New Zealand Embassy Mexico City

Travelling to Mexico

Please see the column on the right hand side providing links to information for New Zealanders in Mexico, Central America, Cuba and Venezuela. Please contact the in Mexico City if you require further information.

If you’re visiting Mexico as a tourist you don’t need a visa, but you do need a tourist card, which you can get on arrival by completing an immigration form available at border crossings or on-board flights to Mexico.

If you’re crossing the border into Mexico from the US (by land), there won’t be an immigration officer at the port of entry, but you’ll need to identify the nearest immigration office and clear your immigration status before you continue your journey into Mexico. The immigration office can usually be found close to the border area, and customs officials at the border should be able to tell you where to find it. If you fail to clear immigration at this point, it is often more complicated to do so once you have left the border area.

You need a tourist card to leave the country. If you lose your tourist card, you can get it replaced at the immigration office at any international airport in Mexico. The cost of a replacement is $295 Mexican Pesos, which is payable at a bank - the immigration office will provide you with a payment form.

There have been reports of bogus immigration officers operating within international airports. You should always refuse offers of help and head directly to the immigration office.

Travelling to Mexico with minors

In Mexico, all minors travelling alone or with a third party of legal age (not parent or guardian) must demonstrate they have their parents or guardians’ permission to leave Mexico. As of 27 January 2014, a Departure of Minors Form (SAM) must be completed for said purpose.

The Mexican Immigration Institute will make the Departure of Minors Form (SAM) available at their website It must be filled in online and validated by the Immigration Authority at the relevant airport or point of departure.

Once completed online, the SAM form must be printed in triplicate - one for the minor, one for the airline/transport company, and one for the Immigration Authority. The SAM form is obligatory for minors with dual nationality (one being Mexican) or for foreign minors who are temporary or permanent residents of Mexico.

Photocopies of the following must also be provided:

  1. Minor’s passport and birth certificate.
  2. Parents or guardians’ official IDs.
  3. Official ID of the person travelling with the minor (if applicable).

The SAM form is valid for 6 months from the date of issue but can only be used once. If you plan multiple departures and arrivals you will need a SAM for every departure.

Please note that this regulation DOES NOT apply to visitors, or to minors travelling with one or both parents or guardians.

The Departure of Minors Form can be found at from 27 January 2014.


Time spent in Canada, Mexico and adjacent islands counts towards the maximum of 90 days stay in the U.S.A allowed under the U.S.A visa waiver program.

New Zealanders travelling to the U.S.A for business or pleasure may be eligible for visa-free travel under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) if certain conditions are met. These include, staying less than 90 days, travelling via a commercial carrier and with a return ticket, travelling on a machine readable passport, having an approved electronic travel authorization (ESTA), and having no criminal convictions.

If transiting the U.S.A. to a destination in Canada, Mexico or the adjacent islands, you may re-enter the U.S.A. on the return journey using any mode of transport, as long as the total visit, including periods of time spent in transit and in Canada, Mexico or the adjacent islands, does not exceed 90 days. If the total time spent in these areas does exceed 90 days, you would need to apply for a B-1/B-2 Visitor Visa, or a C-1 Transit Visa before leaving New Zealand.

To apply for the B1/B2 or C1 visa please contact the U.S. Consulate General in Auckland, New Zealand.

Further information on visas and how to apply can also be found at the U.S.A Embassy in New Zealand website:

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