Friday, June 4, 2010

Another VW and getting a drivers license

I finally purchased another car! I have only ever owned Volkswagen cars so I thought I would continue with that trend. I bought a used 2006 VW from my neighbor the other day and have been busy getting all the paper work done.

It is a great little car and it was owned by a VW mechanic and is in excellent condition. It is so nice to have wheels again!

A while ago, I had rented a car to take some of my visitors from Canada to La Manzanilla. When we were completing the paperwork, the rental car agent pointed out that my Canadian drivers license was expired. Oops, I had no idea but he still went ahead and rented the car to me! After that, I figured, I better go to the transport offices and get my Mexican drivers license. On the advice of friends, I went super early when the offices open. They gave me the list of everything I needed to get a driver´s license: photocopies of my identification (FM 3 visa), copies of a bill in my name where I live, CURP card, lap report with my blood type, and a photo. I had everything on the list with the exception of my CURP card and blood type. Luckily, I was able to get my CURP card in the same offices with copies of my identification and copies of my telephone bill. Apparently, a CURP card is a form of identification here under the National Population Registry (from what I understand, kind of like a census). After obtaining my CURP card, I went to a nearby lab to find out my blood type. They were able to do the test right then and there while I waited. It only took about 10 minutes and they had to test me twice as the lab tech explained that I had a rare blood type so he had to take more blood to confirm. I had no idea I had a rare blood type and when I talked to my father, he was just as surprised as me! At any rate, they put your blood type right on the front of your driver´s license in the event you are in an accident.

With my blood test results in hand, I returned to the transport offices with all the required paperwork. It had been explained to me by several friends here that practically no one writes/performs their drivers test. You are given the option but if you do not wish to, you can hand over a little "extra" and the gentleman takes care of it. So, that is what I did and of course, I passed with flying colors! Then they sent me to the doctor on staff where I thought I would have to do an eye exam. I was wrong - he just asked me if I needed glasses to drive and what my blood type was, and off I went! They then took my photo and issued me my drivers license. The drivers license is digital like the ones we had in Alberta. From start to finish, the process was approx 2 1/2 hours and was approx $700 pesos ($55 dollars).

Once I had purchased the car, I had to go back to the same Transport Offices and get the car changed over in my name and get new plates. Again, you are required to bring copius amounts of paperwork....copies of ID, copies of telephone bills, copies of the original invoice for the car, the old plates, etc. They also have someone inspect the car and take down the VIN and engine numbers to ensure it is not stolen. After a few hours and $4,600 pesos for various taxes, new plates, etc, I was officially the owner of a car.

In other news, my computer is officially dead and cannot be repaired so I have been using an internet cafe in the meantime. I have since purchased a new laptop and a friend of mine is bringing it back from the US for me. In a week or so, I will have a computer again and can get back to posting photos and blogging on a regular basis.


Steve Cotton said...

Great news on the car and the driver's license. I may be looking into both when I return.

Nancy said...

Congratulations! We love having a car with local plates, the expats who still drive around in their US or Canadian car really stick out!

New Beginnings said...

Steve-I would be happy to help you out when you return.

Nancy-thanks! Yes, I agree. A friend of mine went to drive back to the US with his american plated SUV and got hijacked. They took his car and everything in it and left him stranded on the side of the road.

John in LA said...

It's so cool to see you back and blogging again. I'm glad that things are going good for you and you are healthy!
I've had so many things come up this year so I haven't been able to make the trip down there but it's on in the next couple of weeks. I know it will be hot, but hey!, what are you gonna do?
Hope to have a beer with you on the way through!
Take care and keep on keepin' on!

John in LA