Auto insurance is a facility that will take the weight off your shoulders if you have monetary support in case of an incident with your vehicle. If having a car cover is important, it becomes a priority if you want to drive in another country because legislation, citizen benefits, and clauses might be very different. Beyond your first worries, Mexico registered an overall decrease in the number of road deaths in 2019 compared to 2018 by 5.8%, according to the International Transport Forum (2020)
In most cases, regardless of the country, car insurance covers medical and property damage expenses that occur during an accident. These aspects vary based on what type of cover you purchase. But how and when buying it if you go outside the USA? Depending on the purchase modality that you choose, you can have car insurance in Mexico before you travel or once you arrive in the country.
To help you with the task, we will give you some information on how to find a safe auto insurance company and prefer a car insurance app over an auto insurance agency, or vice versa.
What Do You Need to Have in a Car Insurance in Mexico
If you are considering travel to Mexico, whatever the length of stay, you should know that Mexican law establishes that you need to acquire car insurance to legally drive in the country. In this sense, a common US auto insurance will not cover your car in other territories. So, you must separately buy insurance from Mexico.
A cover for tourist or business trips can be found through short and extended time packages, which can also be customized. These include physical damages, civil liability, vandalism, medical expenses, and emergency assistance accordingly to what you need.
Before you start the purchasing process, make sure you include details about your stay in Mexico to include these touristic or business expenses in your budget in a more accurate way. In fact, if you purchase through an app or an agency, you will need to disclose your travel dates and stay location to the company, some apps like La Segura Mexico Insurance don’t require your location. In addition to this information, to purchase car insurance in Mexico you must provide your Mexican Multiple Immigration Form (FMM), your passport, your driver’s license, and, maybe, your US auto insurance policy number.
In case you want to drive your own car, apart from the details of your vehicle’s entry into Mexico, you must give your vehicle details like brand, model, year, and market value; your vehicle identification number; your driver’s license; and your US auto insurance policy number to get a car cover.
Common Commodities of a Car Insurance in the USA and Mexico
Even when you will need to purchase additional insurance during your trip, there are certain aspects that will be similar from the acquisition to the covered expenses in both the USA and Mexico. These are the details that you should take into consideration.
Vehicle Damage or Loss Cover
While basic car insurance will cover accidents, a full auto cover will amplify its benefits to include more specific types of natural accidents, theft, strikes, and riots. This becomes more important when you prioritize preventing a full car loss and not spending more money than you have in mind.
Personal Accident Cover
In case you suffer an accident, the coverage works the same way. If you purchase at higher prices, the gap between what you must pay for medical expenses and what auto insurance covers in Mexico will be reduced. While you cannot predict when this will happen during your stay in the country, it is important to consider how many days you will be there and what activities you will be doing during driving. This will give you a starting point to make a final decision on what you really need.
Try asking this through the auto insurance agency or car insurance app when purchasing, especially if you are traveling with other people. In the end, even when you paid more at the beginning, you will reduce your expected costs.
Cover for Involved Third Parties
Other considerations that you must be aware of are those related to third parties involved in an accident. If there is damage or loss to the property of other people, your car insurance should cover some of those expenses. The same should happen if you are facing legal liability because your auto insurance requires you to provide legal support. Again, this will depend on what you purchase from the package.
You might also want to read about Auto Insurance App vs. Online Auto Insurance for Mexico.
Auto Insurance Agency Vs Car Insurance App
Depending on whether you prefer to purchase before or during your trip, you will find more advantages and disadvantages to doing it through an auto insurance agency or a car insurance app. However, we will disclose more details about these two modalities, so you will know which one best suits your needs.
Auto Insurance Agency
Regarding the pros of going to an agency, you will have a face-to-face customized experience in which you will have the chance to ask all your questions and have an immediate response. In this sense, your specific case and preferences might be more accurately attended to through multipolicy details, which commonly involve discounts. Counting on the advice of an agent will also give you more background about Mexican driving stats and legislation. We recommend you consider if there is any auto insurance agent near you during your stay or what is closer to the airport, in case you have any trouble or questions.
Additionally, checking for car characteristics will be possible using an insurance agency if you are more cautious with these aspects and you want a more humanized treat. You might even feel more secure about having a specific car agent to contact because if you do not get response through calls or emails, you can still approach a specific location.
In contrast, purchasing car insurance through an agency might take you longer because you will require more documentation. So now you might need to go back to delivering all the papers that are missing to finally start driving in Mexico. On-time limitation terms, you have specific opening hours to be attended to if any unforeseen happens.
Another disadvantage is that insurance processes might be delayed, or doubts might take longer to be answered if you do not quickly get the agent to rely on them. Following this, you might be able to contact the agency before making the trip, but the purchasing process will be complete once you arrive. As a result, you might drive from the airport to your stay location if you catch the agency on the first day of your stay in Mexico, but you will also have to wait to do it if you previously did not think in terms of having an auto insurance agent near. Again, this choice will depend on your convenience and needs.
Beyond face-to-face interactions to build a stronger and quicker relationship with a certain agent, this modality is higher in price given that the company must pay additional obligations as it has agent intermediaries and physical space to provide additional services to its clients. These compensations will change according to business policies but will definitely impact market price rates.
As a possible inconvenience, the language might be a barrier because of the differences between English versus Spanish. Depending on the type of agency and its scope, you can find an English agent speaker, but if this is really not the case it can be a thing to be worried about.
Car Insurance App
Using a car insurance app is quick and convenient wherever you are at any time. Through a customer interface, you will have a variety of options without having to move. These will change according to the app, but most of them will let you check your insurance ID, billing, and policy information in English by using the language selection feature. In addition, you will have the option to buy before you travel to Mexico, so once you arrive there, you can drive from the moment you arrive at the next destination.
With this faster option, the paperwork also tends to be lighter because the entire process is digitalized, and a safe auto insurance company requests fewer documents or is more flexible with delivery times. You can even do 24/7 car insurance actions because most processes are automatized; thus, you do not need to wait for authorization to do anything.
Some auto insurance apps will let you make claims and check their status, get access to your real-time vehicle case tracking. You will also be able to chat with the app staff to answer questions or seek help.
If you are a more traditional person, the use of an app offers you less human touch and advice, which might be an inconvenience for you if you want to delve into all the car insurance details before using them. In this case, you will need to do more research to understand the driving conditions of Mexico and what you need. In contrast, this agency skipped step in a car insurance app will reduce the final policy price as companies do not have to invest in indirect sales channels such as agents.
Another possible situation is that some apps do not allow you to give more specific details regarding the type of cover that you want and need, so you might not get the one you wished for. We recommend you pay special attention to this if you do not really require a regular car cover, but instead a multipolicy or special insurance package. This limitation might also encompass the fact that you cannot reduce the prices unless you change the policy package; however, not all insurance apps allow these modifications.
Get a Car Insurance before Your Travel
Knowing all the differences between an auto insurance agency and an auto insurance app, we encourage you to get a cover before your trip for more comfort, especially if you are traveling with your family or for business purposes. This will allow you to invert that time into other aspects of your stay in Mexico and meet your budget by preventing last-minute inconveniences. Besides this, you will be sure that you can move through the country by yourself without spending additional money on other means of transportation.
As a first step, we encourage you to do a lot of Internet research by knowing more about car insurance online. This also includes using car quotes online to get price rates depending on certain benefits; this tool is free, and you will have a lot of options to make your own estimates based on what you are looking for. In fact, the Insurance Information Institute suggests comparing costs before buying to save money. While this method might not provide you with the real prices, it will give you a reference regarding Mexican pesos and their change to US dollars.
For more background, we suggest comparing these findings in the USA and Mexico, so you will be more aware of the aspects that would apply in both cases, and which would not. Thus, you will be prepared to assume certain gaps in expenses if this is the case.
Then, you must establish what your needs and concerns are regarding driving in another country, so you can identify what you need and what you do not. As a result, you can go through a basic cover, full package, or multipolicy and reduce the search for a safe auto insurance company in Mexico based on the criterion that best suits you.
For convenience purposes, a vehicle insurance app will allow you to purchase while you stay in the USA with just a touch. As apps offer you real-time services, you will have the chance to check last-minute details even if you are on the borderline waiting to cross to Mexico without any extra effort. Thus, we recommend you download the La Segura App, which will provide you with various types of insurance based on encrypted data. Additionally, the company has a website where you can learn more about the services they offer and a few tips for your trip.