Latin America Business News
New Mexican Currency Laws Limit Transactions to $100
New currency laws in Mexico took effect in October allowing restaurants, stores and other businesses to only be allowed to accept a maximum of $100 in cash per transaction.
Tour operators Apple Vacations and Funjet Vacations are warning customers that “certain businesses may not be able to, or may choose not to, accept U.S. dollars for any purchase at all, ” and airlines at Mexican airports can no longer accept U.S. cash for checked bag fees or other charges, says Tim Smith at American Airlines.
The law also caps the amount of dollars that foreigners can trade for peso’s to $1500.00 per month. This is all part of an effort to curb drug related money laundering.
The $100 limit per transaction on cash purchases in dollars, which also took effect Sept. 14, “is causing a lot of confusion within Mexico,” admits Tim Wheatcroft, a spokesman for the tourism board in Baja California.
Mexico Tourism Board spokesman Joel Staley says the $100 per transaction limit is not part of federal policy but is being imposed in some Mexican states - including Quintana Roo, home to the major resort destinations of Cancun, Cozumel and Playa del Carmen. Elsewhere in Mexico, Wheatcroft says the Baja California government is “urging merchants to accept dollars on all purchases, even those over $100.”
The laws do not affect credit or debit card purchases, or the amount of pesos that U.S. travelers can withdraw from Mexican ATM machines. But, the tourism board adds, U.S. travelers should purchase pesos before they arrive in Mexico “to minimize any inconvenience the exchange cap at banks may cause. “