U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials in San Diego are anticipating an increase in applications by Mexican travelers for the required I-94 permit during holy week and the Easter holiday.
Mexican border crossing card (or “laser visa”) holders who plan to make an extended visit to the United States during the upcoming holiday season are urged to obtain the essential document early instead of waiting until the day of travel, CBP officials announced today.
“We urge travelers to obtain the required document as much as a week early to avoid congestion and potential delays, if they apply now they will obtain the essential document faster and more conveniently,” said Oscar Preciado, port director of the San Ysidro and Otay Mesa passenger border stations. “Travelers may obtain the permit 24 hours a day at both the San Ysidro and Otay Mesa ports.”
Permit seekers are reminded that at the San Ysidro facility they must leave their vehicles in Mexico and travel on-foot to the old port building on the pedestrian walkway just across the border. Because the building is located in front of the pedestrian entrance to the port, travelers will not need to make formal entry into the U.S. and can conveniently walk back to Mexico.
At the Otay Mesa border crossing, permit seekers must also travel on foot to obtain the I-94 at the pedestrian facility.
As the busiest land border port in the nation with 35,000 - 40,000 vehicles and 20,000 pedestrians daily entering the U.S. through its gates, the San Ysidro facility is one of the Southwest border stations most affected by heavy holiday I-94 processing.
All traveling family members need to be present during the I-94 application process. Those requesting the permits also must be able to establish financial solvency and proof of residency outside the U.S.