Mexico Driving Tips

Following are some hints and tips for having an enjoyable Mexican vacation.  They’ve been gathered from years of travel to and living in Mexico, mostly in the state of Sonora.  If you have any suggestions for improvement or additions, please contact us.

Don’t Forget Your Insurance

Mexican auto insurance is one of the most important aspects of preparation for a trip to Mexico. Read more.

Don’t drink and drive

Most (if not all) Mexican auto insurance coverage is void if the driver has been drinking.  To avoid issues, it’s best to take a taxi – you’ll also find that the taxi driver is one of the most knowledgeable local tourist guides you’ll find.

Be prepared

Much of Sonora is desert, and you can expect that summertime temperatures will be in the 100’s.

  1. Bring plenty of water and snacks, as well as a roadside emergency kit and a first aid kit.
  2. Bring a cell phone.  Even if you don’t have service in Mexico, the phone can still be used to dial theemergency “066” number (the Sonora version of 911) and the “076” number to reach the Green Angels free roadside assistance service.

Be patient, and avoid road rage

Be careful not to tailgate, and wait the appropriate time to pass the vehicle safely. You’re on vacation, relax.

Watch out for topes

Those massive speed bumps – topes- (pronounced tow-pays) are generally found at crosswalks in roads that pass through towns, but they may also be found when entering or leaving a populated area as well.  Oftentimes the original yellow paint that identifies the tope has faded, so keep your eyes peeled – you definitely don’t want to encounter a tope at high speed.

Left turn signal from a truck driver

If you find yourself following a truck on the highway who turns on his left turn flasher, that is generally a signal indicating that it is safe to pass the vehicle.  Be aware of your surroundings though, because it is also a signal for a left turn!

Know the meanings of road signs

Many of the signs are self-explanatory or otherwise easy to interpret, but the non-Spanish-speaking driver may not be familiar with some of the less-common phrases. Stay tuned, we’re working on a list.