Travel Visa Info for Mexico: Who Can Apply & How To Do It

6 min read

Mexico is one of the largest economies in the world. It’s a prominent tourist destination and records over 21 million international arrivals every year. Any visitor who plans to stay in Mexico for more than six months must obtain a travel visa. Thankfully, you don’t have to jump through hoops to visit the country if you’re a permanent resident of the United Kingdom, Japan, Canada, and European Union Schengen area. All you need is to carry documents and a valid passport to prove your legal status. The visa takes two days to process and costs $36.

Eligibility criteria for Mexico Travel Visa

There are certain conditions you have to fulfill to be eligible for Mexico Travel Visa. First, you must approve your financial ability to support yourself. Visitors are required to have at least 50 USD every day. This requires that you provide a formal statement of your financial situation for the last six months. Other than that, you must have a valid passport, proof of permanent residence, and a copy of the application form.

Application process

Mexico migration law requires that you start the application process in the country of origin. You should go to a Mexican Embassy or consulate. If you meet the preliminary requirements, you’ll get a temporary visa. That way you get permission to enter Mexico with a 30-day limit. Before you begin the application process, you must be aware of the processing times. To start, download the application form at the website of the Mexican consulate. Once you’ve completed the application, you should gather the other documents including bank statements, proof of permanent residence, and travel itinerary. Needless to say, you must provide your recent photograph and $22 (application fee). Remember, you should submit your passport one month before your visa expires. The purpose of your visit must be studies, tourism, or business. If your application is not processed, the fee is fully refundable.

Mexico Resident visa

You can either apply for a permanent resident visa or a temporary one. A permanent visa is for foreigners who intend to live in Mexico for more than 180 days. The most essential requirement is to prove you have sufficient monthly income to support yourself as well as your dependents. If you’re a permanent resident of Mexico, you automatically qualify for the visa. This also applies to applicants below the age of 18 years under sibling’s legal representation. Timing is everything.

Who can apply for Mexican Resident Visa?

Most retirees who want to settle in Mexico can apply for the permanent resident visa. According to immigration laws, retirees are required to engage in non-remunerative activities. You can also apply for the visa if your assets meet the financial criteria set. Secondly, you’ll get automatic qualification if you’re willing to invest in Mexico. Your investment must be channeled at industry and services. Other people who are allowed to work and live in Mexico include persons with technical/scientific professions or those with national and international prestige.

But, if you’re married to a Mexican national, you must have two consecutive years of regular status. On the other hand, a temporary visa is for persons who want to stay in Mexico for more than 180 days but not longer than four years. The visa is issued for one year and automatically renewed for a further 3-year period.

The application process for Mexico residency

Applying for Mexican residency is straightforward. You should start from the Mexican Embassy in your country of origin. Note- the process may vary between embassies. The first process is to fill in the application form and submit several documents to support your application. This includes birth and marriage certificates, photographs, pays slips and income/bank statements. After ten days, you should go back to the embassy for medical examination and taking of fingerprints.

Immigration and customs

Most airlines will not allow you to check at the airport, so you have to arrive early. As a general practice, they go through the visa requirements and verify that all documents are okay. An FFM card is also given on your inbound flight. When crossing into Mexico, you pay $22 for the permit which is usually included in your `airfare fees.’

At the port of entry, you have to go through the customs. Here, you’re asked a couple of questions about your travel. Your passport is stamped and the number of days allowed to stay is marked on the card (usually 180 days). But if you lose the card, you pay a penalty on your exit. That being said, it’s important that you carry a copy of your return ticket.

When leaving Mexico, you must return the FFM card. The gate staff will have to verify your documents again. To avoid any penalties, you may want to keep the card safe. You’ll also be required to undertake some paperwork and pay a replacement fee of 40 USD. It’s always important to be on the lookout as the process can take the whole day.

Mexico study visa

Just like other countries, Mexico welcomes students in different institutions. However, some documents are essential during admission. They include a passport, visa, a letter of confirmation, and a dully-filled application form. The visa is usually issued to students who have taken courses that can take up to 6 months. Those who wish to study for less than 180 days are given tourist cards. It takes 2-21 days to issue a student visa. If the given period lapses before you receive your visa, inquire at the consulate. You need to renew the visa once a year. The cost of obtaining a student visa varies from one country to another.

Applicants under the age of 18 years

Any child (under 18) traveling alone must show a notarized letter of permission signed by the parent/guardian. Similarly, any single parent traveling with a child must produce a certified copy of divorce decree to proof the right of sole custody. Other documents required include a copy of death certificate or a birth certificate showing one parent.

Mexico business visa

Mexican immigration law requires any non-resident worker to have a valid visa before engaging in any business. The immigration agents have a formal authority to carry out a thorough inspection before entering Mexico. Other documents required include medical exam certificate, application form, valid/original passport (6 months and beyond), medical exam certificate, and passport-sized photographs. You may also be required to have a letter indicating the services you’ll provide in Mexico.

Good cop, Bad cop

Even if you’ve been granted a Mexican Visa, it does not guarantee entry to the country. The Mexican immigration authorities may ask some questions when traveling. And if you’re a resident of Canada, USA, UK, Schengen area or Japan, you don’t require a visa. In all the above countries, a 180-day entry is given.