RV Rental In Mexico Cityby Alberto Mayagoitia
The idea of driving to Mexico from the US had always appealed to us, but it seemed so far away and meant too many days on the road to get for enough south where the Mexico we wanted to see is. But when we heard from our travel agent about the idea of the Fly and Drive experience we could not get it out of our minds. As experienced RV´rs we knew it would not be difficult to get familiarized with the RV we were going to rent in Mexico City.
We decided to start our trip in Mexico City and drive all the way to the Yucatan Peninsula. It was a blessing that one way rental was available. So we landed in Mexico City and the personnel of Producciones Almaya picked us up at the airport and took us for a quick tour of the city. That night we stayed at a Hotel in the Zona Rosa and the next morning we did the Pyramids of Teotihuacán. An incredible experience!!
The next day a tour to the Museum of Anthropology and a visit to the crafts market of La Ciudadela. Very interesting. Not much of Mexico City but enough to give ourselves an idea of this great metropolis. The next morning, very early, we were taken to where our journey would start.
The RV we rented was a 10 foot Elkhorn Truck Camper installed on top of a 1997 Chrysler RAM pick up truck. Fully self contained, Bathroom with toilet and shower. Queen- size bed, full kitchen with stove, oven and microwave oven, refrigerator with freezer, radio with cassette player. It came equipped with a 7500-watt generator to run the 13,500 BTU air conditioner. It was more than we had expected. The dinette table turned into a bed, so we regretted not having invited Andy and Wanda. The four of us would have had a wonderful time.
The qualified personnel of Produccines Almaya gave us a half hour familiarization tour around the unit and taught us how to turn on the water heater, the A/C. They even showed us a video in english on how to take good care of everything. The camper was a 1997 so everything inside was working perfectly. Inside was everything we needed: blankets, sheets and towels. All the cooking utensils such as frying pans, coffee pot, plates, cuttery, can opener, ice cube trays, everything. When I say everything I really mean every thing. The propane bottles were full, they even gave us air freshener for the bathroom. They gave us maps and a fully detailed route that they suggested we could follow. When you have a 1200 mile journey ahead of you, you need a lot of answers.
We took off around noon and were surprised how easy it was to drive the pick-up truck with camper on top. We stopped in a supermarket on the way out of Mexico City and bought bottled water, fruit, and other food to cook aboard. Some products have labels in English and others we just guessed by the picture. My husband had English-Spanish dictionary and it was easy to look for "sopa" as "soup" and "jamon" as "ham". We found a good variety of canned fish and meat. There was no need to stock more than a few days food supply. We knew that even in small villages, vegetables are available as well as delectable fruits like papaya, mango and pineapple.
The ride from Mexico City to Puebla was easier than what we had thought. The toll road passes near the Popocatepetl and Iztaccíhuatl volcanoes. The view of the slight steam activity of Popocatépetl is great. The 8 cylinder, 360 hp engine of the pick-up gave us an average speed of 95 kilometers per hour. The fuel consumption was an amazing 6 kilometers to the liter. Not so bad if you consider the 1200 kgs of the camper plus our luggage, us and 120 liters of clean water.
When we were in the supermarket I started to feel what this trip was going to be. I told my husband, "We are going to see another Mexico. Maybe the real one".
The people from Producciones Almaya Mexico had screened all the campgrounds, and they told us where we could wash our clothes and where they had other facilities such as tennis courts or saunas.
One night on our way to Oaxaca, we spent the night in the parking area beneath a toll station. Another night on a large asphalt apron beside a restaurant. But for counterbalance, we lucked out several times with campsites only a stone´s throw from inviting tropical beaches. Like those of Campeche. We drove a long road that for more than 80 kms is not more than 200 meters from the beach.
One afternoon, walking out of our country campground in Pisté, (near the famed ruins of Chichen-Itzá) we happened on a small Indian village. Near dusk, villagers were headed home: children rounding up their sheep, oxcart drivers rumbling in from the fields. Below us, at the river, several Indian women, their long skirts tucked to the waist, were still washing clothes. It was rural Mexico up close, a scene unchanged for centuries. The real Mexico and had been hoping to see
The best day was at Tulum. Our guide was a descendent of the Maya ( with features like those seen on ancient stone carvings), adding an eerie note of reality to the scene. The evening ended with the show of the Ballet Folklorico of Cancun in the Convention Center.
We turned the RV in right at the trailer park where we were staying in Cancun.
It was almost an miracle to find room to put all the things we had bought on our trip to take home as gifts. The ride from the trailer park to the airport was just half an hour by taxi.
This has been an unforgettable experience. We will try it again next year.
What to take
- Bring soft suitcases or garment bags so you can fold them and keep them inside the camper.
- Wide spectrum antibiotic. upset and diahrrea medicine.
- Mosquito repellant
- Water purification drops (Sunscreen and hats)
- Your favorite tapes to listen to in both the pick-up and the camper
- Tea bags, saccharin or special food items you might want
- Credit cards and travelers checks
- You will need cash in Mexican Pesos for gasoline, tolls and minor expenses. Toll bridges and highways do not accept foreign currency or travelers checks. Few accept credit cards.
What comes with the Camper
- lankets , sheets and towels for the number of people riding
- Two frying pans
- Two cooking
- Cuttlery for four
- Plastic glasses and plates
- One roll of paper towels and toilet paper
- Dish towels, cleaning rags broom
- Fly swatter, tablecloth
- Toilet deodorant
- 40 kgs of propane gas
- Clothes detergent, dish-washing liquid, cleaning compound (all biodegradable)
- Clothes hangers
- Maps and tour suggestions