Special Requirements for Visit to Mexico or Canada
Before you leave the U.S. always check that you have a valid passport. Call the consulate/embassy of the country you wish to visit to find out if they require you to have an entry visa to visit.
Traveling to Mexico
For entry to Mexico border areas (within 200 miles of the U.S. border), an entry visa to Mexico is usually not required. Depending on your country of citizenship, you may be required to obtain an entry visa to visit other parts of Mexico. Please contact the Mexican Consulate in Los Angeles before traveling to inquire about the requirements for citizens of your country.
CONSULMEX Los Angeles
2401 West 6th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90057
(213) 351-6800 ext 2518
Mexican Consulate in Santa Ana, the United States
828 N. Broadway Street
(+1) (714) 835-3069
Traveling to Canada
Citizens from some countries may be required to obtain an entry visa to Canada . For more information, contact the Consulate General of Canada in Los Angeles.
Consulate General of Canada Los Angeles
550 South Hope Street, 9th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90071
Phone: (213) 346-2700
Fax: (213) 346-2767
Risk of Applying for F or J Visa in Mexico or Canada
Applying for F/J visa while in Mexico or Canada may be very risky because if your visa is not approved, you cannot re-enter the United States. You may be required to apply for a visa in your home country.
- If your F/J visa has expired and you do not apply for a visa during your short visit to Mexico or Canada, you can use your valid I-94 card and expired visa to return to the U.S. DO not submit your I-94 card when you are leaving the U.S.
- If you are renewing an expired F/J visa while in Mexico or Canada, you must wait for the result of your visa application before returning to the U.S. You cannot use your unsurrendered I-94 card to return to the U.S.
- International students who are citizens of the following countries and have an expired F/J visa must apply for a visa to return to the U.S: Iraq, Iran, Syria, Libya, Sudan, North Korea, and Cuba. Students from these countries may need to apply for the F/J visa in their respective home countries. Also, these students cannot use their unsurrendered I-94 card to return to the U.S.
- If you fell out of status before you travel to Mexico or Canada, you may not renew your visa there. You must apply for a new visa in your home country. You should speak with an IEE Advisor before you travel.
Revised — August 2011