Posted by: susankayjones | February 19, 2011

our almost trip to mexico

to live in guatemala, we are here on a “tourist visa”. upon initially entering the country, we bought 90 days of occupancy. at that point, our team had to make a trip to the immigration office to apply for a renewal.

this process (and i DO mean process) bought us another 90 days.

one of the MANY lines we had to stand in at immigration.

which brings us precisely to february18—the date of our visa expiry. upon expiry (before, actually) we were forced to leave the countryto get a 90 day extension. several surrounding countries (ie-el salvador, honduras), have an intra-country agreement whereby people can travel between these countries without needing a visa. the bummer is that visiting those countries do not “count” as leaving the country when you drive across their borders. no stamps in our passport.

so…it had to be mexico. or belize (but belize only buys us 30 more days).

tuesday morning, we headed to the border with the hopes of returning to guatemala that evening with stamped passports and renewed tourist visas. i say “hopes” because, well….just keep reading.

francisco, our pastor, was gracious to go with us—-just to make sure we were safe and could navigate all the directions/border stuff.


several hours into our trip, and only 45 minutes from the border, we came upon a loooong line of trucks/cars. we had heard rumors of a protest going on that had shut down the road to the border, but we were not sure if this was accurate information.

turns out…it was.

our first glimpse at the hold up. !

pretty genuis if you ask they sold alot of pizza

so…we decided to wait it out and found a pizza hut to hide out in for a few hours. we had come so far….we didn’t want to give up without at least waiting a bit.


playing cards at pizza hut

we had also heard it should only be a few hours until the roads were open again.

the reason they were closed? some people were protesting something that happened 30 years ago, and they were demanding payment. ah, guatemala. you really are quirky…but i do love you.

well…several hours later, we tried again.



the policia told us to go home….we were not getting across the border today.

so, we did.

stamp-less passports in hand, we went back home.

despite the failed effort, we were very grateful for many things about this day and trust that God was protecting us with this adventure.

it was a long day, and actually fun…but because we did not get our passports stamped, we are probably going to costa rica in the next few weeks! it’s definitely the cheapest place for us to fly—-so let me know any travel tips if you’ve been!



  1. Wow, crazy times. I’ll be praying that you can get all the paperwork completed in plenty of time.

  2. […] you follow my blog, you know that recently our team had a failed attempt to cross the border into Mexico for the purpose of renewing our visas. (We are required to leave the […]

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