The Mexico Tourist Card

MP News Staff

FM-T (TOURIST VISA), also called a Tourist Card. This is the document that you are given whenever you travel to Mexico for more than 72 hours. It allows you to spend 180 days in Mexico out of 365 days. Your permit is entered into a database upon entry. The tourist visa is valid for up to 180 days, but if you are flying into the country it may be stamped for a lesser time period at the whim of the agent who processes the document. You can request that you be given the entire 180 days by citing a valid reason. If you are entering the country via vehicle you will most likely get the 180 days without asking.

An FM-T is not required if your stay in Mexico is less than 72 hours or if you staying within the “tourist zone”, generally within 15 miles or so from the border. The checkpoint traveling down Baja south of Tijuana is some 70 miles to the south, just beyond Ensenada. Many times there is no one at the checkpoint and Baja seems to have little regulation concerning tourist cards. But if you want to be safe, just take care of it at the border. There is no charge for the card and no income requirements.

All Mexican permits or visas must be returned to a Mexican Immigration office at a Mexican Port of Entry upon final departure from Mexico or to a Mexican Consulate or Embassy no later than five days following the expiration date. An exit stamp should be obtained upon leaving Mexico. Failure to cancel your permit or visa may result in penalties or fines.

The requirements for this visa are as follows:

  • Valid passport, certificate of naturalization or an original birth certificate and a valid government issued ID (a photocopy of the document that you present is also required)
  • 1 front view, color, passport-size photograph.