BELIZE/MEXICO BORDER–Belizeans are known to frequent various areas in Mexico, such as Chetumal, Quintana Roo, Cancun, and Merida for recreation, shopping, medical treatment, among other reasons, but now, there are new requirements for those who plan to drive in these areas: Belizean motorists who are traveling to Mexico this year will need to procure Mexican 3rd party insurance for their vehicles.
The regulation was passed by Mexican authorities in September 2014, but was only enforced last month. It has drawn the ire of many local drivers, however, who view it as an additional hassle to visit our neighbors to the north.
When the media went looking for answers yesterday, Javier Aguilar, Head of Trade, Investment and Tourism Affairs at the Embassy of Mexico, explained that in the past, only Mexican motorists were required to have third party insurance, but now it has become mandatory for both Mexicans and foreigners as well.
While citing specifically what vehicles the stipulation applies to, Aguilar declared that although the third party insurance can be bought from Mexican insurance companies, it can also be bought in Belize from insurance companies that have partnerships with Mexican counterparts.
He said, “Depending on the model and year of the car, all vehicles which are 2008 and newer, they have to comply with it, and also, it depends on the value of the vehicle – if it is more than 162,000 pesos, which is around US$10,000 – if that is the value, or above that, then you will have to comply with it. The insurance must be issued by a Mexican company, but there are lots of Belizean insurance companies that have partnerships with Mexican insurance companies, so you will be able to get the insurance through these companies.”
Aguilar noted that the fee also depends on how much time the motorist spends in Mexico, and shared a personal example regarding the estimated cost.
“When I buy comprehensive insurance, it usually costs me around US$35 per day, so if it’s a third party insurance, I don’t have the exact figure, but it should be cheaper, I believe”, he mentioned, adding that he normally uses Atlantic Insurance, but there are other companies that offer similar packages.
According to Aguilar, by 2019, all vehicles which travel through Mexico will be required to have third party vehicular insurance; however, it will be implemented gradually.
While Mexicans who travel into Belizean territory beyond the Corozal Free Zone must also have insurance from Belizean companies, we were told that so far, Belizean authorities have not spoken with Mexican authorities about the alteration.