REPORT: Migrants find tips on Chinese version of TikTok for long trek to US-Mexico border

Sign up for DML's newsletter

If you paid for a TeamDML Membership and would like to see every article, and see them without the ads, please click here. If you are NOT a member, or if your Membership has expired, and you would like to join TeamDML please click here.

As the most reliable and balanced news aggregation service on the internet, DML News App offers the following information published by

Lihua Wu’s journey to the United States started when she scrolled past the words “The Route,” one of several common hashtags on Douyin, the Chinese counterpart of TikTok, advising migrants on the irregular overland trek across Latin America to the United States, also known online as “the Big Beautiful.”

By the time the single mother and her five-year-old daughter were apprehended by U.S. Border Patrol on a dirt road near the U.S.-Mexico border just before midnight on April 2, Wu said she had relied on social media for detailed instructions for her trip, including footwear (Crocs as well as hiking boots) and how to find and pay for a reliable local guide.

The difficulty of obtaining U.S. visas and the economic after-shocks of China’s COVID lockdowns have led to a sharp increase in Chinese nationals presenting at the U.S.-Mexico border – and some of those arrivals, like Wu, learned about how to come online, migrants, immigration experts, attorneys, and current and former U.S. officials, told Reuters.

“The Route” advises migrants on the best way to travel across Latin America and into the US.

Reuter journalists said they witnessed hundreds of Chinese migrants cross into the United States from a remote border stretch in southeastern Texas over the course of just 3 weeks.

The reporters said when they interviewed the migrants, majority of them explained they got the idea to take the land route to the United States on social media and drew on influencers, private groups and comments to plan their trips.

To get more information about this article, please visit

The Dennis Michael Lynch Podcast is available below. Never miss an episode. Subscribe to the show by downloading The DML News App or go to Apple Podcasts.