On April 10th, 2013 – the Boquillas Border Crossing (officially known as the “Boquillas Port of Entry”) reopened after being closed for more than a decade, officially welcoming visitors back to Boquillas del Carmen and the Maderas del Carmen region of northern Mexico.
The following “Frequently Asked Questions” (FAQs) are intended to provide the most up-to-date and accurate information about the costs and logistics of using the Boquillas Port of Entry to visit Mexico:
When is the Port of Entry open? The Boquillas Port of Entry is open Wednesday through Sunday from 9am to 6pm, and is closed Mondays and Tuesdays. For visitors returning to the U.S. from Mexico, please begin return to by 5-5:30pm at the latest to allow for time to cross the river and complete the immigration process on the U.S. side.
What documents do I need to cross the border? The Boquillas Port of Entry requires one of the following forms of personal identification: a U.S. Passport, a U.S. Passport Card, or an “Enhanced Driver’s License” (which is currently only issued in Michigan, New York, Vermont and Washington state). THIS REQUIREMENT ALSO APPLIES TO CHILDREN.
NOTE: On 12/17/14, a visitor stated that the Mexican customs in Boquillas did not accept an enhanced drivers license. Although we cannot confirm this, please note that a passport or passport card are the preferred documents. See comments below.
What does it costs to cross the border? There is currently no cost to use the Boquillas Port of Entry on either the U.S. or Mexico sides. However, the ferry that takes visitors to/from Mexico costs $5 per person, round trip. You are not required to use the ferry, and can cross the river by foot if conditions permit.
Where can I buy tickets for the Boquillas river ferry? The best place to buy your river ferry tickets is in the Rio Grande Village camp store prior to crossing. If necessary, you can also pay for your ferry crossing at the Boquillas Visitor Center after you’ve arrived to Boquillas.
How far is it from the river to Boquillas, and how can I get there? The distance from the river to the town of Boquillas is approximately 1 mile each way. Local community members offer horse and burro rides to get to Boquillas ($8 per person, round-trip) or truck rides ($5 per person, round-trip), and are always present when the border is open. You may also choose to walk to town if you prefer – but wouldn’t you rather ride a burro?!?
What do I have to do once I get to the Mexico side of the river? Once you arrive to the town of Boquillas, you need to proceed directly to the Mexican immigration office (located in the white trailers directly across from the restaurant in town) where you will be given a tourism permit that is valid for 7 days. You are required to return that permit to the Mexican immigration office upon your departure, it is not a multiple entry permit.