Mexico is known for its heavenly beaches on the Caribbean Sea, for magnificent temples of the ancient Maya and of course for good food and tequila. So that you can enjoy your vacation to the fullest, you will find useful information below about entry requirements to Mexico. If you know what documents you need and what else needs to be considered when entering the country, nothing stands in the way of a relaxing stay.
As a German citizen, you generally do not need a visa for a vacation in Mexico, but can easily enter the Central American country with a valid passport. If you always carry the tourist card and your flight tickets with you for the onward or return journey, there is nothing to prevent a trouble-free entry to Mexico.
You can obtain the latest information on entry requirements in Mexico from the Federal Foreign Office so that you can enjoy your valuable time in Mexico in the best possible way.
What documents and visa requirements apply to a trip to Mexico?
Before leaving for Mexico, make sure you have a valid passport. This should be valid at least until the end of your stay, but better still longer than six months. If there is not much time until departure, a temporary passport is sufficient as a document for entry, your ID card is again not sufficient.
The plane tickets that certify the onward or return journey from Mexico are also important. The Foreign Office also points out that the travel documents must be in good condition.
When you arrive at the airport of entry, fill in the tourist or business card, the so-called FMM which you will show later on entering and leaving the country. You can get the card on the plane or at the airport.
Keep the tourist card and your passport in a safe place and always carry them with you, as regular checks are carried out to check that they are legal. In extreme cases, those who cannot show a valid residence permit can be held in deportation and deported to their home country.
If you lose your card, you must purchase a new one at the latest when you leave the country. The fee is the equivalent of around € 20.
Losing your personal documents is a much bigger problem: If you have registered your German passport as stolen and then find it again, you should no longer use it during your stay in Mexico. The alert in the international property search can no longer be reversed, which leads to difficulties in the onward journey.
If you spontaneously decide to extend your stay in Mexico, you can contact the Instituto Nacional de Migración, which can extend your residence permit without a visa up to 180 days. However, there is no entitlement to this. In any case, employment must be applied for before entering a Mexican diplomatic mission abroad.
For example, for a beach vacation or a business trip (shorter than 180 days) you do not need a visa but can relax without having to enter. However, this only applies if you are not pursuing a paid activity.
This regulation applies to all citizens from the Schengen area and some other countries such as the USA, Canada and Great Britain. If you have a permanent residence permit in one of these countries, you don’t need to worry about a visa either. All other citizens, however, do.
Are there any special entry requirements for children in Mexico?
Your children, just like you as adults, require a valid (child) passport to enter Mexico, which is valid for at least six months at the start of the trip. If your underage child travels to Mexico alone, it is advisable to write an informal letter with your declaration of consent. Some airlines even require it. Copies of IDs from parents cannot hurt either.
Children with a Mexican parent automatically receive Mexican citizenship and do not have a tourist residence status, even if they enter with a German passport. In such special cases, problems often arise when leaving without a Mexican passport. It is therefore essential that you carry the original birth certificate of the child with you.
What do I have to consider when entering animals with Mexico?
Would you like your beloved pet to come to Mexico on vacation? Then you just have to follow a few pointers and you’re good to go. Animals older than three months need a valid health certificate to enter Mexico. This must not be older than one week when entering the country and the international vaccination certificate is also compulsory.
It must be noted that the animal has been vaccinated against rabies and that this vaccination was not older than one year. The health certificate must provide accurate information about the breed, age, gender and colour of the pet. A translation into English also makes sense, so that the entry goes smoothly. If your pet is younger than three months, you only need the health certificate.
Larger animals are usually transported in the cargo hold, while smaller ones can be carried in the passenger area of the aircraft. It is best to contact your airline for more information.
What travel arrangements are recommended?
When you have all the documents together, it is time to find out more about your holiday destination and the necessary medical precautions. The Federal Foreign Office recommends the standard vaccinations according to the vaccination calendar for all trips to Mexico.
In addition, think about vaccination against hepatitis, rabies and typhoid. Therefore, you should contact your doctor or a tropical institute in good time before the start of your holiday and check your vaccination calendar.
In order to be able to perfectly equip your first aid kit, ask about which diseases can occur in which regions. Depending on the state, it is recommended, for example, to carry malaria prophylaxis.
In the big cities, it is usually not a problem to pay and withdraw money with common international credit cards. However, if your holiday destination is very small or in an area where not many foreign travellers are travelling, it is practically possible to have changed money before you travel.
What should he watch out for when importing food? What special customs regulations are there?
Would you like to take some goods or groceries with you on vacation? Then you should know the special entry requirements for goods in Mexico. Food of any kind may not be brought along. The government wants to prevent the spread of animal diseases and plant diseases that could be introduced by foreign food.
Customs controls are carried out in Mexico on both entry and exit. There is a special quantity of specifications for some goods. Adults of legal age can carry up to three litres of high-proof alcohol or up to six litres of wine or the like with them.
For cigarettes, the duty-free amount is 200 pieces, 25 cigars or 200g tobacco. If you have more than $ 10,000 in cash with you when you enter Mexico, you must declare it to customs beforehand.
There are also strict regulations for the export of goods. Unfortunately, you are not allowed to take home some souvenirs such as archaeological finds and antiques. The same applies to cacti, corals and other protected species. The removal of protected plant species from their natural environment is punishable in Mexico and can lead to fines or even prison terms.
Therefore, when buying plants, pay close attention to the type and bring your friends and relatives another souvenir. Those who stayed at home are probably just as happy about a sombrero or handmade jewellery and you are on the safe side.
What are the reasons for refusing entry to Mexico?
The vacation is just around the corner and you already have all the important documents together? But according to the case, what would you be denied entry to Mexico? The reasons for this can be of different types. Check the accuracy and completeness of your documents before departure. If you cannot show a return flight ticket or only have an expired passport, you may not be allowed to enter.
It has also happened that vacationers have been refused entry to Mexico because their passport was damaged or soiled. Correct travel documents are the be-all and end-all for trouble-free entry.
The criminal record of acts that are not too serious usually does not cause any problems in Mexico. Mexico is relatively relaxed in this regard, especially compared to the USA and Canada. Serious crimes or people who are still on probation may experience delays or refusal to enter Mexico. In this case, it is best to find out from the Mexican consulate before starting your trip.
What can I expect when I enter?
Having finally arrived in Mexico, the first step is border control. There you show the responsible official your travel documents, the completed tourist card and usually also the plane tickets. The border official will now ask you some questions. These can be questions about your fellow travellers, the reason for the trip, etc.
However, some officials only speak Spanish or very poor English. It is therefore helpful if you speak and understand some practical words of Spanish. You don’t normally have to give fingerprints.
Are you entering Mexico by land? Then the same conditions and regulations apply to you as to when arriving in Mexico by plane. However, sometimes it happens that your tourist card is not stamped on the border by the official. If this is the case, you must have the stamp added to the Instituto Nacional de Migración. Then you cannot get into trouble with passport control.