Mexican Tourist Cards (FMM)
Tourist Card (FMM) Facts:
- The FMM is a document issued by Mexico's INM (Instituto Nacional de Migración aka INM)
- Casually called a tourist card or tourist "visa" although it is not officially a visa
- Issued to U.S., Canadian and other nationalities for vacation purposes
- Easily obtained at an INM office at the border or online (online still requires a stop at INM at the border for the official stamp).
- Requires a valid passport or passport card
- The stamped FMM is valid for land travel throughout Mexico
- Cost as of January 2017, $500 Pesos (appx U.S. $24) per person; FREE if the trip is 7 days or less and you cross by land
- May be issued for up to 180 days
For important changes to the tourist card (FMM), visit 2015 Mexican Tourist Card (FMM) Changes
See where to get a tourist card at the El Chaparral border crossing (San Ysidro/Tijuana).
Tourist Card - FMM
What is a tourist card (FMM)?
According to the INM
, an FMM, or Forma Migratoria Múltiple is an "admission document" issued to vacationing visitors of certain nationalities. Although the tourist card (FMM) is also popularly known as a tourist "visa," it is not officially a visa. U.S. and Canadian citizens driving to Mexico for vacation may obtain a tourist card (FMM) within minutes at a Mexican immigration office at the border with only a valid passport or passport card. The tourist card application
is now available online as well. The tourist card (FMM) may be issued for up to 180 days and is issued per person including children.
When is a tourist card (FMM) required?
A tourist card (FMM) is required for all tourists who enter Mexico.
It is important to note that in Baja, even
though you may take your vehicle to the end of the peninsula without
a vehicle permit (see vehicle importation
regulations) you are required to have a tourist card (FMM) in order to travel anywhere in the state.
Who may obtain a tourist card (FMM)?
If you are a U.S. or Canadian citizen traveling to Mexico for tourist reasons, you may only need a tourist card (FMM). For citizens of other countries, view the INM's list of Countries and Regions That Require and Do Not Require a Visa To Travel to Mexico - but DO require an FMM.
What type of documentation do I need to obtain a tourist card (FMM)?
If you are a U.S. or Canadian citizen you will need to have a valid passport or passport card
to present to the Mexican Immigration officials in order to get a tourist card (FMM).
What information is asked on the tourist card (FMM) form?
The following information as it appears on your passport:
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Passport number
- Purpose of trip
- How you are entering Mexico: air, sea, land
How do I obtain a tourist card (FMM)?
Most tourists who drive across the border obtain their tourist card from an immigration office at the border crossing. They are also available online.
Keep in mind that if you obtain your tourist card before crossing the border, you will still have to stop at the Mexican immigration office at the border to document your entry date and to have your tourist card stamped by immigration officials. Tourist cards are no longer available at Mexican Consulates.
How much does a tourist card (FMM) cost?
As of January 2017, tourist cards cost $500.00 pesos (appx U.S. $24) and can be issued
for up to 180 days. It is advisable to have your card valid for 180 days even if you don't plan on staying in Mexico that
long. It is easier to already have the time granted to you than extend your card later if you stay longer.
The free tourist card (FMM): The tourist card is free if your stay in Mexico is 7 days or less and you are traveling by land into Baja. This isn't frequently advertised. Ask your local INM official.
What is the general procedure to get a tourist card (FMM)?
1. Fill out a tourist card (FMM) form at the immigration office (INM) and walk to the nearby bank and pay for the tourist card
2. Or fill out the online tourist card (FMM) application
and pay online with a Visa or Mastercard credit or debit card. Your online tourist card (FMM) will be ready to print within minutes. After printing your FMM form, it must be stamped by INM within 30 days to be valid
3. Whether buying the tourist card at an INM office or online, visit the INM office to get your tourist card (FMM) stamped/validated
Is it possible to enter and exit Baja multiple times with the same tourist card (FMM)?
Yes. The INM delegate for Baja California (Norte) announced in September 2015 that the FMM is now multiple entry for land travel in Baja California only
What if I lose my tourist card (FMM)?
If you lose your tourist card, visit the nearest INM office in order to obtain a new one.
Does the tourist card (FMM) have to be returned to INM?
As of January 2015 according to INM, returning the FMM is not
necessary in Baja California
if you traveled by land. Although there is statement on the back of the FMM saying to return it, there is no procedure about how to return it or where to return it when crossing by land. The Federal INM Delgate in other regions may require that you turn it in and get an exit stamp. If you are not in the Baja Peninsula, it would be best to check with your local INM office.
Tourist Card Tips:
- Make sure that the Mexican officials stamp your card.
- Keep your card in a safe place.
- It is recommended to write down your FMM number in case it is lost or stolen.
Helpful Tourist Card (FMM) links:
2015 Mexican Tourist Card (FMM) Changes
Where to get a tourist card at the El Chaparral border crossing (San Ysidro/Tijuana).
How to buy your FMM tourist card online
Sources: Baja Bound staff, INM, U.S. Dept of State
Updated: Feb 13, 2018 11:46 AM