What is the FMM Immigration Form (Mexico FMM Form)?


What is the FMM Immigration Form?

This form is issued to visitors who

·         Are nationals of FMM eligible countries

·         Wish to stay in Mexico for business or pleasure for a short time

If you would like to know more about FMM, how it is processed at the immigration office, and what it is used for, keep reading this article to know more.

What Is The FMM Immigration Form (Forma Migratoria Multiple)?

Forma Migratoria Multiple or the Multiple Migration Form is a travel document issued by the Mexican government to foreign citizens of other countries who wish to visit the country for a short stay. This document is called a tourist visa even though it is not the same as a standard Mexico visa.

But the name has stuck to it because many of the applicants are tourists who visit Mexico all year round. FMM Mexico tourist card online is issued to foreign citizens from No Visa countries, and it takes only a few minutes to apply for it.

But how it is used depends on the purpose, as you will see below

FMM For Visitors/Tourists

This document has to be handed to the officers at the immigration office at the port of entry by the visitor before he or she can enter Mexico. But they have to be nationals of countries that qualify for the FMM scheme. The form can be obtained from different places, one of which is the official website of the immigration service.

The FMM website is available in English, Spanish, Korean, Japanese and Mandarin. So visitors from a large number of countries can apply for it from their home countries before they board a plane for Mexico expect for those who need to apply for a Mexico visa.

Other Places To Get The FMM Form

Besides the official website of the Mexican immigration service, you can also get the form from the following places.

Airlines

Airlines that fly passengers in and out of Mexico charge passengers for the form. So if you are flying in from your country and you buy a ticket for the trip, the airline company will charge you for it.

When you board the plane, the form will be given to you to fill, after which you will present it to the immigration officers when you arrive at the airport without a Mexico visa.

Land Border

If you wish to enter Mexico by land, FMM will be issued to you at the entry point by the Mexican immigration authorities on duty.

But what happens when you are done filling out the multiple immigration form?

The officers will collect the form from you, stamp it with the official stamp of the Mexican immigration authorities to validate it, and the form will be split into two, with half of it given to you while the officer will retain the other half.

On the day you depart Mexico after your stay, the piece with you will be requested by the immigration officer at the immigration office, which you must tender to be allowed to leave. Failure to provide this slip will attract fines because it will be assumed that you did not get approval to enter Mexico in the first place.

Note: On the day you depart Mexico after your stay, the piece with you will be requested by the immigration officer at the immigration office, which you must tender to be allowed to leave. Failure to provide this slip will attract fines because it will be assumed that you did not get approval to enter Mexico in the first place.

Some other important things to note as a visitor who wishes to enter Mexico as a temporary resident is that the form is only valid for 180 days, so you need to leave the country before or on the expiration date. Remaining behind after the date elapses will be viewed as a violation and will attract fines. Fines will also be levied on you if you lose your copy and fail to turn it on at the exit point.

In worst cases, visitors who fail to pay the fines will not be allowed back in after they leave Mexico. Unless they pay the full sum of the fines levied on them.

FMM For Residency Applications

There are also the FMM applications for residency. This type is for those who have applied for the document directly from the Mexican consulate in their home countries. This option grants the applicant access into Mexico to finish the procedure 30 days after they arrive.

The FMM residency procedure is called “Canje” in Spanish, and it basically refers to the switch of a visa to a residency card. For the avoidance of any confusion, Canje is meant for visitors who already have a visa issued by the Mexican consulate in their countries. So what it basically does is to exchange the visa for a resident card.

What Makes Canje Application Different?

If you already have a visa before you enter Mexico, you still have to fill out the FMM form; if you are from an eligible country and you plan to stay for a short while, the difference is that you are not entering as a visitor or tourist so your application will be slightly different.

There are two boxes in the form, one of which is “Canje”; this is the form you must tick. However, if you doubt, don’t bother about it, so you don’t make a mistake. Just ask any of the officers on duty for directions to help you out.

There are two boxes in the form, one of which is “Canje”; this is the form you must tick. However, if you doubt, don’t bother about it, so you don’t make a mistake. Just ask any of the officers on duty for directions to help you out.

If you make the mistake of ticking the “Tourist” box instead of “Canje”, the action will invalidate your existing visa. This means you are a tourist to Mexico and will have to restart your visa application all over again at a future time.

Same as the Visitor and Tourist FMM, once the immigration officer stamps and approve the document, it will be shredded into two, and one piece will be given to you. This piece has to be kept safe and presented at the local immigration office close to where you stay, along with the temporary visa you were issued.

They will also request other Canje documents like your valid passport to process the application. Once the process is complete, you will receive a resident card in exchange for the FMM and visa you hold, and the visa will be deactivated.

Who Can Apply For FMM?

FMM is not open to all visitors coming to Mexico; it is only for nationals from No Visa countries, and there are more than 60 countries on this list. People from these countries do not need to hold a Visa to enter Mexico, as the form grants them visa exempt status.

However, the form is only valid for 180 days, so make sure you wrap up all you came into the country for so you can leave before the deadline.

Many people believe that if they reside within the free zone close to the border for 72 hours only or enter Mexico for 72 hours only, they don’t need FMM, but this is false.

Even if you only plan to stay in any of these territories for only 24 hours, you still need to hold FMM. The only difference is that you don’t have to pay for it. Visitors who are non-Mexican citizens can enter the country for 7 days or less on a free FMM, but they still have to hold one nonetheless.

The entry point is where the document is processed. If you enter through the Northern or Southern borders, it will be processed at the checkpoint by the immigration service. If you enter Mexico through any of its international airports, the processing will be done at the airport arrival terminal.

Common FMM Applicants

Tourists

The majority of people who visit Mexico on an FMM document are tourists who visit to enjoy the sights and sounds of the country. Mexico is blessed with amazing beaches, historical sites and lovely islands, with Cancun being a very popular spot for tourists coming from the north (the US and Canada).

Every year, millions of people visit Mexico for a short stay, and most of them from FMM eligible countries do so with Forma Migratoria Multiple.

Students & Researchers

To the surprise of many, Mexico has a lot of international students and researchers who study at many of the countries teeming academic institutions. Some of them arriving to study a short term course apply for FMM if they are eligible for it. Those who are coming for a course that will outlast the 6 months period do so on a Mexican visa instead.

The same is the case with researchers who visit to study the archaeological and geographical sites all over the country. This category of visitors only stays back for a short time, so they apply for FMM.

Events

The weather in Mexico is great for most part of the year, which makes it a suitable location for local and international events like festivals, carnivals, and sporting and economic events, just to mention a few.

These events only last for a day or less than a week, after which the visitors leave. If you are from a No Visa country, you can arrive in Mexico and have your FMM approved on the same day.

Volunteers

Volunteers of international agencies also visit Mexico using FMM. In fact, officials of these bodies are given preferential treatment similar to what embassy officials of foreign nations enjoy in Mexico as with everywhere else.

 

FMM Immigration Form Cost

The standard Mexico tourist card fee is $30. This fee can be paid using your credit or debit card or cash. If you apply for it online, you will need to make card payments. However, if you apply for it at the entry point, you may pay for it in cash or with your card.

For flights into Mexico, you don’t have to pay the Mexico tourist card fee separately as the airline will charge you for it and remit the money to the Mexican government.

Overstaying Attracts Sanctions

To conclude this article, we want to sound a note of caution!

The government is very strict when it comes to immigration, so there are some things to bear in mind.

Never Overstay Your Welcome

When you enter Mexico on an FMM clearance, you are only expected to stay for 180 days and not a day more. If you overstay, you have broken the law and will be penalized.

Penalties vary depending on the gravity of the offense.

You may be asked to pay a fine for every day you overstay and will not be allowed out of the country without paying the fine.

There are also reports that some visitors who were lucky to leave the country are never allowed back. To be on the safe side, set a reminder every few days, so you plan your itinerary and finish up all you can for so you can leave before the deadline.

Obey The Law

The responsibility lies with you to obey the law of your host country for as long as you remain within its borders. Avoid doing anything criminal and stay at the residential address provided. Ask to know if you need to contact the Mexican immigration authority if you decide to change your address.

Abide by the laws, so you don’t run into trouble with the local authorities and face jail time.

Conclusion

FMM immigration form is a travel document for citizens of No Visa countries. If you are eligible kindly apply for the Mexico tourist card online using the details in your valid passport or when you arrive at the point of entry.