Tourist visa Loop, fine, exemption... for Tourist-Resident

Very often when coming to Guatemala to visit you end up staying longer than expected or you simply
move in and slowly forget about your migratory status...

Any serious expat candidate should consider before considering moving abroad is  to know the migration requirements of the country soon to be his home..
When you decide to stay longer in a country , when you stop to be a tourist and become a have by law to change your migratory status...

Some countries are very regulated and enforce their laws (mostly USA and European countries but also Brazil) other are more relax...Of course migration toward the first world  to an underdeveloped country is better seen than the contrary... As the first world candidate to relocation (relocation not immigration) will surely brings money, employes locals, eventually build.. He is seen as source of opportunities.

So let's talk about Guatemala our main subject...

When people come here they get automatically a 90 days tourist visa.. which can be extended once..
after your second extension you have to technically leave the country . And there is this urban legend that you have to go for 3 days before re-entering to Guatemala. Some people goes to the Mexican and renter the next day without problem and start again another round of 2 times 90 days.
When you renew after your first 90 days you don't have to go to the border but to the imigration office in Guatemala city zona 9. And you can go on like that for many years. I have been 7 years on this system before getting my residency.. but I know people on tourist visa since 20 years.. If you leave the country in between better as you start all again when you come back..
Now if you don't do renew your visa then very little chance you get controlled and would have to regularize your situation.. I have a friend who staid 2 years without renewing when he left the country through the airport he paid 10 Q per day.. o 2400 Q fine.. and if he would have gone a couple of day before he could have use the current Presidential Amnesty that reduce 90 % of the fine if you go to migration office..  And no particular mark  on his passport or limitation to reenter in the future..

So at the moment Guatemala has a non existent or very basic migratory system that is not oriented in looking after the tourist status.. allowing a lot of people to stay on a tourist visa and not have to change their residency status in their own country

A very complete and wise post. I have a different visa question. We are a Senior couple that became residents in 2012. Leaving and entering the country was no problem until the last time leaving. The emigration agent gave us a lot grief because we did not have a special stamp in our US passport that said we were residents. There was no mention of this that we heard when we received our "pink cards".She also said next time I'm not letting you out of the country. Do you know anything about this?

Hi Bp... imigration agent from which country?
Did you renew your passport  and your new one doesn't have the residency stamp?
Pink cards you mean DPI?
your US passport must have a stamp from the Gt government that says you are resident in Guatemala

Thank you for your quick reply. We will get the stamps. Our passports are new within the last two years. But the old ones did not have stamps. I guess we were just lucky at Gt passport control at Aurora AP.    Yes pink card equals DPI and the immigration agent was Gt at Aurora. I assume that the place to get the stamps is the SAT office in Gt city. We live in Antigua.

Hi BP,

You get the stamps not at SAT which is the "Guatemalan IRS" the stamp of residency is given by the Migration be aware...

You need to go to Migracion in Guatemala to have stamp put in your passport.  Can take awhile like everything else!

Hi Armadatitlan &  dark fiber,
Thanks, for the info and getting me going in the correct direction.

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