Last fact-checked: 18 November 2020
Plastic surgery in Mexicali is a great option if you want quality medical care coupled with reasonable prices for procedures that might be otherwise unaffordable back home. With Medical Departures you can book an appointment in confidence knowing that all of our listed surgeons, clinics and hospitals have been fully background-checked by our team.
Keep reading this Medical Departures destination guide to find out more about medical tourism in Mexicali, Mexico, including information about the city, which procedures are available, how much you can save, tips and advice for when you’re there and how to book using our site.
Mexicali is located in Baja California, a state in Mexico that shares a border with the US. This industrial city is the state capital and has a generally high standard of living, just over the US-Mexico border opposite Calexico in California. It is a few minutes’ drive from Calexico and the two cities often seem identical to travelers. It has a prosperous middle-class, helping in part to give rise to better all-round facilities across the city. Mexicali has also become a hub for tourism in the region—both traditional and medical; this is thanks to the quality of care, abundance of experienced doctors and low costs.
The city is accessible in several ways. By air, the General Rodolfo Sánchez Taboada International Airport serviced by local and international airlines. It is also reasonably close to Tijuana International Airport and San Diego Airport across the Border. From both destinations, you will find plenty of good road transport options into Mexicali, either by car of public transport (buses and taxis).
Mexicali has many museums, cultural and historical attractions, parks and casinos, providing tourists with lots of things to see and do while in town. It also has many shopping malls, the most popular being Plaza La Cachanilla.
A mention goes to the city’s bustling Chinatown, another big attraction made popular thanks to the city’s sizeable population of generations’ old Chinese immigrants.
Mexicali is a favored destination for plastic surgery thanks to the affordable rates and quality medical facilities. Below, we run you through the top reasons why this Mexican city is drawing in a growing number of visitors for cosmetic procedures and other medical treatment:
Plastic surgery procedures won’t be covered by your insurance in the US (the only exception is if required for medical purposes). These procedures, such as breast lifts, nose jobs, and tummy tucks, can be prohibitively expensive and out of financial reach for many North Americans.
When shopping around for the best prices, Mexicali ranks up there with some of the most affordable alternative destinations when compared to prices north of the border for similar procedures.
Some examples of the cost savings for plastic surgery in Mexicali:
Breast enlargement in Mexicali: average cost USD 4,000 vs. USD 7,500-12,000 in the US and CAD 15,000 in Canada.
Facelift in Mexicali: average cost USD 4,500 vs. USD10, 000 -15,000 in the US and CAD 12,000-15,000 in Canada.
Tummy tuck in Mexicali: USD 4,500 vs. USD 7,000-12,000 in the US and CAD 10,000-12,000 in Canada.
Some of the hospitals and clinics in Mexicali are comparable with the best in the U.S. and Canada. These facilities actually see more patients than many in the more advanced countries.
The doctors we have partnered with in Mexicali are experienced and skilled. Some may be expats while others will be local doctors who have done part or all of their training in Western countries.
Doctor Training and Qualifications:
Medical education lasts around eight years, after which the fledgling doctor must train for a further year in a rural area or enroll in government service. It is only after all this that the doctor can study further for a specialty such as plastic surgery. Often, the plastic surgeons add to their credentials with affiliations with American or International medical boards
All kinds of plastic surgery, esthetic treatments and elective surgeries are performed in Mexicali. Some clinics may offer only cosmetic and minimally invasive treatments whereas others will offer the full gamut of comprehensive treatments. Some facilities may indeed just specialize in one area, such as those offering laser eye surgery.
Whether you want breast reduction or augmentation, a facelift or neck lift, eye surgery or tummy tuck, a wide range of plastic surgery procedures are available in Mexicali. Other treatments like Botox®, dermal fillers, anti-aging treatments, cosmetic eye treatments (eye bag removal, eyelid surgery, eye bag removal, LASIK and others) are also available. Liposuction, weight loss surgery, body contouring, and hair transplants are also on offer here.
Mexicali has numerous hotels and other accommodations at various price points ranging from luxury to budget. You will discover familiar brand name hotels like Marriot and Holiday Inn. Do check that the hotel has the amenities that you need for your stay, such as free breakfast, room service, wifi, and laundry. It’s also important to check its proximity to your clinic or hospital where you have booked, especially if you are having major surgery or require multiple visits to the medical center.
If you want to make a quick visit in and out of Mexicali and don’t need to go often to the clinic or hospital, then you may want to stay closer to the airport. For those more interested in checking out the town and other places, staying closer to the city center may be a better option.
Mexicali is safe and is not known for kidnappings or killings. There may be occasional instances of petty crime, as is true of any city or country. It is more of a quiet and peaceful place—follow the rules of the travel road and you should be fine.
Surgery done anywhere in the world, even at the best of medical facilities, carries with it some risk. As long as your doctor knows your medical history and has run the required tests before your surgery, you should be safe when booking at one of our background-checked clinics or hospitals. If the doctor is competent, skilled and board-certified, you should not face any problems.
Many surgeons will have studied extensively for their particular specialty, as well as have certifications or board memberships from American or international organizations, like the American Society of Plastic Surgery. Our partner hospitals in Mexicali follow the standards set out by the government (General Health Council) which follow U.S. standards.
Booking through Medical Departures gives you an additional layer of safety since we carry out in-depth investigations into the background and education of the doctors, check their qualifications, accreditations, experience and training. We also ensure that the amenities at the hospitals and clinics listed on our website are of international standards in all respects.
Take a look now at three of our highest-rated hospitals and clinics in Mexicali and see for yourself how well these are being rated by patients booking through Medical Departures:
An individual’s reactions to medical treatment can never be predicted fully. Sometimes, despite all precautions, something can go wrong, no matter where you are in the world. Medical Departures will always be on hand if you experience any problems with treatment or service. As an added precaution, we recommend you take out additional insurance that will cover accommodation and travel expenses should you need to stay longer or travel back for additional care.
Mexico is a huge tourist destination. Except in rural areas, most people speak some degree of English. When you deal with people who are in close and constant contact with tourists, you can be sure that they have the communication skills required. Doctors and medical staff who deal with Western tourists tend to have full command of English.
In tourist places, internationally valid credit and debit cards are accepted for payment. Most places also accept U.S. dollars. You can make small payments in pesos if you want to change your money. This is useful for food, tips and small purchases.
Medical facilities are open throughout the year. However, Mexicali does get quite hot, so it’s advisable to see what time of the year you will be comfortable. While major places are air-conditioned, if you have to be outside in hot temperatures, you might feel pretty uncomfortable. May to August are usually the hottest; the winters might be preferable, you may experience rain or chilly weather on some days.
When you choose to have plastic surgery to improve an aspect of yourself you wish to change, you should have your research in place and check if there are any recurring red flags published online by past patients. If you are healthy and have no other medical complications, all should go well. In any case, any major surgery that requires the use of anesthesia always carries some degree of risk whether you are in Mexicali or in the best medical facility in the world.
Plastic surgery is safe when performed at the hands of an experienced and competent doctor.
Do ensure that the hospital provides you with all that is required for the surgery and afterward. The same goes for the hotel where you stay, as you may require a special diet or food, wifi, entertainment and other amenities. You can also recuperate for a few days in relaxing surroundings and rest up before heading back.
Like any large city, you will discover much you can see and do in Mexicali. Visit museums and churches for a taste of the city’s culture; head to Hardy River for fishing and kayaking; or for some much-needed sun, sea and sand, the closest decent beach is at San Felipe (just remember doctor's orders to stay out of the sun post-treatment).
In Vallecitos, you can see ancient rock carvings and cave paintings from the prehistoric era. There are also places you can go to for panoramic views over the city and across the vast countryside.
For sports fans, Estadios Casa Geo offers basketball games and Club de Golf Campestre is an 18-hole golf course that holds many different tournaments. ATV races are also held off-road, while bowling and other leisure activities can be found in the city center.
Plaza Mariachi has Mariachi bands that will play live music for a small amount of money and Baja Prog, the international rock festival, is held in March.
If shopping is your weakness, then rest assured Mexicali has all the best in high-end shops in the malls, local boutiques and flea markets. You can find all kinds of shopping ranging from clothes and shoes to food and drink, to souvenirs and trinkets and local crafts on sale.
Note: be sure to schedule strenuous activities prior to your treatment, as you will want to focus fully on recovery and recuperation post-op.
General Rodolfo Sánchez Taboada International Airport is just 20 kilometers east of the city; although of international title, it is currently only serviced by local airlines flying to various destinations in Mexico. Mexicali is also serviced by Tijuana International Airport and also San Diego Airport from where you can take buses or taxis to reach Mexicali.
From the US, Mexicali is reachable via the Imperial County Airport in CA, 20 minutes from the border between Calexico and Mexicali.
Los Angeles – 30 minutes
New York – 5 hours 40 minutes
Toronto – 4 hours 60 minutes
Ottawa – 5 hours 20 minutes
London – 19-22 hours (plus layovers)
Flight times will vary and depend on the airlines, the number of stopovers and the waiting time to catch another flight.
While you can utilized the extensive bus system, ranging from cheap to fancy air-conditioned, taxis are easily available. You can either call for taxis, flag one down or try a mobile booking app such as Uber or Lyft.
If you are arriving from the US or Canada, you simply need to carry your passport and you will be able to stay for up to 180 days visa-free. In fact, from many Western countries, you don’t need a visa. If you have residency in another country, then do check current Mexican visa requirements online.
You can begin your planning by looking through our full Mexicali listings on Medical Departures, taking your time to browse through photos, surgeon profiles, price comparisons, authenticated patient reviews and more. Then schedule your free appointment through our online booking system.
If you’ve any questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch—our Customer Care Team will be happy to help you if you need further information about plastic surgery in Mexicali.
American Society of Plastic Surgery. Website accessed: 18 November 2020. https://www.plasticsurgery.org/
General Rodolfo Sánchez Taboada International Airport. Skybrary. 1 November 2017. https://www.skybrary.aero/index.php/MMML
Visa Requirements. MexicoCity.com. Website accessed: 19 January 2020. https://www.mexicocity.com/v/visa-requirements/
Mexicali. Visit Mexico. Website accessed: 19 January 2020. https://www.visitmexico.com/en/main-destinations/baja-california/mexicali
How Safe Is Mexicali for Travel? Travel Safe - Abroad. 8 June 2019. https://www.travelsafe-abroad.com/mexico/mexicali/
Climate - Mexicali. Climates to Travel. Website accessed: 19 January 2020. https://www.climatestotravel.com/climate/mexico/mexicali
Mccollister, Tambra. 10 Things to Do in Mexicali That You Shouldn't Miss. Things to Do. 24 September 2017. https://www.thingstodopost.com/10-things-to-do-in-mexicali-that-you-shouldn-t-miss-119340
Cost of living in Mexicali, Mexico. Expatistan. 2019. https://www.expatistan.com/cost-of-living/mexicali