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Paperwork for Coming to Mazatlan, Mexico

For years all that was needed to cross from Mexico into the U.S. was  a picture identification card such as a drivers license, state identification or military identification card. However; as of January 1st 2008, new more stringent requirements must be met before you can cross the border from Mexico into the U.S. or from the U.S. into Mexico.

Until the upcoming date of June 2009 you can travel to Mexico by land or sea and the only identification documents that will be required of you are a formal state or federal government issued picture identification card and a “stamped certified” original copy of your birth certificate.

New Rules and Regulations


After June 1st 2009 you will need a passport to cross either way on the border, by both land and sea. To fly either way across the Mexican, U.S. border right now you will need a passport and if you don’t have one in your possession you will won’t be allowed to board the plane. Also to return to the U.S. from Mexico by plane you will need a Mexico tourist card and it will be provided for you on the plane trip down.

If you are crossing the border by land or sea and intend on flying back you can obtain a tourist card at a Mexican consular office or a Mexican government tourism office. If you are walking across the border you can also obtain a tourist card at the border inspection station.

Driving in Means More Paper

If you are planning on driving into Mexico there are still other documents that you will need. To begin with, you will need a temporary vehicle importation permit along with a Mexico tourist card which you can obtain at the border. To obtain them at the border you will have to have in your possession proof of car ownership (pink slip), proof of American registration, affidavit from lien holders authorizing importation, proof of valid American drivers license and your passport or birth certificate (until June 1st 2009.)

Get Mexican Insurance

It is also highly advisable that you get a temporary Mexican car insurance policy as well. Even if you have full coverage with a reputable American car insurance carrier it most likely doesn’t cover you for bodily injury in Mexico. You can obtain a policy form numerous sources long the border or you can get it online by contacting mexinsure.com or mexpro .com.

Driving your car into Mexico without a “good” Mexican full coverage, temporary car insurance policy is so foolish that it would best be described as moronic. This is because, if you are in an accident without Mexican insurance and someone is injured, you can and most likely will be arrested and put into a Mexican jail until such time as the victim is sufficiently financially compensated.

Related Links

  • PeoplesGuide – Read this article entitled “Crossing the Mexican Border: What Might Happen.” for more info on crossing the border.
  • About.com – Read all about Mexican car insurance, renting a car in Mexico, as well as crossing the border.

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