• Joe GED Goes To Mexico


       My employer insisted that I take a vacation as I had too many hours on the books.  I've always wanted to travel to Mazatlan, Sinaloa, Mexico.  Living within 11 miles of the border, it was a no-brainer to fly from Tijuana (as opposed to the HUGE expense of flying from San Diego).  Naturally, my destination was beyond the "free zone" and, coupled with the new Trump administration, frought with potential big dollar charges.

      Since I already have a passport, I decided the departing from Tijuana would be cheaper.  Continuing along my cheap line, I applied for a Mexico Visa to allow me travel without having to go through Mexican Customs at every stop.  That cost me 500-pesos (I realize the exchange rate varies daily, but let's keep it simple by agreeing that it's 10-pesos per $1 USD).  I could have applied for the Visa on the flight (for 600-pesos) or entered through Mexican Customs in Mazatlan (for 550-pesos).

      I researched every Mexican National Air Carrier and determined (with the use of my Spanish-English Dictionary) that Volaris was the most economical flight advertised.  My round-trip ticket cost me 3,066-pesos (or $306.60 USD).  What a DEAL!  Flights originating from San Diego started at $500 - USD.  I booked and was ready to go on the 2.5 hour flight to Mazatlan.  Upon my departure date, I crossed the border, got a taxi to the airport for 200-pesos ($20), a pretty good bargain as a US Shuttle would run around $50 or more.

       At check in, the truth was finally revealed.  Here's the true cost of that round trip ticket (remember - cost listed is one way so you need to double for round trip).  VOLARIS "ADDITIONAL CHARGES" OF LOW COST FLIGHT (Their slogan - "Pay for only what you need"):

    Seat (required): 100-pesos ($10/1 way)

    Seat Belt (required): 50-pesos ($5/1 way)

    Emergency Equipment (required: in case of an accident, oxygen/flotation device): 500-pesos ($50/1 way)

    Toilet Use (optional): 50-pesos each use/figure only once ($5/1 way)

    Toilet Paper (optional): 10-pesos per square/average of 10 sqaures minimum ($10/1 way)

    Water (optional): (2oz cup is free/5 minutes after take-off) 12oz bottle for 30-pesos ($3/1 way)

    In-Flight Snacks (optional): Average of 45-pesos per small/12-oz bag (one) of chips for 45-pesos ($4.50 ea/1 way)

    SO: My total round trip flight was actually $481.60, a savings of $18.40.  Oh well, it was a fun five days.