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General Information about Mexico
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The Mexican borders are delimited by three neighbors: to the North with the United States of America and
to the South with Guatemala and Belize. The Mexican sun born in the coast that traps 3,000 km. of the
Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea and it sets in the 7,100 km. of beaches and cliffs of the Pacific Ocean.

|  General Data  |  English Language  |  Highways  |  Buses  |  Train Stations  |  Aircraft  |  Maritime lines and ports  |  Radio  |
Press  |  Telephone  |  Fax  |  Hotels  |  Uses and customs Schedule of banks, trades and offices  |  Nutritional habits  |
Restaurants and Bars  |  Tips  |  Electrical Current  |  Customs in the behavior  |  Religion  |  Days off in accordance to the law  |
Emergency services  |  Health recommendations  |  Drinking water  |  Diseases  |  Night Life  |  Seasons  |  Driving in Mexico  |
Firearms, ammunitions and explosives  |  Migration and Passport control  |  Personal use cars  |  Restricted articles  |  Personal Baggage |

General Data

  • Official Name: Estados Unidos Mexicanos
  • Surface: 1'972,547 km2
  • Geographical situation: Located between 14° and 32° of north latitude
  • Official language: Spanish and some native languages
  • Population: 97'361,711 inhabitants (2000)
  • Money: Peso Symbol: $0.00 cents
  • Measure system: Metric system
  • Weight unit: Gram
  • Predominant religion: Catholic (there is freedom of cult)

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English Language

A considerable percentage of inhabitants of the cities in Mexico speak English,
which has become a need for professionals and entrepreneurs.

The proximity with USA has contributed to an intensive cultural flow: films, series of television, music, commercial products and technical and industrial training which is reflected in the bias of the understanding of the language.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®


The toll highways cover a net of more than 5,000 km. in Mexico and how are being concession by the government to private companies. The most moderns have 6 lanes and count on with boundary, retaining barriers, reflecting, excellent signaling and emergency telephones each 2 km.The tools vary according to the distance between each tollbooth, the weight, the kind of vehicle and the number of shafts.

According to the studies of the Mexican Concession Infrastructure Association, the toll quota is charged in 30% of the highways of the Republic and the average cost is $0.46 per kilometer traveled for trucks of two shafts.Upon paying the toll quota, the conductor is insured against highway accidents in the section that specifies the voucher.

In all the Mexican Republic there are 42 bases of "Angeles Verdes", these are patrols of mechanics who give service to the motorists that need assistance with their vehicles.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Bus - Tour By Mexico ®Buses

The principal Mexican bus lines count on executive service to the most important cities of the country.

During the last year, most of the lines have been modernized and today count on with new units, reliable and comfortable.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®



Train stations

The routes cover the principal cities and industrial centers in Mexico, as well as the border towns with USA which have connection points with the American train stations.The more important connection points are: Mexicali - Calexico, Nogales - Tucson, Ciudad Juarez - El Paso, Nuevo Laredo - Laredo, Matamoros - Brownsville.

The trains offer an attractive and assorted panorama in its XIX century museum trains, from its train stations to the lines that cross places. It worth to mention the rout Chihuahua - Pacifico which travels trough the Sierra Madre Occidental going through the Gully of the Copper, which encloses large and impressive abysses and gran dioses mountains that measure more than 3,000 meters over the sea level. As this tour, and not less impressive are most of the train routes.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®


Until 1985, the aviation in Mexico depended mainly on its international routes. From that year, the development of the regional aviation has permitted the creation of new lines with new routes to
more cities of Mexico, with a more accessible cost.

Currently, 35 international air lines arrive at the Mexican airports. The two principal Mexican airlines
count on with 7 air routes with direct international flights from different cities and 16 direct international
air routes from Mexico City.

There are direct flights toward the principal American cities, and the transatlantic service that counts
on with direct flights to Paris and Madrid, from where practically you can make connections toward all
the world.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Maritime lines and ports

By this means, 30.6% of the national load and 80% of the load destined to the foreign trade, is transported.
Mexico has an infrastructure for height and cabotage vessels.

There are 85 ports, which add 74.7 km of docks. The principal Mexican ports are: Tampico, Veracruz, Tuxpan and Coatzacoalcos in the Gulf of Mexico, and Ensenada, Topolobampo, Mazatlan, Mansanillo, Puerto Vallarta, Lazaro Cardenas, Acapulco and Salina Cruz in the Pacific ocean.

The country counts also with ferryboat service in both coastal with a fleet of 32 ships.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®


The radio is an old tradition in Mexico that has not decayed with the advent of the television.
There is a great variety of stations in A.M. and F.M. with national nets, both bands have a great hearing and
they are an accessible means of promotion and social communication countrywide.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®


The press freedom and the news avidity on part of the Mexican reader have made of the journalism one of most important media.

About 30 good quality newspapers circulate countrywide. In addition to a big amount of magazines and specialized newspapers. In the cities you will be able to find newspapers as the "News" and publications as "Time" or
"Newsweek", as well as practically any international spectacles, modes, social, sports, mechanics, science and information publications.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®


The regular telephony service in Mexico is available in 29,000 towns, and 18,000 localities
count on with rural telephony service.

Since 1990 the international communication from person to person have been quickened thanks to the satellites Morelos and Solidaridad.

The digital net covers 14 cities and as to the cellular telephony, Mexico occupies the eight place in the world,
covering 80 cities with more than 250,000 subscribers.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®


The fax use is common in Mexico, a great number of businesses count on with this tool and it is common
to find private facsimiles in houses of professionals.

The public fax service is provided in businesses and trades, mainly in stationary shops.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®


In all the important cities and in the tourist zones in Mexico, you will be able to find hotels of the principal chains as Westin, Holiday Inn, Radisson and Sheraton, between others. In towns and smaller localities you will always
be able to find Hotels, Inns, Motels and Lodgings which offer good service.

The high seasons are from March 25 to April 10, from July 1st to the August 14 and from December 15 to January 3.
In these dates, as well as in the national holiday days, it is indispensable to book with a reasonable period of
time to receive the confirmation from the hotel by write.

Other viable possibility of loading during a long period of time is to rent a Suite or a furnished department.
In the cities the rent can be high, according to the zone in which it is located, however in the towns,
the prices are more accessible. There are publications where you can find the information of these services as
well as real-estate companies and the embassies that tend to have useful information for their citizens.
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Uses and customs - Schedule of banks, trades and offices

In Mexico the banks open from Monday to Friday, from 8 AM to 4 PM; some are open until 5:30 PM, and
on Saturdays from 10 AM to 1:30 PM, in several malls.

There are automatic cashiers that operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, in some, is offered the VISA or MASTERCARD service used by most of the international credit cards.
It is frequent to find this service in the cities of Mexico.

Generally, in Mexico City the schedule of the trades is from 10 AM to 8 PM, from Monday to Saturday or
from Tuesday to Sunday. In the suburbs some shops closed until 9 PM or 10 PM.
In the rest of the country the trades open from Monday to Saturday, from 8 AM to 2 PM and from 4 PM to 8 PM,
on Sundays they will open half a day.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Nutritional habits

The Mexican people eats 3 daily foods: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.

The Breakfast generally is taken between 6 AM and 8 AM, Lunch between 2 PM and 4 PM and
Dinner between 8 PM and 10 PM.

The peasants and workers, between others, take a light luncheon between 12 and 1 PM since they
tend to be awake extremely early.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Restaurants and Bars

Mexico counts on with all kind of options to eat an to drink. From luxury restaurants that serve international
dishes or Mexican, Japanese, Cantonese, Italian, German, French, Argentine, Greek or Arabic food, etc., to chains
of fast food restaurants from the most famous franchises of the world.

Food in MexicoAlso there are plenty of inns an lunchrooms of Mexican typical food. In all the country you can find all-inclusive menus called "comida corrida" which consists of a selection of soup, rice or salad and a main course to choose under a fixed cost, normally very economic. There are vegetarian and kosher food restaurants as well as macrobiotics restaurants that are specialized in natural and Hindu food. In general, a foreign visitor can continue with his normal diet.

The restaurants and bars on the principal cities are cosmopolitan. the majority give service in schedules wide, normally the restaurants open from 8 AM to 12 PM for foods and until 2 AM for drinks.

By law, the restaurants and bars are obligated to offer a not SMOKING zone.
Some years ago, such zones were quite small and only were there to comply with the imposed regulation,
today the Not Smoking areas have grown considerably.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®


In the restaurants, as opposed to other countries, the service isn't charged in the account.
If the service was of excellent quality the tip is 15% of the consumption, if the service was just good,
the usual is to leave a tip of 10% of the consumption.

The porters, doorman, waiters, gas stations, employees, vigilants and other workers, wait a tip for their services,
since their wages are very low and many times, it represents their only income.

The exception are the taxi drivers who receive a tip only if they have made an extra service.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Electrical Current

In Mexico you will find an electrical current of 110 Volts, 60 cycles AC.

The entry of the plugs are two flat thin plates without polarization, the hotels, offices buildings,
houses and modern establishments count on with plugs of flat polarized and landed thin plates.
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Customs in the behavior 

Mexico is a traditionalistic country, where the hierarchies between social positions, age, sex and cultural level are observed. The professionals are called by their academic degree: Doctor, Lawyer, Engineer, Architect, etc.
the painters and writers are called Master, the youth women are called "Miss" and the married or mature "Mrs.";
to the persons of age as well as to those that have gained the respect of the community, its place before their first name "Lady" if it is woman or "Sir" if it is man.

It is appreciated the happiness, the spontaneity and the natural education, the knowledge and
the work capacity in a person are admired.
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Jesuschrist photo in MexicoReligion 

The prevailing religion in Mexico is the Catholic-Christian. In Mexico is venerated the Virgin Maria of Guadalupe, Christ and the Saints. A great percentage of the population attends mass on Sundays. There is a great variety of creeds related to the Catholic Church, its importance varies from region to region. There are temples of all types along the territory, mainly in the capital and principal cities. It is practiced the Protestantism, the Judaism and all the existing religions. Normally, do not have religious prejudices.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Days off in accordance to the law 

In Mexico during the following dates, the offices, banks and factories do not work, as well as some trades.
The restaurants and most of the shops stay opened January the 1st; February 5; March 21 and 31;
May the 1st and 5; September 15 and 16; October 12; November the 1st, 2, 20; December 12 and 25.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Emergency services

The Mexican Red Cross and the rescue organizations provide emergency services to who need them.

In nearly all the towns there are Hospitals and Clinics of the Mexican Institute of the Social Security (IMSS),
and of the Social Security Institute to the Service of the Workers of the State (ISSSTE), which can attend any
person in case of emergency, but normally they attend only to its assured.

The Hospitals of the Secretaria de Salud (S.S.A.), and Departamento del Distrito Federal (D.D.F.), attend for free everybody who need it.

In Mexico there are a lot of clinics and particular physicians. The embassies and consulates handle directories
with these services and they can recommend to their citizen, the attention they need. There are various Mexican companies that offer air ambulance services and of mobile units of intense therapy.
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Health recommendations 

It should be considered that Mexico presents aspects that should be taken with consideration with respect to the altitude, the weather and the nutritional habits.

For good adjustment to the height is needed a short period of time of adjustment, avoid excesses and try to
have a light diet during the firsts days. It is recommended, as in any part of the world, to drink bottled water and
not to abuse of the typical food of the regions.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Drinking water

In Mexico there are drinking water services, in which the water is purified through electrical systems.
In every town you will be able to find purified water bottled.
Also, you will be able to find purified water bottled as Evian, Electropura and Cosmopura between other brands.
To purify the faucet water, is recommended to boil it during twenty minutes.
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Currently it does not exist a epidemic disease in Mexico.

In the cities the risks of contracting diseases as Cholera, Typhoid, Malaria, Dengue fever or Hepatitis are minimal, however the vaccines for the trip are recommended specially if they are toward jungles or marginated zones of
the country. The Health Institutions, offer this service for free. Also, it is prudent to investigate the peculiarities of
each region that you want to visit, to take the necessary cautions.

In Mexico, as in all the world, the problem of the Acquired Immunity Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), is present.

There are governmental as well as civil organizations, that offer support and guidance as well as
basic medical assistance to persons that suffer from this disease.
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Culture and entertainment

 In the principal cities of Mexico you will always find entertainment's. Besides to the numerous tourist attractions, the country counts on with any number of options of culture and entertainment as museums, galleries, cultural centers, theaters, cinemas, concert halls, amusement parks, nightclubs, discos, etc.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Museums and Galleries

The museums are inexpensive countrywide, with some exceptions.
In Mexico there are museums with temporary and permanent exhibitions as the better of the world.

In Mexico City the museums with more prestigious are the Anthropology and History, Rufino Tamayo, Modem Art,
the Interventions, the Mexico City, Diego Rivera, Frida Khalo, and Contemporary Art museums between others.
An other way to appreciate the art is visiting the expositions of the galleries of the country.

Mexico conserves a very important artistic tradition, the galleries concentration in the Mexico City can be
appreciated in the "Zona Rosa" or in "Polanco, Coyoacan and San Angel".
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Cultural Centers

The Palacio de Bellas Artes without doubt is the most prestigious Cultural Center of the country.
Painting and sculpture expositions, opera representations, theater and ballet, concerts, contemporary and
folklore dance; all under the same building. Similar in its capacities to offer art and entertainment is the
Theater Degollado in Guadalajara.

The Claustro de Sor Juana is a cultural space in a convent.
This center has a great tradition as one of the most beautiful cultural frameworks in Mexico City.

In most of the political delegations of Mexico City, there are Cultural Houses where are offered expositions, theater, plays, concerts and dances. Almost always the events are free and of good quality.

In the states, the Cultural Houses are cultural bastions for the people. In the Sala Nezahualcoyotl and in the Silvestre Revueltas, you will able to listen, among other spectacles, to the Philharmonic Orchestra of Mexico City.

The Auditorio Nacional is space for all kind of concerts, with modern equipment, comfortable facilities and
excellent acoustics.
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In the principal cities of Mexico the theatrical billboard is vast. Theater is reasonably inexpensive,
its prices vary according to the play and the theater in which it is presented.

You can find from the Broadway musical, to the dramas and classic tragedies as well as alternative expressions.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®


You will be able to find international debut movies. The debut time in relationship with USA id from one to three
months depending on the film. Also, you will be able to find international cinematographic shows of excellent quality.

Night life

The night life in Mexico is very varied and active.
You can attended musical spectacles, cabarets, discos, nightclubs and bars with variety, practically every day
of the week in all the cities. The costs are reasonable when the drinks are national and the environment is
generally safe and pleasant.

It is recommended the foreigners be far from the "Tolerance Zones" of the cities,
where the cabarets and burdeles are.
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In Mexico Spring begun on March 20 at 2:28 PM, Summer on June 21 at 8:48 AM,
Autumn on September 23 at 12:23 AM and Winter December 21 at 8:23 PM.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Driving in Mexico

The cities count on with clear signaling of the speed limit as well as the restrictive preventive signaling.

It is valid to use any driving license of any country, to drive in Mexico. The signs on roads and cities follow
the international standards.

In highways, the speed limit generally is 100 km/h. There are vibrators at the entry of the towns and before
the collection roads or highways.
In the cities, the speed limit can be between 40 and 60 km/h., and 80 km/h in freeways.

There are one way streets which sense is indicated through the arrows in the corners;
when the arrows are green, these indicated that the traffic by that street has preference, if they are red
the cars should stop in the corner.

There are boulevards that generally have four lanes in the same direction and a fifth in opposite direction,
reserved for public transportation. To pedestrians and drivers it is recommended to pay attention in order to
avoiding accidents.
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Firearms, ammunitions and explosives

In Mexico the firearms possession, forbidden weapons, ammunitions and explosives is illegal,
you must have a special permit of the Secretaria de la Defensa Nacional (SEDENA).

The copies that do not boot are not considered illegal.

Naturally, tourist are not permitted to import any kind of armament, including knives.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Migration and passport control

Requirements for foreigners to enter Mexico as tourists:

a) Citizenship identification The tourist that travel to Mexico should present an official paper of citizenship.

This can be:

  • Valid Passport
  • Birth Certificate (original or certified copy)
  • Notaries endorsement of citizenship

b) Tourist entry visa or card

The Tourist card - Form FMT or the Tourist entry Visa are necessary if is intended to travel farther the
border zone and when is intended to stay in Mexico for more than 72 hours.

Citizens of certain countries do not need to transact with anticipation a Tourist entry Visa, therefore it will be
enough to have a Tourist Card at their entry to the country. To obtain it, it's enough to present a citizenship identification in the Mexican consulates, in the border migration offices, in the official entry points, in the tourism
offices of the Mexican government or in any of the air lines that travel to Mexico.

The Cards and the Tourist entry Visa are free. The entry card has a validity only of 90 days and it should be
returned to migration authorities at the moment of leaving Mexico; the exact time of its validity is determined
by the Mexican migration agent.

While the tourist is in Mexico, he will have to carry all the time the Card or Tourist entry Visa with himself,
otherwise, he will deserve a fine. In the event of lose it he can attend at once to the local migration authorities
to obtain a duplicate.
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Personal use cars

This category is applied if the vehicle is going to be used by the person as its means of transportation.
The requirements are the following:

  • Valid driving license
  • Citizenship identification and the entry Visa or Tourist Card respective
    (Passport, Birth certificate or Notarial endorsement of citizenship)
  • Invoice or title deed of the vehicle
  • Traffic card or other type of register of the vehicle
  • A bond deposit in Mexican company of the total value of the car, the sign of a sworn declaration in which
    the owner bind it self to return within the period of time granted in the permit.

These cars can only be driven by the foreigner citizen or by the person in favor of whom is issued the permit,
or another person but always in company of the holder of the permit. If the vehicle is borrowed to any person,
is committed a violation to the Customs Law whose sanction is a fine and the possible lost of the vehicle.arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Restricted articles

Upon speaking of the restricted articles we are not necessarily speaking of the prohibition of it entry to
the country, but that is prudent to declare the articles to avoid fines and retention's. All the products and
sub-products of vegetable and animal origin will be surveyed by the safety officers of phytozoo health.
Upon arriving to the border, you have to declare products as:

  • Animal origin: Pets, butters, cheeses, hams, sausages, hunt trophies, skins not processed
  • Vegetable origin: Plants, flowers, fruits, seeds, bulbs
  • Other insecticide, insects, medicines, vaccines

All the pets, must have a health certificate arriba - Tour By Mexico ®

Personal baggage

Below we offer a list of the articles that do not pay taxes on their entry to Mexico.

Of personal use:

  • Footwear, clothe, bathroom articles
  • A photographic, cinematographic or video camera (except professional equipment) including power source and
    up to twelve films or video cassettes new, as well as the filmed or printed photographic material
  • Books and magazines
  • An sports equipment or an individual sport equipment provided that could be transported by a person
  • Twenty cigarette packets or fifty cigars or two hundred fifty tobacco grams, if the passenger is an adult
  • Three wine or liquor liters, if the passenger is an adult
  • Medicines of personal use with medical prescription when they are psychotropic substances
  • The valise, trunks and suitcase which contain the articles of personal use
  • Binoculars and additional photographic camera
  • A portable television
  • A portable radio for recording, reproducing or both
  • Up to twenty records or tapes for sound reproduction
  • A typewriter portable
  • A musical instrument as long as it could be transported and used by a person
  • A tent
  • A camp equipment
  • A fishing equipment
  • A skis pair
  • Two tennis rackets
  • A boat without motor, of less than five meters of length or an aquatic slider with or without sail
  • Five used toys, when the passenger is a child

Provided that means of transportation will be a Mobile House, an Aircraft or a Yacht with private registers,
the following articles will be permitted:

  • A video reproducer
  • A bicycle with or without motor
  • Domestic clothe
  • Cookware, kitchen, and/or living room furniture's

When articles different to the previously indicated are transported and that may have a value higher to
three hundred American dollars, but less to one thousand; or up to four thousand American dollars
(in the case of compute equipment) it should be declared and paid through a bureau of Customs Taxes,
provided that, it is one of the following articles:

  • 1 Live animal
  • 10 Cans of preserved food
  • 10 Toys
  • 2 Electronic toys
  • 1 Furniture set
  • 10 Clothes pieces and accessories
  • 3 Footwear pairs
  • 1 Sport equipment
  • 1 Motorcycle or bicycle
  • 1 Piece of each home appliance
  • 1 Piece of each part of a compute equipment
  • 5 Compute programs
  • 1 Professional set
  • 2 Tool sets
  • 3 Art collection or antiquities objects
  • 20 Fantasy jewelry
  • 5 Jewelry sets
  • 20 Records, cassettes or compact disks

The inspection system in the border customs and in airports or marine ports, operate with a random selection
system or semaphore. Will be checked the person that gets the semaphore light in red.

If upon pressing the semaphore button the person gets green light will not be checked, but if there is
a difference between the statement and the articles, is applied an economic sanction of 1.5 times the value
of the not declared articles.

The person that gets the red light is checked.In the event of incurring in the lack of articles declared will exist a
sanction of 4 times the commercial value of the not declared articles.If there are doubt in this regard, you can
consulted a fiscal advisor that is found in the inspection area in borders and airports.

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