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Bringing a Car to Mexico

Temporary Importation of Automobiles Into Mexico

There is no special permit needed to drive your car across the border, as long as you plan to stay within the "Border Zone" or "Free Trade Zone" which extends to approximately 25 miles into Mexico, and will remain in this part of Mexico for less than 72 hours. However, the Mexican Customs may impound and arrest the passengers for Contraband if the vehicle registration is not current.  Beyond that point, the government of Mexico strictly regulates the entry of vehicles into Mexico and a special permit is needed. Failure to obtain the required permit may result in the seizure of your vehicle, a fine, and jail time.

Information on procedures for taking your car into Mexico is available from the Embassy of Mexico. Additional information, including the ability to make pre-arrangements for your car permit at some Mexican Consulates in the U.S., can be found on the individual consulate's websites. Consult the lising for the Mexican Consulate nearest you. Permits are available at all of the international bridges serving the region covered by U.S. Consulate Nuevo Laredo. For additional information, contact the Mexican Consulate in Laredo, TX.

Note: Do not forget to return your permit when you leave Mexico. Failure to do so may bar you from getting a new permit in the future for the same or any other vehicle.