CROSSING THE BORDER
If you are a U.S. citizen, a current photo I.D. is sufficient to cross into Baja California. If you are not a U.S. citizen, you will need a passport with a visa to cross into México. If you have a Mexican work permit, keep it with you at all times (to be valid, it should be stamped when first entering México; and again when leaving).
As a tourist on holiday, you are allowed personal luggage, a reasonable amount of household items, a personal still camera or camcorder and a laptop computer and printer. You are allowed to bring $50 worth of groceries into the country.
U.S citizens under age 18. If traveling with a birth certificate, photo ID is not required but is recommended. Children under 18 years of age traveling to México without both legal guardians must have a notarized letter of consent from the non-traveling parent (s) granting permission for the child to travel. Adults with infants too young to have received a birth certificate must have a notarized letter from the pediatrician or hospital of birth identifying the traveling adult’s name and the adult’s relationship to the infant.
Crossing With Pets. You may bring your dog or cat with you, but you must have a veterinary certificate showing proof that your pet has had all of his or her required shots.
Crossing With Personal Tools and Equipment. As a tourist, you are not permitted to bring tools, equipment or non-laptop computers with you. These items should be crossed through the commercial crossing at Otay Mesa. You may bring small amounts of commercial goods into México if you drive through the farthest lane on the right, at San Ysidro, and declare the goods. You will be asked to state the value of what you are bringing into the country. You will be required to pay 20-30% duty on the declared value. If you have your work permit, you are allowed to bring your “tools of trade” with you, If they are pre-registered at a Mexican Consulate, and you can provide the registration stamped inventory of the items upon entering México. If you have your work permit buthave not registered your “tools of trade”, then your equipment must be crossed through Otay Mesa.
Being so close to Los Angeles and San Diego, the concept of moving equipment, materials, props, set dressing, wardrobe and supplies in and out of México may seem as simple as loading a truck and driving across the border; but the process is more complex. It is therefore important that all applicable regulations imposed by both the U.S. and Mexican governments are adhered to. Infringement of the rules could result in the delay or confiscation of your shipments and/or the loss of future cooperation from border officials.
Crossing With Food, Liquor, Flowers and Plants. As someone who is living and working in México (with a work permit), you are allowed to bring $400-worth of groceries into the country each month. Liquor, fresh flowers and live plants are prohibited whether you have a work permit or are entering as a tourist.
Crossing With Documents. You are allowed to cross documents (such as mail, files or daily production office pouches). Label the items -- Documents Only/No Commercial Value. Videocassettes or small supplies placed in envelopes do not constitute documents and should not be included with documents.