Tips When Traveling to Mexico

Traveling the Baja Peninsula is an adventure.  As long as you respect the roads and surroundings, which it offers you should not have any problems.   The two most important things before crossing the border is to make sure that the vehicle is in top running condition and purchase Mexico insurance. 

Today, there are a number of different policies, coverage’s and deductibles available to think about.  Below are some tips and questions to ask yourself before purchasing Mexico insurance.

Tips to purchasing Mexico Insurance:

Always verify you are purchasing Mexico Insurance from a reputable Surplus Lines Broker and verify their license with the Department of Insurance. Click here.

There are a variety of insurance programs available to purchase over the telephone, internet or at the border. (Not recommended to wait till the last moment it could cost more)  Below are some of the most common questions asked by individuals before they purchase insurance and or travel to Mexico.

  1. Does my United States car insurance cover me in Mexico?

There are some United States insurance companies that extend        physical damage (comprehensive and collision) into Mexico.  It is recommend that you contact your insurance agent to confirm coverage and mileage limitations.    

  • Does my RV insurance coverage extend into Mexico?

There are some specialty RV insurance companies that extend        physical damage (comprehensive and collision) into Mexico.  These specialty carriers include Allied, National General, Progressive, and Safeco.   Always confirm your coverages by reviewing your declaration page.      

**You must always purchase liability from a Mexico domiciled insurance company**

  • Do I need Mexico Insurance and what coverage should I purchase?  

Yes, you must always purchase Mexico liability insurance coverage while traveling in Mexico.  It’s important to remember that the legal system is different than in the United States. As in the U.S., the possibility exists of being involved in an accident. The Mexican government treats these accidents seriously; under Mexican law, they are considered both civil and criminal offenses. The vehicle may be impounded and you could be detained. 

  • What is the difference between Split Limit coverage and a CSL?

Split Coverage:

Most common way to describe liability insurance limits are “100/300/50” what this means is $100,000 per person, bodily injury, $300,000 per accident bodily injury and $50,000 for property damage. 

Combined Single Limit (CSL):

Bodily Injury and Property Damage coverage expressed as one single amount of coverage. Example $100,000CSL

  • What choices do I have with deductibles?

A deductible is a dollar amount that the insured is responsible for pay before the insurance company will adhere to the contractual agreement. 

All of the basic programs have a 2% and 5% deductible however; the top of the line policies the deductibles are usually fixed at $500 and a $1000. 

There is no obligated to repair the vehicle in Mexico however; there are additional adjustments and expenses that you could be responsible for.    

  • What is Legal Aid Service?

In Mexico, a traffic accident is considered a felony. It is very possible that the authorities will detain you and your vehicle until they conclude their investigation. Legal aid coverage helps to prevent this. With one phone call an attorney will come to assist and negotiate the immediate release of you and the vehicle.  The legal aid contract was designed to cover the legal requirements that arise from an automobile accident.

  • How does the claim service work?

All claims MUST be reported before you leave the Republic of Mexico. Any claim not reported may be subject to denial. The first thing that you need to do if involved in an accident is to contact the 01-800 insurance claims hotline provided and 01-800 legal aid hotline number to get an adjuster and lawyer to the accident scene immediately.

Our claims are handled by our staff in the United States to prevent from having to deal with the Mexico insurance company directly.

Travel Tips:

  1. Mexico insurance is a MUST.  Be sure to obtain your Mexico insurance from a reliable agent and make sure the policy purchased is authorized from a Surplus Lines Broker.
  • Under no circumstances is it ever recommended to travel at night.
  • Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs in Mexico.(insurance will be void)
  • There are very few street lights on the highway and the roads can become very narrow so always drive defensively and be alert.
  • Always be aware of your surroundings!  To see animals or live stock on the road is not uncommon (especially at night and early morning) and can cause major damage to your vehicle.
  • All speed limits are posted in kilometers per hour. 
  • Mexico has a helmet law when riding a motorcycle. (it is up to the police to in-force it) 
  • After it has rained be extremely careful when driving due to the build up of oils on the highway that may cause you to loose control of your vehicle.  It could take several hours of heavy rain to wash the oils away. 
  • Watch out for “topes”, which are speed bumps.  These can wreak havoc on your suspension if you do not slow for them. 

Purchasing online at www.mexicoinsurance.com or contact us if you prefer to speak with one of our professional sales agents at 800-909-4457.

Required Travel Documents and Tourist Visa Information:

Mexico Law requires everyone traveling more than 72 hours in the country obtain a FMM (tourist visa).  These documents are issued my Mexico’s INM (Instituto Nacional De Migracion).  There are two different FMM tourist visa’s available depending on how long you will be in Mexico:

When traveling 7 days or less the visa is free and can be obtained on their website at https://www.inm.gob.mx/fmme/publico/en/solicitud.html.  Be sure to leave enough time for mailing otherwise you must obtain at them border. 

If you are planning to be in Mexico more than 7 day you must purchase a FMM tourist visa.  This visa can be issued up to 180 days and the cost is $533pesos (appx $30 US).  Our office can issue this form and mail to you or you can also purchase them at https://www.inm.gob.mx/fmme/publico/en/solicitud.html.  We must have a minimum 10days processing and mail time.   

  • When purchasing the FMM through our office you must specify the port of entry you will be entering through and it must be validated at that crossing.  Once validated you may use any port of entry. 
  • When traveling to Baja Sur, they longer are validating tourist visa in Guerrero Negro so be sure to have them validated when enter Mexico to avoid being sent back to the border.
  • You must have a passport or passport card

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