Subject: Travel by Bus in Mexico
Good morning Ziners (and Frances in particular) - I have an excellent publication Pacific Mexico Handbook which includes Mazatlan all the way down to Oaxaca - it's a Lowell Thomas award winner published by Moon Travel Handbooks. I recently with some other Mexico aficionados donated a copy of this book to our local library.

You might also check out the following link:

It's a very comprehensive timetable for all Mexico bus routes, along with the name of the bus companies. A word to the wise though - it's always prudent to reserve your seat ahead of time!!

Some years ago, with two of my children in tow, we took a bus from Acapulco to Zihuatanejo. We flew out of Mexico City a day earlier than expected and there were no seats available to Zihuatanejo but they offered us standby to Acapulco and we got on it. As a result,we spent an unexpected night in Acapulco but before we went to find a hotel, my son (at that time on student exchange in Mexico) said we had to go to the bus station and reserve a seat for first thing the next morning and it was a good job he did.

Also, when traveling by bus, there can be stops made where armed militia will board and ask everyone to get off and they will search the bus. It's certainly nothing to be afraid of - just be polite and show papers if asked. There are certain sections along the Pacific coast where drug trade proliferates and they are trying to snuff it out.

It's much cheaper to do Mexico the way your son-in-law is doing it. The busses also generally run on time, are inexpensive and the first class busses are equipped with TV, snack bars, etc. - he should be quite comfortable. He should though be cautious about carrying a lot of cash - ATM's are readily available in Mexico - perhaps a pair of Tilley pants with a hidden pocket or a cash carrier he can put around his neck under his clothes in which he can keep his tourist card, passport, money, etc. And tell him to make sure he does not lose that tourist card or they will charge him big bucks to get another when he leaves.

My son, Jason, was 16 when he went to Mexico and living in Tehuacan, not too far from Puebla. He got permission from the local Rotary governor to go on the bus to Monterey and had no problems and no chaperone. It took almost a day. He has also taken a bus from the Texas border to Monterey and a lot of the passengers on the bus were illegals picked up in Texas and shipped back to Mexico - he said the Mexican border guards literally scooped all the money these people had on them when they re-entered Mexico. Thank goodness mothers don't find out about these things until after the kids have come home!!

I would like to take this opportunity to wish all of you happy holidays and a peaceful, prosperous and healthy new year filled with lots of new travel experiences.