I live in Sonora, I often go to the USA but I forgot to renew my Mexican passport, It expired in March. I want to do a short trip to Las Vegas this weekend (may 1st - 4th), but would I have any problems If I try to cross the border by car or airplane with my expired Mexican passport? even the expiration date says "03 06 2015", in the US date format its like its still valid (valid until June 3), but I know the format is day / month / year so I can say "OMG I didn't know" while I'm there? My visa is perfectly valid, it expires in 2019.

I know it would be better not to take the risk, but I really want to go to Las Vegas :/

  • 7
    I imagine that the US guards on the Mexican border are well familiar with the date format on Mexican passports. If they use a machine to read the machine-readable data, they'll anyway get the correct expiration date, as the format there is internationally standardized as YYMMDD.
    – phoog
    Apr 29, 2015 at 20:33
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    "03 06 2015" would be March 6, 2015 in US date format (mm/dd/yyyy). That sort of deception would not be acceptable. Apr 29, 2015 at 20:35
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    Going to Vegas AND taking a chance on your expired passport not being noticed would seem to be too many high-risk low-payout activities for one trip. Apr 29, 2015 at 20:54
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    If it says "03 06 2015" and the format is day / month / year, then it expires in June.
    – user102008
    Apr 30, 2015 at 0:14
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    How can you even think about asking such a thing? Did you really need to ask? Don't mean to sound rude, but, you know, next time go to the Cooking SE and ask if it's safe to eat a food labeled as "poisonous, do not eat"?
    – o0'.
    Apr 30, 2015 at 13:22

5 Answers 5


You're relying on the desk agent (if flying), the border guard and the CBP (2-3 checks going there), and 2-3 checks coming back. Very unlikely, and a bad idea. If caught, ignorance is never accepted as a valid excuse, and you might get blacklisted in future.

Like Vegas, the risk outweighs the reward, not worth the gamble ;)


Yes you will have problems, you will not be allowed to enter with an expired passport.


There is a question dealing specifically with entry to the United States for foreign citizens on the CBP site.

For Mexican citizens:

A visa and passport are not required of a Mexican national who is in possession of a Form DSP-150, B-1/B-2 Visa and Border Crossing Card*, containing a machine-readable biometric identifier, issued by the Department of State and is applying for admission as a temporary visitor for business or pleasure from contiguous territory by land or sea. Mexican citizens using the Border Crossing Card may travel 55 miles into the U.S. - except in the Nogales/Tucson area, where travel to Tucson is authorized.

The Border Crossing Card (BCC) is acceptable as a stand-alone document (by itself) only for travel from Mexico by land, or by pleasure vessel or ferry. Together with a valid passport, though, it meets the documentary requirements for entry at all land, air, and sea ports of entry (to include travel from Canada). Note: You must be a Mexican citizen and a resident of Mexico to have a BCC.

Given that you're traveling more then 55 miles into the country you will need a passport and if your passport is machine readable you shouldn't have to worry about the Border Crossing office reading it. The machine readable format is universal. Plus Mexico is exempt by the US from 6 months past leave date validity requirement.

So if the date says 3/6/2015 and it actually means June 3rd, 2015 then you should be fine but I would renew it anyway.

  • so would a passport expiry that read 3/13/205 (month/day/year) crash the machine? Apr 29, 2015 at 22:01
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    @EdmundYeung99 The machine only sees the machine-readable part, which is "YYMMDD" on all passports from all countries that have machine-readable passports. Any other field would be manually entered; as a rule, systems would say "invalid date" instead of crashing with a bad input. Also, the standard US date format is MM/DD/YYYY.
    – cpast
    Apr 30, 2015 at 1:40
  • Funny that those machines only take 2 digits of the year... Apr 30, 2015 at 3:14
  • @EdmundYeung99 It's not like there's much chance of confusion with just 2 digits of a year.
    – cpast
    Apr 30, 2015 at 7:55
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    Right, the early part of the 22nd century will be great for vampires and other immortals, who will be the only people who still resemble the photos in their 90 year-old expired machine-readable passports that suddenly read as unexpired again ;-) Someone Else's Problem, I think, the ICAO might have to increment a version number in the machine-readable part, or otherwise change the format, to solve the century bug. Agreed it's a well-known and elementary "error" to a programmer, though. Apr 30, 2015 at 11:10

I'm not sure how old you look, but assuming you were able to get to Vegas, you may encounter another problem: getting into the casinos or getting a drink.

I've had a liquor serving license in two US states (Texas and Louisiana). Both trainings associated with licenses instructed me to ask for a valid passport for those that did not have a United States ID and not to accept local ID for other countries.


According to my interpretation of https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/detail/a_id/826/kw/expired%20mexican%20passport/session/L3RpbWUvMTQzMDQyMzg0MC9zaWQvTmMxOWFibG0%3D: Mexican passports will be accepted for 6 months after their expiration. You should be fine as long as you leave the US before September.

However, it is written in governmentese and it does not really matter what my interpretation is. Other commenters interpret it otherwise and there is a good chance that the border guards interpret it otherwise.

If it costs you little to go to the border, then I don't see the harm in trying it out and reporting back your results. If going to the border costs non trivial time/money/etc, I recommend you not chance it.

  • You have misunderstood what that rule means. It DOES NOT mean you can use an expired passport for 6 months. It means you don't need a clear 6 month leeway between your trip and the expiry date. See the bold text "need to have a passport valid for their intended period of stay"
    – JamesRyan
    Apr 30, 2015 at 20:18
  • @JamesRyan perhaps you are right, but I read "Countries that Extend Passport Validity For an Additional Six Months After Expiration" at the very bottom.
    – emory
    Apr 30, 2015 at 21:02
  • yes it is worded confusingly.
    – JamesRyan
    Apr 30, 2015 at 22:05

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