When I took a vacation to Mexico recently, I wondered “can I bring alcohol into Mexico from the US?”
After looking into the issue, I discovered that it is possible to bring alcohol into Mexico from the US, but there are many restrictions on how much alcohol each person in your party can bring into the country.
You can bring in a certain amount as part of your personal property, but if you want to take a lot of alcohol into Mexico you may need to pay duties on it.
If you plan to bring alcohol into Mexico for resale, you will need to use a customs broker. Read on to learn more about bringing alcohol into Mexico from the US.
Can I Bring Alcohol into Mexico From the US?
It is legal to bring alcohol into Mexico from America. Each adult over the age of 18 is allowed to bring up to three liters of beer or liquor and six liters of wine. If you want to bring more than this into the country, you have to declare the items on an official customs document and pay tax on them. If you want to bring more than $3,000 of liquor into the country for commercial resale, you must use a customs broker.
Bringing Alcohol Into Mexico for Personal Use
If you want to bring alcohol into Mexico, you have to adhere to the limit of three liters of beer or liquor and six liters of wine per person (with some exceptions).
Note that this is not the total amount that your party is allowed to bring into the country. This limit is per each adult over the age of 18.
The legal drinking age in Mexico is 18, not 21, which is why each adult over the age of 18 is allowed to have alcohol.
As long as the amount of alcohol you are trying to bring into the country is below this limit, you do not have to declare it on a customs form, nor do you have to pay duty taxes on it.
This means that you can go through the “Nothing to Declare” lane at the border, which will save you a lot of time.
Bringing More Than the Personal Allowance of Alcohol
It is not illegal to bring more than three liters of beer or liquor and six liters of wine per person into Mexico.
As long as the purchase price of the alcohol is less than $3,000 total, you can still bring it into the country. However, you will need to declare it on a customs form.
You will also need to pay duty taxes on it.
If you plan to bring more than the personal allowance of alcohol into Mexico by car, you will need to go through the “Declaration Line.”
You will be directed to stop at a customs office.
While you are at the office, you will be able to fill out a declaration form listing the alcohol you are trying to bring into the country.
You will also need to pay a duty tax of 16% of the purchase price of the alcohol. It is best to keep the receipts for the alcohol you are planning to bring into Mexico.
This will enable you to quickly and easily pay the duty tax and be on your way.
Bringing Alcohol Into Mexico for Commercial Reasons
It is possible to bring large amounts of alcohol into Mexico for commercial reasons.
If you are planning on bringing more than $3,000 worth of alcohol into the country, it will automatically be assumed that you are importing this alcohol for commercial reasons (i.e., reselling it).
This is legal as long as you have completed the proper paperwork and paid the relevant fees.
If you are planning on importing more than $3,000 worth of any items, including alcohol, you will need to use a customs broker.
Finding the Right Mexican Customs Broker
It can be tricky to find a legitimate Mexican customs broker if you plan to import alcohol into the country for resale.
There are many websites that claim to be legitimate customs brokers, but turn out to be scams. Thankfully, there is an easy way to find a legitimate customs broker.
Mexican customs offices will help you find a legitimate broker. A good broker will help you complete the proper paperwork and pay the necessary fees.
Frequently Asked Questions About Bringing Alcohol from the US to Mexico
Can I bring alcohol into the US when I return from Mexico?
It is legal to bring alcohol into the US when you return from your trip to Mexico. If you are crossing into California, you are only allowed to bring one liter of alcohol per person over the age of 21. If you are crossing into another state, you can bring up to 60 liters of alcohol per adult over the age of 21.
Do I have to declare alcohol at customs?
You have to declare alcohol at customs if you are bringing in more than six liters of wine and 3 liters of beer or liquor per adult over the age of 18.
Can I be arrested for trying to bring too much alcohol into Mexico?
If you are caught trying to bring more than the personal allowance of alcohol into Mexico without declaring it and paying duty tax, you will not be arrested. You will have to pay a fine and your alcohol may be confiscated. However, if you are caught trying to bring more than $3,000 worth of alcohol into the country without the proper paperwork, you may be arrested.
Purchasing Alcohol in Mexico May Be a Better Option
It may be simpler to purchase your alcohol once you get to Mexico. This way, you will not have to worry about declaration forms or duty taxes. Many types of alcohol are actually cheaper in Mexico, anyway.
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