All of the information on this that I could find was about buying alcohol in Mexico, but I am actually driving into Mexico with a bunch of alcohol from the US, having a party, and then coming back. I am wondering if I can bring the alcohol back without issues? I'm driving from California into Mexico and back.

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    I think you need to treat this as two separate transactions. You need to check Mexico's regulations to find out how much alcohol you are allowed to import from the US into Mexico, and US regulations to find out how much you can import from Mexico into the US to bring any back again. Commented Feb 27, 2019 at 19:25
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    I'm afraid you're either bringing too much alcohol or not enough friends. Commented Feb 27, 2019 at 19:44
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    Isn't alcohol a lot cheaper in Mexico than in US? You could buy it there and just give away any left over. Commented Feb 27, 2019 at 20:20
  • I agree with Patricia, I think it will have to be 2 transactions. Some alcohol is cheaper in Mexico, some is more expensive. Alcohol produced in the US (e.g. bourbon) is more expensive in Mexico. There is also alcohol that is very difficult to find in Mexico (e.g. Saint Germain, Bitters, Aperol, etc)
    – RaresMan
    Commented Mar 6, 2019 at 20:03
  • I am having a wedding, and I am bringing a lot of friends, but they like to drink A LOT of alcohol :)
    – RaresMan
    Commented Mar 6, 2019 at 20:07

1 Answer 1


A quick search turned up the information below from Discover Baja

What am I allowed to take into Mexico?

When crossing by land, you are allowed to take your personal belongings and $75 worth of merchandise, duty free. People over the age of 18 may bring three liters of liquor or beer and up to six liters of wine. For more details, see our Mexican Customs section.

What am I allowed to bring back to the U.S. from Mexico?

Your personal belongings and $800 worth of purchased merchandise, duty free. If you are a California resident over the age of 21 crossing the border by car or foot, you may only bring back 1 liter of alcohol. Non-California residents over the age of 21 may bring back up to 60 liters of alcohol. California residents traveling via steamship, airplane or railroad may also bring back up to 60 liters. See our U.S. Customs Page for detailed information.

A search for beer prices in Mexico and California suggest that a beer in Mexico will cost you around US$0.50 (in local equivalent currency), while a similar beer in the US will cost between US$0.75 and US$1.00. (This wasn't a very thorough search, so I accept no responsibility for accuracy or otherwise)

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    steamship....when was this last updated? Commented Feb 28, 2019 at 14:38
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    @theotherone I'm not sure, but the Mexico customs page refers to changes in 2017 so not long ago. The language in legal documents can sometimes be archaic. 'steamship' may have been tested in court to mean 'any vessel capable of moving under its own power', or maybe a wider definition to include Sailing ships without engines. As a legally tested term it would be used even if 'steamship' seems rather quaint to an outside observer.
    – user90371
    Commented Feb 28, 2019 at 20:58
  • You can actually bring back an unlimited amount of alcohol into the US, as long as it is for personal use. From the CBP website itself: "There is no federal limit on the amount of alcohol a traveler may import into the U.S. for personal use" As long as you pay the appropriate taxes. What's annoying is that I paid taxes for that alcohol when I bought it in the US, I paid taxes on it to bring it into Mexico, and now I must pay taxes on it again to bring it back to the US.
    – RaresMan
    Commented Mar 6, 2019 at 20:05
  • I am actually going to bring all of my leftover alcohol back and go through customs in a few weeks and declare it...it looks like paying the taxes on it is way cheaper than re-buying the alcohol stateside. From the TTB Website a 750ml bottle of distilled spirits (e.g. bourbon) will incur a $2.14 tax - much better than leaving the bottle in Mexico.
    – RaresMan
    Commented Mar 6, 2019 at 20:11

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