Driving in Mexico Safety Tips - RV, Cars, Motorcycles

Honestly, driving in Mexico is much safer than you think. I've driven on and off-road since '68 (19, not 18). I speak from experience. Many who say it's not safe have never driven or had a bad experience. I've driven in Los Angeles and Houston and had bad experiences, but don't warn you not to drive in L.A. or Houston (may God rest your soul if you have to).

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Still smiling after 5,000 miles!

Motorcyclists face a few additional challenges to safely driving their bikes in Mexico. While you may already do this in the USA or Canada, be extra cautious if it starts to rain on a Mexican highway. There seems to be an extra layer of oil or diesel slick on the roads. The first ten minutes are deadly. If you can pull over, do so. Better to wait under an overpass than slide under a semi.

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Safe Driving Tips For All

When you drive, you really see Mexico. These driving tips for Mexico will help you have a safe and enjoyable trip. Driving safely in Mexico is a matter of defensive driving (gringos shouldn't try to drive offensively).

Short version - Don't. It is stupid. Don't drive at night on the two-lane roads. There is a lot of loose livestock and I have yet to see a cow equipped with tail lights. My tip for driving at night is - DON'T. On the toll roads (which are as good as or even better than those in the U.S. or Canada), I have relaxed my stance on night driving. So, if you are sticking to the toll roads, I suppose you could drive an hour or so after dark. However, although driving in Mexico is generally safe, remember that bad people like to move under cover of darkness in any country. Also the Green Angels are home in bed, so there is no help except for a kind passer-by. I have found folks to be a lot kinder in daylight hours. So, if you want to be an idiot and drive all day and night, go ahead. Just don't ask me if it is alright. It is not. It is loco.
This does not apply on toll roads, where international rules of the road pretty much apply. On the open road (meaning libre two-lane highways), a left turn signal is an invitation to the guy behind you to pass. Trucks and buses frequently turn their left blinker on to guide you around them. I trust them, but use common sense. Sometimes they have optimistic views of your acceleration capabilities. Don't use your left turn signal on a two lane road when you are about to pass. You might get hit. My advice -- use your signals as you are used to on toll roads and in cities, but don't expect the other guy to do the same.
Right on red is usually OK, unless there is a sign saying that it is not. I have been told by many local people that it is legal. I have asked cops across the country and they have all said, "Yes, in my town. But every town is different." I have been honked at by locals when I wait for a green light. Today I turn unless I see a cop, in which case I freeze. But that is just me. Maybe you did not live such a sordid past.