I read some contradictory statements regarding the need of obtaining a Mexico’s Visitor Visa (FMM) when entering Mexico by land (either by foot or by car) just for a few days:

https://www.mexperience.com/your-mexican-tourist-permit-fmm/ (mirror)

Fee for Mexico’s Visitor Visa (FMM): If you arrive by land and leave Mexico within 7 days of your arrival date, there is no fee for the permit. If you fly into Mexico from overseas, the fee is usually included within your air ticket’s “fees and surcharges.” The fee is approximately US$25.


All visitors entering by land and traveling farther than 20 kilometres (12 miles) into Mexico or staying longer than 72 hours should obtain a document Forma Migratoria Multiple to present at checkpoints within the country.[2] In 2016 Mexico has introduced the electronic version of the form (Forma Migratoria Múltiple Electrónica, or FMME) which can be obtained online at a price of 390 Mexican pesos.[3]

https://www.inm.gob.mx/fmme/publico/en/solicitud.html (mirror) doesn't say anything.

Does a French citizen and a US lawful permanent resident need a Mexico’s Visitor Visa (a.k.a. FMM = Forma Migratoria Múltiple) when entering Mexico by land from the United States (either by foot or by car) just for a few days, and if so, can it be obtained at the border and how much it cost?

  • A few days = between 1 to 14 days.
  • I am interested in both the case where on travels farther than 20 kilometres (12 miles) into Mexico, and the case where one doesn't go beyond 20 kilometres (12 miles).

Related question: What is the penalty for entering Mexico via the land border without obtaining an FMM?

  • Are you walking across the border? Sep 28, 2020 at 20:56
  • @MichaelHampton walking or driving, TBD Sep 28, 2020 at 20:57
  • 1
    The "traveling farther than 20 kilometeres..." is a new one for me. AFAIK all visitors (that don't have a visa) are supposed to get an FMM, just if it's for less than 7 days it doesn't cost. A bit of advice - if you think you might come back, it's about $28 whether for 8 days or 180 days (the limit) and you can request 180 days when you get it. The FMM is reusable for multiple entries when entering by land into Baja. Other places I believe are single-entry.
    – Midavalo
    Sep 28, 2020 at 22:05
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    Also my understanding is the online FMM a) costs more than this now and b) still has to be stamped when you cross the border, in the same office you'd go to to get the FMM if you hadn't done it online. Note I have never had an FMM (as I entered with residency), but we have helped many people get FMMs when we've brought them over the border. None of them had the online FMM
    – Midavalo
    Sep 28, 2020 at 22:08
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    See also bajabound.com/before/permits/visa.php - I would trust this Baja Bound site and the Mexperience site you link in your question over what it says on Wikipedia, and neither seem to mention the 20km
    – Midavalo
    Sep 28, 2020 at 22:10

1 Answer 1


Yes, a French citizen with green-card requires an FMM tourist permit to visit Mexico. For visits of less than 7 days the permit is free, otherwise for up to 180 days costs $575 MXN (approx $25-30 USD). The FMM is not a visa, and is required for all non-Mexicans (including US citizens and residents) - I am unsure whether citizens of countries where a visa is required still need to get an FMM (although I don't believe they do) but this doesn't apply to your situation.

FMM is valid for up to 180 days, and can be used for multiple entries (at least into Baja), so if you're going to pay for it you may as well ask for the full 6 months since it costs the same.

Regarding the 20km no FMM required info from Wikipedia, this is no longer valid according to the Discover Baja website

As of September 2015, the “free zone” for FMMs (trips within the 20 kilometer border zone for less than 72 hours) is no longer valid and everyone entering Mexico will need to obtain an FMM

You can obtain the FMM online via the same INM link in your question, or you can get it at the border. If you are driving you will need to stop as you cross the border to enter the office, if you are walking they will direct you (to the same office I believe). Note that if you pay for the FMM online you will still need to stop at the INM office at the border to get it stamped. (Google Maps Link)

I would tend to trust the visitor guide websites over Wikipedia in this case, these are updated regularly, and the people that operate them are usually also involved in personally helping people get the correct visas, permits, etc., as a service so their websites are usually reasonably accurate. See Discover Baja, Mexperience (as per your question), and Baja Bound.

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