I am an Australian passport holder. I intend to travel to the United States under the VWP (ESTA approved) for the 90 day period.

After 83 days in the US, I will depart for Mexico where I will be travelling on a tour through Mexico, Guatemala and Belize. My entire trip including Central America will exceed 90 days. The 90 days will expire once I am in Mexico.

I do not intend to re-enter the US after Central America; however, I will need to transit through Los Angeles airport for my return flight back to Melbourne, Australia.

Am I going to encounter any problems? I am travelling with a US passport holder.

  • You will be fine.
    – phoog
    Mar 27 '17 at 1:46
  • @phoog I am concerned as although I leave USA after 86 days, i go straight to Mexico for another 9 days before entering Guatemala. Do you think this will not be an issue?
    – Caseypete
    Mar 27 '17 at 7:13
  • 1
    No, it won't, because your stay in the US is shorter than 90 days.
    – phoog
    Mar 27 '17 at 7:18
  • @phoog US Government websites state that the VWP is valid for 90 day stays, which includes Mexico/Canada and other islands in the Caribbean. This is when it is unclear to me
    – Caseypete
    Mar 27 '17 at 7:20
  • Which US government web site says that?
    – phoog
    Mar 27 '17 at 7:21

As you visit Guatemala and Belize there is absolutely no problem, this is a separate visit.

Note even if it were Mexico only you might get away with it. Yes, the rules say it is not but the border guard has wide discretion and what they do not want is a visa run.

  • Thanks. As I'm doing a guided tour, I think we enter Guatemala on Day 8 which means this is more than 90 days in USA/Mexico, will that be a problem?
    – Caseypete
    Mar 27 '17 at 2:06
  • @Caseypete The restriction is on returning to the US within those 90 days. Since you're not planning to, the US does not care when you exit Mexico and enter Guatemala. Mar 27 '17 at 2:09
  • That is helpful, thank you. I thought the same thing, however keep seeing conflicting information online. I am worried that I will be denied boarding in Aus, as my return flight from LAX back to Melbourne is well over the 90 days (even though I travel into Guatemala etc.) I am also worried about transiting back through LA. I hope that it will not be an issue
    – Caseypete
    Mar 27 '17 at 2:33
  • @Caseypete As long as you have evidence (tickets etc) showing that you will exit the US/Mexico within 90 days, you'll be fine. Mar 27 '17 at 6:02
  • @jpatokal this is my issue. I exit Mexico after the 90 day period. I exit USA after 86 days, then join a tour and i believe it is day 7 or 8 that the tour exits Mexico and enters Guatemala
    – Caseypete
    Mar 27 '17 at 6:06

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