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Josh82

Jun 13, 2015, 3:51 PM

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Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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Okay, first off I'm new here to the forum but I'll be around for a long time, I hate for my first post to be for help but I appreciate and thank you for any help in advance.

This is my 4th time in Mexico as a permanent tourist on a FMM. I'm living in Merida and my 6 month FMM from December 2014 is basically done.

A couple days ago, I went to Belize to attempt to acquire a new FMM when re-entering MX. I got out of Mexico without paying the "exit tax" (I'd flown in and there was a 5 minute argument over me owing, but I wasn't giving up and I got through). I got into Belize, barely, by bullshitting them that I wanted to go diving and possibly stay for a month or so and asking for 30 days. The guy marked my pasport for 72 hour minumim, stamped me, and I was in. I went to Corozal for a few beers and returned, thinking I could talk my way out the same day - I eventully did, but no sooner than after an hour of pleading, apologizing for my mistake (thinking it would be no big deal), admitting I only wanted a new FMM for MX, and paying 1,500 pesos.. Finalyy I thought I was home free.

Re-entering Mexico is where the problem came in. Mexico saw that I'd been stamped out that day, and also been stamped in and out of Belize with a 72 hour conditional stay that I obviously didn't obey. Mexico said they would give me an FMM for 5 days so I could get back to Merida, get my shit and exit. He said I could re-enter or do whatever I wanted, but that he wasn't giving me a new 180-day FMM. I pleaded, offered money, told him my situation, etc.. Nothing worked. He said to wait and he left the booth and came back with my OLD FMM, the one I'd turned in just 5 or 6 hours earlier - it still had about 5 days left on it. I asked him why, and he said it's not his problem, I could eaither take it and go, or I can go back to Belize for 72 hours, or I can stay in the free zone for 72 hours..

I assumed after being stamped out of Belize, mexico could care less. However, the Mexican immigration guy was clearly just playing by the rules that Belize had set forth for me which was a 72 hour stay. Bullshit or not, that's what he did. Unfortunately, I didn't have the time nor the money to stay in Belize or the free zone for 72 hours.

So now, my situation is this. I have a FMM expiring in a couple days, am not in the situation to make it back to the border to "buy another" and don't really have the time or $ for the next few weeks to leave to the US and then return. What I'm looking for is a bit of advice. Keep in mind that I plan to live here on FMMs for a few more years until applying for dual, or something more permanent.

Since I have the exit stamp from MX and the entry & exit stamp from Belize, what can I do? Should I go tho the immigration office here in Merida and claim to have lost my FMM? If they check my passport, the last stamp is from 12/2014. I suppose I could say "I don't know, I guess they didn't stamp me when I entered the other day!".. But, would they be able to check the computer system and see there was never a new FMM issued to me??? Should I say that somehow I was passed through at immigration and they gave me neither a FMM or a passport stamp and pretend like the problem was maybe the language barrier? Should I say that when I exited MX I did so while telling them I had lost my FMM and they made me pay $500 pesos but gave me no receipt and I never did any paperwork about a lost FMM???

I'm worried about not handing in my old FMM, which I have right now. I'm also worried about asking for assistance at immigration without a FMM or passport stamp from entering Mexico just now. (keep in mind I have an EXIT from Mexico, and a Entry & Exit from Belize, which would probably be decent evidence for them to believe my "situation").. I'm looking for advice. I don't want to come back the next time I visit home in the US in a few months and have problems because my FMM was never canceled, nor do I want to get caught "stretching the truth" to immigration by saying I was issued a new FMM upon re-entry to MX but I lost it and also never recieved and entry stamp on my passport. I have no problem "stretching the truth" if I know it's foolproof however, or if there's no danger of arrest or anything like that.

Will I be smart to simply go to the Merida airport and play dumb and say "I think I need a stamp and FMM because they never issued it to me when I re-entered from Belize a few days back"????

Please, anyone with some experience, help me out here.. I'm not interested in any information other than this. Please spare me the lectures on back-to-back FMMs, that's just the way I prefer to do things right now as it is my only option at this time. Additionally, I'm looking to take care of this ASAP and my LAST plan is to simply play it out and then leave on an expired FMM via Cancun. I don't want to deal with the BS when I return, I'd rather have my mind at ease knowing I have a entry stamp or, at least, a new & valid 180-day FMM..

Thanks in advance, and thanks to many of you for posting great threads as I've used the forum for info for quite some time, but only as a lurker and never a member.. I'm hoping I can get a little info to help set my mind at ease and/or provide me with the best ideas for taking care of this problem..


(This post was edited by Josh82 on Jun 13, 2015, 4:13 PM)



rvgringo

Jun 13, 2015, 4:31 PM

Post #2 of 32 (5110 views)

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Re: [Josh82] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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That was a confoluted post and does indicate that the INM folks at the border decided to “send you on your way“, which is their right. They probably detected that you were making frequent border runs to live in Mexico indefinitely and decided to force you into a proper residence visa. That is also their right. You have indicated that you probably don‘t have the funds to qualify for a visa, and they may suspect that you are working illegally to support yourself. In any event, you may have to leave Mexico until you can qualify for a visa and solve the problem in the appropriate manner.
Granted, the officers on the Belize border tend to be more strict, or even judgemental and possibly hungry for mordida than at crossings to the USA, where you might find it easier to remain a perpetual tourist; although it is a long trip.
Bottom line: The airport will not help you, and might send you back to the border. It may be time to leave and re-group.


Josh82

Jun 13, 2015, 4:52 PM

Post #3 of 32 (5105 views)

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Re: [rvgringo] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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Thanks for the response. I wasn't trying to make it such a complicated post, I just wanted to make the details clear. Sorry if it's a mess.

I work for a company in the US, working remotely from home here - I make decent money and qualify for temporal as far as funds go, but there are other complications keeping me from applying for that right now. I want to get permanent in a few years and I need to get some serious cash together for that first... Normally $ to travel to the US wouldn't be a problem, but right now it is because of personal reasons. I basically bailed my mom out of a forclosure and I'm running super-lean on cash right now.

With that said, I totally understand it's their right to do so - whatever they say goes.

I admittedly didn't expect to run into a problem that a little $ couldn't handle, and I did, unfortunately. I was unprepared and made a rookie mistake basically. Had I simply stayed in Belize for 3 days, I would have been fine most likely.. Live and learn, I guess.

I'm just hoping for a bit of advice in case someone esle may have experienced similar. With the fresh Belize entry & exit, I though I might have a tiny advantage if I speak with the right person. Then again, I may be wrong.

By "might send you back to the border" are you saying they'd recommend I go there to take care of it, or are you saying they might send me forcefully at that exact moment?

Hey, thanks a lot for your input. I appreciate it.


cbviajero

Jun 13, 2015, 5:21 PM

Post #4 of 32 (5091 views)

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Re: [Josh82] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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.

I admittedly didn't expect to run into a problem that a little $ couldn't handle,

Pobrecito..
You couldn't bribe your way out of your immigration situation..que lastima...


(This post was edited by cbviajero on Jun 13, 2015, 5:24 PM)


Josh82

Jun 13, 2015, 6:15 PM

Post #5 of 32 (5075 views)

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Re: [cbviajero] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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Clearly my situation has really moved you emotionally, thanks for your concern... Hahaha. ;)

Well, really I'm a good talker and I figured that the combo of that and a little cash (if necesarry), and I wouldn't have to worry too much. I was polite and professional as well. Clearly none of that mattered, i.e. I learned a lesson.

I was incorrectly under the impression that once I was into & out of Belize, re-entry into Mexico would be a cake walk.. I thought the hard part was over. So I was wrong..... We're all wrong at some point, no?

Here's more stupidity in my behalf - I could have paid $2,500 to the guy before even leaving Mexico and he said he'd give me a new 180 days right then & there. My concern is that it wouldn't be put into the system, or that I'd have a problem somehow.. I thought the only one I'd be willing to give $ to was the entry people at Mexico, not the exit.

Now, and only now am I realizing he probably would have given me an exit and then an entry stamp, as well as a new 180 day FMM and I would have walked right back out the same road I came in on without even going to the exit booth.. Probably could have gotten it done for just $1,500 too.

I feel pretty dumb for that but I wasn't sure what to think. Regardless, that's behind me and now I have to deal with the current situation so I'm not going to slap myself about what I could or should have done.. Like I said, I learned a lot that day but I still have no clue what I should do right now..


playaboy

Jun 14, 2015, 4:09 AM

Post #6 of 32 (5028 views)

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Re: [Josh82] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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Everything is computerized now. Passport stamps are becomming a thing of the past. Was your passport scanned by Mexico at anytime during your ordeal ?


Josh82

Jun 14, 2015, 5:27 AM

Post #7 of 32 (5018 views)

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Re: [playaboy] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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I am not 100% sure if my passport was scanned when I exited or when I re-entered Mexico, but I'm pretty confident that it was not. That was something I was thinking about afterwards because it would give me a little leverage..


playaboy

Jun 14, 2015, 7:10 AM

Post #8 of 32 (4998 views)

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Re: [Josh82] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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I cross all the time. If you handed the INM officer your passport the chances are very very good that it was scanned. That is usually the first thing they do. If I was you i would assume they did.

Pack up, drive down to Belice, if you are given the chance to "pay to play" again, take it. Otherwise go hang out in Corazol for a couple of days.

I guess you learned you weren't as smooth as you thought your were. Those INM agent know you are trying to live here on a FMM


YucaLandia


Jun 14, 2015, 8:02 AM

Post #9 of 32 (4985 views)

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Re: [playaboy] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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It all goes to show ...
The last 2 times re-entering Mexico at the "Chetumal"/Subteniente Lopez/Santa Helena crossing, we walked past an empty INM station - along with a trickle of about 5 Mexicans - unnoticed.

At the next Gob. station, a bored Aduana clerk perched on a bench 2m away barely glanced at my bag with 2 liquor bottles as we strolled past.

It was the 2:30 hora de almuerzo => taco-time.
-
Read-on MacDuff
E-visit at http://yucalandia.com

(This post was edited by YucaLandia on Jun 14, 2015, 8:03 AM)


cbviajero

Jun 14, 2015, 8:31 AM

Post #10 of 32 (4970 views)

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Re: [Josh82] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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Clearly my situation has really moved you emotionally, thanks for your concern... Hahaha. ;)
Well, really I'm a good talker and I figured that the combo of that and a little cash (if necesarry), and I wouldn't have to worry too much.

People on ex-pat forums constantly whine about how corrupt Mexico is..okay,no argument there.
But when they whine about not being able to bribe their way out of a situation of their own making...that doesn't generate a lot of sympathy.


playaboy

Jun 14, 2015, 10:32 AM

Post #11 of 32 (4935 views)

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Re: [cbviajero] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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Clearly my situation has really moved you emotionally, thanks for your concern... Hahaha. ;)
Well, really I'm a good talker and I figured that the combo of that and a little cash (if necesarry), and I wouldn't have to worry too much.

People on ex-pat forums constantly whine about how corrupt Mexico is..okay,no argument there.
But when they whine about not being able to bribe their way out of a situation of their own making...that doesn't generate a lot of sympathy.


CB, what I find amazing is that in both these recent posts about getting a new FMM at the Belice border is that a price (would that be called mordida) was quoted right at the beginning.

Counter offer, pay, and get the a new 180 days. This is the easy way.

Or you can pay the same amount every year for a resident visa and have to deal with INM as well.


(This post was edited by playaboy on Jun 14, 2015, 10:44 AM)


cbviajero

Jun 14, 2015, 10:37 AM

Post #12 of 32 (4932 views)

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Re: [playaboy] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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CB, what I find amazing is that in both the recent these recent post about getting a new FMM at the Belice border is that a price (would that be called mordida) was quoted right at the beginning.

Counter offer, pay, and get the a new 180 days. This is the easy way.

No saben regatear.


Josh82

Jun 14, 2015, 7:40 PM

Post #13 of 32 (4874 views)

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Re: [cbviajero] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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I'm not whining at all.. I just said that my assumption was that, if anything, I'd be able to pay. To be honest of course I'm a little upset but I can't really complain and I'm definitely not looking for sympathy. Just trying to figure out what to do next.


Josh82

Jun 14, 2015, 7:49 PM

Post #14 of 32 (4871 views)

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Re: [playaboy] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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I cross all the time. If you handed the INM officer your passport the chances are very very good that it was scanned. That is usually the first thing they do. If I was you i would assume they did.

Pack up, drive down to Belice, if you are given the chance to "pay to play" again, take it. Otherwise go hang out in Corazol for a couple of days.

I guess you learned you weren't as smooth as you thought your were. Those INM agent know you are trying to live here on a FM
As I mentioned before I'm not sure that it was scanned, but would that make a difference? For example, what if I went to INM here in Merida to get a new FMM? If I showed them my passport (with MX exit, BZE entry & exit), would I just be able to pay the lost FMM fee? Or would that be a bad idea seeing as they might not see a new one in their computer? The last thing I want is to cause unecesarry legal problems for myself at the INM office, or to get what I'm after and then have unexpected problems down the road and/or make it harder to enter at a later date..

If I have to head back and try again, I guess that's what I'll do.. And no, I was absolutely not as smooth as I thought! After getting out of paying the "exit tax" and getting stamped into Belize I thought I was super-smooth.. Hahahahaha.. Again, I learned quite a bit.

My main concern was the process of paying for a new FMM at the exit. I was worried that they'd take my money and stamp me, but that the new FMM they gave me would not be legit, possibly not entered into the system or something like that which could cause me a problem during my next normal entry via US or something. The more I think about it, the more pissed off I am at myself for not just paying. I'm sure they would have used the same process as normal, canceled my old one and I'd have been fine..


(This post was edited by Josh82 on Jun 14, 2015, 8:01 PM)


playaboy

Jun 15, 2015, 5:39 AM

Post #15 of 32 (4836 views)

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Re: [Josh82] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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Your initial main concerns were wrong. Your assumption that your passport wasn't scanned is probably wrong (everything is computerized). Going to INM in Merida with a BS story is wrong. Everything you did was WRONG.

If you don't want to jeopardize your living here, you better go to Chetumal and try again. Learn from your mistakes. When offered, pay to play.

Read Jwallacq posts about his adventure at that border crossing last week.

http://www.mexconnect.com/...;;page=unread#unread

http://www.mexconnect.com/...;;page=unread#unread

BTW are you sure that you got a 3 day minimum tourist permit for Belize? I never heard of their immigration officers doing that. Could your tourist permit have been only good for 3 days, like a transit permit?

FYI, the entry stamp on your FMM and passport has a little picture included. If you arrive by land there is a picture of a car, if by air then there is a little picture of a jet. So if you fly in, drive out and INM asks for the "tourist tax" just show them your entry stamp on the FMM with the picture of the jet. That show them that the tax has been paid.

Good Luck


Josh82

Jun 15, 2015, 7:00 AM

Post #16 of 32 (4811 views)

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Re: [playaboy] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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Thanks for clearing that up.

Belize was suspicious right off the bat as why I wanted to enter Belize, so I told them I wanted to chill out and dive and probably go forward into Guatemala & Panama. I automatically asked how long I could stay there to show interest in actually staying and they told me they could give me 30 days, but he stressed that I had to stay for a 72 hour minimum and that I wouldn't be allowed to leave prior. He wrote in pen "72 hours" right above my stamp. On the stamp the to & from dates of 6/11 to 7/10 are written. That's why they gave me shit and I ended up paying to leave a few hours later.

I'm just going to return to Chetumal within the week and try again as you advised. I figure there's 2 different crossings to exit MX and they change shifts at some point, so I could have up to 4 chances to pay.

The only thing is that I'm slightly worried about going to the border with an out of date FMM in case I'm not offered to buy a new one, but I think I'll be fine.


YucaLandia


Jun 15, 2015, 7:09 AM

Post #17 of 32 (4807 views)

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Re: [cbviajero] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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In Reply To

CB, what I find amazing is that in both the recent these recent post about getting a new FMM at the Belice border is that a price (would that be called mordida) was quoted right at the beginning.

Counter offer, pay, and get the a new 180 days. This is the easy way.

No saben regatear.


"No saben regatear. "

For people who enter Mexico in the future, cb is very mistaken, making things up, or doesn't haggle well (?) .

CBviajero: They do haggle, a lot. ... as long as you don't insult them ... or annoy/anger them ...

A few months ago when a friend and I exited there to go into Belize, d the INM agent said we had to pay $200 pesos each for paper receipts/tickets to exit for a few hours and then return back into Mexico.

We told him "No, thanks."

He said "You must pay!". We replied "No, thanks."

He then lowered the price to $100 pesos each... "No, thanks." ... Then he offered "$50 pesos for both".

We said, "No, we'll just stay in Mexico." ... He sighed ... and gave us the papers.

Same thing happened to me in Cancun ... They started by demanding $75 USD, and we finally settled at $15.

Haggling has also worked with them in Merida ... has worked with them in Nuevo Laredo ... has worked in Progreso ... has worked multiple times with them in Matamoros ... and at the Belize border.

Guess you just have to know how to haggle... without annoying them.
-
Read-on MacDuff
E-visit at http://yucalandia.com

(This post was edited by YucaLandia on Jun 15, 2015, 7:24 AM)


cbviajero

Jun 15, 2015, 7:39 AM

Post #18 of 32 (4795 views)

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Re: [YucaLandia] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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For people who enter Mexico in the future, cb is very mistaken, making things up, or doesn't haggle well (?) .

CBviajero: They do haggle, a lot. ... as long as you don't insult them ... or annoy/anger them ... .

Yuca,I was referring to the two cases playaboy mentioned..try to follow the thread...
Did you Google (regatear) or did you ask your wife what it meant? JaJa...


(This post was edited by cbviajero on Jun 15, 2015, 7:40 AM)


YucaLandia


Jun 15, 2015, 8:49 AM

Post #19 of 32 (4767 views)

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Re: [cbviajero] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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In Reply To


For people who enter Mexico in the future, cb is very mistaken, making things up, or doesn't haggle well (?) .

CBviajero: They do haggle, a lot. ... as long as you don't insult them ... or annoy/anger them ... .

Yuca, I was referring to the two cases playaboy mentioned..try to follow the thread...

Did you Google (regatear) or did you ask your wife what it meant? JaJa...


There's no need for personal insults.

CB viajero is simply wrong.

CB viajero clearly has no appropriate experience with the INM & Aduana folks at the Belize-Mexico border, so he's using his inapplicable past personal failed histories of no apparent success in negotiating with INM and Aduana officials. He gives completely wrong advice, especially about this thread and the "two cases playaboy mentioned" ...

I've only had about 30 face-to-face encounters with INM & Aduana folks at that Belize crossing over 10 years,
and they clearly do negotiate - in many ways and in many areas...

They negotiate prices on some fees, they negotiate amounts of days, they negotiate amounts of goods, they negotiate time (how quickly or slowly) , they negotiate etc. etc etc.

When we're wrong about something, it's better to go back to facts and reality.

Much better than devolving to personal attacks and personal insults that drag down the quality of this board.

Happy Trails,
steve
-
Read-on MacDuff
E-visit at http://yucalandia.com

(This post was edited by YucaLandia on Jun 15, 2015, 8:58 AM)


Maesonna

Jun 15, 2015, 8:56 AM

Post #20 of 32 (4760 views)

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Re: [Josh82] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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You wrote, “Keep in mind that I plan to live here on FMMs for a few more years until applying for dual, or something more permanent.”

You would be well served to learn more about your options for alternatives to 6-month FMMs. The basic one is a temporary resident visa. There are fees and paperwork involved, but you no longer have the problems that you just faced. The temporary resident visa can run for up to 4 years, then if you want to continue to live Mexico after those 4 years, you must change to a permanent resident visa. Once you have that, you no longer have to do annual renewals or fees.

There is no such thing as ‘applying for dual’. A person who has lived in Mexico for sufficient time (quite a few years) under a resident visa can choose to apply for Mexican nationality – not dual nationality. The dual nationality isn’t something anyone applies for, rather it comes as a natural consequence of acquiring a new nationality without relinquishing the other one.

It is also possible to be a lifelong permanent resident of Mexico without ever getting nationality – plenty of people do that.


(This post was edited by Maesonna on Jun 15, 2015, 8:58 AM)


cbviajero

Jun 15, 2015, 9:59 AM

Post #21 of 32 (4743 views)

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Re: [YucaLandia] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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CB viajero clearly has no appropriate experience with the INM & Aduana folks at the Belize-Mexico border,/reply]
.

The first time I had experience with the INM at the Belize-Mexico border was in 1978,it was easy and I didn't pay any bribes.
As a matter of fact in over 40 years of traveling in Mexico and 10 years living here full time I've paid ONE 100 peso mordida for a minor traffic violation that I had committed,maybe I'm just lucky...


(This post was edited by cbviajero on Jun 15, 2015, 10:11 AM)


YucaLandia


Jun 15, 2015, 10:20 AM

Post #22 of 32 (4731 views)

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Re: [cbviajero] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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In Reply To


CB viajero clearly has no appropriate experience with the INM & Aduana folks at the Belize-Mexico border,/reply]

=============================
The first time I had experience with the INM at the Belize-Mexico border was in 1978,
it was easy

and I didn't pay any bribes.


Things have changed, a lot, since 1978.

As recently as spring 2015 we had very successful negotiations with both INM & Aduana at that crossing - that did NOT involve any bribes.

In our recent 10 years of personal experience, Aduana and INM officials do negotiate (haggle/regatear) ~ many things ~ without bribes ~ at Mexican entry-points in Cancun, Progreso, Belize, Matamoros, and Nuevo Laredo.


Offer helpful, useful, pertinent information.

In this thread's cases, that means it's often helpful and necessary to negotiate/haggle/regatear with the sometimes challenging INM & Aduana agents at the Belize-Mexico border.

Remember: Respectful, polite, calm, professional behavior goes a long way when haggling with them.

Happy Trails,
steve
-
Read-on MacDuff
E-visit at http://yucalandia.com

(This post was edited by RickS on Jun 15, 2015, 12:10 PM)


cbviajero

Jun 15, 2015, 10:58 AM

Post #23 of 32 (4724 views)

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Re: [YucaLandia] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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.
Offer helpful, useful, pertinent information.

Okay,here's my helpful information...Any foreigner who chooses to try to get over on the Mexican government by living here permanently with a temporarily imported vehicle on a tourist visa,like the OP, should expect some hassles and also be prepared to pay some mordidas.


(This post was edited by cbviajero on Jun 15, 2015, 11:18 AM)


playaboy

Jun 16, 2015, 4:48 PM

Post #24 of 32 (4606 views)

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Re: [Josh82] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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Josh, let us know how it works out?


Josh82

Jun 17, 2015, 2:03 PM

Post #25 of 32 (4519 views)

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Re: [playaboy] Help with Passport/Visa Problem From Re-Entering MX via Belize

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Abosolutely, I'll update when I'm finished. I won't be going back down until July 1st, which means my FMM will be two weeks expired - I'm hoping that doesn't make much of a difference aside from possibly paying extra "fees".
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