Trade between the largest countries in the north of the Americas is highly active and dynamic. Importing to Mexico from the USA has been an increasing constant over the years. It is a process that has been simplified, but there are rules to be followed.

In ADS Group we are committed to increasing trade between Mexico and the United States. That is why we know how to import to Mexico from the USA, observing the inherent requirements and avoiding difficulties and fines. Moreover, we offer the best alternatives to suit your business.

The main recommendation in this process is to have an experienced Customs Broker. Likewise, choosing a qualified importing company, acknowledged in international trade is vital. Let’s see what you need to import to Mexico from the USA

Importing to Mexico from USA

Importing merchandise and raw materials from the United States to Mexico is a several requirements process, being the most important registering in the Official Importers Registry, as well as to have the merchandise certificate of origin and a Mexican Customs Agent.

Only a customs broker can complete and verify the required import forms. Be sure to partner with one having the knowledge and experience in Mexico trade compliance to ensure a smooth process.

What products does Mexico import from the United States?

Mexican statistics show an 80% of medical supplies and equipment come from the USA. These imports cover the areas of high-value medical devices, pharmaceuticals, biopharma, and medical equipment for services.

Another product imported from the USA to Mexico is refined petroleum to cover part of its domestic demand. The same is true for corn, of which Mexico stands out as one of the largest consumers in the world.

Electrical machinery is one of the main products Mexico imports from the USA. It is noteworthy this type of import represents 40% of the country’s total annual imports.

Documentation required to import from Mexico to the United States

The import order is a crucial part of importing to Mexico and must be submitted to Mexican customs authorities. The customs broker must fill it out with the following information:

  • Commercial Invoice
  • Origin certificate
  • Certificate of weight and volume
  • Commodity identification (part numbers, brand information and/or serial numbers)
  • Submitting the import order means that the imported goods have legally entered Mexico.

Additional costs to consider when importing from Mexico to the U.S.

By average tariffs (excluding agricultural products), the United States designates one of the lowest custom costs in the world (3.5% on average). Some products subject to higher tariffs are beverages, dairy products, clothing, candy, confectionery, tobacco, and apparel.

North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) established a duty-free zone for imports between Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. Tariffs and classifications depend on the origin of the goods. Calculation of tariffs is ad valorem on the amount of cost, insurance, and freight (CIF).

Taxes and Customs Duties by Product

In the import procedure from the USA to Mexico, there are several taxes and tariffs per product. The most significant are:

Tax on New Automobiles (ISAN)

Articles 1 and 2 of the Federal Law of ISAN state that vehicles import, when they enter the country, are subject to the payment of this tax.

Special Tax on Production and Services (IEPS)

This special tax is intended to be established for imports of liquor, beer, energy drinks, soft drinks, hydrating drinks and fuels. In this case, the rate varies according to the product.

Tariff: Ad Valorem

A percentage of the merchandise value is charged. These products are footwear, clothing, accessories. It refers to merchandise coming from China.

Specific Tariffs

It is applied per volume on certain products, especially materials, natural resources, minerals, and others with similar characteristics.

Transit times

To import to Mexico from the USA it is important to know the transit times, both air and ocean. The distance the cargo must travel and the choice of air or sea transport will influence the times.

Ocean-going ships move at a much more leisurely pace of 21.7 miles per hour. Of course, they usually carry a much higher cargo volume. Below are the shipping times to Mexico from major U.S. ocean freight centers:

Country of origin Departure Port Destination Port

Transit time


Miami Veracruz

13 days


Jacinto Port de Houston

Dos Bocas (Tabasco)

15 days

 In the case of air shipments, time is shorter. Below is a list of typical shipping times to Mexico from various air cargo hubs in the USA:

Country of origin

Output port Destination Port

Transit time


Atlanta Mexico City

7 days


Cincinnati Mexico City

5 days


Los Angeles Guadalajara

5 days


Los Angeles Mexico City

5 days

USA Houston Veracruz

4 days

Important Ports

Mexico has a vast range of ports and airports to import from the USA contributing significantly to trade relations between the two nations. Some of the most important seaports in Mexico are:

  • Manzanillo
  • Altamira
  • Lazaro Cardenas
  • Veracruz
  • Ensenada

Regarding to the most important airports in Mexico that boost international trade, the following stand out:

  • Benito Juarez (Mexico City)
  • Cancun International Airport
  • Don Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla (Guadalajara)
  • Mariano Escobedo (Monterrey)
  • General Abelardo L. Rodríguez (Tijuana)

Free Trade Agreement

A global agreement establishing the rules for international trade and investment between Canada, the United States and Mexico. One of its objectives is to eliminate barriers to trade and facilitate goods and services cross-border movement.

Restrictions on importing from Mexico to the United States

Regarding restrictions, there are fewer limitations when importing from the USA into Mexico. On the other hand, by contrast, there are some restrictions on products produced in Mexico such as agricultural products, which suffer certain restrictions since 2020 to reach the U.S. territory.

Do I need insurance to ship freight?

To import to Mexico from USA you need a Cargo Insurance like the one offered by ADS Group. In the USA, this company has NVOCC benefits, which grants exclusive advantages. In addition, when hiring ADS Group you have at your disposal warehouses in Miami at no additional cost

Click here the benefits of ADS Group’s International Transport Insurance. Ask for advice and the quote you require to analyze the advantages offered by one of the largest international transport companies, with the best position, and with presence in Chile, Argentina, Peru, and the United States.