Duty-Free and Prohibited Items
Last update 7 December 2013

The information on this page was gathered from several sources, most importantly this Mexican official site in English.  In Spanish here.

In addition to the items listed below that are always duty-free, each person entering México is allowed a limited amount of other items without paying a duty.


Those entering by air are allowed $500 USA dollars worth of non-free items.  Those entering by land or sea have an allowance of $300 dollars.



DUTY-FREE ITEMS   Each person may import the following items without paying an import duty:


1.  New or used goods for personal use, such as clothing, footwear, hygiene products and beauty products, including wedding party items. so long as they are in accordance with the duration of the trip, and their quantity does not suggest that they can be the object of commercialization.


An important caveat:  You can only bring your own clothing.  For example: a man cannot bring his wife's clothing if she is not with him.


2.  Two photographic camera and one video recorder, and,  when appropriate, their power source; up to twelve rolls of unused film or video cassettes; printed or filmed photographic material; one cellular telephone apparatus and one pager; one typewriter; one new or used portable computer, of those called laptop, notebook, omni book, or similar items; a copier or portable printer; a portable projector, and their accessories.


3.  Two sports equipment, four rods, three surfboards [Aduana translations the word deslizadores as speedboats which doesn't make sense] with or without sails and their accessories, trophies or recognitions, provided that they can be transported normally and commonly by the passenger, one stair climber and bicycle


4.  A portable radio for the recording or reproduction of sound or mixed tapes; or a digital sound reproducer or portable reproducer of compact discs and a portable reproducer of DVD’s, such as a pair of portable speakers, and their accessories.


5.  Five laser disks, 10 DVD disks, 30 compact disks (CD) or magnetic tapes (audio cassettes) for the reproduction of sound and five storage devices or memory cards for any electronic equipments.


6 Books and magazines, whose quantity does not suggest that they can be the object of commercialization.


7.  Five toys, —included those that are collectible— and a video game console and videogames.


8.  One device that permits measurement of arterial pressure and one for glucose, as well as medications of personal use; in the case of psychotropics the medical prescription should be shown.


9.   One set of binoculars and a telescope.

10.  Valises, trunks and suitcases necessary for the movement of goods.

11.  Passengers over 18 years of age, may introduce a maximum of up to 20 packs of cigarettes, 25 cigars or 200 grams of tobacco and up to three liters of alcoholic beverages, and six liters of wine; in excess of the above, cannot be imported without complying with applicable regulations and restrictions.

12.  Baby travel accesories, such as strollers and baby-walkers

13.  Two musical instruments and its accessories.

14.  A camping tent and camping equipment, as well as their accessories.

15.  Handicapped or old travelers may introduce items for personal use, useful to have a better performance of their activities, such as walkers, wheelchairs, crutches and canes.

16.  A set of tools including its case, it might have a hand drill, wire cutters, wrenches, dices, screwdrivers, current cables, among others.

17.  Beddings, that will be able to include a set of matching sheets and pillowcases, a set of towels, a set of bath, a set of table linen and a set of kitchen.

19.  Up to two dogs or cats, maybe introduced as well as their accesories, provided that the corresponding  zoosanitary  import certificate issued by (SAGARPA) is presented to the customs officials.

20.  If you bring a desktop computer, you may pay duties and taxes by filling out a payment form.


PROHIBITED PRODUCTS   This list of prohibited items has been compiled from government publications and from reports by visitors.  There is some variability among customs agents' views of the rules, thus some items are sometimes allowed -- such as spices, frozen meat and cheese.  If prohibited items are found, they will be confiscated, generally without any penalty, except in the case of guns, ammunition and illegal drugs.  


Firearms and ammunition are strictly forbidden, except for hunting purposes when the rules indicated in section 4 of the Manual of Tourist Entry are complied  with. Apply at your area Mexican consulate if you wish to bring a rifle for hunting.  An unauthorized attempt to bring a gun or ammunition is one of the most serious offences one can commit in Mexico!  Possession of so much as a single bullet will result in your being jailed for a very long time. 


These common items are not usually allowed:

Fresh or frozen meat

Cheese, eggs, milk, etc

Plants and plant material -- fruit, veggies, seeds and spices

Gasoline in a container

Unopened canned and packaged food is usually allowed.

In accordance with the Law of the General Taxes of Import and Export, the following products are prohibited for the import and/or export:

  • Alive predator fish, in their states of young fish, youthful and adult

  • Totoaba, fresh or cooled (fish)

  • Frozen Totoaba (fish)

  • Turtle eggs or any class

  • Poppy seeds (Narcotic)

  • Flour of poppy seeds (Narcotic)

  • Seeds and spores of marijuana (Cannabis indica), even though when they are mixed with other seeds

  • Marijuana (Cannabis indica)

  • Juice and extracts of opium, prepared to smoke

  • Extracts and juice derived from marijuana (Cannabis indica)

  • Mucilage and condensed products derived from the marijuana (Cannabis indica)

  • Stamps or printed transfers in colors or in black and white, displayed for their sale in envelopes or packages, even when they include chewing gum, candies or any other type of articles, containing drawings, figures or illustrations that represent childhood in a degrading or ridiculous way, on attitudes of incitement to violence, to self-destruction or in any other form of antisocial behavior, known like Garbage Pail Kids, for example, printed by any company or commercial denomination.

  • Thallium sulfate

  • Insecticide (Isodrin or Aldrin)

  • Insecticide (Heptaclor or Drinox)

  • Insecticide (Endrin or Mendrin or Nendrin or Hexadrin)

  • Insecticide (Leptophos)

  • Heroin, base or hydrochloride of diacetylmorphine  

  • Medication prepared with marijuana (Cannabis indica)

  • Medication prepared with acetylmorphine or of its salts or derivatives

  • Skins of turtle or doggerhead turtle  

  • Goods that have been declared as archaeological monuments by the Secretariat of Public Education

Bringing Exotic Birds Into Mexico

CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) is an international agreement between governments to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival.  It accords varying degrees of protection to more than 33,000 species of animals and plants.

Many exotic pets are protected by CITES including most parrots, cockatoos, lories, and macaws; iguanas; box turtles; and all boas and pythons.  However, the budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus), cockatiel (Nymphicus hollandicus), rose-ringed parakeet (Psittacula krameri), and the peach-faced lovebird (Agapornis roseicollis) are not listed by CITES.

If you do not know if your pet is regulated, visit the species list page to find out its status.

Before you leave or travel to the United States, you must have a CITES permit if your pet is listed by CITES.  To get a permit, you must submit an application form and meet their criteria.

Here are two  links for CITES.  

General information:  http://www.cites.org/

CITES Forum:  http://www.cites.org/forum/forum.php

Page Directory