We arrived in Mexico in February and two months in, coronavirus shut the world down. Like the rest of the world, Mexico (rightly) put the country on lockdown. We sat it out and sat it out and lo and behold our tourist visas were set to expire in early August. So we moved over to Veracruz because it houses both an immigration and customs office. We had little information going in, so we spent our first day finding out what forms we needed from immigration. The fun thing about immigration, though, is that it takes at least three hours of waiting in line before you get to see an officer and ask a question.
Day 1 equated to a 4 hour wait to find out what forms we needed, so that night we put it all together. Day 2 was standing in line for 6 hours to find out that I had filled the form out wrong and needed to come back. Day 3 finally saw all the documentation in line after a 4 hour wait. Everything was in order and we were ready to receive our visas. On Monday. So we had a weekend before we got them.
But the most important part is the documents. If you need to extend your tourist visa in Mexico due to coronavirus, here is what you need.
- Formato para solicitar trámite migratorio de estancia (click for a link)
- It is very important to list the reason as “Cambiar condicion de estancia” and then “Cambio de condicion a visitante por razones humanitrias”
- Copy of your passport
- Copy of your current tourist visa
- A letter requesting an extension. Here is an example (cut and paste and change the bolded text):
INSTITUTO NACIONAL DE MIGRACION
EL QUE SUSCRIBE, FULL NAME, DE NACIONALIDAD NATIONALITY, BAJO PROTESTA DE DECIR VERDAD SOLICITO LA REGULARIZACION POR RAZONES HUMANITARIAS, AL HABER SUFRIDO UNA AFECTACION DIRECTA COMO CONSECUENCIA DE LAS MEDIDAS INTERNACIONALES DERIVADO DE LA CONTINGENCIA SANITARIA DEL VIRUS DENOMINADO SARS-COV2 (COVID-19) QUE ME IMPIDE EL REGRESAR A MI PAIS DE ORIGEN.
LA IRREGULARIDAD EN QUE INCURRI FUE QUE MI DOCUMENTO FMM ESTA VENCIDO.
LOCATION, LOCATION, DATE
(example: VERACRUZ, VERACRUZ, A 5 DE AUGUSTO DE 2020)
The Day Of
Once all the documentation in is place, arrive at immigration at least an hour before they open. It’ll save you hours of waiting in line (but bring a book, it’ll still take time). Hand in everything, sign what they need you to sign, and they’ll tell you when you need to come back to pick up your new visas. We had a weekend to kill; hopefully you won’t have to wait that long.
Picking Up the Visas
The day your visas are ready, arrive around 3 or 4 in the afternoon because the visas will be ready at 5. Once you get them, congratulations! You’re now legal again!
Temporary Vehicle Import Permit (TIP)
If you are driving and need to extend your TIP, it’s worlds easier to do. Photocopy your new visa, your passport, your original TIP, TIP receipt, your vehicle registration, and your vehicle title. Head to an ADUANA office at 9 AM the next morning, let them know you want to extend your TIP. An employee will meet you after a short wait and present you with four copies of a form to fill out. Do so, they’ll give you a copy, and send the paperwork to Mexico City. The Mexico City office will send you an email with confirmation within 30 days.
With all that, you are good to go and safe to stay in Mexico for another 180 days!