Driving Central America & South America.

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Seattle to Argentina Jan '10/ Paperwork and Visas?

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thedudedotcom's picture
Joined: Sep 30 2009

Just out of college and looking to make my great journey to friends in brazil and end in Argentina. The research phase of my trip is just starting and I'm very curious about the type of papers I will need to make this trip. Any info/websites to help guide me would be super helpful. Also looking for a possible travel partner. Repost or email me at: thedudedotcom@yahoo.com

robertdjung's picture
Joined: Oct 31 2006

Awesome to have you here --

Awesome to have you here -- and that's a great time to go travelling (haha, what time ISN'T a great time?)

You'll need a passport, money, time, a little spanish, and persistence. And patience.

At every border you'll stop and get visas and stamped in, and at each other border you get stamped out. It's very easy for US citizens, harder for some Europeans that don't have agreements with the Central American countries. They must do more visa prep.

Post away...

thedudedotcom's picture
Joined: Sep 30 2009


So just to clarify, I wont need to get any visas or other documents before I leave? I have a passport and the other things... I read something about mandatory car insurance in mexico as well. Any thoughts...?

kyle's picture
kyle (not verified)

mexican insurance.

mexican insurance is not manidorry, though depending on your risk level may be advisory.

If you want it, buy it from Sanborns insurance. You can even get bailed out of mexican jails by them if you have an accident (in mexico, if there is an accident, the authorities arrest all parties until fault is assessed and restitution made, more common is to settle up on the scene and haul ass. I recommend $1000 in $5 dollar bills hidden in your undergarments; shoulld the worst happen, make a deal on the scene and get the hell out of dodge.)

just drive carefully, and remember if a mexican car pulls over to the right with his left blinker on, he is actually taking a left and is just waiting for a clearing in traffic.

atg200's picture
Joined: Feb 20 2008

You don't need any visas in

You don't need any visas in Central America. Not sure about oddball countries in SA like Paraguay, but you don't in Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Chile or Argentina.

You'll need the original title to your vehicle. Don't know about any special SA requirements. My truck was fairly new and worth quite a bit, so I insured it in Mexico through MexPro and in Central America through AIG. You have to buy insurance at the border in Nicaragua and Belize.

An international driver's license is cheap, and I much prefer handing that over rather than my US license when I get pulled over on a trumped up traffic charge/bribe attempt.

Make lots of photocopies of your passport, title, and registration before you go to save time at borders.