Mexico's Govrenment Port Auhtority (API) charge an API Fee (About $10 per day) sporatically along the Pacific Coast for anchoring
In Cabo San Lucas, they come collect it in a API marked Panga with uniformed API personnel. In La Paz
, you are suppose to pay the fee at the API Office. Even Zihuatenajo tried collecting the fee for a while in 2011, but then backed down. We heard rumors about other commercial ports
, but don't have first hand knowledge.
They say the charge is to manage the federal waterway and I get that. The Mexicans have to maintain the buoys, dredge the channels and provide sort of supervision, but franly I think it is just another way to tax the tourist. The API fee does not give you any benefits, like garbage collection.
In the three places we experienced the API fees
, only one made sure everyone paid it (Cabo)... The other two relied on the honor ystem, which doesn't work
Also in Guadamala, on the Pacific side, Puerto Quetzal charges anchoring
fees equal to the per day charge for the local marina in order to encourage boats to use the marina instead of anchoring. This has caused every Pacific Cruisers Guide to recommend passing by the port. We attended this year's El Salvador Rally and not one of the more than 40 boats traveling from Mexico
to El Salvador stopped in Guademala as a result of their anchoring fees.
In our experience, no fees were charged in any other Pacific Central American countries from El Salvador to Panama