Do you have to pay a tourist fee in Mexico – 2024 Guide

The Mexican government collects the so-called tourist fee for foreigners to visit Mexico. It is called a “Tourist Card”. This money will be used to promote tourism in Mexico, in order to keep it one of the most important industries for Mexico. 

The fee for this card will be applied when the foreign tourist arrives in Mexico. This is done automatically by the airline or travel agency with which you book your trip to Mexico. You will receive a stamp on your passport, after landing you must go to an information counter at customs where they give you the Tourist Card. 

When To Pay The Mexican Tourism Fee?

If you enter the country with a plane ticket via an airport in Mexico, you must pay this fee before or after passing immigration control depending on whether your flight arrives or departs at the same airport where you are required to collect your card. If you are entering by land (Caribbean), bus, boat or any other means of transportation, this fee must be paid before leaving the port of entry.

What is included in The Tourist Card?

The first part of this card is a coupon that will give you access to public services such as medical attention and transport (buses). The second part contains personal information about each traveler (name, nationality, passport number). Why collect your tourist card at the airport? 

It has been decided that tourists are required to pay this fee before collecting their luggage so they can leave the country with 100% certainty that they have already paid it. This avoids possible misunderstandings with authorities if someone chooses not to pay this fee after arrival at the airport. 

Can I get the tourist card if I enter with a US passport?

Yes. In this case, you will automatically receive this card when checking in for your flight from the United States to Mexico. Even if you have been living in Mexico and renewing your residency or visa every 6 months, you must pay this fee. If not, Mexican immigration authorities can impose a fine of up to 10 times the amount of this tax ($2,200 USD). 

How do Mexicans avoid paying it?

As most Mexicans entering or leaving by land use small border crossings where they cannot pay this fee, some people cross through these portals without having paid it so they can avoid further fines when traveling by road.

Where does my money go?

Part of your money will go to public health services, which means hospitals, clinics, and laboratories. The remainder will be used to promote national tourism. 

You can get the tourist card at the following places: 

– At any port of entry into Mexico. 

– Through authorized travel agencies in all countries. 

– In tourism offices in Mexico and through Visitax

If you have a vacation rental, BnB, or hotel in Mexico, they usually provide this service for free as part of your stay.

How long is your visitor permit valid?

The Border Crossing Card allows you to swiftly and simply cross the border. It’s valid for a period of up to 180 days and may be used to visit Mexico as many times as desired during that time, but the number of days spent in Mexico does not add up. This implies that if you leave Mexico for ten days, return with your card, and stay there for another 90 days, when you try on your way out attempt to depart before the end of this second visit because it will expire on your card exactly three months (90 days) after it was issued. When traveling by air, airlines frequently provide a discount called “Tarjeta Turistica” (Tourist Card Discount). When booking your flight into or out of Mexico, make sure to inquire whether one is accessible.

You will receive a Tourist Card to enter Mexico, which is valid for 180 days. Your card should have an expiration date on the front of it. Once you have used up this period of time, any additional stays are considered “overstays” and could be subject to fines upon exiting the country. 

Keep your Visitor Permit safe!


Upon entering Mexico, avoid checking in your Tourist Card along with your luggage. You should give it to an airline or travel agent representative once you check-in for the flight back home so they can secure it for you. If you lose this card, even if it expires before the end of your visit, you will be considered an “overstayer” and could face fines when leaving the country.

Entry requirements for all international travelers

At a Mexican airport or land border crossing, you will need to show proof of legal entry into the United States (a visa, green card or another document). This is obviously not an issue if you arrive from the US. If you arrive from another country, check with the Mexican consulate in that country regarding specific entry requirements. It’s also recommended to always have copies of both your passport and tourist permit with you when entering Mexico as immigration officials may want to verify them against your actual documents (be prepared to wait while this happens!).


So you must pay the Mexican tourist fee if flying into Mexico but not if entering via land. This fee is separate from any fees for visas (if required). To avoid potential fines by immigration officials at airports who might not know about this rule, make sure you pay this tourism fee before checking in for your flight. You can do this at an airline check-in counter or at a bank location near the airport that deals with Banjercito transactions (and ATMs near those locations).