Guide to Driving in Mexico

Unfortunately driving in Mexico can be very stressful mainly because of the high crash & collision rate. Also, the crime rate is quite high. Add the poor condition of the road and you might not want to drive in Mexico anymore. However, with some precautions it still can be a great experience. As we already said, the road is not in the best shape so you may want to adapt your speed accordingly. If you’ll be crossing the border get ready for a close inspection; the police officers have the right of raiding your car to check for drugs or any other substances. On the streets of Mexico traffic is rather chaotic: drivers often press the horn without a good reason and they drive very aggressive. Keep a defensive style and you’ll be safe. At night it’s five times more dangerous than during the day. Carjackers pretend to be stranded and they often ask drivers to stop; never stop unless you’re sure that it’s a police officer who’s stopping you. Always drive with your doors locked. When parking, look for a well-lit spot. Never go on dark alleys because you risk a lot. There are a lot of free parking lots which are located near a main road; such a place is perfect for parking the car.

The police vehicles in Mexico are often all black or white with several black stripes on the sides. The words printed on them vary from ‘POLICIA FEDERAL’ to ‘POLICIA ESTATAL’ and ‘STATE POLICE’. Look for the red & blue light beacons to confirm your suspicions. There are few working speeding cameras in the country but it’s likely that you won’t have the chance of speeding due to the road condition. In terms of documents every drive needs and identity card, the vehicle registration, third-party insurance policy and your driver’s license. If your license is not issued by UK or US you need an international driver’s permit.

Essential Driving Information

  • Although the minimum age for driving is 15 there’s no relevance for most of the European drivers since the minimum age in most of the countries is above 17.
  • All the passengers and the driver must use the seatbelt all the time according to the Mexican law. A €15 fine will be issued on spot in case you don’t wear it.
  • You are not allowed under any circumstances to use the mobile phone while driving.
  • The dipped beam should be used when the visibility it’s not clear; make sure you turn your headlights on with 30 minutes before sunset.
Speed Limits
Town/City: 40kmh (25mph)
Main Road: 80kmh (50mph)
Motorway: 110kmh (68mph)
Emergency Phone Numbers
Police: 060
Ambulance: 065
Firefighters: 068
General Information (as of 2014)
Min Driving Age: 15
Alcohol Limit: 0.08%
Petrol Price: €0.80/litre
Diesel Price: €0.73/litre
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