Guidelines For Driving In Mexico

December 23, 2014
Michael Ryan
Mexican Border

At the US-Mexico Border

Part of planning a trip to Mexico is getting to know the rules of the road.  There are several rules you have to adhere to, to make your trip a pleasant one.

Obtain a Permit

If you intend driving beyond the Border Zone, which extends for around 20 to 30 kilometers from the border, you will need a temporary import permit for your vehicle.  This can be obtained from the customs office and is normally valid for a period of six months.  There are certain documents you need to produce to obtain this, such as:

  • Identification, such as a birth certificate or passport
  • Vehicle registration
  • Driver’s license
  • A credit card in your own name
  • A tourist card or immigration form
  • If your car is still under finance, you require the contract

It will be necessary for you to post a bond to obtain the permit.  You can pay for this using your credit card as it will be refunded when you leave Mexico and cancel the permit at the border post.

Toll Roads

Try to remain on the toll roads as the conditions are better and it is safer.  Toll roads are marked as cuotas and free roads as libre.

Road Conditions

Road conditions in Mexico are very different to the US or Canada.  You should watch out for topes, which are speed bumps.  Some of them are marked with yellow paint and there are warning signs, but this does not always happen.

Large potholes have been a problem in Mexico for many years, as many of the roads are not regulated by the government.

Mexico does not make use of exit roads or overpasses if it becomes necessary to get to the other side of the freeway.  They have areas where you can safely make a U-turn slightly beyond the exit you need.

Do Not Drink and Drive

All drivers in Mexico require Mexican car insurance.  This means that your US or Canadian car insurance is not valid in Mexico.  However, if you are involved in an accident and you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol, your Mexican vehicle insurance could be declared invalid.  Be safe and avoid alcohol if you are going to drive or wait until you reach your final destination.


Night Time Driving

It is safer to drive during daylight as not only are the roads in bad condition – they are also not safe at night.  There are often hairpin bends and narrow shoulders on the roads and you could come face to face with animals.

Who to Call

If you are unlucky enough to be involved in an accident or are in danger on the roads, you could call the Mexican version of 911, but dial 066.  On toll roads, you can obtain roadside assistance from a group called the Green Angels, by dialing 078.

When you purchase Mexican car insurance, you should consider including roadside assistance and some of the other add-ons, such as legal assistance, bail bond assistance and medical assistance.  Ensure that your Mexican vehicle insurance is valid and that you have obtained it through a licensed, reputable provider. You can purchase your Mexican insurance online through this link.

13 Comments. Leave new

Lauralee Lehman

Drive carefully and slowly! Driving condition in Mexico isn’t the same in US. For my optimum security, I only trust Mexico insurance.

Shonta Whitlock

Although I only drive for several hours to go to Baja Mexico, I still need the insurance to protect me. That’s why I decided to buy even for 1 day worth of Mexican auto insurance. I need insurance because many accidents happen to the border.

Derick Mercier

I want to make the most of my heard-earned money. I found Mexican Insurance Store to be helpful. I have now the most important protection every vehicle driver should have. My car insurance can be counted on.

Susy Donnelly

Don’t blame other drivers if they don’t have their car insurance. We are responsible for the things we both do and don’t do. For best security purposes, get your car insured by Mexican Insurance Store. By that time you need it your troubles will not burden you anymore.

Yuri William

As a policy holder, you are responsible for knowing your coverage. Reviewing it once in a while is important. This is what I do because I bought long-term Mexico insurance. I may not know everything, but at least I know the basic things covered in my policy.

Charolette Card

Illegal activity is not smart, especially when you’re a foreigner driving in Mexico. If you’re drunk your coverage may not save you. You can’t use it because you’re drunk when driving. It’s better to keep safe by buying the Mexican auto insurance and take a taxi if drinking.

Lieselotte Harrill

Don’t delay your Mexico summer vacation. There are ways to save money to get the most of your vacation. Getting cheap Mexican auto insurance is one of the most helpful tips to take.

Sharyl Kinyon

Be prepared for unpredictable weather conditions when traveling to Mexico. Getting your car covered by Mexico insurance is a wise decision.

Bridgett Giard

It’s the right place if you’re looking for a hot desert climate just close to unspoiled beach. San Felipe offers a way out from commercialization. You’ll definitely find good resorts in the place as well.

Julietta Winger

You can satisfy Mexican law. How? You should purchase at least the liability part of Mexican insurance.

Krishna Joy

Many US rental agencies don’t permit drivers to use their cars in Mexico. However, there are agencies that allow this, especially if their car is used in border cities.

Grayce Paolucci

The right coverage is what you need when driving your car in Mexico. Who wouldn’t want security while driving in the first place?

Burl Mankin

If you always drive without the required Mexico car insurance, you are certainly breaking Mexican law on having coverage.


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