When we mentioned that we were RV newbies while purchasing our Georgetown a couple told us to visit http://www.travelwithkevinandruth.com. We did and it turned out they were from our hometown. While in town we invited them over and we had a great chat about full time RV’ing and Caravaning in Mexico. In fact it sounded so great we signed up. Being new to RV’ing and not familiar with Mexico except for the media fear mongering, it stood to reason at the time that travelling in numbers was the greater option. But I am not saying it is the only option, we were surprise to meet fellow travellers of all ages from different parts of the world who RV travel in Mexico solo.
“Everywhere we went was special, all the people we met exceptional. “
The media has greatly emphasize the dark side of a country that has overcome their share of revolutions, corruption and of course the drama of the cartels. Not to blame the media entirely, they are only giving people what they want, shock, gossip, drama and negativity. Bad news sells. Everyone we met and told about our plans to RV to Mexico had a Horror story to tell. If you let this darkened your travel plans and prevents you from seeing a beautiful country, you are missing out. However, to be honest with my readers we put too much faith in the Caravan, I would suggest to anyone planning a caravan trip is to do your own research. Depending entirely on the Caravan leaders can leave you in the dark and vulnerable. Here are some of the resources I found helpful which I should have reviewed these before the trip.
Traveler’s Guide to Mexican Camping: Explore Mexico, Guatemala, and Belize with Your RV or Tent
by Mike Church and Terri Church
Although there might be changes since 2009, this guide was helpful for a good overview of what to expect while travelling in Mexico.
It is helpful to know which areas that you should stay away from. Believe me there are more beautiful safe places than bad.
Here are a few tips based on our experience:
If you can learn the language or some of the essential words, it will make your life easier if you can communicate.
Although the Caravan company will give you logs to follow, bring a map of where you will be going, google map, basecamp or any other map of your route. Know where you’re going and do your research.
Even if you have all your faith in your Caravan you are ultimately responsible for yourself and your RV.
Drive safe – ask questions-research!
Is travelling by Caravan for everybody?
Some of the things to ponder before you embark on a Caravan:
- First of all find out the obvious, what is included in that big chunk of money you put out to be a Caravan member. We travelled with” Caravanas de Mexico”. While you read the reviews of the company, remember to also research the wagon master. A bad wagon master can make all the difference between a great trip or a nightmare. Find people who has travelled with this wagon master and private message them for an honest opinion. Companies tend to put on social media and web sites only the good.
Your caravan friends will be with you 24/7 for and extended period of time, people come with different personalities, issues, preferences, demands, which will require patience and acceptance.
Your caravan friend will come in various levels of health, which means some may get sick and have to be hospitalized which can delay you caravan. The same goes for frequent bathroom stops.
Your caravan friends will be driving Vans, campers, fifth wheels, class A, B or C in different conditions. Some will be poorly maintained and result in breakdowns.
Your caravan friends will have different driving skills that you, bad driving skills of course can cause accidents but also can wear and tear on RV”s and result in breakdowns.
You are at the mercy of the Caravan, they have everything planned for you, so if you are a stickler for autonomy, a caravan might be a wrong choice
The schedules if often demanding, up at the crack of dawn for a full day of driving anywhere between 4-8 hours. And a lot of activities planned for the following day.
I would love to hear the opinions of others who have travelled via Caravan:
Was it a good experience? Would you do it again?