Should I rent a car in Puerto Vallarta?

We’re planning a family vacation to Puerto Vallarta, but we’re not sure if a rental car is necessary. Should I rent a car in Puerto Vallarta?

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Answer provided by
Mariza Morin
Answered on Apr 26, 2022
What a beautiful destination for your family vacation! You do not need to rent a car in Puerto Vallarta thanks to Mexico’s expansive bus system—the best way to get around the Puerto Vallarta area.
The public bus system in this walkable coastal city is efficient and affordable, with one-way fares starting at 10 pesos (equivalent to about 50 cents). Just make sure you have correct change for the bus driver. All the routes converge at Lázaro Cárdenas Park, but they do not allow transfers, so make sure you have enough tickets if you need to take more than one bus.
Renting a car may be a better option if you’re staying outside the city or want to explore gorgeous nearby Mexican towns like San Sebastián del Oeste, so you can be in control of your schedule. To rent a car in Mexico, you must be at least 25 years or older—though some rental companies allow ages 21 to 24 for an additional fee—with the following:
  • A valid driver’s license
  • Proof of insurance
  • Vehicle registration
  • ** A passport
You do not need an International Driving Permit (IDP) if your driver’s license is from an English-speaking country like the United States or Canada.
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