Passports are required for all air travel to and from Mexico. For travel by land or sea, adults should have a passport, passport card, enhanced driver’s license or a trusted traveler card like NEXUS, FAST or SENTRI. Children under the age of 16 may travel with only a birth certificate, as may children under the age of 19 who are traveling with an organized group like a school, church or sports group. However, keep in mind that Mexican regulations typically require US citizens to have a passport if they travel beyond the “border zone” into the interior of the country.

Instead of a passport, passengers on closed-loop cruises, which begin and end in the US,  may cruise with a state-issued photo ID and birth certificate or naturalization certificate.

Do I need a passport for Mexico?

Right now,  whether or not you need a passport to go to Mexico  depends on two factors: how you’re getting there and when you’re planning to go. Passports are already required for travel to Mexico if you are traveling by plane.  However, currently land and sea travelers can cross the border with a passport book or a passport card.

Some border crossings may permit travel with a state-issued ID (like a driver’s license) and proof of American citizenship (like a birth certificate). However, this is not recommended as you will have a harder time crossing back into the USA without your valid passport. The only groups of people who are able to cross the border using birth certificates will be children under 16 traveling with family and children under 18 if they are on an organized trip with a school, church or sport group. These exceptions only apply for children traveling by land or sea. Everyone flying to or from Mexico will still need a passport, regardless of age. As a safety precaution, it’s best  that all travelers to Mexico have a passport in case they need to fly home unexpectedly.

If you’re planning a trip to Mexico, it’s important to apply for a passport at least 8 weeks and preferably several months in advance.

If you need a passport to Mexico in a hurry, you should consider using a private passport expediting service to submit your passport application. With an expediting company, your application will be processed more quickly, bypassing the normal wait times. With RushMyPassport.com, you can have your passport processed quickly, safely, and securely!

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