After the patient has decided to undergo Weight Loss Surgery in Mexico, they must think about the actual travel itself. Traveling to Mexico will require more than their ID or birth certificate. The US Department of State recently amended passport requirements for US citizens traveling to and from Mexico. Patients and all travelers should be prepared to present a current and valid United States passport book when flying internationally. As such if the patient does not have a passport or if their passport is expired, they will have to apply for a new passport or to order an expedited passport application /renewal in order to receive their passport prior to their departure to Mexico. Every person, regardless of age flying into Mexico, must have their own passport.
There are two types of passports in the United States. There are a passport book and a passport card. But what is the difference between a passport book and a passport card? The United States passport card is an official national identity and limited travel document issued by the United States and it is the size of a typical credit card. It may be used as an identity card for purposes other than international travel except for those traveling on a cruise ship, as well as those flying domestic air travels. A passport card cannot be used for flying internationally, it can only be used for entry by land or sea at US borders for travels to and from Mexico, Canada, Bermuda, and the Caribbean. A passport book on the other hand is a small booklet-sized federal document that allows the holder to travel internationally and represent that they are from the United States of America. The passport book can hold foreign visas and most countries will stamp an entry and exit seal upon entering and leaving foreign countries. The Passport Book is required for air travel into Mexico as well as anywhere else in the world.
What do you need to do to get a United States Passport quickly?
- To get a routine passport under normal circumstances it takes about 6-12 weeks for it to arrive. An expedited passport may take anywhere from 3 to 6 weeks for it to arrive. This is when you go to your local post office and or passport agency application center and the processing is done by mail from your local acceptance facilities.
- For Life and Death Emergencies a passport may be issued by a regional passport agency whereby you make an appointment, arrive and they will immediately issue you a passport.
- If you have pending international travel you may request and pay for an expedited service where you may make an appointment typically within no more than 3 days prior to scheduled travel at the Regional Passport Agency, here they then will provide you with an expedited passport book however you must provide proof of travel and you may schedule these appointments no more than 2-3 weeks prior to your scheduled departure. (during times of Covid this is easier said than done as there are limited appointment spaces to receive these passengers so it is best to plan ahead and expedite your passport if possible through the mail).
What documents do you need to apply for a United States Passport?
If this is your first time applying you will need to do the following:
You must apply in person at an acceptance facility using the Form DS-11
To apply in person you must use Form DS-11 if at least one of the following applies to you:
- You are applying for your first U.S. passport
- You are under age 16
- Your previous U.S. passport was issued when you were under age 16
- Your previous U.S. passport was lost, stolen, or damaged
- Your previous U.S. passport was issued more than 15 years ago
Note that if none of the above statements apply to you, you may be eligible to Renew by mail using the Form DS-82.
If you are renewing an expired or a passport that is going to expire soon you will do the following:
If you already have a passport book or passport card, you can renew by mail using Form DS-82. Your current passport book or card must be:
- Submitted with your DS-82 application
- Undamaged (other than normal "wear and tear")
- Issued when you were age 16 or older
- Issued within the last 15 years
- Issued in your current name (or you can document your name change with an original or certified copy of your marriage certificate, divorce decree, or court order)
Documents that are required to prove that you are a US Citizen
- An undamaged fully valid US passport
- A US Birth Certificate that meets the following requirements:
- Issued by the city, county, or state of birth
- Lists your full name, date of birth, and place of birth
- Lists your parent(s)' full names
- Has the date filed with registrar's office (must be within one year of birth)
- Has the registrar's signature
- Has the seal of the issuing authority
- A consular Report of Birth Abroad
- Certificate of Citizenship
- Certificate of Naturalization
Note you always need to bring the original and a copy of the proof of US citizenship with you.
You also need to bring a valid ID as well such as a driver’s license or state-issued identification document as well as a photocopy of the ID.
You must also bring at least one passport photo with you so that this may be used for your new passport. You will need to request a passport photo at your local photo center and may bring this or submit this with your passport application.
You will also have to pay the passport fee, plus if you are expediting the passport you will pay a small expedite fee. Currently, the passport book fee is $145us and the expedited fee is $60us.
It is essential for patients to learn about the different travel options and travel needs when scheduling their weight loss surgery in Mexico. It is completely safe to travel to Mexico to have a weight loss surgery especially if you are considering having weight loss surgery in Puerto Vallarta. Weight Loss Team, the bariatric center at the CMQ Riviera Nayarit hospital is one of Mexico’s leading bariatric surgery centers operating at one of Mexico’s only world-class hospitals. By having surgery with Weight Loss Team you will not only be provided with world-class care but in a safe tropical vacation destination where you can recover on the beach and in a safe non-border town environment.
For more information regarding Clinics/ Hospitals and Weight Loss Options mentioned in this article:
Weight Loss Team – Bariatric Surgery Center at the CMQ Riviera Nayarit Hospital
Telephone: Toll free 1(800) 404-9064 or + 1(818) 949-6911