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Guatemala Entry Requirements

U.S. citizens of any age must have a valid passport to enter and depart from Guatemala. Passports must have at least 6 months validity or risk getting turned away by the airline or by immigration. Dual nationals may be able to enter Guatemala on a 2nd nationality passport, but will not be permitted to board a return flight to the U.S. without a U.S. passport.

Alternate proof of identification or citizenship, such as certificates of Naturalization, birth certificates, driver's licenses, and passport photocopies are not accepted by Guatemalan immigration authorities. U.S. citizens are required to carry their passport or a photocopy at all times while they remain in Guatemala.

U.S. citizens may remain in Guatemala for up to 90 days without a visa, and may apply for an additional 90 days to Guatemala immigration, or a duplicate of whatever length of stay was initially granted. Minors may visit Guatemala without special parental permission as long as they have a valid passport.

If you have your passport stolen or lost in Guatemala, you must visit the U.S. Embassy to obtain a replacement passport. You must then present the new passport and a police report of the loss or theft to the Direccion de Migracion (Guatemalan immigration agency), Sub-director de Control Migratorio (Sub-director for Migratory Control), to get permission to leave Guatemala.

The agency is located in Guatemala City at 6a Avenida 3-11, Zone 4, Guatemala City. Office hours are weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; telephone 2411-2411. Guatemalan immigration does not charge for this service.

Guatemala is a part of the Central America-4 (CA-4) Border Control Agreement along with El Salvador, Honduras, and Nicaragua. This agreement allows both citizens of the countries and eligible foreign visitors to travel across land borders without additional visas or tourist entry permits, and without entry/exit formalities at immigration checkpoints.

U.S. citizens are eligible for this agreement. A maximum of 90 days will be awarded to visitors upon arrival, and foreign visitors who wish to stay longer need to apply for a one-time extension of stay or leave the area. Local immigration authorities may grant stay extensions, and visitors who leave the CA-4 countries can apply for readmission to the region.

If you are expelled from any country in the agreement you will not be permitted to enter any of the other three countries. Isolated incidents of confusion over the CA-4 details have led to delays, fines, and detention for a few travelers.

For further information regarding entry, exit and customs requirements, travelers should contact the Guatemalan Embassy at 2220 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20008; telephone (202) 745-4952, extension 102; fax (202) 745-1908; or contact the nearest Guatemalan consulate (Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, or San Francisco).

About the Author: For over 20 years, the U.S. Passport Service Guide team has helped hundreds of thousands of travelers with their travel document questions and shared advice about how to make traveling abroad simpler, safer, and more enjoyable.

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