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  #1  
Old 4 Apr 2011
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stranded at el salvador (metapan)/ guatemala border (2+ days so far)

here's the scoop if anyone has guat or el salvador ideas:


1) i cross the border south from guatemala to el salvador and cancel my motorcycle import paper for guatemala as i do not plan to return
2) my plans change a month later and i decide to drive back north through guatemala
3) i cross the border north from el salvador to guatemala and cancel my import paper leaving el salvador
4) at the same border, but on the guatemala side i check my bike into aduana and am told that because i had originally left guatemala and cenceled my papers i cannot return for 90 days
5) so my only option is to return to el salvador
6) when i attempt to return a few moments later i am pleasantly informed that i cannot reenter el salvador until 60 days for the same reason
7) so i find myself stranded between 2 borders in no man's land
8) i am put in touch with some shady border lawyers who originally say if i pay $100US they can get me a document called a TO i can use to cross the country (guatemala) to mexico
9) then i am informed that i need a police escort across the country in a maximum timeframe of 24 hours to mexico- it goes from $250 to $400
10) then it gets more complicated and they say its more like $500 +++++ and it keeps going
11) but i never saw an end to this and who knows how far they will go with it- then it could be a chain reaction to mexico
12) i was told that the bike at the border in aduana hands is $30/ day as it sits- so i found a small hotel with a friendly family in the border space and came up with the idea that i would leave the bike with them until next fall (past the 90 day timeframe), fly home, and return to ride it the rest of the way to s america then.
13) once the shady lawyer catches wind of this he relays to me that the goverment will only permit me to leave it at the hotel for 20 days- then renigs knowing i am seeking outside help and says that aduanda will not permit me to leave it at all.
14) left with no options, i fortunately have a helpful friend in el salvador and worked out leaving it in the border space at the friendly hotel- without knowing who (aduana) will try to squeeze me on this so i may never be able to get the bike out, or have it gone when i return.

what a blast!
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  #2  
Old 4 Apr 2011
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The information you got on the Guatemalan side of the border is correct , legally you have to wait 90 days before you can reenter your bike in the country .
A friend of mine had the same problem , a month ago . He was able to get a Temporary Import Permit at the border without signature of the aduana guy , and it was not entered in the aduana computer neither .
It might be cheaper to pay the import taxes for your bike then the $500.00 police escort service
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  #3  
Old 5 Apr 2011
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I have no solution but I do have a question.
Nest year I plan on a 6 week trip thru CA. What is this law about? I have been thru Guatemala and Belize and never heard of this 90 day rule. Where does it apply?
Thanks
brian
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  #4  
Old 6 Apr 2011
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persistance beats resistance

I have no idea about the law in Guatemala and El Salvador but I have had my share of excitement at Central American borders. I for one am mighty glad I don't have to pass through them again.

My last 8 hour wait at the El Salvador/Honduras border was rectified with a change of shift at Aduana. Granted my issue wasn't the same as yours, it involved paperwork that hadn't been cancelled 18 months prior to me re-entering El Salvador, but by staying (relatively) calm and waiting for a change of personel in the evening my issue was eventually resolved.

In Latin America most things are possible, and to date I've managed to avoid greasing palms to get what I need. I sincerely hope that you can avoid that situation too. See if "persistance beats resistance"... good luck. I'm feeling for you.

Graham
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  #5  
Old 6 Apr 2011
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Brianb

If you cancel your TVIP when you exit Guatemala you have to wait 90 days before re entering. You do not cancel your permit when you leave if you are coming back, they let you keep the permit for the duration of the permit for re entry. Hope that makes sense

cyrusa
After riding in Guatemala for 2 months I was never asked for paper work,you could ride accross and leave via La Mesilla at an opertun moment, did you keep your mexican TVIP when you went south ? Some let you keep it others dont. Search Adventure rider for Oso Blancos ride report and near the end you will see how he handled the situation.
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  #6  
Old 6 Apr 2011
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The problem is that you cancelled your Guate TVIP
when you knew, or did not know, you would be coming back within the timeframe it gave you. Never cancel it.
Save the paper document which they leave with you when you check out of GT . IF YOU DO RETURN within its valid term it will really speed up getting the new permit to enter GT with the bike.If you come back after it expires , no big deal.
If you never come back it does not matter.
Sorry, this advice is of little use to you cyrusa but it is for anybody else who wishes to avoid a similar dilemma
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  #7  
Old 6 Apr 2011
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I don't know if you've already explored this option or if it applies in your situation. El Salvador offered me a 24 hour transit permit when they were having computer problems, preventing them from issuing a temporary import permit. If that works then it would at least get you away from the sharks at the border who've probably smelled blood by now.

In my case I ended up getting the proper permit after all but it's worth asking. Maybe, as has been already suggested, wait for a shift change as well. Of course it may just shift the problem 24 hours down the road to another border crossing but you're not exactly in a good position right now anyway.


...Michelle
www.scrabblebiker.com
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  #8  
Old 6 Apr 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cyrusa View Post
here's the scoop if anyone has guat or el salvador ideas:


1) i cross the border south from guatemala to el salvador and cancel my motorcycle import paper for guatemala as i do not plan to return
2) my plans change a month later and i decide to drive back north through guatemala
3) i cross the border north from el salvador to guatemala and cancel my import paper leaving el salvador
4) at the same border, but on the guatemala side i check my bike into aduana and am told that because i had originally left guatemala and cenceled my papers i cannot return for 90 days
5) so my only option is to return to el salvador
6) when i attempt to return a few moments later i am pleasantly informed that i cannot reenter el salvador until 60 days for the same reason
7) so i find myself stranded between 2 borders in no man's land
8) i am put in touch with some shady border lawyers who originally say if i pay $100US they can get me a document called a TO i can use to cross the country (guatemala) to mexico
9) then i am informed that i need a police escort across the country in a maximum timeframe of 24 hours to mexico- it goes from $250 to $400
10) then it gets more complicated and they say its more like $500 +++++ and it keeps going
11) but i never saw an end to this and who knows how far they will go with it- then it could be a chain reaction to mexico
12) i was told that the bike at the border in aduana hands is $30/ day as it sits- so i found a small hotel with a friendly family in the border space and came up with the idea that i would leave the bike with them until next fall (past the 90 day timeframe), fly home, and return to ride it the rest of the way to s america then.
13) once the shady lawyer catches wind of this he relays to me that the goverment will only permit me to leave it at the hotel for 20 days- then renigs knowing i am seeking outside help and says that aduanda will not permit me to leave it at all.
14) left with no options, i fortunately have a helpful friend in el salvador and worked out leaving it in the border space at the friendly hotel- without knowing who (aduana) will try to squeeze me on this so i may never be able to get the bike out, or have it gone when i return.

what a blast!
It sounds like you managed to cancel your CA4 ? From entering Guatemala you have 90 days until you exit Nicaragua.

I can't help with your situation, but for future travelers they need to remember about the CA4 agreement. (IMO)
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  #9  
Old 7 Apr 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BruceP View Post
From entering Guatemala you have 90 days until you exit Nicaragua.
(IMO)
what?
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  #10  
Old 7 Apr 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GR8ADV View Post
what?
When you enter one of the CA4 (Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua) you get a 90 day tourist permit for the entire CA4. In other words, leaving Guatemala and going to El Salvador does not restart the 90 day clock. Unfortunately, you still have to do the border dance with your motorcycle papers. Meaning you need a new permit for each country, for the bike.

I have read that Honduras has been requiring check in and out with immigration for tourists, but I can't swear to that. When I was there last in 2007, they honored the CA4 thing for migracion, but not aduana (customs).
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  #11  
Old 7 Apr 2011
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okay, I need more details on this.

I am in Costa Rica right now and my 90 days permit expire on 4/9.

Will I be okay to re-enter Nicaragua? I canceled my permit when I left, which is also about 90 days ago.
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  #12  
Old 10 Apr 2011
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As you are now in Costa Rica you are outside the C4 and if you old permit expires today you are pefectly okay. You will just get a new 90 day permit issued when you enter Nicaragua on your way north.
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