Thursday, March 6, 2008

Directions to Otay Mesa Sentri Lane From the Free Road

These directions assume you are staring in Ensenada, take the toll road to Rosarito and go through the first two tolls.

Exit onto the free road just after the Commerical Mexicana (an orange pelican on your right) - the sign will say "Rosarito Norte".

Follow that road - you will soon see a sign that says Tijuana Libre. There will be several traffic lights in the first little bit and then it opens up into a two lane highway.

Follow that until you see a Pemex on your right immediately followed by a Dico furniture store - you will then veer to the right. The sign will say "Mexicali".

Follow that road toward the airport. You will go through a lot of city traffic but just keep going on the main road following any signs that lead to the airport or Garita Otay.

You'll wind up the hill to the plateau. DO NOT TURN where it says San Diego or the border or something like that. This is for the regular lanes - keep going following the main flow of the road. It can be confusing so pay attention.

Turn right at the large sign that says "Vehiculos Pesados" which is also Belles Artes.

Go a few blocks and then turn left into the SENTRI lane or Linea Sentri.

Directions to Sentri Lane at San Ysidro From the Toll Road

Take the toll road north all the way to the light at Benito Juarez.

There are three lanes. Get in the far right lane labeled Colonial Federal (it used to be the carpool lane). (There is a red medical cross on the road and a sign saying medical vehicles only that you just ignore.) All three lanes turn left and you want to stay to the right so go on the right–hand side of the K-rail divider.

Follow this lane past all the folks waiting in the border line and keep going over the hill to the traffic circle. You want to be in the far left lane.

Make a U-turn onto Avenida Frontera.

Go one block to the huge speed bump and stop sign. Turn right and take the second left onto Paseo Centenario.

Follow it to the first stop sign. If you look over your left shoulder you will see the big green Sentri sign.

Make a U-turn.

Congratulations, you have made it to the Sentri lane.

There are currently two lanes that expand to four lanes as you proceed. Occasionally, when you look back and see the Sentri lane you will notice that there is a long line of cars past where you want to do the U-turn. These people are already in line and you do not want to cut in line.

Instead, make a left turn and go one block.

Turn right and go one block. (Sometimes this is closed off, so make the first available right).

Turn right again and you will return to Paseo de Tijuana (traffic circle).

Turn right onto Paseo de Tijuana and you are at the end of the Sentri lane.

Even if the Sentri lane is this long, you will still get to the border in less than 30 minutes.Here is a link to a map showing both border crossings:

Directions to the San Ysidro Sentri Lane from the Free Road

Information about round-abouts:
  • right turn is 1/4 of the way around

  • straight ahead is 1/2 way around

  • left is 3/4th of the way around
If you are on the toll road from Rosarito, get off at the Rosarito Norte Exit (just past the Commerical Mexican sign with the Orange Pelican) and head north on the Free Road.

At the first round about in Tijuana, go three quarters of the way around (you are, in essence, making a left).

Go a block.

At the next roundabout, make a right (that's a quarter of the way around).


At the next round about, go 3/4th of the way around (essentially a left turn).

At the next round about, go 1/2 way around (or straight ahead).

Right after you get beyond the roundabout, you'll see a sign straight ahead that says "SENTRI."

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Directions to the Sentri Office in Otay Mesa

At $129 for a five year pass, the Sentri pass is the best value in the Dept of Homeland Security. There is a link to the Sentri system in the links section.

Directions to the Sentri Office

805 south to the 905.

Take the Siempre Viva off ramp and head East of the freeway and take the road between the Shell station and the Chevron station South.

Go past the Carl's and the Burger King and go through the "Road Closed" sign and park in the second lot on your right - it says Sentri parking or something like that.

The building is just a little bit south of the parking lot. Basically, the Sentri office is just east of the Otay Mesa Border crossing on the US side. Leave extra time to get there because it is a little confusing and mapquest won't lead you there.

Good luck!