Planning a trip across the border can be an exciting adventure. However, when you’re planning to drive you may face some unique situations. Whether you’re heading to Mexico or Canada – there’s much more to crossing than you may know about, especially if you’re a first-timer. Check out some of our tips for driving across the U.S. border.

Traveling to Mexico

1. It will be crowded. Make sure to check the border wait times before making your trip.

2. Consider other options instead of driving your own car such as:

  • Taking a taxi to the border and walking through.
  • Taking a taxi once you’ve crossed the border and park your car at the border parking lot.

3. Expect the line to cross the border from Mexico to the US to be a 1-2 hour wait if you follow these tips and warnings.

4. What you’ll need:

  • Drivers license or ID
  • Passport (or a U.S. birth certificate, not photocopied)
  • Mexican pesos (although almost all stores will take U.S. money)

Traveling to Canada

1. If traveling across the border with children that aren’t your own, you must have a written note from the parents or guardians giving permission for the children to leave the country.

2. Find out what you CAN and CAN’T bring to Canada here.

3. Learn the border wait times before making your trip.

4. What you’ll need for the border officer:

  • Have all passengers’ passports and other IDs ready before reaching the border services booth.
  • Take off your sunglasses
  • Turn off radios and cellphones