I am a Turkish citizen holding a ten year US tourist visa. I spent six months (the legal time alloted to me) in the US with a B-1/B-2 visa, and am now in Mexico. I have heard that traveing to Mexico does not count as leaving the US and that if I try to reenter the US after six months I will not be allowed reentry. Is this true? Does anyone have experience with this?

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    @pnuts The formal rules apply only to the VWP. – phoog Feb 21 '17 at 4:55
  • thanks @phoog and I wasn't sure if the VWP and the B1/B2 visas had the same rules. I plan to stay in Mexico for 4 more months (it has been two already). Six months after I left the US is the earliest I can come back in, correct? – Rachael Feb 21 '17 at 5:28
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    @pnuts I plan to stay in Mexico for 6 months, but want to know if I need to go further south to be able to return to the US in six months – Rachael Feb 21 '17 at 5:29
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    @Rachael there's no strict rule about how long you need to stay away before you can reenter. It's more subjective. If the immigration officer suspects you're abusing your B-2 status then you'll have problems. Whether you go farther south or not will have no bearing on this except possibly indirectly. – phoog Feb 21 '17 at 12:49

Going to Mexico does count as leaving the US. There is some concern about using Mexico for visa runs (short trips for the purpose of renewing your period of admission), and there are statutory rules in place to prevent the "resetting" of the period of admission by traveling to Mexico or other "adjacent territories," but these concern the visa waiver program travelers, not visa holders. If you return to the US after six months in Mexico, visa runs will not be a concern.


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