The El Paso/Ciudad Juárez border is one of the largest, if not the largest, drug trafficking spots on the US-Mexican border. Stick to well-lit major streets, be very careful at night (avoid walking alone) and watch out for pickpockets.
Money Changing Scam
There is a scam that is done in all of the local shops and even some of the nicest hotels.
It all depends on the exchange rate. When I was there, the exchange for a dollar was $10.50.
I also had quite a few peso's on me and would purchase all of my items in peso's. However when my change would come back it would always be in US dollars. They would then count $1 dollar as $10 pesos. Although it was only $.05 a dollar that they were stealing, it was the whole principle of the matter that drove me nuts.
When I would call the people on it, I would have the person and what ever local around them yelling at me that "it was the same."
avoid this city like the plague!
The local people here are of a special ilk. I dont know how else to describe them. Please note that I am not talking about all of the people that live in this hole, only 99% of them.
The thing that I noticed is that when I would ask for directions, some of the responses that I recieved were not only in perfect English (slang included) but in feet and miles. This struck me as odd because Mexico uses the metric system. After investigating, I found out that a lot of the locals are actually products of the US but for some legal reasons the people had to come back to Mexico as to avoid jail in the US.
What it comes down to is a lot of the people that are trying to scam you were doing something in the US and should have gone to jail, but because of their heritage they went back to their own country to live as to get a second chance.
avoid this city
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