USA to Mexico Sign

How Goods are Transported Across the Border from the U.S. to Mexico

The Office of the United States Trade Representative values total trade across North American borders at $580 million each year. The increase in cross-border business and shipping between the U.S and Mexico is a result of the North American Fair Trade Agreement (NAFTA) going into effect in the mid-90s, Mexico’s expanding, competitive manufacturing industry and North American companies seeking cost savings measures over offshoring to countries in the Pacific Rim. Organizations that gain a clear understanding of how goods are transported across the border from the U.S. to Mexico can experience faster, smoother border crossing, which can translate into profit and a competitive edge against those that don’t.

How goods are transported southbound between the U.S. to Mexico

YRC Freight Process for Southbound Shipping to Mexico

  • Origin pickup: Shipment is picked up at origin and travels to the border terminal.
  • Loading: Shipment is loaded in a trailer and dropped at the freight forwarder’s yard.
  • Inspection and Customs filing: The freight forwarder inspects the freight and arranges for crossing once customs entry is filed.
  • Terminal arrival: The drayage agent picks up freight, clears customs, and drops it at our carrier’s border terminal.
  • Destination delivery: Mexican carrier performs linehaul and delivers the freight to its final destination.

Just like northbound shipments, there are two levels of inspections to which freight crossing from the U.S. to Mexico is subject:

  1. First Inspection via Mexican Customs Personnel
    The first inspection is the on Mexican side of the border and carried out by Mexican Customs staff. Only trailers carrying freight are subject to the primary point of inspection; however, even empty trucks could be inspected if they are randomly chosen for such by the Mexican government’s computerized selection process.
  2. Second Inspection via 3rd Party
    A percentage of trucks hauling goods into Mexico will undergo a secondary inspection that independent, third parties conduct. Once one or both inspections are complete and Mexican Customs officials verify documentation, Mexican freight carriers deliver shipments to their final destinations.

YRC Freight has a 98% and better on-time performance for deliveries

Once a shipment arrives at the border, it generally crosses within 24 hours. One day is built in to YRC Freight’s cross-border transit times. However, it is the customs broker and importer’s responsibility for border crossing, and the carrier has no control over delays.


YRC Freight expedites customs clearance

When shipments arrive at the border, Border Ambassadors work with customs brokers for a smooth, timely crossing. YRC Freight is the only carrier with bilingual representatives on-site at border crossing points in Mexico.

View the most frequently asked questions to find answers about cross-border shipping.


Talk to a YRC Freight expert about cross-border shipping between the U.S. and Mexico

For shipments that run southbound between the U.S. and Mexico, YRC Freight’s Border Benefit means your freight crosses faster with fewer hassles. Plus, consolidation options on truckloads saves our customers on transport, customs and brokerage fees.

Many companies rely on YRC Freight to help keep their supply chain running seamlessly and count on our Border Ambassadors to track your freight end-to-end and work with brokers for quick, our real-time tracking, single invoice convenience and an efficient border crossing. After all, we’ve been moving freight across the border for 30 years.


Talk to a YRC Freight expert about shipping your freight to Mexico.

Our Spanish Service team is available to answer your questions by phone or via email.


Related Articles

» Required documents for shipping to Mexico
» Northbound: Securing freight moving across the Mexico border