Getting Around Mazatlán

Pulmonias

These open-air "golf cart" looking taxis are unique to Mazatlán. They are everywhere and easily waved down. Always negotiate the price first! Tell them where you want to go, they'll give you a price. You can respond with a lower amount, generally half of the amount they first say. Don't get into the pulmonia until you both agree to a price. You'll enjoy a great ride with their music turned up all the way. You can tip about 10%, but it isn't required (most locals don’t tip). Most everything between the Golden Zone and the old part of town (Centro) can be reached for approximately 40-50 pesos. Most locations within the Golden Zone, or within Centro are 20-30 pesos. Exceptions might be very late at night, or if you're very drunk. They can double rates after 11pm.

Eco-Taxis

These red or green striped taxis are usually cheaper than the pulmonias. Once again, confirm the price first. If you don't, you may end up paying whatever the driver says. Current rate is about 30 pesos.

 

Buses

A bus ride here is easy to do, it's very cheap, and will let you rub shoulders with the locals. There are a few marked bus stops where you'll see several people waiting for a bus. Usually, you just flag down a bus and they'll stop almost anywhere to pick you up. Do this by extending your arm out at shoulder's height, palm down and moving your arm down toward the ground. Pay the driver as you board. The current fare is 4.20 pesos during the day, and a little higher after about 8 pm at night or for some longer distances. When in doubt, hand the driver a five peso coin and he'll give you change. There are some new green deluxe busses that have started service primarily on the Sabalo/Centro (main link from the Golden Zone to Centro) and the Sabalo/Cocos routes. These currently charge 8 pesos but are well worth the extra cost. They are air conditioned and actually have some room for your knees.

You'll notice that buses either have a name at the top, or a list of names written on the front windshield, or both. The names indicate the stops and areas the bus will go to. Assuming most readers of this guide are staying in the Golden Zone or downtown "Centro" area, you only need to worry about a couple of lines.

Between the Golden Zone and Downtown, take any bus marked "Sábalo-Centro." To return, stand on the other side of the street. The exception is at the Mercado (main market downtown). Since the streets on each side of the market are one-way streets, stand on the Benito Juárez street (west side) to go back to the Golden Zone.

Bus service is generally between 5:30 am and 10:30 pm. Hold on to your ticket; sometimes they check. The driver will stop to let you off just about anywhere once you push the "timbre" button. If you flag down a bus and it doesn't stop, it means the bus is full and you'll have to wait for the next one. Or it means that you're in an area where the drivers use set bus stops. Look up and down the street and you'll probably see where others have gathered waiting for a bus. This is very true within the Golden Zone.

 

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