How to Prepare for a Road Trip to Mexico...Vehicle Tips | Mexpro

How to Prepare for a Road Trip to Mexico...Vehicle Tips

A lot goes into planning a trip. If you are driving your car, there's a bit more to think about. If going on a road trip to Mexico, there are even more things to add to your to-do list. We have used our personal experience, as well as those of our employees, clients, and friends to develop these vehicle tips for driving your car to Mexico.

Keep the Tank Full

It's always a good idea to have a full tank of gas before hitting the road on any trip. The same goes for Mexico. And fill up before you cross the border.

When driving in Mexico you will want to take advantage of gas stations more frequently than you might in the U.S. Fill up when your tank is half full. This is because some gas stations on your drive can be closed for no apparent reason and sometimes, they are very long distances apart.

Check Your Fluids

Make sure all your vehicle's vital fluids are properly topped-off, including engine oil, transmission fluid, antifreeze/coolant, brake fluid, power steering fluid, distilled water for the battery, and windshield washer fluid.


The roads in Mexico can be rough, so it is important to have good tires when you travel there. Several close ties who frequent the Baja peninsula said they got new tires before going, and one said, "definitely have decent tires."

In addition, make sure your vehicles' tires have the proper amount of air before your road trip to Mexico. Check that your tire tread is deep enough to provide adequate traction. You can do this using the penny test. Place the penny, upside-down, in the tire tread. If you can see Lincoln's head, you should get new tires.

Make sure you also check your spare tire. It should be good enough to be used for long distances. If you get a flat tire, it could be many miles before you find a gas station or tire shop.

Wiper Blades

There is nothing worse than bad wiper blades. If you live in a dry climate, they don't last long, no matter what you do. Make sure you can see if you get stuck in a rainstorm or even get splashed with irrigation water.


If you have a way to check your battery or are driving by an Auto Zone before you leave, check your battery charge. It is easy to do and will save a lot of time if your battery is near the end of it's life while you are on the other side of the border.

Extended Trips

If you are staying in Mexico for an extended period, you should consider getting the following:

Spare Parts

Spare parts for many popular vehicles can be difficult to find in Mexico, and often must be ordered and shipped from outside the country. Electrical fuses, fan belts, and radiator hoses are inexpensive and take up little room. Along the same lines, extra fluids, like motor oil, coolant, distilled water, and even a gallon of gas if you have somewhere to put it, can save you time in a pinch.


Depending on where you are in Mexico, cell phone reception can be spotty. If you need a map while traveling through poor reception areas, you will not be able to use Google Maps. The app allows you to download maps before your trip and use them while on your trip when you do not have reception.


It's always a good idea to carry a flashlight or headlamp, a tire pressure gauge, a cell phone charger cord, a first aid kit, bottled water, a blanket, and a few snacks in your car. These items are always in my car.

Car Insurance

Liability insurance coverage from a Mexican domiciled company is legally required on all non-Mexican plated vehicles driving in Mexico. In Mexico, you are considered guilty until proven innocent and will be detained until you can show you can pay for an accident you cause. So not having insurance can put a real dent in a vacation, both financially and timewise. You can easily get auto insurance online before you start driving, or while you're headed to Mexico at, in 2-minutes or less.

All Mexpro auto policies come with MexVisit® travel assistance, which includes roadside and legal assistance. This coverage is vital if you have car troubles or an accident in Mexico.

Know the Rules of the Road

Mexico's laws and restrictions are not exactly the same as those in the U.S., but many are similar. You should know that speed limits are in kilometers per hour (km/h). Make sure you have km/h on your speedometer or remember that 1mph = 1.6 km/h. You should also only drive during daylight hours for a multitude of reasons, but mostly because the roads are not well lighted and there are a lot of cows. Read our 10 Things to Know When Driving in Mexico to learn what else you should know.


Driving in a foreign country doesn't have to be troublesome. When you are not used to driving on Mexican roads and where the next gas or service station will be, its best to be prepared. Follow these vehicle tips so you can thoroughly enjoy your road trip to Mexico!