Public transportation in Cancun is efficient, and taxis are affordable, but renting a car makes getting around the city, and indeed the Yucatan Peninsula, so much easier! The freedom of movement and the comfort which renting a car brings can be the cherry on top of a great vacation!
How to choose a car rental company?
If you are already familiar with a particular brand, you should stick to that one, but you will find that most international brands operate in Mexico. Smaller “mom and pop” stores may lack the service that you are used to, so you should probably stick to a brand you already know and trust. Make sure you read reviews before you rent a car in Cancun, and compare prices.
Things to remember
- Booking online prior to your trip can save you money and give you access to the best deals. Keep in mind, however, that the prices outlined may not include the obligatory insurance costs. We recommend that you opt for full coverage to ensure that your vacation goes without a hitch.
- Do a complete inspection for imperfections, damage, and issues both inside and out of the car, and take photographs if necessary. After all, you do not want to be blamed (and charged) for dents and scrapes caused by a previous driver. Do your homework even if you are in a rush to get going.
- Highways might have tolls, but the price is well worth it to enjoy the modern roads; if you use google earth to navigate do it before you get behind the wheel to get an idea of what the road ahead looks like.
Where to go?
Anywhere. Everywhere! Research the hot spots in the city, but also beyond Cancun. Those who seek will find, and often the best experiences lie off the beaten (tourist) trail. Visit the magical cenotes, Mayan ruins, out of the way eateries, and secluded beaches. Playa del Carmen or Tulum are fantastic places to spend a day; explore the Yucatan for memories that will last a lifetime.
As with any strange country there are some basic rules you should follow while you’re driving in Mexico. Firstly, all of the main traffic laws that apply back home are in force here. Do not drink or take drugs before driving, do not text or make calls whilst behind the wheel. Keep to the speed limit and respect traffic laws.
For your safety we recommend that you avoid to picking up hitchhikers, travel during the daylight areas, and should you encounter a police or military checkpoint you should be polite and follow instructions, but avoid getting out of your car if possible. When in towns and cities keep doors locked, and on highways keep them unlocked.
Mexican Road Signs to help you when renting a car in Cancun
Here is a short guide to Mexican Road Signs:
No Hay Paso – Road Closed
Despacio – Slow
No Rebase – No Passing
No estacionarse – No parking
Curva Peligrosa – Dangerous Curve
Ceda el paso – Yield
Conserva su derecha- Keep right
Topes – Speed bumps
Desviación – Detour
Importantly, you should take your time, explore, relax, and keep in mind that there is always a friendly OXXO, Kiosko or 7 Eleven convenience store (or better still, a family run store) in which you can refill, refuel, and get directions (if you need them).