Customs and migration information PDF







If you are not Mexican and have no other valid migratory form in Mexico (e.g., FM3, FM2), in order to enter the country you need to have a tourist/business visitor/visitor in transit migratory form (FMTTV). In accordance with international immigration treaties between Mexico and other countries, the procedure to obtain the FMTTV varies with the nationality of each visitor. This form can be obtained for each person at the first port of entry, the Mexican borders or Mexican consulates and embassies.

You are advised to request migratory and visa requirements information at any of the  Mexican Embassies or Consulates far enough in advance before planning your travel, as additional to the FMTTV you might need a visa to enter Mexico and in some cases its processing time can take up to 30 working days. Although your travel agency can inform you about visa application procedures and resolution times, you are recommended to confirm them with the Mexican Embassy or Consulate nearest to your domicile.

When you enter and leave Mexico, make sure that your migratory form is stamped and authorized by the migratory authority. If you decide to prolong your stay for a period longer than that granted by your permit (FMTTV), before expiring it you must request its extension before the migratory authorities. Including extensions, the FMTTV maximum period validity is six months as tourist and business visitor, and 30 days as visitor in transit. Extensions and changes of migratory status are possible provided that these procedures are not stated as restrictions on the FMTTV.


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The Non-Immigrant Fee

As many countries, as of 1999 Mexico charges a fee for the authorization of Non-Immigrant migratory status. The resources collected through this fee are used for the promotion of tourism in Mexico and for the assistance and improvement of migratory services. This fee is about US20.00, which is updated annually. The time and manner of paying it varies according to the mode and route you use to enter the country.

All foreigners who enter Mexico must pay this fee, except those who have immigrant or immigrated status (FM2), or who are visitors with an FM-3. Passengers with connecting flights in Mexico or in transit (whose stay is less than three days), diplomats with an official or service visa, and crew members are also exempt.

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Upon entering Mexico, you must fill out a Customs Declaration Form per family in all cases. Depending on your means of transport, the form will be given to you by the crew of the ship or plane or you will be able to obtain it at the point of entry to Mexico (border, airport, or seaport). It must be filled out correctly as you will be subject to a random research by the custom authority, and incorrect information may constitute a crime.

International passengers arriving by air in Mexico in transit or connexion to their final destination within the national territory or abroad, shall present to the customs authorities their baggage for inspection at the first port of arrival.  For such effects, the air companies that make international transportation of passengers, shall have the obligation to transfer the luggage to the corresponding carrousel so the passenger can claim it and proceed to the customs inspection, so they can activate the mechanism of automatized selection.

The obligation to declare before the customs authority applies to every individual who acts on his own behalf, as well as to the legal representatives of national or foreign individuals or corporations, to the officials and employees of international organizations, and to the employees of messenger services who carry with them quantities that, for such purposes, the Law indicates must be declared.

Once you have filled out the Customs Declaration Form, you must proceed to the automated selection mechanism or fiscal traffic light. At this stage, it will be indicated whether a passenger must allow the customs authority to inspect his/her goods. If the mechanism determines that you are subject to revision (red light), you must give the Declaration to the individual who is going to perform the inspection and open your baggage, so that what you declared on the form may be corroborated. If the mechanism determines that the inspection will not be performed (green light), simply hand in your declaration and you may leave without undergoing further procedures. The result of the automated selection mechanism (fiscal semaphore) does not depend on any personal criteria whatsoever, it is completely random.

If, upon arriving in or leaving national territory, you are carrying with you quantities in cash, in national or foreign checks, in money orders or any other document to be cashed, or a combination of the above in a quantity greater than ten thousand US dollars or its equivalent in other foreign currencies, you are obliged to declare them to the customs authorities, registering them by means of the "Customs Declaration" (Declaración de Aduana) and "Declaration of Passenger´s Money in Exit" (Declaración de Dinero Salida de Pasajeros) forms. The said declaration must be submitted at the entry or exit customs, as appropriate. To carry such a quantity upon entering or leaving the country is not a crime but not declaring it is a felony.

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Goods that you may bring into Mexico without paying taxes

You may freely bring your personal luggage and a variety of exempt goods what vary according to the route by which you enter the country. There is a permit for goods in addition to your luggage that you may bring into the country tax-free.

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List of articles that make up personal luggage


  • Goods for personal use, such as clothing, footwear and personal toiletries and beauty products, as long as they are appropriate for the duration of the trip, including wedding party items.  
  • Two photographic cameras or video recorders, 12 rolls of film or videocassettes; photographic material; two cellular telephones or radio phones; a portatil typewriter; an electronic calendar; a portable computer (laptop), notebook, omnibook or similar items; a copier or portable printer; a portable projector, and their accessories.
  • Two sports equipment, four rods, three speedboats with or without sails and their accessories, trophies or recognitions, provided that they can be transported normally and commonly by the passenger, one stair climber and bicycle.
  • A portable radio for the recording or reproduction of sound or mixed tapes; or a digital sound reproducer or portable reproducer of compact discs and a portable reproducer of DVD’s, such as a pair of portable speakers, and their accessories.
  • Five laser disks, 10 DVD disks, 30 compact disks (CD) or magnetic tapes (audiocassettes), for the reproduction of sound and five storage devices or memory cards for any electronic equipments.
  • Books, magazines and printed documents.
  • Five toys, —included those that are collectible— and a video game console and videogames.
  • One device that permits measurement of arterial pressure and one for glucose, as well as medications of personal use; in the case of psychotropics the medical prescription should be shown.
  • One set of binoculars and a telescope.
  • Valises, trunks and suitcases necessary for the movement of goods.
  • Passengers over 18 years of age, may introduce a maximum of up to 20 packs of cigarettes, 25 cigars or 200 grams of tobacco and up to three liters of alcoholic beverages, and six liters of wine; in excess of the above, cannot be imported without complying with applicable regulations and restrictions.
  • Baby travel accesories, such as strollers and baby-walkers
  • Two musical instruments and its accessories.
  • A camping tent and camping equipment, as well as their accessories.
  • Handicapped or old travelers may introduce items for personal use, useful to have a better performance of their activities, such as walkers, wheelchairs, crutches and canes.
  • A set of tools including its case, it might have a hand drill, wire cutters, wrenches, dices, screwdrivers, current cables, among others.
  • Beddings, that will be able to include a set of matching sheets and pillowcases, a set of towels, a set of bath, a set of table linen and a set of kitchen.
  • Up to two dogs or cats, maybe introduced as well as their accesories, provided that the corresponding  zoosanitary  import certificate issued by (SAGARPA) is presented to the customs officials.

If you bring a desktop computer, you may pay duties and taxes by filling out a payment form as long as the value of the computer and its peripherals and accessories do not exceed US$4,000. If the total value of the computer and its peripherals and accessories exceeds US$4,000 you must hire the services of a customs broker

The luggage belonging to ambassadors, plenipotentiary ministers, business men, counsellors, secretaries and attachés of the diplomatic or special foreign missions, consuls, vice-consuls, or foreign diplomatic agents, officials of international organizations accredited by the Government of Mexico; as well as their spouses, parents, and children who abide in the same house, will not be subject to customs inspections. When there is well-founded reason to believe that personal luggage contains objects whose importation or exportation is prohibited or subject to non-customs regulations or restrictions, the customs authority may only perform the corresponding inspection, so long as it is performed in the presence of the respective party or of his/her authorized representative.

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The tax exemption

As previously indicated this exemption varies by the mode and route of entry to the country. For this reason, we recommend you read the the following link ADUANA. The corresponding quantities in each case may be accumulated by the father, the mother, and the children, even considering minors, when the arrival in national territory is simultaneous and by the same means of transportation.


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Prohibited products

  • In accordance with the "Law of General Import and Export Taxes", the introduction of the following products into the country is prohibited:
  • Firearms, except for hunting purposes, as long as the rules indicated in.
  • Live predatory fish in their fingerling, juvenile, and adult stage.
  • Thallium Sulfate
  • Totoaba, fresh or refrigerated (fish)
  • Insecticide (Isodrin, Aldrin, Heptachloro, Drinox, Endrin, Mendrino, Nendin, Hecadrin, or Leptofos)
  • Frozen Totoaba (Fish)
  • Turtle eggs of any kind
  • Poppy seeds (Opium Poppy)
  • Imide of N-phtalilglutamic acid (Thalidomide)
  • Poppy seed flour (Opium Poppy)
  • Marijuana (Cannabis Indica) seeds and spores, even when mixed with other seeds
  • Heroin, base, or Diacetylmorophine hydrochloride
  • Marijuana (Cannabis Indica)
  • Medicinal preparations based on marijuana (Cannabis Indica)
  • Opium juices and extracts prepared for smoking
  • Medical preparations based on acetylmorphine, its salts or derivatives.
  • Extracts and juices derived from marijuana (Cannabis Indica)
  • Turtle or Green Turtle skins
  • Mucilages and thickeners derived from marijuana (Cannabis Indica)
  • Stamps printed in colours or in black and white, presented for sale in envelopes or packets, even when they include chewing gum, candy, or any other type of articles, containing drawings, figures, or illustrations that portray childhood in a denigrating or ridiculous manner, in attitudes which incite violence, self-destruction, or any other type of anti-social behaviour, know as "Garbage Pail Kids", for example, printed by any company or commercial denominations.
  • The Ministry of Agriculture prohibits the following goods since they represent a great risk for the introduction of plagues and diseases: earth, straw, padded containers of hay, straw decorations without processing; homemade foods; flours of animal origin; fresh, dry, canned or frozen meat and meat products, such as smoky, salted and mature sausages that have been elaborated in countries under absolute quarantine (Europe, Africa, Asia and South America). For additional information please visit the website

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Bringing medicaments into Mexico for personal use only

Foreign nationals under medical treatment of controlled narcotic and psychotropic drugs in form of medicaments -when they enter Mexico- must declare it to the customs authorities and present a medical prescription or a licence issued by competent authority. The former must state bars code, name of the doctor authorising the prescription, his signature, contact details (telephone, address) and professional register. The medical prescription or licence must also state amount of the substance required by the patient during her or his stay in Mexico, the amount bringing into the country and the daily dose. The medicaments must not exceed of the amount required for a period of 30 days. The prescription must be translated into Spanish.

Please be aware that in order that you can export medicaments for personal use from the United Kingdom, you might need a personal export licence. For more information visit the website of the Drugs Licensing and Enforcement Unit.

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Bringing pets into Mexico (dogs and cats)


In order to bring a pet (dogs and cats) into Mexico, the following documents must be presented at the Office of Animal Health Inspection (OISA) at international airports and ports of entry into Mexico :

  • If the pet is less than tree months, a "Certificate of Good Health" issued by an official authority or by a licensed veterinarian provided that his or her signature is approved in the United Kingdom and issued not more than five days before the animal enters Mexico
  • If the pet is older than three moths, the "Certificate of Good Health" must also states immunizations against rabies, distemper, hepatitis and leptospirosis. Any immunization must been administered at least 15 days before pet's arrival to Mexico, but not more than one year.

At the OISA your pet will be physically checked and that office will determine if the animal is allowed immediate entry or must remain in custody for an additional inspection. In the first case, it will be issued a zoo-sanitary importation certificate, which must be carry when leaving Mexico. In the second case, If the above said authorities retain the animal, they should also give you a voucher.

If your pet is coming from a country where foot-and-month disease or risk of that disease exists, it must receive a prophylactic treatment.

Nota Bene
When you intend to introduce into Mexico three or more pets or any other animal species , you must fulfil the requirements established on the Zoo-sanitary Requirements Page (Hoja de Requisitos Zoosanitarios).

Animals, plants and their products may enter Mexico depending on their country of origin and country's sanitary conditions. These procedures are to be strictly adhered to in order to prevent plagues and high risk diseases from spreading in Mexico.

Further information can be obtained on SENASICA.


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Cases in which you must pay taxes

- If you enter by land, you are entitled to bring up to US$75 worth of goods in addition to the goods included in your personal luggage, and that you are allowed to combine this amount with family members.

- If you enter by air, you are entitled to bring up to US$300 worth of goods in addition to the goods included in your personal luggage, and that you are allowed to combine this amount with family members.

- If you exceed this exemption or if your family’s combined amount exceeds the combined exemption, but the value of the goods does not surpass three thousand dollars, there is a flat 15% rate of duties and taxes, which is applied only to the amount exceeding the exemption (individual or combined). You must fill out a payment form, which is available at the Customs counter.   

- If the value of the goods surpasses three thousand dollars (per family member) after subtracting the US$75 exemption by entering by land or US$300 by entering by air, or if any of the goods is subject to non-tariff regulations or restrictions, you must hire the services of a customs broker


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Once you find yourself in Mexican territory, you will be free to travel and circulate within or without having to fill out more migratory forms. They will only be able to request the presentation of customs declaration forms when you leave a city near a border and head for another within the same country.

Nota bene.- This information is provided as a service to the public. Therefore you are advised to verify it directly with the customs authorities by visiting the website

Most of the information contained on this menu forms part of the manual of tourist entry prepared by La Secretaría de Turismo, Aduana de México, Banjercito, el Instituto Nacional de Migración, la Secretaría de Comunicaciones y Transportes y la Secretaría de la Defensa Nacional. The manual of tourist entry can be downloaded from the website of La Secretaría de Turismo.

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Última actualización el Miércoles, 11 de Mayo de 2011 11:10

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