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Navigating the Mexican Temporary Visa Process:
A Journey from Seattle to Guadalajara


Embarking on a new chapter of life in a different country often involves navigating through bureaucratic processes and paperwork. This was precisely the case for my husband, who sought to acquire a Mexican temporary visa. Our adventure took us from the Seattle, Washington Mexican Consulate office to the sunny shores of Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco only to be redirected to the vibrant city of Guadalajara, Jalisco. Join us as we recount the challenges, surprises, and ultimate success of obtaining his visa.

Seattle: The Starting Point

Our journey began at the Mexican Consulate office in Seattle, where we familiarized ourselves with the visa application requirements. Armed with the necessary documents, including a passport, proof of income, and proof of retirement, we eagerly submitted the application. The consulate staff were helpful and guided us through the initial steps, outlining the process and providing valuable insights.

Puerto Vallarta: An Unexpected Twist

With high hopes, we arrived in Puerto Vallarta, a coastal paradise that captured our hearts with its sandy beaches and vibrant culture. Our plan was to finalize the visa process at the local immigration office. However, we soon discovered that the immigration office in Puerto Vallarta would not process his temporary visa, leaving us in a state of uncertainty. During our stay in Puerto Vallarta, we encountered an INM agent who advised us to apply for the visa in Guadalajara instead. This suggestion came as a surprise since we had used our address in Guadalajara for the application. It was a moment of confusion and uncertainty, as we had assumed that an Airbnb address in Puerto Vallarta would be sufficient for our one-month stay. As the situation unfolded, doubts started creeping in. We began to question whether our visa application was indeed in line with the requirements. The mounting pressure and fear of potential failure made me feel overwhelmed. It was a distressing moment, as the thought of having to return to the US and restart the entire process loomed over us.


A Detour to Guadalajara

Adapting to unexpected changes, we quickly researched alternative options and learned that the city of Guadalajara, Jalisco housed an immigration office equipped to handle our visa application quickly. Packed with excitement and armed with determination, we embarked on a journey to Guadalajara, Mexico's second-largest city renowned for its rich history and energetic atmosphere. With my husband's temporary stay set to expire in just five days, we made a quick decision. Realizing the urgency, we left our AirBnB in Puerto Vallarta and boarded a bus bound for Guadalajara. The clock was ticking, and we needed to reach our intended destination before the deadline. Despite the sudden change of plans, we were determined to navigate the journey swiftly, ensuring that my husband's stay in Mexico remained compliant with the immigration requirements. In retrospect, our initial plan was to soak up the sun on the coastal beaches before venturing inland to Guadalajara. However, it turned out that for INM (National Institute of Migration) purposes, it would have been more convenient to reverse our itinerary. The INM typically advises applicants to apply for the Mexican visa based on their intended place of residence. The use of an Airbnb address may not be accepted by the INM for visa purposes. Instead, it is generally necessary to provide a specific residential address where you intend to live during your stay in Mexico. This ensures that the visa is issued with accurate information and reflects your intended place of residence.Since our ultimate destination was Guadalajara, it would have been wiser to have applied for the visa with our Guadalajara address first before enjoying the coastal beaches. This way, our visa would have aligned perfectly with our planned journey and our desired place of residence in Mexico, as per the INM's guidelines. Lesson learned for future travel arrangements!

Guadalajara: The Road to Success

Arriving in Guadalajara, we were greeted by a bustling cityscape that resonated with both traditional and contemporary vibes. Our first stop was the local immigration office, where we were pleasantly surprised by the efficiency and professionalism of the staff. They guided us through the necessary paperwork, meticulously reviewed our documents, and provided clarity on any questions we had.

While in Guadalajara, we found solace in the city's warm hospitality and indulged in its culinary delights, exploring the charming streets of the historic center and admiring the iconic landmarks. The experience provided a welcome distraction from the bureaucratic process and allowed us to immerse ourselves in the vibrant Mexican culture.

Finalizing the Visa: A Triumph

After a couple visits to the immigration office and ensuring we met all the requirements, the day finally arrived when my husband's Mexican temporary visa was granted. It was a moment of relief and joy, as we knew this opened the doors to new opportunities and adventures in Mexico. We celebrated our achievement by savoring traditional Mexican cuisine and toasting to the successful completion of our visa journey.


Acquiring a Mexican temporary visa is a process that requires patience, adaptability, and a willingness to overcome unexpected obstacles. Our experience, starting from the Seattle, Mexican Consulate office and ultimately finalizing it in Guadalajara, taught us the importance of thorough research and flexibility when dealing with bureaucratic procedures in a foreign country. Throughout this journey, we discovered the warmth and resilience of the Mexican people, experienced the diverse beauty of Puerto Vallarta, and fell in love with the vibrant energy of Guadalajara. While the detour may have altered our plans, it also exposed us to new destinations and enriched our understanding of Mexico's cultural tapestry.

To anyone embarking on a similar visa journey, we offer this advice: stay resilient, remain open to unexpected changes, and immerse yourself in the local culture. While the path may not always be straightforward, the reward of a successful visa acquisition and the memories gained along the way make it all worthwhile. 

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