Bernadino and on to Phoenix.  A friend flew into Phoenix so I wouldn't have to do the Mwxico part of the trip alone. If you could meet your mother in Phoenix she woul probably apreciate your help for the rest of the trip. We entered through Nogales.  There was one dog traveling with me and my car was very full.

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Your mom might also want to have some alternatives lined up in case she finds she can´t make it comfortably to Navajoa the first night. When I last drove down, it took a long time at the border to get through the car paperwork (I was convoying with someone else, and it was quite busy there, so it took us a lot longer to get on the road than we were anticipating), then we ran into a lot of highway construction. By the time we were nearing Guaymas, we were fried and ready to stop for the night.

Before Guaymas , there is a turnoff to the west for San Carlos. There is a Best Western on the right hand side as you are getting into San Carlos, called Hacienda Tatakawi, where we stayed. It was quite nice, and they had a good restaurant upstairs at the front, so we didn´t have to go out into town to eat.

Same farther south, she should have some alternatives lined up in case she doesn´t make it as far as she had planned.

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9 hours ago, mudgirl said:

I think if she drives down with a pre-approval for RT they will only give her 30 days on the car permit (which corresponds to the number of days she has to report to INM when she gets here and then she will be expected to drive the car back to the border before that 30 days is up and re-enter with the vehicle under her RT, which will be good for the length of her RT. If she goes the tourist route, they will give her a 180 day permit. BUT if she has the RT pre-approval from the consulate, she must definitely not enter as a tourist.

This is not true. Once a person with a pre-approved TR visa enters Mexico they start the process at INM and immediately goes to Aduana proving they started and again when visa is issued. There is no need tor return to the border for 4 years. 

saludos

Sonia

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I sent you a PM.  In the top right of this page, look for three horizontal bars. Click on that, then on the envelope that will appear. That will open your message box.

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On 10/9/2016 at 7:21 AM, tomgates said:

Another reason not to cross at Nogales:

Remember that nearly new toll road between Durango and Mazatlan that was touted by the government as being state of the art and a wonderful piece of construction?  I rode it three weeks ago out of Durago.  It is literally falling apart in only two years.  Huge potholes everywhere.  Coincidentally it is loaded with trucks and of course there are no truck scales.  

It was so bad I got off early and used the free road.  Between the trucks and the potholes the thing was a nightmare to drive.

I agree about the condition of that fabulous new road, but..... if one crosses at Nogales one does not go from Durango to Mazatlan... that's another direction. But there are some really bad spots on 15D down from Nogales last time I went that route. 

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On 10/9/2016 at 4:29 PM, RonanGDL said:

Hi everyone! Your answers have been UNBELIEVABLY helpful, we've now mapped out a route (via Nogales, due to the presence of better hotels so she can feel safe), set dates, and decided on additional stuff to keep or toss so that she can fit everything in the car or mail ONE small box via DHL if needed. You guys are great. Thank you :) 

Oh and, she's calling the Mexican Consulate in Seattle tomorrow to start the RT visa process. That'll let her pass through more easily if she gets questioned, plus she won't need the trip across the border every 6 months.

When will your Mom be making the drive? You may want to put out another separate post about 4-6 weeks out and ask if anyone else is making the drive from Nogales. Then she can caravan. Lots of folks do this.

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14 hours ago, RickS said:

I agree about the condition of that fabulous new road, but..... if one crosses at Nogales one does not go from Durango to Mazatlan... that's another direction. But there are some really bad spots on 15D down from Nogales last time I went that route. 

Several others very recently have reported how bad 15D can be. 

For sake of 185 miles, known highways, often higher speed limits, familiar hotels and restaurants, no tolls in the US others who contemplated both options were happy to go via Laredo.

 

 

 

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5 hours ago, vivien said:

Is there a new way to PM a person now?

I tried to send you a PM, but it says, “vivien cannot receive messages.“

Check your profile to see if your settings are causing this.

 

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