Mexico Newsletter —
August 2020

This month: US-Mexico land border update; the extraordinary Copper Canyon train returns; Mexico reopening gradually; Mexican cell phones; Practical living tips...

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Mexperience Mexico Newsletter — August 2020

Travel restrictions extended again on US-Mexico land border: Mexico’s land border restrictions have been extended again, until at least August 20th.  The restrictions effectively keep the land border closed to all except ‘essential’ crossings. Flights to and from Mexico are not affected by this restriction, but if you have a foreign-plated vehicle in Mexico, note that its permit (TIP) expiry date will not be extended due to Covid.  This article summarizes the restrictions and explains what is defined as an ‘essential crossing’—and what isn’t.
See also: How busy in the US-Mexico land border?

Copper Canyon Train Returns: The extraordinary train that traverses Mexico’s inspirational Copper Canyon resumed services on July 17, 2020.  The train will run at 50% of its full capacity until further notice and implement a series of precautionary measures which include deep cleaning of the train’s passenger and dining cars.
See also: Experience Mexico’s Copper Canyon

Gradual and phased reopening: Mexico announced a phased reopening of its economic, cultural, educational, and social activities starting June 1st.  Each municipality and region is implementing a gradual and custom reopening plan based on a color-coded ‘traffic light’ system so the processes vary depending on each locality.  We have published an article that we are keeping regularly updated with material developments related travel and lifestyle in Mexico.  For all our Coronavirus-related articles, visit the Covid-19 section on Mexperience.

Tourism is beginning to reopen in Mexico—gradually

Phased reopening: States and destinations that rely on tourists are setting-out phased plans to reopen leisure services in the months ahead.  A modest flow of domestic tourism is anticipated to resume this summer and fall, and it’s expected that international tourism will take longer to return.  States and regions are working through details of how hotels, restaurants, and other leisure activities can reopen.

Outdoor/Nature: Mexico’s Copper Canyon Train resumed services on July 17, and we understand that the nature sanctuaries that receive the Monarch Butterflies hope to be able to host visitors this coming fall and winter.

Planning: If you’re planning to visit Mexico this summer/fall, we recommend you talk with your tour operator to ask about the latest developments and if you’re traveling independently, we suggest you contact the hotel(s) you intend to stay at to ask them about the current situation in their locality.  Flight schedules may be reduced and/or subject to sudden change: check with the airlines for details.

Customized tours: If you would like to book a custom tour in Mexico, our associates can help —they are in constant contact with the operators and destinations they work with, and will book travel itineraries as soon as it is practicable to do so.

Inspiration: In the meantime, you can find inspiration for future visits to Mexico by browsing Extraordinary Travel Experiences, and Travel Destinations in Mexico.

Mexico visas and documentation: We’ve been receiving many questions in recent times about matters related to visa requirements and to help we have published and updated additional information about the documentation and visas required to visit or reside in Mexico.  These include:

Mexican consulates are beginning to reopen and gradually resume the provision of routine services including things like applications for residency visas, and menaje de casa requests.  Check with your nearest consulate for opening times and procedures.

Immigration Assistance

If you need assistance with your residency permit application or renewals, or troubleshooting with an expired permit, consider using the Mexico Immigration Assistance Service provided by our associates.

Scorpions, spiders, and mosquitoes:  Summertime catalyzes a proliferation of all natural wildlife across Mexico, including insects, arachnids and mosquitoes.  While these can cause a nuisance and occasionally pose a potential danger, some foreknowledge helps to mitigate risks.  Learn about and identify the three spiders that you should be careful of; and get practical advice for keeping the nuisance of mosquitoes under control.

Cell phone calling plans: Mexico is one of the least expensive countries in the world to run a mobile phone.  Mobile phone plans (prepaid or contract) offer unlimited calling and generous data allowances for use across all of North America, so your Mexican cellphone can roam with you in the United States and Canada for no additional charges.

Health insurance in Mexico: Readers continue to ask us about how to get health insurance here.  If you’re considering healthcare coverages in Mexico, read about your choices for healthcare cover in Mexico and connect to relevant resources and contacts which include health insurance quotes and medical evacuation.

Practical Living Matters: As we mentioned in an article last month, the rain season is one of the most agreeable times of year to be in Mexico as the rains bring life, bright colors, and stimulating floral fragrances to Mexico’s natural habitats.  When you’re living here, it also brings some challenges, including potential power cuts, heavy storms that can cause property damage, as well as flash floods that can make driving more hazardous.  Our guides and articles provide practical advice.

Gentle Reminder: Please tip generously during this difficult time

Tipping is woven-in to the fabric of Mexican trading culture and, as we explain in our guide, tipping in Mexico must be practiced often and in a wide variety of situations.  Please remember your generosity when tipping during this exceptionally difficult economic period.

Thank you for supporting your local Mexican community! Many foreign residents living in Mexico have actively stepped-up to help local people and traders during the Covid event: Thank you to everyone who has!  We have compiled a list of practical tips and ideas for foreign residents in Mexico who want to actively support the local communities they love calling home, and what you can do to support your local Mexican economy.

Spanish matters: Whether you plan a short visit to Mexico or to stay for longer, being able to communicate in Spanish will make a material difference the everyday activities and experiences you encounter.  This article explains why, and for those who want to learn about Spanish language and its nuances in Mexico, our PinPoint Spanish language series provides helpful insights.

Useful Resources on Mexperience.com

Discover Mexico: Visit our Discover Mexico section for the latest stream of articles and features to help you get inspiration, insights, and connections about Travel, Living and Lifestyle Mexico.

Mexico Features: Our features share ideas and connections for Travel, Lifestyle and Real Estate.

Immigration Assistance: When you need help applying for residency, or help renewing your existing residency permit (or working through a ‘regularization’ procedure after a mishap), consider using this Mexico Immigration Assistance Service, which offers personalized advice and practical help.

Mexico Insurance: Everything you need to know about Healthcare, Auto and Evacuation coverages in Mexico.

Mexico eBooks: Browse and download free eBooks which provide useful knowledge about Mexico including the 2020 editions of our Mexico Immigration Guide and Mexico Cost of Living Guide.

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Matthew Harrup is founder and editor of Mexperience