Mexico Car Permit


Mexico Car PermitsRequirements For Mexico Vehicle Permit  – Banjercito requires you to leave a guarantee deposit in addition to the fee for your vehicle importation permit. The government of Mexico strictly regulates the entry of vehicles into Mexico.
It is important for visitors to remember the following steps when crossing the border between the United States and Mexico by automobile. There are no procedures to comply with if you are traveling within the Border Zone or Free Trade Zone (including the Baja California Peninsula and the Sonora Free Trade Zone). If you wish to travel past these zones, you will need to adhere to certain procedures. It’s important to note that in the case of Baja California even though you can take your vehicle all the way to the end of the peninsula without a vehicle permit (see vehicle importation regulations), you must have a tourist card if you plan to go South of San Quintin. Tourists wishing to travel beyond the border zone with their car must obtain a temporary import permit.

How do I obtain a Vehicle Importation Permit?

1. To acquire Mexico car permit, the owner’s original Vehicle Title or Registration Receipt is needed.
2. If the vehicle is financed, a rental car, leased, and/or a company car, a notarized letter of permission is required from the lien holder or lending institution.
3. Valid Driver’s License (with photo and same name of title).
4. The fee for importation of a vehicle is $44.00 USD plus IVA; this fee is the same when the permit is obtained at the border, consulates or obtain your Mexico Car Permit online.
5. A guarantee deposit for the return of the vehicle to the US, regardless of the form payment, will be applied to all vehicles. The amount of the guarantee will be determined by the year of the vehicle. The guarantee will be refunded upon cancellation of the permit at Banjercito offices, as long it is prior to the expiration date of the permit.
The refund will be made in the same form as the deposit was made.

  1.  2007 – newer $400.00 USD
  2.  2001 – 2006 $300.00 USD
  3.  2000 – older $200.00 USD

6. If the vehicle is not returned to the US prior to the expiration date of the permit or the Mexico car permit is not cancelled upon exiting Mexico, the guarantee deposit will be forfeited.
7. Before Banjercito issues a Mexico car permit, they will verify the VIN # to make sure the vehicle does not have any restrictions to be driven in the US or Canada, in which case the permit will not be allowed.
It is important that we remind you that the Mexico car permit is cancelled at the border prior to returning to the US to ensure that guarantee deposit is returned to the importer.
Our recommendation, if you have enough time before your trip to Mexico, (between 7-10 days), is that you process the temporary vehicle importation permit online. This will save you time at the offices of the consulates or at the border.  See our FAQ below for more information.

8. The Mexico carpermit is valid for up to six months. The vehicle may be driven across the border multiple times during the authorized period of the permit. You MUST return the vehicle back to the United States before the 6 months expiration, or your guarantee deposit would be forfeited. A receipt will be issued when the permit is cancelled and the deposit will be returned in the same format that it was paid. Failure to turn in your vehicle’s permit before the expiration date may result in denial of entry into Mexico on your next trip.
*This is subject to change without notice by the Mexican Government.

FAQs About Importing Your Vehicle at Banjercito

Please contact our office at (800) 273-8508 or call local from Tucson (520) 882-5000 for assistance with Mexican Auto Insurance or with questions about traveling to Mexico.

Vehicle Permit

  • Banjercito – Mexico’s Banco Nacional del Ejército Fuerza Aérea y Armada – is the government authority who issues vehicle permits.
  • Vehicle import permits are required if you travel outside of Baja or outside the border zones (generally further than 16 miles from the border) or outside the permit-free zones of Sonora.
  • Looking for a Sonora Only permit? Read our article: Sonora Only Vehicle Permits
  • Vehicle permits may be obtained thru Banjercito’s online process, at a Banjercito office at the border or at certain Mexican Consulates (listed below).
  • Don’t forget your Mexican insurance policy. Quote and Buy Online or Contact a Local Agent to purchase over the phone.

Important information from Banjercito’s website to assist you through their online form easily:

  • You may request your permit 7 to 60 days prior to entering Mexico by vehicle.
  • You may ONLY request a permit for a vehicle that is registered to your name or that of your spouse, your children, or your parents.
  • You may NOT request a permit for a vehicle weighing more than 3.5 metric tons (7,716 lbs).
  • Once the payment has been accepted, Banjercito will send the permit to your address within 7 business days.
  • Once you have received your permit, you must send a copy of the documents you provided during the application process in one of the following ways:
    • Sending the scanned documents by e-mail to
    • Through courier service to the following address: Av. Industria Militar 1055, Col. Lomas de Sotelo, Del. Miguel Hidalgo, México, D.F., CP. 11200.
    • Delivering them in person to any Banjercito office.
  • Should any of the information you provide during the application process be found to be false, you may be subject to sanctions imposed by the Mexican authorities.
  • Banjercito reserves the right to deny any request for a permit should any violation of current law be found.
  • The applicant must be 18 years old.
  • The person named on the credit card must be the person who is applying for the temporary importation permit.
  • You will not be able to process the permit online if you have a working or student visa, due to the fact that it is necessary to prove that the visa is still valid and it has at least been one year since its been in force. If this is the case you will need to go to the Mexican Consulate that processes vehicle permits or at one of the borders so you may obtain your vehicle permit.

Need a Mexican Vehicle Permit? Apply Online at Banjercito!

Banjercito’s online vehicle permit registration offers travelers to Mexico an easy way to get their temporary importation vehicle permit by mail (if time allows) or to save time picking it up at Banjercito later.Banjercito’s online application is for:

  • Vehicle permits
  • Boat permits
  • Motorhome permit
  • Sonora Only vehicle permits

Access Banjercito’s online application directly

Do I need a vehicle permit to drive in Baja and the border zones?

No permit is required if you plan to stay within 25 kilometers (16 miles) of the border, known as the “border zone”, or anywhere in the Baja California peninsula.

Do I need a vehicle permit to visit Sonora?

Possibly. If you are visiting Rocky Point, Guaymas, San Carlos, Hermosillo, Bahia de Kino, Caborca, Father Kino Missions, Magdalena and Santa Ana you will not need a vehicle permit. If you are visiting other cities that are further south or east of the 15, but will stay in Sonora, you qualify for the Sonora Only permit.

What about driving in the rest of Mexico?

If you plan to drive south of the border zone, or outside of the Sonora permit-free area or outside Baja, you must obtain a temporary importation vehicle permit online, at the border, or from certain Mexican consulates (read below).

How much does a vehicle permit cost?

How much does a vehicle permit cost for a recreational vehicle (RV)?

Fees in USD, including IVA are:

  • $680.82 Pesos from the Banjercito website (roughly U.S. $54.50 as of 12/04/13)
  • A guarantee deposit is also required

How much does a boat permit cost?

Fees in USD, including IVA are:

What is the guarantee deposit?

Banjercito charges a guarantee deposit to those applying for a permit. The deposit will be returned once the vehicle and permit are returned. If you do not return your vehicle and the permit by the time your permit expires, Banjercito will keep the deposit. Remember to return your vehicle and permit!

  • 2007 and newer models, USD $400.00 deposit required
  • 2001 – 2006 models, USD $300.00 deposit required
  • models previous to 2000, USD $200.00 deposit required

If I am making payments on my vehicle, what do I need in order to take my vehicle to Mexico?

Many banks and finance companies require you to take a letter of permission with you to Mexico. In order to issue the letter of permission, many companies will require proof of Mexican Insurance first. Contact your bank or finance company for further information.

Is it easy to send my policy to my bank or finance company?

Yes. Your policy will be sent to you in pdf format if you purchase over the phone or online.  If you purchase in our office we can fax it right away. Please call us at 1-800-273-8508 or locally at 1-520-882-5000  if you would like assistance. We will need the fax number or email address of your bank in order to send the policy to the correct department or person.

What information do I need to apply for a vehicle permit online?

  • Your INM (Instituto Nacional de Migración) online pre-registration for FMM – tourist card
  • A document that proves your citizenship (you will need to enter the document number):
    • Passport or passport card
    • Certificate of naturalization
    • Resident alien card
  • Date you will enter Mexico
  • Email address – Will be used to send a confirmation email with a reference number
  • Number of passengers in your vehicle
  • Address – This is the address the permit will be mailed to
  • Your vehicle’s VIN number
  • Credit or debit card that allows foreign transactions

*Note: To apply for a vehicle permit online, you cannot use a birth certificate as proof of citizenship, but this is accepted if you apply in person.

If I pre-register, where do I pick up my Mexico car permit?

Pre-registered vehicle permits may be picked up at any Banjercito Module located at the border. See below for a list of locations.

If I pre-register, what documents do I need to bring with me to pick up my permit?

The documents you used to complete the online application will be required to pick up your Mexico car permit (bring a copy or two along). These documents could include your passport or passport card and vehicle registration or title. Don’t forget to bring your pre-registration code. If you need permission to take the vehicle to Mexico, i.e. if you are making payments or the vehicle is rented, it is important to bring the proof that the vehicle may leave the country.  The required proof  of permission is a letter from your bank or a car rental agreement that states the vehicle may be in Mexico. Don’t forget to buy Mexican Insurance before your trip. It is easier to purchase before you arrive at the border.

What is required in order to get a vehicle permit in person at a Mexican consulate or Banjercito office?

Make sure you have the original (or a notorized copy) and two photocopies of the following documents:

  • One of the following documents that prove your citizenship:
    • Passport or passport card
    • Birth certificate
    • Certificate of naturalization
  • Your vehicle registration or vehicle title (pink slip) – The vehicle registration must be in the driver’s name.
  • A lease contract if the vehicle is leased or a rental contract if it rented
  • If you owe money on the vehicle through a lien holder, you must provide a notarized letter of permission
  • A Mexican tourist card (FM-T) or visa for travel in Mexico

I have all my documents in order, what do I do next?

  • Purchase your Mexican Auto Insurance before you go.
  • Look for the “Módulo de Control Vehícular” or Mexican Customs (Aduana México) signs that say “Importación Temporal de Vehículos” where you are crossing.
  • This next step is determined by whether or not you have an internationally accepted credit card. If you have an international credit card (Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Diner’s Club) the next part is easy. The credit card must be in the name of whoever is listed on the vehicle registration! You will be required to charge a non-refundable fee of $16.50 (including the IVA) to your credit card at the Banjercito which is within the Customs area. Banjercito hours of operation at different border crossings are listed below. If you do not have an international credit card, read about making a cash deposit.

Which Mexican Consulates issue temporary vehicle import permits?

California: Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Sacramento
Arizona: Phoenix
Texas: Dallas, Houston, Austin
New Mexico: Albuquerque
Colorado: Denver
Illinois: Chicago

How long can my car stay in Mexico?

Temporary vehicle importation permits are valid for up to six months. Within this period you may enter and exit Mexico with your vehicle as many times as you want.  If your vehicle is in the country for longer than the permit allows, it can be confiscated by the Mexican authorities so be sure to return your permit before it expires.


Why do I need to return my vehicle permit when I leave Mexico?

The vehicle permit must be returned to authorities when you leave Mexico so that the permit is canceled and authorities know the vehicle is no longer in Mexico. It is important to bring your vehicle, the permit and the sticker with you. Vehicle permits may NOT be canceled any other way. If you drive home without canceling your permit, you risk having to drive all the way back to Mexico to return the permit.

What are Banjercito’s hours of operation?

Unless noted otherwise, Banjercito offices are open on holidays and follow the same schedule listed below

Banjercito Office – Nogales, Sonora

Baja California Norte

  • Tijuana
    8am-12am – 7 days a week
  • Otay Mesa
    8am-12am – 7 days a week
  • Tecate
    8am-8pm Monday-Friday
    10am-2pm Saturday
    Closed on Sunday
  • Mexicali
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • Mexicali – Annex
    8am-4pm Monday-Friday
    10am-2pm Saturday
    Closed on Sunday

Baja California Sur

  • La Paz (Pichilingue)
    9am-2pm – 7 days a week

Sonora (Arizona Border)

  • San Luis Rio Colorado
    8am-12am – 7 days a week
  • San Emeterio (Sonoyta)
    8am-12am – 7 days a week
  • Nogales (Km 21)
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • Naco – Anexo
    8am-12am – 7 days a week
  • Agua Prieta
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • Cananea
    8am-6pm Monday-Friday
    8am-1pm Saturday & Sunday

Chihuahua (Texas Border)

  • Cd. Juarez (Km. 30)
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • Palomas
    8am-12am – 7 days a week
  • Pte. Int. Ojinaga
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • Piedras Negras (Km. 54.3)
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • Acuña
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • San Jeronimo
    24 hrs – 7 days a week


  • Nuevo Laredo (Patio Fiscal)
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • Nuevo Laredo (Puente Internacional I & II)
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • Reynosa
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • Nuevo Amanecer
    8am-12am – 7 days a week
  • Ciudad Camargo
    8am-12am – 7 days a week
  • San Jeronimo
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • Matamoros Pta. Dos
    9am-6pm Monday-Friday
    9am-4pm Saturday
    Closed Sunday
  • Puente Nuevo
    24 hrs – 7 days a week
  • Puente Ignacio Zaragoza
    9am-9pm – 7 days a week
  • Puente TLC
    9am-6pm Monday-Friday
    9am-4pm Saturday
    Closed Sunday