Immigration matters are often considered a formality when visiting another country. If it is your first time out of your home country or your first time into Mexico we have some tips on this essential but straightforward process.
Most people arrive in Mexico by air. On your flight, your flight crew will give you documentation to fill out. One form is a customs form. The other is a “Forma Migratoria Multiple,” or FMM, or commonly known as a tourist card, tourist visa, or visitors visa. You can complete these forms on the plane. The forms ask you the basics: name, nationality, passport number, date of birth, the airline and flight number you arrived on.
Tip #1. Bring a pen to complete the forms. Flight crews never have pens.
Tip #2. If the flight crew does not have the forms on board the plane, you can get the forms at the immigration at the Cancun Airport.
Immigration hack: You can get your tourist card form and complete it online.
When you go through Immigration, an immigration officer will stamp your passport and your tourist visa. The tourist visa has two parts, they keep one part, and give you back the other. It is vital that you keep this piece of paper with you.
Tip #3. DON’T LOSE YOUR TOURIST CARD
We don’t mean to shout, but keeping track of your tourist card is muy importante. Losing this one piece of paper can cost you and your family a lot of money. Before leaving the country, you must turn in the half of your tourist visa to airport personnel. If you don’t have your tourist visa (FMM) when leaving, you can expect to wait in line at the immigration counter at the airport terminal, complete more paperwork and pay a fine of about $40 USD per lost tourist card. You can see how this can add up if your entire family misplaces their tourist visas. Plus, it causes undue stress and possibly a missed flight if you arrived at the airport late.
Tip #4. If you are paying a fine for a lost tourist card, Immigration does not accept credit cards. Only Mexican Pesos, USD and Euros. There is an ATM in the terminal if you are out of cash.
Tip #5. It is recommended to arrive at the airport 3 hours before departure, especially in the winter season when the airport is busy.