Category Archives: Mexican Insurance Tips & Tricks

Is Duplicate Car Insurance Really Necessary?

Is Duplicate Car Insurance Really Necessary?

U.S./Canada Registration and Mexican Car Insurance

If you have to have Mexican Insurance when you drive in Mexico, why should you have to keep your domestic insurance? Mexico Insurance “mex-insurance” requires your vehicle to be “legal to operate” which means it has to have current registration. But your state won’t let you register without U.S. insurance! So it seems you’re forced to have duplicate insurance. Or does it?

Oh Canada!

In Canada, it’s simple. All you have to do is present to your Canadian broker the Mexican Insurance policy. He/she will refund your Canadian Auto Insurance for that term! That’s it. No duplicate insurance for Canadians.

Two Solutions to Avoid Duplicate Insurance for American tourists

Solution 1: Register Your Car in your Home State with Affidavit of Non-Operation

Most states will allow you to file an “Affidavit of Non-Operation.” If you read the fine print, it does NOT mean that you won’t drive your car. It simply states you will not operate on your state’s roads. As the California affidavit reads:

The above described vehicle is not being operated or parked on any California roadway so as to require evidence of financial responsibility. I understand that if the vehicle is operated or parked on a California roadway prior to complying with all applicable registration and financial responsibility (liability insurance) laws, I will be subject to citation.

–California DMV Affidavit for Non-Use

This allows you to keep your registration current, and avoid paying duplicate insurance in the U.S. Please pay attention to the timing of these forms. Some states require 60-75 days to process. With that said, give yourself plenty of time. If the registration expires, you’re going to have to go in person to renew.

California Registration Requires Insurance unless you file an Affidavit of Non-Operation

Arizona Forms

In Arizona, it’s called a “De-Insured Certificate” which notifies the Motor Vehicle Division that the car will no longer be on Arizona roads and no longer requires insurance in Arizona

Oregon – NO DICE

  • Oregon does not offer affidavit of Non-operation

New Mexico Forms


Solution 2: Find a State that Does Not Require Insurance and is Friendly to Non-Residents, ie: South Dakota

There are only two states that do not require insurance, Virginia and New Hampshire. Unfortunately, both states require local residency to register your car. In South Dakota a small county in the southern part of the State called Clay County will let you register as a non-resident without smog or insurance requirements. Apparently the State has taken down most of the information related to this process. You can call the Clay County DMV (Treasurer) here:

  • 605-677-7123
Cash in Mexico

Cash in Mexico

Is it Safe to Carry Cash in Mexico? Many travelers are concerned about carrying a substantial amount of cash on them no matter where they’re traveling. Carrying too much cash can make them feel like a target. Even so, it’s helpful to carry a certain amount of cash on you when driving in Mexico. Although… Continue Reading

Mexican Free Zone

Mexican Free Zone

The Mexican Free Zone designed to attract tourists. Formerly the “hassle-free” or “liberated area” – officially it is called the “Free Trade Zone.” This zone is about 15-20 miles into Mexico all along the Mexican border. Its intention is to reduce government requirements (Mexican government requirements) for tourists visiting and spending money in the area.… Continue Reading

Frequently Asked Questions About Mexican Auto Insurance

Frequently Asked Questions About Mexican Auto Insurance

Is Mexican Car Insurance really necessary? Absolutely! Under Mexican regulations, foreign drivers are legally required to be held financially responsible for any damages caused to automobiles – as well as bodily harm.The only alternative to having Mexican auto insurance is obtaining a pre-arranged bond through a bank in Mexico, or having cash on-hand that is… Continue Reading

Driving in Mexico City – “Hoy No Circula” Restrictions

Driving in Mexico City – What you need to Know If you plan on driving in Mexico City (or plan to drive through Mexico City), please read this article. What is the Hoy No Circula program? First of all, the goal of the “Hoy No Circula” program is to set standards that reduce vehicular traffic… Continue Reading

Towing in Mexico

Towing in Mexico


Here are some important things to note when you tow your boat, trailer, another car, utility trailer or ATV down to Mexico:

1. You MUST identify the towed unit when trailering in Mexico. When you add weight to the rear of your automobile it changes the operating dynamic and risk. Failure to tow behind an insured vehicle without listing … Continue Reading

From Canada to Mexico

From Canada to Mexico

There is a natural draw from Canada to Mexico.  So, what do Canadians need to consider before taking the trip across both borders into the land of Sun and Relaxation?  How can a Canadian prepare themselves properly to ensure a relaxing trip? Here are the requirements:  Passport.  Before you cross into Mexico – make you… Continue Reading

Fast Border Crossing with Sentri

Border Crossing with Sentri – several crossings along the U.S. and Mexican border now allow pre-approved travelers a fast track back to the U.S.  By registering for Sentri cards or other quick-pass identification cards, travelers can use the Ready Lanes to speed up the customs and crossing process.  For frequent travelers to Mexico, this is… Continue Reading