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best border crossings and safest driving routes


blankletmusic
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What are the easiest border crossings and safest driving routes to Lakeside? I live in Albuquerque and DO NOT want to cross at Ciudad Juarez., but would prefer not to have to drive hundreds of miles just to avoid it (if possible).

If you already have your FMM visa stamp (from the consulate) and importado certificate (purchased online) do you even need to stop at the border crossings? Or do you stop at the Aduana checkpoint 20 or so miles beyond the border?

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I would take the crossing at Del Rio, Texas. Just came down that way last week. Couldn't believe it, no one at either check point, U.S. or Mexico. Roads are also much better. Your other alternative from where you are is the crossing at Santa Teresa, just west of Ciudad Juarez. Very little presence at this border either. Going this way you pass by Ciudad Chihuahua though and I don't like the roads as well. 

I drove from Santa Fe and the distances are almost equal going either way.

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56 minutes ago, blankletmusic said:

What are the easiest border crossings and safest driving routes to Lakeside? I live in Albuquerque and DO NOT want to cross at Ciudad Juarez., but would prefer not to have to drive hundreds of miles just to avoid it (if possible).

If you already have your FMM visa stamp (from the consulate) and importado certificate (purchased online) do you even need to stop at the border crossings? Or do you stop at the Aduana checkpoint 20 or so miles beyond the border?

And which route(s) SOB? (preferrably on toll roads).

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53 minutes ago, Al Berca said:

FMM status has not existed since 2012.

The card you fill out coming and going is still called an FMM. 

OP....what visa are you getting at the consulate...tourist, or are you starting the application process for temporal or permanente?   The last two require a stop, a very important stop, when you cross the border.  If you get the car import sticker in the US , you don't need to do anything else at the border with the car (though they will want to see the paperwork sometimes at the border sometimes farther south in AZ, past the free zone).  

When we lived in Bisbee we crossed at Naco; you might want to look at crossing at Agua Prieta (Douglas AZ).  You'd take Rte 2 over to 15D and stay on that all the way to Guadalajara.  Good safe toll road.  But pretty far out of your way.  Never crossed in TX, so I'll let others advise. 

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From the OP's initial Post it sounds like he got started at a consulate and is coming down with a foreign plated vehicle and already has the TIP sticker. At some point one will have to go through the 'declare' or 'nada declare' line so one must at least 'slow down'. It depends on where one crosses as to whether that is 'at the border' or the proverbial '26km stop'.

The only 'reasonable' way to make this trip from Albuquerque is  down through Chihuahua. It is 150 miles farther to go down to Del Rio (although that is a great way to go otherwise!). If it is Juarez proper that you do not want to drive through, by all means cross at Santa Teresa (do it anyway!).

 

 

 

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If he has his canje stamp in his passport, he MUST check in with immigration at the border. That is required in order to establish his entry date into Mexico. Then he has just 30 days to report to INM at his destination, with proof of residence, to start the process (tramite) to get the actual visa issued by INM.  The canje in his passport is only a single entry permit & approval for INM to process the visa in Mexico, which may take a couple of months.

At the border, he must obtain an importada temporal for his car, which will only be for the 30 day period, since the change of status will require that he notify Aduana and formally request a new importada to match his new visa.  He should get local help & guidance for that process, as it is very time-sensitive.  He should not have a “mail-order car permit“, which is not for this type of situation. He is not a tourist or visitor !  On crossing the border, his FMM will be marked CANJE.

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18 hours ago, RVGRINGO said:

If he has his canje stamp in his passport, he MUST check in with immigration at the border. That is required in order to establish his entry date into Mexico. Then he has just 30 days to report to INM at his destination, with proof of residence, to start the process (tramite) to get the actual visa issued by INM.  The canje in his passport is only a single entry permit & approval for INM to process the visa in Mexico, which may take a couple of months.

At the border, he must obtain an importada temporal for his car, which will only be for the 30 day period, since the change of status will require that he notify Aduana and formally request a new importada to match his new visa.  He should get local help & guidance for that process, as it is very time-sensitive.  He should not have a “mail-order car permit“, which is not for this type of situation. He is not a tourist or visitor !  On crossing the border, his FMM will be marked CANJE.

And applying for the extension of the car importado after you arrive will extend it (so you can legally have the car in Mexico) until you actually receive your residente temporal? Regardless of how long that takes?

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I think there is a 15 day application window for the extension of the Importada Temporal, which is a Catch-22, as Aduana and INM do not coordinate, or even communicate. So, you may want to consult with Spencer, at Chapala Law, to assist you in making a timely application to Aduana, then following it to the actual issue date of your visa, for its activation.  He seems to know how to do it.   We were fortunate to become Permanente long ago, when the FM2 could be transitioned in-country, so I have no detailed personal experience on your situation.  Do contact Spencer.

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If your US plated car is still in the country when your visa is issued you can probably say goodbye to your $400 deposit... Spencer was unable to pry our deposit from their grubby little fingers... Our first contribution to Mexican bureaucracy. 

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Yes, the deposit can easily be lost, but at that point the car is in Mexico illegally, with the potential for more serious consequences to follow if it is driven.  It will have to be removed with a Retorno Seguro.

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RV does NOT have to be IN Mexico to be able to answer questions/make Posts on this Forum. Your Post is trying to shed some amount of skepticism on what he Posts. Yes, like all of us he may get something a 'bit off' from time to time but by-in-large he is spot-on IMO. He tends to take the 'hard legal line' sometimes but at least one knows what may be coming if one tries to 'get by'. 

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I assume that if you buy a US plated car from somebody at Lakeside you'll have to drive it all the way to the US and then turn around and buy an auto importado in your name at the Mexican border. Is this basically accurate?

 

How does it get removed from the sellers' name so it can be imported under your name? And you have to pay a $400 deposit that only gets refunded to you if you take the car out of Mexico?  Very confusing stuff this.........

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It is illegal for anyone to sell you an imported car here in Mexico. When you got the TIP you promised not to do that. The car must be removed and the transaction must take place in the US or Canada. Then, as you say, you can import it yourself since the owner must (should) cancel his own TIP upon leaving. Do yourself a big favor and don't even think about buying a US car here. Do yourself an even bigger favor and don't even bring one in if you intend to live here. Lots of Mexican plated cars for sale and you'll be glad you did.

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2 hours ago, pappysmarket said:

It is illegal for anyone to sell you an imported car here in Mexico. When you got the TIP you promised not to do that. The car must be removed and the transaction must take place in the US or Canada. Then, as you say, you can import it yourself since the owner must (should) cancel his own TIP upon leaving. Do yourself a big favor and don't even think about buying a US car here. Do yourself an even bigger favor and don't even bring one in if you intend to live here. Lots of Mexican plated cars for sale and you'll be glad you did.

Pappysmaret, your comments are not entirely accurate. The law that prohibits selling a foreign plated vehicle in Mexico with a temporary import permit (TIP) is aimed at not permitting that vehicle to indefinitely stay in Mexico. Selling a foreign plated vehicle in Mexico to someone whose intentions are to immediately drive it out of the country is not in violation of that law. The 'sell' transaction (which merely means a US title gets signed over and funds pass hands) does not have to be done NOB as you have stated. What Mexico wants/demands is that the vehicle be removed as promised by the person originally obtaining the TIP. 

IF a person wishes to sell their foreign plated vehicle in Mexico, that person should demand from and be comfortable that the new owner WILL immediately drive that car out of Mexico AND, as you stated, cancel the 'sellers' TIP at a border crossing. That new owner should also remit back to the seller the receipt one receives from Aduana when one cancels that TIP and the seller would be wise to keep that receipt 'forever'.

IF the seller has already reached Permanente visa status, the seller must procure a Retorno Seguro (Safe Return) document from SAT in "Guadalajara" and designate the buyer as the driver. This document, once obtained, gives the driver 5 business days in which to safely remove the vehicle from Mexico. If the seller is 'merely' a Temporal or a Visatante, a Carta Poder (Power of Attorney) should be provided by the buyer to the seller to drive the vehicle out of the country.

I have purchased probably 15 vehicles in Mexico, Ajijic and San Miguel de Allende, over the last few years from owners who were either approaching or had achieved Permanente status and who just did not want to go to the hassle and expense of driving the vehicle out of Mexico, somehow dispensing of it NOB and then bussing or flying back to their home. I often use Spencer McMullen or a Notario for the formal paperwork to insure that the removal of the vehicle is done properly. I always cancel the TIP at the border and remit the receipt back to the seller. This is not "job" but something I do as a retirement hobby.... and it gets me down to Lakeside more often.

 

 

 

 

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16 hours ago, rvanparys said:

If your US plated car is still in the country when your visa is issued you can probably say goodbye to your $400 deposit... Spencer was unable to pry our deposit from their grubby little fingers... Our first contribution to Mexican bureaucracy. 

You are posting incorrect information which will only misinform or confuse the OP, who has stated that he has a TEMPORARY RESIDENCY visa approval. His car is perfectly legal to remain in the country and he will get his deposit refunded when next driving out as long as he notifies Aduana of his temporary visa within the required time period.

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2 hours ago, blankletmusic said:

I suppose if you ever would have to move NOB you could not drive it (or register and insure it) in the states? Would you have to sell it and take AT (alternative transport) back home?

Under the circumstances you mention (moving back NOB), for all practical purposes you cannot take that Mexican titled vehicle NOB and title it there. [If, however, you were just going NOB for a visit, one could take that vehicle and keep it there for up to one year]

"Most" vehicles made in and sold for Mexican consumption do not meet US Emissions and Safety requirements. "Most". If a newer Mexican vehicle should be able to meet those requirements, that vehicle could be Imported into the US but that process is costly and not for the faint of heart. 

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12 minutes ago, mudgirl said:

You are posting incorrect information which will only misinform or confuse the OP, who has stated that he has a TEMPORARY RESIDENCY visa approval. His car is perfectly legal to remain in the country and he will get his deposit refunded when next driving out as long as he notifies Aduana of his temporary visa within the required time period.

Well, not always. There is a timing issue. When one comes across in that circumstance, the TIP is not valid for the 'normal' 180 days. RVGringo stated it is 15. But none-the-less if the Temporal process takes a long time to complete, the TIP CAN get 'loss in the paperwork' and at that point getting the refund when exiting can be compromised. (That was the short version of what can and has happened... as rvanparys suggested happened to him/her).

 

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3 hours ago, blankletmusic said:

How does it get removed from the sellers' name so it can be imported under your name? And you have to pay a $400 deposit that only gets refunded to you if you take the car out of Mexico?  Very confusing stuff this.........

As suggested above, the '"seller's" TIP must be cancelled at the border to remove that vehicle from the records of being in Mexico. Then, yes, the buyer can bring it back in and, yes, must pay the deposit as ALL must do bringing a vehicle in.

BUT, herelin lies a rub and a quick 'turnaround' is not possible:  If one is buying the vehicle that has just been driven out, that new owner cannot drive right back in because he/she does not have a title or registration for that vehicle.... they only have a signed-over title from the seller. To bring a vehicle into Mexico, one must have a title IN THEIR NAME. Since Texas will not give you a title if you don't live there, you must find some place/state that will give you a title and plates. And this process will take time to accomplish. So buyer beware. 

 

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4 minutes ago, RickS said:

Well, not always. There is a timing issue. When one comes across in that circumstance, the TIP is not valid for the 'normal' 180 days. RVGringo stated it is 15. But none-the-less if the Temporal process takes a long time to complete, the TIP CAN get 'loss in the paperwork' and at that point getting the refund when exiting can be compromised. (That was the short version of what can and has happened... as rvanparys suggested happened to him/her).

 

As I understand it, the OP will get a 30 day permit for the vehicle under the Canje status he will be entering under. As that is the amount of time a person has to attend an INM office in Mexico to complete their visa process. The 15 days comes into play when you actually have that visa or it is in process. As another poster mentioned, paying Spencer to assist with this, as he knows the time constraints, would be wise.

BTW, years ago when I had my Canadian plated vehicle in Mexico under a temp.visa and had sent off all the required paperwork to Aduana within the required time period, I never got a confirmation that it had gone through. Repeated calls over the course of a month and a half to Aduana were met with "It's in process". Finally I just emailed Banjercito asking if they had received the extension. I got a reply within 24 hours confirming that they had.

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