Ask Cap’n Greg

Jun 10, 2016 by Ask Cap'n Greg

Rocky PointThe best way to get to Rocky Point is to drive here. While some hotshots may tell you they have made the four hour drive in three hours, don’t believe it. Covering the 225 miles at an average speed of 75 is impossible, what with Border Patrol checkpoints, speed limits through small towns, lots of other traffic, open range wandering cattle and burros, potty breaks, and having to crawl like a desert tortoise through Sonoyta. My advice is take your time, and enjoy the scenery. Then there’s the issue of insurance. Hampton Garcia sent us an email asking, “What happens if you don’t have Mexican insurance?”

The easy answer is, “Nothing…unless you get in a wreck.” Here’s how I explain it. Say some jerk in Phoenix is texting and runs into the back of your car. If he sticks around long enough, the cops give him a ticket and, ideally, his insurance pays to fix the damage. But if he’s like the 20% or more of Arizona drivers who have no insurance, you can sue him—good luck with that—or your uninsured driver rider on your policy pays. Follow me so far?

Well, it doesn’t work that way in Mexico. Your insurance that protects you in the States is virtually worthless here. You get in a fender bender or worse, and even if it’s not your fault, you have to prove you are financially liable for damages. If you have proof of Mexican insurance, the paperwork can be done at the accident scene. If not, they’ll sort it out at the police station. Did I mention they have a jail there? If you don’t have insurance that is valid in Mexico, you could very well go to jail until you can prove that you can pay for damages. Even though it’s the other guy’s fault. And if it’s your fault, you are in even deeper trouble.

So before you drive to Mexico, go to your insurance agent or AAA or get it on line or stop in Ajo or Why where they sell it. Take your driver’s license and registration with you, and buy the Mexican insurance. Not only is it a good idea, it’s the law. Did I mention your health insurance doesn’t work here, either? We’ll discuss that another time.

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