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Press Releases 09

Land and Sea Phase of WHTI Takes Effect June 1   

Mexico City, May 19, 2009 – The U.S. Embassy would like to remind the public that the land and sea portion of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI) will enter in effect on June 1, 2009. WHTI requires all travelers to present a passport or other approved secure document denoting citizenship and identity for all land and sea travel into the United States. WHTI applies to all who were previously exempt, including citizens of the U.S., Canada and Bermuda.   

The U.S. Embassy strongly urges all U.S. citizens currently in Mexico who do not have a passport or WHTI-compliant documents such as a passport card or a Trusted Traveler Card (NEXUS, SENTRI and FAST) or Enhanced Driver’s License (EDL) to apply for a passport in the near future as they will need one to enter or re-enter the United States after June 1.  

Standardized, secure and reliable documentation will enable Customs and Border Protection officers to quickly and accurately identify travelers at land and sea ports of entry, resulting in a more secure and efficient border. WHTI went into effect for air travel in 2007.  

Document requirements for Mexican citizens are not impacted by WHTI. All Mexican nationals, including children, are currently required to present a passport with a nonimmigrant visa or a laser visa Border Crossing Card to cross the U.S. border. This requirement applies to SENTRI program members as well. 

For more information on WHTI and the types of documents for land, air and sea travel, please visit  For general information on WHTI or other travel-related programs, please visit  

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