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Customs in Mexico : an effort to gather the info in one thread !

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#121 MrsAlmaguer2011

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    Posted 08 November 2011 - 06:38 AM



    Is la plaza bar open during the day? I am thinking after my ceremony i can direct my guests to the closest bar and figured looking at the map that might be closest.


    I leave tomorrow!!!


    #122 ORBeachbride

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      Posted 11 November 2011 - 03:06 PM

      I am really glad that I read this, I would have never thought about it.

      #123 Julietisurs

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        Posted 20 January 2012 - 11:13 AM

        Make your own receipts! Who would have thought?! Thank you for posting!

        Originally Posted by Ayita 

        OK so we're having this VERY interesting discussion in the May 09 thread that I thought would be useful for everybody ! I personnally only discovered this issue today and it leaves me just enough time to get prepared for this...

        Plus, some already married brides could share their good or bad experience - which would have the advantage of being live experience instead of us elaborating on what could happen...

        So the whole discussion started in post 923 of the May 2009 thread - were we supposed to bring our receipts with us for the OOT bags and other wedding stuff :


        Here is the summary of all the info that could be gathered so far :

        First, what you can find on the Mexico customs site :
        Aduana M©xico

        - we're allowed to bring personal belongings, in a reasonable quantity
        - on top of the personal belongings listed, you can bring up to 300$ per person and this can be grouped per family if you arrive together. So, if you're travel with your already husband, and have the same name, you cna put all your stuff in one suitcase. If it's your FI or you did not change your name yet, allocate the stuff between 2 suitcases so that each of you have no more than 300$
        - I understand that above the 300$, they compute customs duties at variable rates, and if you owe less than 50$, they let you go. Over 50$, you have to pay.

        From the experience / hear say from other ladies :
        - you'll have no issue if you don't have too much luggage, and/or if your light goes green. But of course if you have a lot, even before the light goes on you can have questions
        - if they start looking in your suitcases better have your receipts or it can turn nasty... it can also be fine but do you want to try your luck here...
        - if you have receipts it usually goes fine...
        - if you did not keep your receipt, make some. You can find templates from microsoft :


        or buy some paper ones you can fill by hand at Staples or Office Max :

        Adams Write & Stick Receipt Book, 2-3/4" x 5-3/8", 2 Part | Staples®

        Here are some useful threads on the subject :






        #124 Vanessa56

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          Posted 12 April 2012 - 04:32 PM

          Thanks ladies! This has been an extremely helpful thread!

          #125 mrspfafftobe

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            Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:47 AM

            I got married in Mexico back in June but I'm just getting around to posting this. Before we left I read this forum and understood the limitations and requirements, etc. We were bringing down a massive amount of stuff with us (9 suitcases not including our personal items/clothes/etc for the trip) so I had a feeling we were going to have issues.


            We had a folder inside each suitcase that included a detailed spreadsheet of every item and its value, and original receipts for every item. We understood that each person had a $300 limit and we would be taxed for anything above that amount. We easily could have made up receipts and lied about an items value, BUT the penalty to falsifying information is WAY MORE (several thousand dollars) than just paying taxes. We decided to go the safe route and were honest about everything. I think total we brought with us about $2,500 of decor, gifts, welcome bag materials, etc.


            We bought plastic suitcases/travel trunks from Walmart (picture below) - they were wonderful for packing and traveling but were a HUGE RED FLAG for customs. We didn't even get to go through the red light / green light thing. We were brought aside immediately by customs staff and all 9 suitcases were inspected in their entirety. They made sure there was nothing illegal (guns, drugs, etc.) and of course wanted to know the value of everything. I am so lucky/thankful that I have been studying Spanish for 12 years, otherwise this process would have been nearly impossible with the language barrier. They were asking me a lot of questions and trying to have a conversation the whole time.


            We ended up having to pay around $120 to get them to clear our suitcases.  Please note that they only accept Mexican pesos - no US dollars or credit cards. We didn't know this so we had to find a currency exchange at the airport and were charged a ridiculous exchange rate. We were afraid they would confiscate items or charge us several hundred dollars, so we didn't think our fine/tax was too bad. The worst part was that the whole process took about an hour and 1/2. There were 12 other guests on our same flight from the States who were waiting for us to head to the resort (we had a huge 20 passenger van) so I felt really bad about how long it took.


            My advice: travel with luggage that looks like personal luggage, not sketchy trunks!!


            #126 mrspfafftobe

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              Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:51 AM

              Sorry, the picture didn't show up, so I'll try again:


              #127 imnotarunner

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                Posted 20 October 2012 - 11:52 AM

                good idea i will make a few fake receipt i never save recipts it fills up my purse with garbage

                #128 ashk

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                  Posted 24 October 2012 - 04:03 PM

                  Wow- this never would have even occurred to me to worry about! I don't think we'll be taking quite so much with us as that, but still - good to know and now I can be prepared. The idea of a note stating that it's for a wedding - I will make sure to do that!!!

                  23 days and counting until "We Do" in the beautiful Riviera Maya!

                  Grand Sirenis January 20, 2013

                  Yay! the world still exists - it would've really sucked to have done all this planning for nothing! :D

                  #129 Moments That Matter

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                    Posted 25 October 2012 - 10:05 AM

                    Great info mrspffafftobe! and I agree with you about taking regular looking luggage to be less noticable. Also your preparation ahead - to take care of any eventuallity was excellent - well done!

                    I think your entire clearing time of 1.5 hrs is pretty good - tho I know what you mean about keeping others waiting.

                    Still, overall - GREAT job! and thx for sharing such invaluable info + advice :)


                    You're sure to help countless other brides have a smoother time clearing customs because or how you "blazed the trail".....thx again for sharing :)




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                    #130 quackdoc

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                      Posted 09 November 2012 - 09:13 AM

                      Great advice!!

                      Thanks so much for sharing; I will be sure to use personal luggage and keep packing lists with values with me!

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