What do I need to know about traveling to and from Mexico?

See what the Mexican Consulate in Seattle recommends.

For many people, one of the most exciting benefits of getting the COVID-19 vaccine is being able to travel again. This is especially true for those who could not visit friends and family abroad in more than a year. It is also exciting for those who are dreaming of taking a well-deserved summer vacation.

If this is you, you might have questions about the rules for traveling abroad as the pandemic continues. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends making sure you understand and follow all airline and destination rules related to travel, mask wearing, testing, and quarantine. These may be different from U.S. guidelines. You should also check the CDC’s map of recommendations by destination for more guidance. In addition, your airline may require you to complete a form about COVID-19 symptoms when you check in.

With this in mind, we spoke with Diana Oliveros, Consul of Mexican Communities Abroad at the Mexican Consulate in Seattle. She shared the current rules and recommendations for traveling to and from Mexico, and how the Consulate can help.

Thanks for talking to us, Consul Diana. What does the Mexican Consulate recommend for those planning a trip to Mexico?

The first thing we recommend is to have all your travel documents up to date before planning a trip, especially your passport. It is also very important to avoid travel if you or a close relative has had any COVID-19 symptoms recently. If you travel, be ready to follow safety recommendations such as wearing a mask, washing your hands, and keeping your distance as much as possible. You should also follow the guidelines set by your airline, transportation services, and hotel. Finally, keep in mind that vaccination numbers in other countries are lower than in the United States. So being fully vaccinated before traveling will keep you and your family protected.

What are the requirements for travelers coming back to the U.S. from Mexico?

The CDC requires that everyone traveling by airplane to the United States has a negative COVID-19 test no more than three days before their flight. This applies to everyone, including fully vaccinated people and U.S. citizens. And as usual, travelers must have all their immigration documents up to date, such as their passport, visa, or residency card.

What happens if a person does not have a negative COVID-19 test? Can they get a fine, or could that affect their immigration status?

If a person does not show a negative COVID-19 test result, they will not be allowed on any plane coming to the United States. If that happens, they may need to pay to change flights or make other travel plans.

Some people might need to return to the United States by a certain date because of their immigration status. That means it is important to take steps to avoid any complications that could prevent you from being back on time.

What about Mexican citizens who want to visit family in the U.S.? Do they need to be vaccinated?

Right now, Mexican and U.S. authorities do not require travelers to be vaccinated. But the CDC highly recommends that people don’t travel internationally until they are fully vaccinated. Vaccination significantly reduces someone’s chances of getting sick with COVID-19 or spreading the virus during and after a trip.

What resources or programs does the Mexican Consulate offer to people in Washington state?

The Consulate offers a variety of services. This includes processing travel, identification, and double nationality documents; notarizing letters; and helping families of Mexican citizens who died while abroad. We also offer financial and health education, among many other services.

Where can people find official information from the Mexican Consulate in Washington?

The best place to find information is our Facebook page, where we publish notices, resources, and events for the Spanish-speaking and Mexican community. On our web page you can find all the details on how to request passports and access other services. We also have an online Travel Guide which can help you find out what you can and cannot do before, during, and after travel to other countries.

More information

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Check the state’s COVID-19 website for up-to-date and reliable info at coronavirus.wa.gov.

The COVID-19 vaccine is now available to everyone 12 and older. For more information about the vaccine, visit CovidVaccineWA.org and use the vaccine locator tool to find an appointment. The COVID-19 vaccine is provided at no cost to you.

WA Notify can alert you if you’ve been near another user who tested positive for COVID-19. Add WA Notify to your phone today: WANotify.org

Answers to your questions or concerns about COVID-19 in Washington state may be found at our website. You can also contact the Department of Health call center at 1–800–525–0127 and press # from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday, and 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday — Sunday and observed state holidays. Language assistance is available.

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