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Kurbie

Tourist Visa - Driving belongings into MX from Laredo

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A couple of questions and I appreciate everyone's input.  We're driving down in a couple of weeks and bringing some of our "stuff" in two vehicles as we cross the border in Laredo:

1.  I will have a tourist visa.  Do I need to fill out anything in "advance" inventorying items in my personal vehicle?  (computers, dishes etc).  Our movers will be taking care of everything else from Laredo to Ajijic.

2.  My wife just received her permanent visa from the Detroit consulate and she'll be driving the other vehicle in "my" name.  She'll finish the paperwork on the permanent visa in Chapala when we arrive.  Is there anything special she'll need to do carrying our personal belongings into MX?

Thanks for ALL your help!

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When we drove down 8 years ago, through Nogales, we decided to do everything by the book. Had inventory in Spanish, declared extra bottles of wine. We stopped to turn in our paperwork, a total pain and not necessary . Cars and pickups were simply driving through , we wasted both time and money . Drove through Nogales last week with a car lodeof stuff, just drove on through!

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Every once in a while they will check, so to protect yourself, you might create the paperwork showing what you are bringing in. And it is better if the item is new, that it doesn't look like you just bought it. Good luck. Chances are you will have no problems unless your vehicle is filled with all kinds of original boxes holding all kinds of unused items that might be for sale.

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Since your wife will be Residente Permanente, and unable to temporarily import a car for more than 30 days, you should be very careful not to end up with more than one temporarily imported vehicle ‘in your name‘, as only one is permitted per person with either a tourist permit or Residente Temporal. 

I am not sure how you intend to handle that situation.  Did I miss something?

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29 minutes ago, RVGRINGO said:

Since your wife will be Residente Permanente, and unable to temporarily import a car for more than 30 days, you should be very careful not to end up with more than one temporarily imported vehicle ‘in your name‘, as only one is permitted per person with either a tourist permit or Residente Temporal. 

I am not sure how you intend to handle that situation.  Did I miss something?

We have two vehicles, both in my name, and the "plan" was to drive both down with some of our personal stuff.  When we visited the Detroit consulate they suggested my wife get the permanent visa (we had all of the paperwork and everything flew by within one hour).  Any suggestions?

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Kurbie, I see the same problem RV does.  You have two cars, two people.  You can bring one in under your Tourist Permit, no problem.  However your wife can not bring one under the Permanente Visa filing and you personally are limited to one car.  I'm surprised they didn't alert you to this.

Only solution I see is to go back and refile for her to get a Temporal.  She can import a car under a Temporal for up to 4 years.  As noted you can import one on your tourist permit for up to 6 months.

Best overall solution if you feel like you need to bring both cars is for both of you to file and get Temporals, then you can both get TIPs and extend them each year when you renew your Temporals.

 

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There may be another option, if you only need the second car for the move, and will be willing to take it back to the USA almost immediately; within 30 days.  It would involve re-registering that car to your wife, who can then temporarily import it in her own name, but only for 30 days.  Once you empty it, you (not her) or someone with her written permission, could take it out of Mexico, get the deposit returned to her credit card and get the formal receipt for having taken it out of Mexico.  (Keep that forever)

It sounds inconvenient, expensive and maybe impractical, but it is possible.

Your wife, with the consular approval and recommendation for a visa “canje“ (she does not have one yet), will have to report to INM within 30 days of entering Mexico to start the tramite to get her actual visa.  It will take several weeks; and she should plan to remain in Mexico during that time & be able to report to INM at various steps in the process. 

Therefore, the simpler solution is to bring only one car.  As soon as your wife has her actual visa card, CURP, RFC, CFE receipts, etc., she can go ahead and buy a second car in Mexico, if desired.  Having a Mexican plated car has advantages, as you will discover.

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On the issue of re-registering the cars from both in your name to one in her name, be sure to it that way.  Don't just add her name to yours.  Had friends in AZ where the wife drove to MX for a long stay in a car registered in joint names.  When her husband tried to cross to visit her in a car in his name only, they would not issue the TIP, saying he was in the system as already having a car in MX. 

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I recently crossed at Nogales on a tourist Visa with a carload of stuff.  There were no problems.  But they wanted to see the original title to my vehicle, not the registration.  So if you are planning on transferring one vehicle to your wife, be sure you will be able to get a new title in time for your trip.  I had many copies of the title to my vehicle with me, but they insisted on seeing the original.  Yes, I had that too.  Good luck.

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As others noted you will not be allowed to bring in 2 cars in one name. I do not know why you both did not get a TR pre-approval and one car in each name. I also do not understand the rational for one being a tourist and leaving the country every 6 months with vehicle. You may want to read my web site.

Unfortunately, consulate staff are often wrong.

 

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12 hours ago, Sonia said:

As others noted you will not be allowed to bring in 2 cars in one name. I do not know why you both did not get a TR pre-approval and one car in each name. I also do not understand the rational for one being a tourist and leaving the country every 6 months with vehicle. You may want to read my web site.

Unfortunately, consulate staff are often wrong.

 

Sonia .... if one of the vehicles is put in my wife's name, will that work?  (even if she has the permanent visa and needs to go to Chapala to get the paperwork finished)

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No Kurbie, as a Permanente your wife cannot have a car in this country on a TIP at all.  As RV noted, you can drive it in but have to remove it in 30 days.  By far the easiest course is to bring only one car, sell the other one up there and when you arrive and she has a Permanente, buy a Mexican plated car and put it in her name.  You can't title a car in this state on a tourist permit but can in some other states as Sonia has noted.

 

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1 hour ago, Mainecoons said:

  You can't title a car in this state on a tourist permit but can in some other states as Sonia has noted.

That restriction is for Chapala, not for the state. I got tired of S&S stalling my acquisition of a car while waiting on my visa ( it was hung up on a snafu ) and just went to Ocotlan where I bought and they registered my car with a passport and cash. My immigration status made no difference to anyone there.

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46 minutes ago, AngusMactavish said:

That restriction is for Chapala, not for the state. I got tired of S&S stalling my acquisition of a car while waiting on my visa ( it was hung up on a snafu ) and just went to Ocotlan where I bought and they registered my car with a passport and cash. My immigration status made no difference to anyone there.

Good info.

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When did you register a car at Ocatlan, Angus?

Apparently this problem surfaced late last year.  There are a number of older threads on here about it.  Anyone know what the current situation is, only a problem at the Chapala DMV office?

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Spencer said to me it was Chapala's interpretation of the rules. I bought the car this year and it was on March 8th.

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6 hours ago, AngusMactavish said:

That restriction is for Chapala, not for the state. I got tired of S&S stalling my acquisition of a car while waiting on my visa ( it was hung up on a snafu ) and just went to Ocotlan where I bought and they registered my car with a passport and cash. My immigration status made no difference to anyone there.

Did you have to have a CURP and an RFC to register it?  We have our RPs, but S&S tells us we need these two items as well.  

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17 minutes ago, Bisbee Gal said:

Did you have to have a CURP and an RFC to register it?  We have our RPs, but S&S tells us we need these two items as well.  

Only a passport and cash. Nothing else. I have since registered a new motorcycle in Chapala and I had to supply my visa (the CURP is on it) and an RFC. 

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People in PV say they can not register a car as a tourist. Q.Roo has the same issue. Mexico is not known for consistency. :-)

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Sonia,

You said people can buy a car in SMA regardless of immigration status?

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2 hours ago, tomgates said:

Sonia,

You said people can buy a car in SMA regardless of immigration status?

yes.. I have assisted many tourists with driver's license and vehicle registration. 

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We plan on moving to Lakeside next summer and come in on a tourist visa. How long can we keep the car in Mexico?

If we leave Mexico to go to Panama or Costa Rica, in the 1st 6 months will we have problems with immigration?

The plan is likely to drive to Lakeside with our animals (2 cats) and as little stuff as possible. We will then return to the U.S. sell the car (2015 Subaru Outback) and start making decisions on what is next.

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Your temporary vehicle import permit (TIP) is good for the same period as your Tourist card.... up to 180 days. I say up to as you can, of course, leave before then.  But one CANNOT legally leave Mexico WITH the TIP vehicle left behind (this is a highly disputed claim and has been debated for years, but.....). Plenty of people have done it (leave with the vehicle still in Mexico, then fly back), including me, but some have been fined if "caught". The odds are pretty small that one will 'get caught'.

IF you decide to fly out, with the vehicle still in Mexico, your Tourist card stating that you came into the country via ground, will be taken by the airlines as required. Upon re-entry by air you will be issued/you will fill out yet another Tourist card for 180 days and this one will denote that you arrived Mexico via 'air'. When you eventually leave Mexico by vehicle within the original 180 days, you will want to turn in your latest Tourist card and cancel the TIP paperwork at the Mexican border (or you won't get the refundable $400 deposit you gave AND you will not be able to bring another foreign plated vehicle back into Mexico as their records will show you did not remove the first one!).

 

 

 

 

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