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[*] posted on 6-8-2009 at 01:05 PM
Better than SENTRI ?


I don't know... maybe for a few...

...but we may find out verrrry soon, right here at bajanomad.com....

:?:

Speed up border crossings, binational leaders say
Delays costing region 51,570 jobs, $5.1 billion
By Sandra Dibble
February 9, 2008

"...Oscar Escobedo Carignan, Baja California's secretary of tourism, said U.S. visitors returning from medical appointments in Tijuana are now routed to a special lane, and the government plans to expand the program to other crossers that bring revenue to Baja California."

From:
http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/business/20080209-9999-1b...

:biggrin:




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[*] posted on 6-8-2009 at 01:15 PM


I'm not sure which method is most alluring...a root canal or getting a Sentri Pass although I appreciate all efforts to bring the nightmare zone out of the dark ages and into the twenty first century.
Also....if they would quit treating everybody like radical Muslims, that would be nice too.
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[*] posted on 6-8-2009 at 02:16 PM


send Oscar an e-mail and tell him if they simply organized the Mexican lanes at the crossing they would have much shorter wait times.

Filling up that sad excuse for a "medical emergency" lane with medical tourists isn't smart and is really just a cheap deception- it only cuts half the line and you still have to battle to get into a real lane for the next half hour of playing "chicken" before you approach the inspection area.

If they were seriuos about a medical evacuation lane- it would be poled-off all the way fromthe gate to the inspection booth so it would be fast and no one could cut in. But then ICE wouldn't buy into it- because one inspector would be sitting at the booth all day with very few cars to inspect.




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[*] posted on 6-8-2009 at 02:30 PM


Geez. Someone noticed the economic cost of the delays. I'm extremely small potatoes in the economic sense, but I can assure you that I greatly cut back on weekend trips to Ensenada just because of the hassle factor. I'm certain there are many others who would attest to the same. People with second home were far more likely to face the delays because they had an investment that would be sitting idle otherwise. but folks like me who frequented an array of hotels and restaurants were much more easily dissuaded. Nostaglic as it may be, I still recall the many times when the officer would look at us and wave us through, or maybe ask where we were born. Now with the passport or similar docs a requirement, Uncle Sam not only makes us wait forever, but can now compile a data base of everywhere an d when we go. And I swear I've never harbored a terrorist in my trunk.
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[*] posted on 6-8-2009 at 03:19 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by Woooosh
Filling up that sad excuse for a "medical emergency" lane with medical tourists isn't smart and is really just a cheap deception- it only cuts half the line and you still have to battle to get into a real lane for the next half hour...
I've never seen it put forth that this was a lane for "emergency" use. It's a lane reserved by Tijuana to benefit whom they choose to let "cut" the line considerably - and has been reserved for economic benefit of the community - and they've targeted tourists that are spending money locally.... first with medical tourism, and now with.... ???

:biggrin:

[Edited on 6-8-2009 by BajaNomad]




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[*] posted on 6-8-2009 at 03:24 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by Woooosh
If they were seriuos about a medical evacuation lane- it would be poled-off all the way fromthe gate to the inspection booth so it would be fast and no one could cut in. But then ICE wouldn't buy into it- because one inspector would be sitting at the booth all day with very few cars to inspect.


I'm not so sure about that. If it ever becomes truly effective, I have a feeling that there will be a lot more people visiting their "doctors" in TJ, more than enough to keep one lane busy during daytime hours. The scam possibilities are endless.




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[*] posted on 6-8-2009 at 03:44 PM


I wonder if Anthony's and others in the mix can organize a special lane? Fishbuck could throw away his Sentri Pass.
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[*] posted on 6-8-2009 at 07:49 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by BajaNomad
Quote:
Originally posted by Woooosh
Filling up that sad excuse for a "medical emergency" lane with medical tourists isn't smart and is really just a cheap deception- it only cuts half the line and you still have to battle to get into a real lane for the next half hour...
I've never seen it put forth that this was a lane for "emergency" use. It's a lane reserved by Tijuana to benefit whom they choose to let "cut" the line considerably - and has been reserved for economic benefit of the community - and they've targeted tourists that are spending money locally.... first with medical tourism, and now with.... ???

:biggrin:

[Edited on 6-8-2009 by BajaNomad]


You sure about that? I think it was a medical lane and you needed to show some sort of ID (or a Ben Franklin ID) to get through- then it was a buy-a-restaurnat/shopping card and show you receipt to pass though the gate lane, and now it is a medical tourist lane. Maybe you are correct and it just depends on the day and the casue du juor. For sure it is no express lane though.




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[*] posted on 6-8-2009 at 11:04 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by Woooosh
You sure about that? I think it was a medical lane and you needed to show some sort of ID... then it was a buy-a-restaurnat/shopping card and show you receipt... and now it is a medical tourist lane... For sure it is no express lane though.


It's still all the above Woooosh. Tijuana owns the land to access the San Ysidro crossing, and they can do whatever they please with it.

They wish to encourage $$$ to be spent, and the Tourism department is running the lane that can provide a significant "shortcut" to the line. After targeting the "medical" tourists, they are now setting their sights on other tourists....

(more later)

:coolup:




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[*] posted on 6-10-2009 at 02:15 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by Woooosh
Filling up that sad excuse for a "medical emergency" lane with medical tourists isn't smart and is really just a cheap

To clear this up:
It has NEVER been intended for use as a medical emergency lane. It was designed by the Economic development department of Tijuana and one sector of tourism was chosen for this program and that was the medical sector so it was a medical tourism lane to start. A medical clinic, hospital, dentist, etc would enroll in the program and would give the passes to their patients for the return trip across the border.
In January of this year, as one of the many efforts put in place to reactivate tourism they opened it up to other tourism sectors and some businesses signed up from Ensenada, Rosarito and Tijuana. These businesses came up with the idea that if you visited them and made a purchase of $1000 pesos or more they would give you a pass to use that lane, the pass is stamped by the Tijuana Convention and Visitors Bureau and the merchant, has a space for the name of the guest and vehicle plates and description and is to be presented at the access gate along with the purchase receipt for $1000 pesos or more. http://www.tijuanaonline.org/EN/FastTrack/
Our company name is soon to apear on the above site as well as on the secretary of tourism's web page

In talking to different people from this board and other tourists, especially ones not interested in purchasing from the few merchants enrolled in the program, either because they are not interested in staying at a particular hotel or dinning at a particular restaurant, because their visit to Baja California is for other purposes, and also because of the set minimum purchase of $1000 pesos (translates to about 77 dollars at 13 x1) witch to many is way to much, we approached CANIRAC Tijuana - Tecate (the restaurants association of Tijuana and Tecate) , yes, the same people that took Baja By The Sea to San Diego and also the Tijuana Convention and Visitors Bureau to explore the possibility of developing a restaurants discount card that a visitor of Baja California could purchase and that would offer discounts at the different restaurants affiliated to the restaurant association. These discounts range from 10% to 50% off and with the purchase of the card the visitor receives 2 (two) passes for the special lane. Since members of this association are not all expensive restaurants, some sell burritos, some Chinese food, some sushi, some Mexican, we took a look at the majority of the menus and an average full meal for two persons was about $400 pesos (translated at 13x1= $30.77 Dollars) The Convention and Visitors Bureau agreed to allow us to promote this card including the special lane passes with a minimum purchase of $400 pesos.
So now with this new concept you can be on your way to see the whales in San Ignacio, fishing in San Quintin or La Paz, camping at Bahia de Los Angeles or Bahia Concepcion or just taking advantage of the peso exchange to go grocery shopping south of the border, with the fast track passes you receive when you purchase the Restaurant Discount Card all you will need is a receipt from one of the restaurants reflecting your purchase and you are set.
http://forums.bajanomad.com/viewthread.php?tid=38963




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[*] posted on 6-11-2009 at 08:25 AM


Thanks, fdt.



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[*] posted on 6-11-2009 at 10:59 AM


I think it's easier to just ask my security guard friend at a medical clinic for a gate pass. Besides- I haven't seen the line backed-up past that gate in a while.

How peeed off will some American tourist be who gets the discount card, eats at the restaurant (or shops at a participating store), gets his form filled out and stamped and then goes to the border to find a shorter line than where the booth drops you off? Think they will try that twice? Nope.

All the people working hard on this "solution" would serve TJ and Mexico better by addressing and confronting the real causes of slow touirsm (it's not the lines stoooopid). Way funny is the part about americans coming to TJ to grocery shop. Every Mexican shopper who can get across the border shops at the CostCo in Chula Vista or the nice Malls - not the ones in TJ. Why is that? Maybe the quality and price of the itmes sold there or the 10% tax? I have visited all the TJ CostCo's. Just like Home Depot- they carry the same name but that's about it- not even close to the same shopping experience. Besides, they raise the prices in TJ quickly to match the dollar rate- there is no peso advantage that I have found.

BUT, If you could convince the affluent Mexicans (who have cars) to stay on their side of te border to shop and dine, that would help TJ more wouldn't it? It would seem a "Buy and Dine at home in Mexico" program would make more sense than creating this complicated system to get the few Americans who do visit TJ back home to the USA faster. Why won't Mexicans shop and dine at home and save TJ ??!

[Edited on 6-11-2009 by Woooosh]




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[*] posted on 6-11-2009 at 02:16 PM


No point having a war of words with the unarmed.

It's really this simple... When Mexicans think it's smart to shop in Mexico, I will. When Mexican business people think it's safe enough to return to Mexico to live- then I will know it is. If you can't honestly get Mexicans to prefer to shop and live in Mexcio (and I really mean TJ) why push so hard for us Americans to? Set an example we can believe.

[Edited on 6-11-2009 by Woooosh]




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[*] posted on 6-11-2009 at 03:21 PM


The "do as I say and not as I do excuse" just doesn't pass the smell test. I'm not Mexican- the example is for Mexicans to display with their pesos and their feet. The USA did set an example but it clearly didn't flow south. (I am talking TJ/Rosarito/Ensenada here- so the people in Baja Sur can exhale now. )

What I clearly said was: When the Mexicans with the means to shop, dine, invest and live in TJ/Rosarito/Ensenada prefer to shop, dine, invest and live in Mexico instead of the USA- I will believe what you say. Clearly they don't.

Why should I shop at the TJ CostCo when the Chula Vista ones are packed with mexican plates? Why didn't they shop in Mexico and pay the 10% sales tax? You spend all this effort trying to make a system to make it easy for Americans to spend money in Mexico- but why won't Mexicans shop there? I won't even go into the dining, public saftey and safe housing issues.

Tijuana needs to sit quiet, shut it's mouth, take it's lumps and wait for the winds to change. Programs like this just make it look more desperate and pathetic IMHO. and that is hard to do. How is that arguable??

[Edited on 6-11-2009 by Woooosh]




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thumbup.gif posted on 6-14-2009 at 12:21 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by Woooosh
The "do as I say and not as I do excuse" just doesn't pass the smell test. I'm not Mexican- the example is for Mexicans to display with their pesos and their feet. The USA did set an example but it clearly didn't flow south. (I am talking TJ/Rosarito/Ensenada here- so the people in Baja Sur can exhale now. )

What I clearly said was: When the Mexicans with the means to shop, dine, invest and live in TJ/Rosarito/Ensenada prefer to shop, dine, invest and live in Mexico instead of the USA- I will believe what you say. Clearly they don't.

Why should I shop at the TJ CostCo when the Chula Vista ones are packed with mexican plates? Why didn't they shop in Mexico and pay the 10% sales tax? You spend all this effort trying to make a system to make it easy for Americans to spend money in Mexico- but why won't Mexicans shop there? I won't even go into the dining, public saftey and safe housing issues.

Tijuana needs to sit quiet, shut it's mouth, take it's lumps and wait for the winds to change. Programs like this just make it look more desperate and pathetic IMHO. and that is hard to do. How is that arguable??

[Edited on 6-11-2009 by Woooosh]


You Got That Right .. :lol::tumble::tumble::lol::lol:




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[*] posted on 6-14-2009 at 05:12 PM


BTW if you do have an emergency, they let you in the line by going thru mexican customs and they open the gate that is right at the border on the far left side, the same one they use to return cars. I know because that is the way we took my mom on an ambulance once.



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[*] posted on 6-15-2009 at 12:45 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by fdt
BTW if you do have an emergency, they let you in the line by going thru mexican customs and they open the gate that is right at the border on the far left side, the same one they use to return cars. I know because that is the way we took my mom on an ambulance once.


I've seen ambulance go through there with lights flashing. People even moved to the side to let it through faster. Everyone understands that it could be their mother in the ambulance next time. It's too bad it takes an emergency to bring out the nice in people- but at least it is there down deep somewhere.

woooosh-note: Years ago the border was all honking horns in every lane all day long. What made people stop doing that? Now when you hear someone lay on their horn- it stands out.




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[*] posted on 6-15-2009 at 03:10 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by Woooosh
woooosh-note: Years ago the border was all honking horns in every lane all day long. What made people stop doing that? Now when you hear someone lay on their horn- it stands out.



They [some] used to do that when there were lots of cars and the tempo would start to drag. People were'nt used to slow crossings.
Now, it's always slow and everybody knows the horn is a useless noise and there's no reason to get impatient.
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[*] posted on 6-15-2009 at 05:16 PM


Oh. Futility leads to complacency. Why didn't I think of that? I thought maybe it was associated with the increase in retail commerce there. It's hard to drive, lay on the horn and eat the freshly-fried papas without spilling salsa. As a food court it's getting better and better actually.



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[*] posted on 8-26-2009 at 09:49 AM
Darn


Quote:
Originally posted by Woooosh
Oh. Futility leads to complacency. Why didn't I think of that? I thought maybe it was associated with the increase in retail commerce there. It's hard to drive, lay on the horn and eat the freshly-fried papas without spilling salsa. As a food court it's getting better and better actually.


It's been twenty years since I crossed the border, and that last crossing made me stop and think about going back for this long... and I'm getting my SENTRI pass on the 8/31/09.

Now, I read your post and start getting hungry... things have changed big time at the border crossing... the wait may have not been too bad, with certain exceptions.. the food sounds good this morning to me..;D;D




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