TIJUANA (Border Report) — The long lines between San Diego and Tijuana are said to be the number one reason U.S. residents won’t travel south of the border for a meal, a tourism official in Tijuana says.
“I believe if those crossings were a bit more fluid we would see anywhere from a 10 to 15 percent increase in business at our restaurants,” said Hugo León Valle, a coordinator with Baja California’s Gatro-Tourism Cluster.
While there has been a recent increase in travelers, he said, it would be much better if the border waits weren’t as long.
“A resident of San Diego who would consider traveling to places such as Puerto Nuevo, Ensenada or the Guadalupe Valley won’t go once they hear how long the border waits are.”
León Valle said it’s not just south-to-north waits. Repair work has shut down the main road to the coast, affecting travel from the border south into Mexico.
“Right now, if you have to go to the beach area you know it’s going to take an hour and a half to get there, but if we want to go further to Rosarito you now have to leave two hours earlier,” said León Valle. “We have world-renowned restaurants with high-quality products but it doesn’t matter if those border waits and travel times remain high.”