What documents are needed to travel in Mexico

The process for entering into Mexico via Automobile (land), by sea, or air is as follows.

As of January 2007, the United States will require U.S. citizens to present a valid U.S. passport or other accepted identification when entering or departing the United States by air or sea travel to or from Mexico or Canada.

U.S. Citizens are required to show proof of citizenship when traveling to and from Mexico. Each visitor needs a valid picture I.D. and one of the following:

* a state-issued birth certificate with an affixed seal, or
* a naturalization certificate, with a laminated naturalization card, or
* a valid U.S. passport

If flying into Mexico, you will receive a Mexico Tourist Card and a Mexico Customs Declaration form to be completed prior to your reaching your destination. All visitors, including all minor infants and children, must be in possession of a Tourist Card. Don’t lose or misplace your Tourist card as it is needed for your return flight.

Minors – In addition to possessing one of the forms of documentation mentioned above, an unaccompanied U.S. or Canadian citizen under 18 years of age must have the following:

* If traveling alone, the minor must carry a notarized letter signed by both parents giving permission to do so.
* If traveling with one parent, he or she must have a notarized letter from the absent parent giving permission for the traveling parent to take the minor out of the country, or an original court order indicating that the traveling parent has full custody.
* If the minor is traveling with one parent, and the other is deceased, the deceased parent’s Death Certificate must be presented.

Listen, these procedures are not always followed verbatim, especially in Mexico. It is however, wise to posses everything in order to proceed with as little difficulty and sometimes irritation as possible.

Mexico Travel Documents To enter Mexico you will need the following:

As previously mentioned, a valid passport or your birth certificate with embossed seal and government issued photo ID, generally a valid Drivers License. It is a good idea to have at least 3 copies of these documents, allowing you to save some time at the Port of Entry, or in dealing with Aduana. They are the “Mexican Customs” located approximately 18 miles into the interior of all Mexican border cities and towns from Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California. That allows you to not stand in line so long, and to avoid paying for extra copies.

We suggest you keep an extra set of all your important documents, such as passports, vehicle registration, titles, etc. at home with one of your emergency contacts, if needed. In addition, if you have E Mail, you might want to scan a copy of your important documents and save them in your PC or cell.

Vehicle Permits


You do not need a Vehicle Permit in the “Free Zones”. That is the Mexican states that border California, and most of Arizona. Along the Texas, New Mexico, border is considered “free” or Frontera as well. However, once you arrive at a Port of Entry generally between 18 to 26 kilometers, then you have to acquire the vehicle permit.

* If you are a Mexican Citizen, you need to prove your citizenship by providing a Passport, Proof of Work Authorization in the U.S., your Resident Alien Card, or Naturalization Certificate.
* If traveling beyond the frontera, or border, then you will also need to provide a copy of your Registration, or cars Title (if you have one, Canadians provide only Registration) A bill of sale is not valid proof of vehicle ownership.
* A credit card for the temporary importation of your vehicle, which includes the vehicles permit, good for up to 180 days. NOTE: You MUST return the permit if you are not going to re-enter Mexico prior to your vehicle permits expiration. Failure to do so will cost you the “bond” that has been charged to your credit/debit card.
*IMPORTANT: For financed, leased, rental or company owned vehicles, you must obtain a letter from the actual owner authorizing you to take the vehicle into Mexico, which will typically entail the purchase of a full coverage Mexico Tourist Auto policy. You should always purchase at least a 3rd party Mexico insurance policy from a legally licensed Mexican insurance company. That can be purchased in the U.S.

As in all Gov’t sanctioned requirements, they can be changed by the Mexican, or U.S. Gov’t at any time.

Now go enjoy your adventure! If you have any questions, please feel free to call or E Mail.

For all of your Mexico Auto and International health insurance needs, please call us at 1-800-434-3966 OR Email us at ici@mxici.com or visit us at mxici.com to issue your own policy. We appreciate your business!

2 thoughts on “What documents are needed to travel in Mexico

    1. admin Post author

      Never had this one before. I am assuming that you would require whatever I.D. it is that Mexico requires of documentation for their own citizens, which is nothing? If your not re-entering the U.S. then you wouldn’t need anything if your a citizen of Mexico. Don’t take my word for it, contact Mexican Customs. Thanks for the question.


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