TIJUANA STREET PHOTOGRAPHY
IS TIJUANA SAFE TO VISIT
Yes, absolutely. The parts of Tijuana that we visit are safe and any tour you go on with the image guide will have safety as the absolute highest priority. But just like any major city in the World going down the wrong street at the wrong time could possibly put you in danger. This is why going with those that know the place well is always a worthwhile investment in itself. We at the image guide take safety seriously and don’t venture into any area we haven’t extensively scouted out and found to be safe. Being streetwise (or Trucha in Tijuana) is a part of being a a good street photographer, when you’re comfortable in your surroundings better images can be captured. But honestly you need not worry. Lots of fear mongering and false information gets out about Tijuana, most of which is just outright false. Tijuana is a happy place where we feel safe, we wouldn’t be doing these tours if it was anything else.
What are the border wait times like?
Crossing by foot is by far the fastest way to cross the border. Crossing in a car without a sentry can take hours. We don’t need to worry about that as we cross at the new pedestrian west crossing. Getting through to Tijuana takes 5-10mins, and that includes filling out the day visa form at customs. Crossing back over to the US usually takes the same amount of time. However, at any point that could change for whatever reason so those times are not set in stone. We have never experienced a line more than 25mins at the times we cross back over to USA.
WHERE DO THE TOURS MEET AT?
Our main meeting point is at The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf in Las Americas Outlet, San Ysidro US, which very close to the border crossing. and close to paid parking
MEETING POINT ADDRESS - 4463 Camino De La Plaza #111, San Diego, CA 92173
If we have anyone meeting up on the Mexican side then the meeting point will be at the entrance/exit point of the Pedestrian West Border crossing - Zona Urbana Rio Tijuana, 22010 Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico
Getting to the border from san diego?
TROLLEY - We highly recommend taking the trolley to San Ysidro from San Diego. It takes roughly 45mins from Downtown San Diego and costs $5 for a day pass which will get you to and from San Ysidro. Once at the San Ysidro Trolley stop you will need to walk to the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf meeting point which is roughly 5-10mins away. You can also get off a stop or 2 early and take the bus ride to the pedestrian west border stop, this service is part of the trolley service and is covered on a day pass. Please plan your route and check for updates on price via the official website https://www.sdmts.com/
CAR - Several paid parking lots are available at the Border. These lots can be expensive and sometime, mainly on the weekends, they’re full which is why we recommend taking the trolley instead. You would be very lucky to find all day street parking.
is Parking available at the border?
Yes, but they’re often full and can be expensive.
Can I use use US dollars in tijuana?
United States Dollar is widely used in Tijuana. Bring small notes, 1 dollar bills are great! You may find it hard to get change for bills over $20. Mexican Pesos is obviously the currency, but it is recommended that you stay clear of the new $500 bill. Smaller bills are always best.
Can I bring a friend/partner along for free if they don’t bring a camera?
No, everyone on the tour must pay the required fee.
Do I need a passport to visit Tijuana?
YES. All foreigners require a valid and current passport to enter Mexico. You will also require you passport to reenter the US. For non US citizens you must present a valid GreenCard, Tourist Visa
-American Citizens must have a passport or passport card to walk across the border. Sometimes you can walk straight through into Mexico without any checks at all. Entering the US from Tijuana is a different story all together and you need your passport/passport card. We hear lots of rumors about crossing and entering back into the US with only your driving license or birth certificate. This is not a good idea as you will go to secondary inspection for a citizenship check which can take a long time.
-Permanent Residents need both a passport to enter Mexico, and a UNITED STATES OF AMERICAN PERMANENT RESIDENT card (Green Card) to reenter the USA. Your foreign passport alone will not be enough to get back into the USA without paying a Fee for a VISA. Bring a PASSPORT TO ENTER MEXICO & A GREEN CARD TO CROSS BACK TO THE US
-Citizens of other countries must carry a valid passport with a valid I-94 or multiple entry visa or visa waiver to re-enter the United States; please verify details with the Mexican Consulate before traveling.
On most occasions when entering into Tijuana you will be required to fill out a Mexico Visitor's Permit which is free for our tours since they’re day trips. Staying longer requires a fee to be paid which costs about $22
******THE IMAGE GUIDE IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANYONE NOT GRANTED ENTRY INTO MEXICO OR RE-ENTRY BACK TO THE US. NOR WILL REFUNDS BE GIVEN IF YOU FALL VICTIM TO UNFORESEEN CIRCUMSTANCES REGARDING THESE BORDER CROSSINGS.******
what is your cancellation policy?
We don’t offer cancellations. We can switch dates if needed, and upon availability, if you’re unable to attend the originally booked date.
Do you offer custom tours?
Yes, if you’re interested in a us creating a private tour or workshop for you or your company please get in touch with us. We love to create group tours for corporate clients. Private tours and workshops are a great way to fast track your street photography skills. Please email us using the contact form here
Do you offer 1on1 workshops?
Yes, when we are not taking groups to Tijuana we are often taking individuals on custom 1on1 tours/workshops that are catered towards your photography needs. All levels are welcome to inquire from pros that want to skip wandering into the unknown, and for beginners that want to fast track into becoming a very competent street photographer. Get in touch today
What camera gear should I bring?
Camera- DSLR, Mirrorless, Compact, Point and Shoot, 35mm film, Medium Format film and even camera phones can be used to make great images. Most cameras will work fine. The ability to control the functions is the most important thing when picking the right camera to bring. If you have an interest in photography and are looking into these tours then it’s very likely you have a suitable camera already. Send us an email if in doubt.
Lenses- One lens is best. Zoom or Prime. Telephoto lenses are not suited for these street tours. A 35mm is ideal, as are wider lenses and lenses with a focal length up to 50mm.
Less is more- Bring the essentials only, sometimes having to much gear can hamper your thinking and the weight of heavy camera gear spare can make the tour miserable as we do plenty of walking. One lens, one camera, spare batteries and memory cards is all we take.
How much walking is done - We do a lot of walking, but we take plenty breaks to rest the legs. We walk roughly 4-7kms throughout the day so comfy walking shoes are a must. Comfort over fashion is highly recommended.