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Archive 2012 · Best way to take camera gear into Mexico
  
 
dsteelman
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Best way to take camera gear into Mexico


Hoping someone might be able to advise me on the best way to take gear into Mexico. I was planning to fill a hard shell case with a couple of studio strobes, some stands, a light modifier, etc. and check it, but after some reading it looks like that could be a problem customs- wise. I suppose I could pay duty on it if necessary....anyone have any recommendations? Thanks....


Jun 27, 2012 at 04:29 AM
Peter Figen
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Best way to take camera gear into Mexico


Are you shooting a commercial job there? Are you flying in or driving? If so, you should make every effort to do it by the book. I went through this a year and a half ago shooting for Honeywell in Mexicali, and after many long conversations it was determined that even though Mexico has signed the international carnet agreements, most of the customs agents aren't aware of that. I was told that Mexico was one of the most difficult countries to take equipment to.

What I did, and your situation will be different, was to use the same import/export company that Honeywell uses, drop all of my equipment at their Calexico office where they loaded into their van and took it through customs and delivered it to us. Unfortunately, they screwed up some of the paperwork and it took a full 26 hours to finally get our stuff. Also had to get work permits (about $20) at the border as it's illegal to do any commercial work there without one. The whole process was reversed when we left and there were no delays going the other way.

For the import/export company, every single item we were taking had to be listed with brand, model, serial numbers, what it was, value and country of origin, as there are different duty percentages from different countries.



Jun 27, 2012 at 05:55 AM
dsteelman
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Best way to take camera gear into Mexico


I'm not shooting a commercial job....we're going down for 3 weeks, then back to the US for 2 weeks, then actually moving there. I'd like to get as much gear as I can there via checked baggage but the customs restrictions have me concerned.


Jun 27, 2012 at 02:36 PM
Peter Figen
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Best way to take camera gear into Mexico


If you're moving there permanently, they're probably going to want to collect duty from anything that's going to be in the country indefinitely. I'm not sure who you talk to about doing this in a way that avoids any hassle. Good luck though.


Jun 27, 2012 at 04:33 PM
 

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Kell
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Best way to take camera gear into Mexico


strapped to an M16


Jun 27, 2012 at 04:35 PM
GoGo
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Best way to take camera gear into Mexico


Kell wrote:
strapped to an M16


BTW, any firearm or ammunition will get you a trip to a Mexican jail.
Just an FYI for you.

Be Well!




Jun 30, 2012 at 05:39 PM
Dennis M 1064
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Best way to take camera gear into Mexico


I understand there are some rarely used tunnels that start in an abandoned warehouse just south of San Diego. . .

I'm sort of partial to the M-16 thing though. That is a little of my Army side showing though.

You may consider carrying your working capitol in your sock, and your. . ."Oh, did you just drop this 50 dollar bill?!?!" money in your pocket.

We entered through Ensenada via boat. Seemed easier that way. Nobody really checked our stuff. Bid duffle bags etc. Different times I guess. Good luck, be safe. . . and don't drink the water.

Edited on Jul 04, 2012 at 02:49 AM · View previous versions



Jul 04, 2012 at 01:39 AM
DemonAstroth
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Best way to take camera gear into Mexico


If you are flying into Mexico City, after you go through immigration you pick up your luggage and go through customs. There you press a button, if it's a green light they let you through without checking your luggage, if it's a red light they go through everything.

I think my family and I, from going into Mexico maybe 20 times, have had the red light only twice. Also, you can take a lot of personal stuff. I'm trying to find the page where it says exactly what you can take as personal items, but I know it's rather generous. This is of course if it's PERSONAL items. If things are in boxes, with manuals, etc. You will probably have to do a lot of explaining and end up paying, for they'll think you're trying to sell merchandise.

Anyway, 3 weeks ago I went with 2 gripped bodies, a 300, a tilt shift lens, 135 f/2l, 85 1.8, 50 1.4, and 28-135mm, as well as a tripod, and they did not seem to care. You are bringing more equipment (lights), so it may be different then.



Jul 04, 2012 at 01:49 AM





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