Felons in the U.S are allowed to travel freely throughout the U.S, of course, that’s after completing their terms of probation and getting released from prison. But, they can’t visit all the other countries.
Read this article to find out about the restrictions on foreign travel and whether they can travel to Cancún or not.
After a felony conviction, traveling to another country outside the U.S is not always possible, even though there is no standard set of restrictions on felons who want to visit a different country.
But the problem lays in the country they wish to travel to, a lot of countries have different restrictions when it comes to having felons crossing their borders.
For example, any person with a criminal conviction of any type whether it is felony or misdemeanor can’t travel freely there. It is the Canadian laws, and anyone who attempts to break these rules will be sent back at the border.
See also: Can Felons Travel to Bermuda?
Of course, the laws are different in each country, Canada might be too strict, but some other countries have different rules.
Some countries allow felons to own a passport with certain exceptions.
People who are convicted of a drug felony and have crossed the U.S border while committing their crime are subjects to federal arrest, and those who got restricted from leaving the country have no right of obtaining a passport.
Also, felons with an outstanding warrant who are viewed as a danger to others or themselves, or those who are considered a flight risk cannot get a passport as well.
If a felon already has a passport but falls under these guidelines and breaks these laws will have their visa restricted or revoked and won’t be able to travel.
Felons who applied for a passport or have received a passport but have lied on the application can lose their passport.
Other than these restrictions, felons have the legal right to leave the U.S
Why Choose Cancún?
Cancun is considered the most affordable vacation destination in the Western Hemisphere, thousands of people travel there each year, it’s a small barrier island located in southeastern Mexico, well known for its beautiful beaches, clear warm water, and pleasant weather.
Of course, felons after getting released from prison will want to travel somewhere lovely with their families and enjoy their new lives. And Cancun can be an excellent choice for them.
Regulation to Enter Mexico
The current laws state that a passport is required to enter Mexico. Some felons might have been free before 2004, and they may have traveled to Mexico legally without a passport. But after the events of 9/11, a major change took place concerning the relationships between the U.S and other countries.
The U.S instituted the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, in order to strengthen border security and make entry to this country for U.S citizens and legitimate foreign visitors easier.
So, all the citizens of the U.S, Canada, Bermuda, and Mexico have to own a passport and present it or any other acceptable document that verifies their identity and nationality in order to leave or enter the U.S from within the Western Hemisphere.
All American citizens require a valid U.S passport if they want to travel to Mexico, and that is obligatory for obtaining the appropriate document upon returning to the U.S soil.
If you are flying back to the U.S, the U.S state department asks you to show your passport, and if you are driving to Mexico, you must have a valid passport to enter, even though documents may not be necessarily checked upon entry, but it’s best if you carry your passport with you.
It is essential, especially when you will come across some immigration checkpoints that are set up at intervals along your road to Mexico, and they inspect your vehicle and documents.
In these checkpoints, they will ask for your travel documents and will hand you out your entry permit.
Some people might travel to Mexico on a closed-loop cruise, it originates from and terminates in the same American port city, and technically a closed-loop cruised doesn’t require a passport.
But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take your passport with you, a cruise can stop in a foreign port for some reasons, and officials in that port have the legal right to ask the passengers for their passports, the stop might be a part of the itinerary or due to an emergency. And if felons don’t have their passports with them, they might face some legal issues.
Border officials in Mexico have no access to U.S criminal databases, so felons who possess a valid passport will have no troubles concerning their criminal records.
Felons with some missing documents might get detained, which will result in them missing their flights or face some return arrangements.
And this can cause some troubles for felons who have warnings or who are expected to face legal problems if they are held for such reasons.
So, entering Mexico is not the issue here, since if you follow the law you will face no problems, but So, entering Mexico is not the issue here, since if you follow the code you will suffer from no problems, but once detained, a criminal history can play a factor if the felon gets hold. And that might necessitate the interference of legal counsel.
Of course, you should stay out of trouble and respect the law if you are visiting Cancún or any other country, whether you’re a felon or not.
If a person already has a conviction record and gets in other legal problems could get easily required to leave the country, get their passport revoked, and might even face some other legal consequences when they get back to the U.S.
See Also: Can a Convicted Felon Go to Mexico?
Encouraging Felons to Travel to Cancun
Visiting Cancun can be very peaceful and relaxing for felons and their families, so if one member of your family just got out of prison and wanted to change their mood and visit Cancun, try to be supportive.
Also, help them out with maintaining a peaceful trip and getting out of trouble. They need your support to stay out of trouble and have a new clean life.
Also, remind them that traveling to a foreign country as an American will bring them under more scrutiny.
Make sure to tell them that they have to commit to this new life and avoid any legal difficulties while in Cancun or any other place and that breaking the law might even get them back to prison.
Read also: Can Felons Travel To Australia?
Robert Gomez was born and raised in the Bronx, New York. He currently lives in Northern California with “the wifey,” “the kids,” “the dog,” and “that cat,” 🙁 He is also a former journalist who has interviewed murderers on death row. Felonyfriendlyjobs.org was born to help ex-felons get a second chance in life.