Pre-Road Trip Car Inspection | Car Maintenance Checklist

Pre-Road Trip Car Inspection Car Maintenance Checklist

Before embarking on a road trip, it’s important to make sure that your car is working properly. Doing so will help you avoid any roadside disasters that could potentially ruin your trip, or worse, put you and your passengers in danger. If you’re planning an exciting voyage out on the open road, follow this pre-road trip car inspection checklist to ensure that your trip—and vehicle—run smoothly.

Tires

A road trip is sure to put your tires to the test. To ensure that they can withstand the extra strain that comes with long days on the road, make sure to check their pressure and tread depth. Consult your vehicle’s manual and use a tire gauge to make sure you appropriately fill your tires.

Brakes

Propper functioning brakes are extremely important when it comes to the safety of your vehicle. Worn down brake pads and rotors will spell trouble, so check to see if your car needs these replacements.

Lights

Having burnt out lights isn’t just a safety hazard, they could also lead to costly tickets. Before leaving the driveway, make sure to check to see if your headlights, high beams, taillights, and left and right turn signals work correctly.

Fluids

Your car has six essential fluids: radiator, brake, power steering, transmission, and windshield fluid, as well as oil. To make sure that your car functions properly, get your fluids regularly checked. You’ll also want to consider how far your trip is to determine if a mechanic will need to service any of the fluids before you leave.

Air Filter

To avoid breathing in dusty, dirty air your entire trip, check to see if your air filter has reached capacity, and change it if necessary. Aside from reducing interior air quality, forgetting to change your air filter could impact your engine’s performance and fuel economy.

Belts

If the surface of your engine belt appears ragged, cracked, or torn, you should replace them before your trip. You should also make sure that your belt isn’t loose as this may cause it to fall off while you are driving.

No matter how much you prepare, accidents can still happen. As such, it is important to invest in auto insurance before going on a road trip. If your travels are leading you south of the border, Lewis and Lewis Insurance Agency has you covered. We offer a great deal on reliable Mexican tourist auto insurance. You can apply online today for a quick and free quote—our team will keep you safe throughout all 1,972,550 square kilometers of Mexico.

Guide to the Weather and Seasons in Mexico

Guide to the Weather and Seasons in Mexico

The best time to visit Mexico largely depends on what weather you want during your stay. For a relaxing vacation on the beach, you may want to visit during its hottest months while those looking to hike and explore ruins may prefer cooler temperatures. To determine which time of year is best for your visit, consult this guide to the weather and seasons in Mexico.

Temperature in Mexico

Hottest months

Depending on the area you’re visiting, the hottest time to visit Mexico is generally between April and September. In Mexico City, the hottest month is May when temperatures reach an average of 64 degrees Fahrenheit (18 degrees Celsius). On the Pacific Coast, however, the hottest period is between July and September and between April and May in the south.

Coolest months

Typically, the weather in Mexico is coldest between December and February. Temperatures, however, will vary greatly by region. While it may remain hot in the Yucatan during this time, temperatures can reach freezing further inland.

Seasons in Mexico

Rainy season

The rainy season in Mexico spans between May and October. During this time, the risk of tropical storms is the highest. The positive side of visiting Mexico during the rainy season, however, is that all the water nourishes the landscape so it appears lush and green.

Dry season

Mexico’s dry season occurs between November and April. Weather is normally warm during this time and there is little to no rainfall. As a result, the landscape is often less vibrant and more parched during this season.

Humid season

From May to July, Mexico experiences extremely hot and humid weather. While this is a good time of year to spend snorkeling or swimming along the beautiful coastline, sightseers should wait for a cooler time of year to book their ticket.

High season

High season refers to the most popular time of year to visit a country which results in inflated accommodation and transportation prices. In Mexico, the high season takes place between December and April when tourists from colder countries flock to the country’s calm, warm climate.

Low season

The least popular time to visit Mexico is during May and June, as well as between September and November. During this time, accommodation and transportations prices can be up to 50 percent lower than during the high season.

Hurricane season

Peak hurricane season in Mexico occurs from June to November, with visitors being most at-risk during September.

Regardless of what time of year you’re planning on visiting Mexico, make sure to invest in insurance before you go. Lewis and Lewis Insurance Agency can provide you with the best home, boat, medical, and Mexico vehicle insurance at a great cost. Get your free quote today.

12 Must-See Attractions in Mexico to Add to Your Itinerary

12 Must-See Attractions in Mexico to Add to Your Itinerary

Mexico is a diverse country filled with innumerable sights and activities to suit the travel style of any globetrotter. Besides luxurious beaches, the country offers a wide variety of cultural, culinary, and exhilarating experiences. From exploring underwater museums to rediscovering ancient ruins, these are some of the must-see attractions in Mexico to add to your travel bucket list.

The Underwater Museum of Art (MUSA)

The Underwater Museum of Art is one of the largest underwater art attractions in the world. It includes over 500 permanent life-sized sculptures. Further, it boasts a unique and imaginative design—the structure’s material facilitates the growth of coral reefs, demonstrating the relationship between art and nature. Popular methods to experience this miraculous aquatic display include snorkeling, scuba diving, or viewing it from above in a glass-bottomed boat.

Chichen Itzá

One of the new wonders of the world, Chichen Itzá is a top tourist attraction in Mexico. The impressive ruins make up the largest Mayan archaeological site in the Yucatan Peninsula. One of its most notable features is its impressive temple-pyramid, El Castillo, which includes a stairway with 91 steps on each of its three faces. Additional attractions at the complex include structures such as the Great Ballcourt, the Temple of the Warriors, and El Caracol—a circular observatory.

Palacio de Bellas Artes

Built between 1904 and 1934, the Palacio de Bellas Artes commemorates the centenary of Mexican independence in 1910. Throughout the years, the prominent cultural center in Mexico City has hosted a variety of notable music, dance, theater, literature, and opera events. The center also includes murals by famed artists such as Diego Rivera, José Clemente Orozco, Rufino Tamayo, and David Siqueiros.

La Catedral Metropolitana

Located in the heart of Mexico City’s main plaza, La Catedral Metropolitana is one of the oldest and most iconic buildings in the country. It’s also the largest cathedral in Latin America, standing at 65 meters (213 feet) tall, 109 meters (357 feet) long, and 59 meters (193 feet) wide. Due to its 250-year construction period, the cathedral features a unique variety of architectural styles including Renaissance, Baroque, and Neoclassical.

The Copper Canyon

Sometimes referred to as Mexico’s Grand Canyon, the Copper Canyon is several times larger and deeper than its U.S. counterpart. Located in Chihuahua—which accounts for roughly 12.6 percent of the nation’s area—the network of canyons covers roughly 25,000 square miles. One of the most popular ways to experience this incredible natural attraction is by taking a ride on the famous Ferrocarril Chihuahua al Pacífico train. The railway takes passengers over 37 bridges, through 86 tunnels, and reaches altitudes of 2,400 meters (7,900 feet) above sea level.

Templo Mayor

Also known as the Great Temple, Templo Mayor served as a focal point of the Aztec religion. The architects dedicated its twin temples to the rain god, Tlaloc, and the war god, Huitzilopochtli. During its prime, the temple served as the location of many human sacrifices, coronations, and other state occasions for years to come. After its initial construction in 1440 CE, the structure underwent several renovations, improvements, and enlargements until 1502 CE when it reached its final height of 60 meters (180 feet).

Cenote Dos Ojos

Located just outside of Tulum, Cenote Dos Ojos is one of Mexico’s largest underwater cave systems. Its name, which translates to “the cavern of two eyes,” refers to the two sinkholes located in the cenote. Since the pools’ water filters through limestone, they offer a crystal-clear snorkeling and scuba diving experience.

Xcaret

Xcaret is an eco-archaeological theme park located in the Riviera Maya. It includes over 50 natural and cultural attractions such as underground rivers, a coral reef aquarium, a butterfly garden, breathtaking chapels, archeological sites, entertaining performances, and a recreation of a Mayan village.

Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe

One of the most popular religious sites in the world, over 12 million people visit the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe each year. As such, it’s considered the second-most-important Catholic shrine after Vatican City. The impressive Roman Catholic church resides on the site where Mexico’s patron saint, the Virgin of Guadalupe, appeared to Juan Diego. Many believe that the saint revealed herself to the poor boy in a vision. To provide proof, the Virgin Guadalupe arranged flowers in his cloak and instructed him to open it when he returned to the bishop. When he did, a miraculous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared on the cloak’s surface. The cloak is now kept behind bullet-proof glass in the immense circular building for all to see.

Uxmal

Many individuals consider Uxmal to be one of the most important Mayan archaeological sites in the world. Spanning roughly 150 acres, the ancient city is perhaps best known for its tallest structure, the Pyramid of the Magician. Translating to “thrice-built,” the city’s name refers to the fact that construction of the 115-foot tall Mesoamerican step pyramid took place on top of pre-existing pyramids.

The Pípila Monument

Located on a hill high above the city of Guanajuato, Pípila Monument commemorates the hero who lead the Hidalgo forces to their first independence movement victory. While the Pípila Monument alone is a stunning sight, part of what makes the structure a must-visit destination in Mexico is its panoramic view of Guanajuato. From its location on a hill, the monument overlooks this vibrant city known for its baroque colonial architecture and rainbow-colored houses.

Museo Nacional de Antropologia

The Museo Nacional de Antropologia is the largest and most-visited museum in Mexico. Since its creation over half a century ago, the museum has collected a remarkable variety of archaeological and anthropological relics from Mexico’s indigenous heritage. Today, it contains the most impressive collection of Mesoamerican artifacts in the world, including the Stone of the Sun or “Aztec Calendar” and the Aztec Xochipilli statue.

To stay safe while exploring these incredible must-see attractions in Mexico, it’s important to invest in proper travel insurance. Since most foreign insurance plans are not permissible south of the border, forgetting to apply for coverage could leave you vulnerable in case of an accident abroad.Fortunately, Lewis and Lewis Insurance Agency offers a variety of different auto, home, medical, and boat insurance plans to suit your specific needs. For optimal convenience, you can get your quick and free Mexican car insurance quote online today.

12 Must-See Attractions in Mexico to Add to Your Itinerary infographic

How to Get a U.S. Passport: A Step-By-Step Guide

How to Get a U.S. Passport: A Step-By-Step Guide

When planning an international vacation, don’t forget to apply for a passport. Passport books are a requirement for all international air travel and are valid for all destinations and travel methods. According to Forbes, “A grand total of 21.4 million passports were issued in the U.S., the highest number ever recorded.” If you aren’t sure how to acquire one of your own, follow this step-by-step guide on how to get a U.S. passport.

Step 1: Print the required forms

When applying for a passport for the first time, you’ll need to fill out a DS-11 form. You can acquire this form from any U.S. post office, by downloading a PDF version of the application, or by using an online Form Filler.

Step 2: Gather necessary documentation

To get a passport, you’ll need to provide photo identification and show proof of U.S. citizenship. If you were born in the United States, this documentation will include a valid government-issued photo ID and birth certificate. The city, county, or state of birth must issue the certificate and it must include your full name, date of birth, birthplace, and the name of your parent(s). If you were born outside of the United States, you must provide either a valid U.S. passport, a Certificate of Naturalization, a Certificate of Citizenship, a Consular Report of Birth Abroad, or Certification of Birth.

Step 3: Take your passport photo

All passport applications must include a color 2 by 2-inch photo taken within the last six months. The photo can’t be a selfie, use any filters, or have digital alterations. In addition, the photo should provide a clear image of the subject’s face and they should be standing in front of a white background. Make sure to remove any hats, glasses, or other accessories that could hide your face in any way.

Step 4: Pay the fee

In order to receive a passport, you’ll need to pay application and execution fees. Acceptable payment methods include a check or money order. These fees change periodically and depend on a variety of different factors. To give you an idea of how much money the passport will cost, you can use this fee calculator provided by the U.S. Department of State.

Step 5: Submit your application

After you have completed steps one through four, all you have to do is submit your application. The processing of your passport will typically take between six to eight weeks unless you pay the extra cost for expedited service. In this case, it could take as little as eight days to three weeks depending on your needs.

In addition to a passport, it’s also essential to have proper insurance when embarking on an international trip. If you’re travels take you south of the border, Lewis and Lewis Insurance Agency can provide you with Mexico tourist auto insurance. We also offer medical, boat, home, and kidnap and ransom insurance to keep you safe and protected.

A Beginner’s Guide to Mexican Auto Insurance

A Beginner’s Guide to Mexican Auto Insurance

Most people wouldn’t risk driving without auto insurance. But when travelers cross the border, many forget to sign up for a Mexican auto insurance plan. Whether you’re taking a short road trip or planning a longer stay, obtaining coverage is essential. This beginner’s guide to Mexican auto insurance will familiarize you with the basics of proper automotive protection south of the border.

Why you need it

To ensure that drivers are financially liable in the case of an accident, Mexico legally requires all drivers to have auto insurance. Even if you have auto insurance in Canada or the United States, you still need to purchase coverage in Mexico; this is because as soon as you cross the border, most plans will become void. Considering that the average price of a new vehicle is around $31,400, without insurance, this significant financial investment is put at risk. Additionally, it’s important to remember that coverage is required even if you drive a rental a car.

Without insurance, the financial and legal repercussions of an automotive accident in Mexico could be devastating. In addition to paying lofty fines, officials could impound your vehicle and they may arrest you. In Mexico, traffic accidents are civil and criminal offenses. If you can’t prove your ability to pay the damages, the police might hold you in custody for an extended period.

What it covers

Rather than providing umbrella coverage for a wide range of risks, Mexican auto insurance is very specific about what it covers. As such, it’s important to read policies carefully before you sign up for an insurance plan. Important areas of coverage include liability, physical damage, legal, medical, collision, theft and vandalism, and travel assistance. If you do not see these listed on your plan, then the insurer will not cover them.

How to get it

Obtaining Mexican auto insurance is a fairly simple process. After contacting an insurance agent, you’ll have to answer questions about your driving habits and your vehicle’s value. You’ll also discuss how long you want your coverage to last and how much protection you want to receive. After determining your premiums, you’ll receive coverage. With Lewis and Lewis Insurance Agency, we make it simple—you can purchase your Mexico auto insurance online, by mail, or facsimile for optimal convenience.

How to determine prices

The price of your Mexican auto insurance will largely depend on the vehicle that you drive, rather than safe driving habits. Based on Mexico’s data, car models which are more susceptible to crime will have higher insurance premiums. Other influential factors that determine the price of Mexican auto insurance include the duration of time and the coverage amount that you need.

What You Should Know Before Traveling to Mexico

What You Should Know Before Traveling to Mexico

Mexico is a breathtaking country full of stunning beaches, amazing food, vibrant culture, and unique experiences—the reason why 74 percent of Americans take vacations. When traveling to a foreign country, it’s important to be knowledgeable of any cultural or lifestyle differences so you can avoid any inconveniences or health and safety issues. If you want to pay a visit south of the border, we highlight what you should know before traveling to Mexico so you can have the best trip possible.

You shouldn’t flush your toilet paper

Flushing your toilet paper in Mexico will often result in a clogged toilet. Unlike in the U.S., Mexican pipes aren’t designed to handle toilet paper. While you probably can flush your toilet paper at nicer establishments and resorts, most bathrooms in Mexico will not have this capability. Instead, make sure to toss your toilet paper in the small waste bin by the toilet to avoid any embarrassing and inconvenient plumbing issues.

The water can be dangerous to drink

The rumors about Mexican water causing illnesses and painful stomach issues are true. Unless you know that your water comes from a trusted source, you should avoid drinking it. It’s also important to recognize that even if the establishment uses filtered water, the water for their ice may not be. While most ice in Mexico is made in factories that use filtered water, this isn’t always the case. Even if your beverage comes from a trusted resort or nice restaurant, you should always be cautious of drinking beverages. If the water in the ice isn’t purified, it can contaminate your drink as it melts. As an additional precaution, you should also avoid brushing your teeth with tap water to reduce the risk of illness.

Foreign exchange rates can be high

Not paying with pesos in Mexico could end up costing you a lot of money on your trip. While many places in Mexico accept credit cards and the U.S. dollar, it’s a better financial decision to convert your money to pesos before visiting. This is because merchant foreign currency exchange rates and bank fees can be very high if you choose to purchase goods with U.S. money. To avoid wasting money, exchange your currency before traveling to Mexico or pay using a credit card that doesn’t have foreign transaction fees.

Mexican insurance is essential

Most U.S. insurance plans aren’t accepted in Mexico. To ensure you receive the financial and legal coverage you need in case of an accident, it’s always important to register for a Mexican insurance plan. Investing in Mexican insurance is especially important if you’re going to drive while in the country. Auto insurance for Mexico travel won’t just help you cover legal, medical, and property fees in case of an accident, it’s also required by law. If you get into an accident in Mexico and aren’t covered by a valid Mexican insurance plan, you could be forced to pay exorbitant fees and may have to go to jail—even if it’s just a minor fender bender. Additional types of insurance that are important to have while in Mexico include boating insurance, medical insurance, and kidnap and ransom insurance. Proper coverage will make your trip much safer and you’ll be less stressed knowing you’re protected in the event of an accident.

Mexico has a great bus system

If you’re planning a trip to Mexico, don’t be afraid to take public transportation. Mexico’s bus system is an inexpensive way to explore the vast country, and it’s also very safe and comfortable. The Mexico bus system offers a range of transportation options to suit your needs and budget. The tiered system includes three classes: deluxe and executive, first class, and second class. The deluxe and executive class options—called de lujo, primera plus, and ejecutivo—are often considered to be nicer than most U.S. busses. They include onboard restrooms, movies on individual video screens, and comfortable seating that rivals a first-class airline. The lower-class buses take more stops and don’t have onboard restrooms. They do, however, come at a cheaper price tag and are still a quality transportation option for budget travelers.

Raw fruits and vegetables can make you sick

The street food in Mexico is often delicious, but it also comes with some risks. Contaminated street food can lead to stomach issues that put a rut in your trip. This risk increases when you eat raw fruits and vegetables because there’s a chance they were washed in contaminated water or prepared in an unsanitary environment. In addition, if food was left to sit out for a long period of time, insects may have contaminated it. It’s much safer to eat hot foods. If you do choose to eat raw foods, make sure they were prepared by a trusted source.

Bartering is expected

Bartering is a common practice in Mexico. Unless you purchase something from a department store or chain establishment, merchants don’t expect you to accept the first price they offer. While you barter, it’s important to be respectful and avoid being overly stubborn or aggressive. Asking for a much lower price than their initial offer can also be seen as a devaluation of their work—which is often handcrafted and serves as their primary source of income. While you shouldn’t accept the first price offered, you should be realistic with your own offers. For a successful bartering experience, have an idea of the maximum price you’re willing to pay before entering into an exchange, and be prepared to walk away if you can’t come to an agreement.

The best time to visit is during the dry season

The ideal time to visit Mexico will depend on your preference and the region of the country you want to visit. All travelers, however, should avoid visiting coastal areas during hurricane season which typically peaks between August and October. As a general rule, the best time to visit Mexico is during the dry season between December and April, as there is very little rain and it won’t be as hot and humid as it is during the summer. If you’re on a budget, you shouldn’t plan your trip during Christmas or New Year’s, as this is often the most popular and expensive time to visit Mexico.

What You Should Know Before Traveling to Mexico infographic

6 of the Main Reasons to Travel to Mexico

6 of the Main Reasons to Travel to Mexico

Mexico is a beautiful country filled with incredible culture, sites, and experiences—which could be why roughly 35.05 million U.S. citizens visited in 2017.

From breathtaking beaches to colorful cities, there is no shortage of motives to visit this stunning land. While it is virtually impossible to name them all, here are six of the main reasons to travel to Mexico.

Breathtaking beaches

When most people envision a Mexico vacation, the first thing that comes to mind is lounging on a gorgeous beach. Mexico is home to over 6,000 miles of coastline and has over 450 beaches. From the laid-back shores of Tulum to the palm-lined coast of Playa del Carmen, you won’t want to miss out on the beaches in Mexico.

Delicious cuisine

In addition to staple Mexican dishes such as tacos, tamales, and quesadillas, Mexican cuisine also features many unique dishes that aren’t nationally recognized. Depending on what region you’re in, Mexican food will widely vary—from unbeatable seafood on the Pacific coast to the incredible street-food in Mexico City.

Stunning artwork

Mexico was the birthplace of many iconic artists such as Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, Gerardo Murillo, José Clemente Orozco, and David Alfaro Siqueiros. You can find some of their remarkable artwork in the many art museums throughout the country. In addition, the cities also serve as a canvas for incredible murals and street art.

Incredible marine life

Mexico is just as beautiful below the surface as it is above. From vibrant coral reefs to diverse marine life, Mexico is a can’t-miss destination for people who enjoy snorkeling and scuba diving.

Remarkable archeological sites

You can find incredible Mayan and Aztec treasures throughout Mexico. It is almost impossible to name them all, but some of the most popular archeological sites in Mexico include Templo Mayor, Teotihuacán—also known as the “Palace of the Gods”—and the incredible ancient city of Uxmal where the Pyramid of the Magician stands.

Amazing nature sights

Mexico is overflowing with scenic landscape. In addition to the stunning beaches and reefs, Mexico is also home to volcanos, mountains, jungles, underground rivers, caves, and canyons that would make any nature lover swoon.

We’re sure that all these alluring reasons to visit Mexico have made you want to book a plane ticket right away, but before you go, make sure you’re prepared. Don’t forget to enlist in a vehicle insurance plan to protect yourself financially in the case of an accident. Lewis and Lewis Insurance Agency makes it easy to get car insurance for your Mexico trip by offering a quick online quote, free of charge.

The Differences Between Mexican and U.S. Auto Insurance

The Differences Between Mexican and U.S. Auto Insurance

Mexican auto insurance is legally required if you’re going to be driving across the border, even if you’re using a rental vehicle. But enrolling in a foreign plan can be confusing and intimidating if you don’t know what to expect. To help you navigate the cultural changes, we outlined some of the main differences between Mexican and U.S. auto insurance.  

Liability

Unlike in the States, Mexican auto insurance liability doesn’t cover injuries per person and per accident. Instead, all liability charges are lumped together and are determined by the Mexican state. If an accident results in a death, the Mexican state in which the accident occurred will set both the criminal and civil liability charges. These often include funeral expenses for the deceased and a high rate of compensation for their family. Depending on the state, a judge may determine the final amount.

You should also keep in mind that liability coverage isn’t automatically included in Mexican insurance plans like it is in the U.S. As such, you should always make sure to add liability coverage to your plan.

Policy coverage

Instead of looking into the risk factors of each driver—such as a history of accidents or DUIs—Mexican auto insurance links policy coverage to the vehicle itself. As such, if you’re driving a model that has a higher risk of being stolen according to Mexico’s data, your premium will likely be higher. Furthermore, because coverage doesn’t pertain to the driver, you can’t receive any safe driver discounts. If you’re renting a car, you also won’t be able to change vehicles during your time in Mexico, as you’ll only be covered for the specific car that you registered through your insurance company.

Mexico insurance policies are also far less broad than U.S. plans. Rather than providing umbrella coverage for all risks, the insurance company will list in its policy the specific risks it covers. If the risk isn’t listed, it won’t be covered.

Pricing

In the United States, prices and standards for auto insurance companies are regulated by certain laws. However, these regulations are much looser in Mexico, so prices on policies can range radically depending on a variety of factors. To protect yourself from getting scammed by an unreliable insurance company with attractively low rates, it’s important to do your research on the company ahead of time.

If you’re planning on traveling south of the border, registering for auto insurance is now easier than ever. With Lewis and Lewis Insurance Agency, you can effortlessly register for Mexican car insurance online today.

7 of the Most Important Safety Tips for Driving in Mexico

Driving in any foreign land can be dangerous. Each country has its own unique legal processes, road conditions, and safety rules, and Mexico isn’t any different. As such, it is important to take the time to learn Mexico’s rules of the road and general safety guidelines that may differ from your own country. If you don’t, you could end up in serious legal, financial, or even medical trouble. These safety tips for driving in Mexico will help you reduce your chance of having an accident as well as prepare you for what to expect if one occurs.

Take toll roads

In Mexico, there are two main types of highways—the toll or “cuota” roads and the free or “libre” roads. While driving on toll roads in Mexico may be more expensive, they are much safer than the free roads. Free roads often wind through towns, where there is a lot more traffic, which can increase your chance of getting into a dangerous collision. Furthermore, free roads are often riddled potholes and, occasionally, wandering livestock. Toll roads are wider and kept in better condition. Plus, the Green Angles monitor the toll roads. Similar to the AAA in the U.S., the Green Angles are a bilingual group that patrols major highways in Mexico and provides help to drivers who need assistance. As such, it is much safer to stick to toll roads when driving in Mexico, especially at night with reduced visibility.

Avoid driving at night

Driving at night in Mexico can be dangerous. According to Trip Savvy, “road fatalities are far higher at night in Mexico than by day.” Due to the decreased visibility, it can be hard to see tire-popping potholes, sharp turns, or even livestock that wander onto the road—a relatively common occurrence in Mexico. Plus, the cover of nightfall provides a prime opportunity for criminals such as robbers or kidnappers to strike. If you have an issue with your car that requires you to pull over on the side of the road, you become a sitting target. To reduce the risk of these potential dangers, it is much safer to drive during the daytime.

Watch out for speed bumps and potholes

Unexpected bumps or holes in the road can wreak havoc on your vehicle. Unfortunately, these are very common on roads in Mexico unless you are driving on a toll highway. Since the government doesn’t regulate many roads in Mexico, potholes can reach incredible sizes—some the size of half a car. If you aren’t paying attention, these holes could put your vehicle out of commission. Additionally, it is important to keep an eye out for speed bumps. Known as topes, Mexican speed bumps are far larger than U.S. speed bumps and are much harder to spot. Sometimes, warning signs with an image of two black bumps on them indicate their location; however, many are often left unmarked. As such, it is important to keep an eye out for them, especially when entering or leaving towns.

Familiarize yourself with Mexican road notifications

While driving laws in Mexico and the U.S. aren’t that different, they do have a few dissimilarities worth noting. One of the main differences that drivers should acknowledge is that speed limits and distance markers in Mexico follow the metric system rather than the imperials system. In addition, the majority of road signs in Mexico read Spanish. As such, it is important to familiarize yourself with the appearance of Mexican traffic signs so that you don’t miss any important road notifications.

Get insured

When driving in an unfamiliar country, your risk of having an accident goes up. Thus, it is important—and legally required—to have Mexican automobile insurance. In the case of an accident, failure to provide proof of valid insurance could result in hefty fines that you have to pay out-of-pocket; officers may even detain you in jail until you settle your case. Even if you have U.S. insurance, it is important to note that most companies don’t provide coverage in Mexico, and those that do often have strict limitations and restrictions. Furthermore, unless you are able to prove your coverage or have a local insurance representative, your insurance may not be honored by the Mexican authorities.

As such, the safest option is to enroll in an insurance plan through a licensed Mexican insurance company such as Lewis and Lewis Insurance Agency. For a great price, our plans provide a wide range of coverage for various tourist vehicles throughout the entire Republic of Mexico.

Carry proper documentation and contact information

In the case of an accident, it is important to be prepared. When driving, you should always keep your passport, driver’s license, visas, proof of insurance, and other relevant documents in your vehicle. You should also have important contact information written down, such as Mexico’s emergency number—066—and the number of your insurance agency. This way, you are able to promptly receive the assistance that you need. Another useful phone number to know is the Green Angel contact line. In the case of an emergency, call 078, and the Green Angels will provide free mechanical, towing, and first aid assistance on Mexican toll roads.

Know what to do in case of an accident

When an accident occurs, there is a specific reporting process that all drivers should follow. After ensuring that everyone involved in the accident is safe and taken care of, you should then move your vehicle out of the line of oncoming traffic. Then, exit your vehicle and call the police as well as your Mexican insurance company’s 800 number so that you can leave your information. Your insurance agency will likely send a claims adjuster immediately to document the claim at the scene and arrange for a towing service if you need one. While waiting for the police and your insurance agent to arrive, never leave the scene of the accident or your vehicle unattended. Once they arrive, you can complete an accident report and file your claim. Regardless of the size of your accident, you should always file a report before leaving the country.

When driving in a foreign country, it is important to be prepared. By following these safety tips for driving in Mexico, you can reduce your risk of getting into a traffic altercation abroad and avoid legal and financial trouble if one occurs.

4 of the Main Benefits of Boat Insurance

4 of the Main Benefits of Boat Insurance

Boat owners are not always legally required to carry boating insurance, but there are many reasons why having coverage is beneficial. Much like auto insurance, boating insurance is tailored to the specific needs of the owner. Coverage can help protect you from financial loss in the event of theft, vandalism, or an unexpected accident that causes damage to you, your boat, or others. If you’re still questioning whether to get coverage or not, check out these main benefits of boat insurance.

Investment protection

Purchasing a boat is often a large investment, so it’s important to have financial protection in case an accident, such as a storm, crash, or fire, causes damage to people or your boat. Some homeowner’s insurance policies can provide protection for boats, but most plans generally only extend coverage to boats under 16 feet that are often valued at just $1,000. The more your boat is worth, the more important it is to invest in an “all risk” insurance policy that covers a broad range of potential misfortunes.

Medical coverage

Thousands of boating accidents occur each year, many of which result in injuries. The cost of medical bills to treat such wounds quickly adds up, especially if multiple people are harmed. One of the main benefits of boating insurance is that it can help you cover hospital bills for watercraft-related injuries.

Protection from lawsuits

If you’re at fault for a boating accident that injures a passenger, a swimmer, or damages another boat, you could find yourself in the middle of a costly lawsuit. Boating accidents can be very expensive, so it’s always worth investing in boating insurance to help cover medical, legal, and property damage costs.

Emergency assistance and towing

If your engine gives out, or you run out of gas, you may need to call a professional towing service to get you. These services don’t come cheap, though, so it’s important to invest in a quality boat insurance policy that will help cover these costs.

To start receiving Mexican boat insurance, you can get a free quote from Lewis and Lewis Insurance Agency today.