New rules that will be effective on June 1, 2009 will change what you need to cross the U.S./Mexico border at Cochise County‘s two ports of entry.
Make sure you have the required documentation before you travel!
Before entering Mexico, make sure everyone traveling with you has an active passport or a passport card. If you are staying for more than 72 hours (3 days) or travel more than 21 kilometers (about 7 miles) into Mexico, you and everyone in your party must obtain a tourist card. You must also get Mexican auto insurance and a permit for the automobile.
To acquire a permit, you must submit evidence of citizenship, title for the car, car registration certificate, a driver’s license and credit card in the name of the driver, to the Banjercito branch located at the Mexican Customs office at the Agua Prieta port of entry and pay a processing fee. Naco does not have the capacity to issue car permits.
When returning to the U.S., make sure you have proof of citizenship. As of June 1, 2009, the only accepted proof is a passport or passport card.
For more information about traveling to Mexico, log onto the U.S. State Department’s website. It is recommended you know the current laws on purchasing medication or alcoholic beverages. You can spend U.S. dollars in Mexico’s border towns, but you can also purchase pesos at banks or exchange houses.
There are two Nacos: one in the United States and the other just across the border into Mexico. Naco, Arizona, is about a 15-minute drive from Bisbee, and you can easily walk across the border. Park on the U.S. side and cross directly into the center of Naco, Mexico. There are several good places to eat and some stores.
Agua Prieta is in Mexico, adjacent to Douglas, Arizona. A community of approximately 125,000 people, you have a wide variety of shops and restaurants. Beautiful Mexican floor and wall tiles are available in Agua Prieta. When entering Agua Prieta from Douglas, it’s easy to park your car in Douglas at the secure pay parking lot and walk across. Take Pan American Highway from Highway 80 and turn left on J Avenue (also known as Customs Avenue) just before the border.
South of the Border
If you’re looking for a more adventurous trip south of the border, you might want to take a short trip from either Naco or Agua Prieta can take you to the historic mining community of Cananea, Father Kino’s missions or through the beautiful Rio Sonoran valley.
For more information on traveling to Mexico, talk with the staff at the Douglas or Bisbee Visitor Centers or visit http://www.gotosonora.com.