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Getting a bank check from Banamex to pay US passport fee at LCS

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Hi!

Evidently Banamex has told some expats they can't purchase a bank check to pay US passport fee at LCS without opening an account.

I wrote to the US embassy and they replied:
 

Quote

It is not necessary to have a Banamex account.

Consulate employees cannot accept cash or credit card payments during our off-site visits, we will accept only peso-denominated Banamex bank checks.  We have confirmed that the Banamex branch in Lake Chapala can issue this type of check.  It is very important that the checks be made out to “United States Disbursing Officer” or they will not be accepted for payment.

 

Has anyone here purchased the abovementioned Banamex "bank" check without having an account with them?

Suggestions would be welcome!

Also, would you know the fee for the check?  Just so I have an idea of what I'm doing when I go to the bank.

I guess they're called "cheque bancario" or "cheque de caja", as far as I can tell from Google Translate.

Thanks for your time.

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I bought a check at Banamax to renew my US passport a couple of months ago and I don't have an account at Banamax.  I just told the person that I needed a 'cheque para el Consulado de Estados Unidos' and he knew exactly what I was talking about and he sent me to a certain window.   You could also tell them 'para renovar mi pasaporte' if they ask.   The lady at the window told me she makes checks like this often and knew what to do.  I had printed out the amount and the  to 'United States Disbursing Officer'  to make sure she got the spelling correct and it only took her a few minutes.  I can't remember how much the charge was but it wasn't a lot.  Hope this helps..

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We help people present passport renewals at the US Consulate in Guadalajara for those that are disabled or would be troubled to go to the bank, then a trip to drop off and another to pick up due to mobility issues.  The Consulate accepts cash when presented there and return the passports Fedex within 2 to 3 weeks.  Best to plan ahead and see the consulate at LCS or the Legion 6months or more before your passport expires and keep in mind any trips outside the country and immigration document renewals. 

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Banamex does require a form to be submitted at the time of the request, which is attached. They may not accept a copy, but you could fill, then redo at the window.  The lines are very long at Banamex so plan on getting your check in advance of the consulate visit.  

Check is made out to.   United States Disbursing Officer

You need your passport for ID verification.

Passport Renewal Fee in December was $2310.0 pesos.   Banamex bank fee was $235 pesos. Not sure if that fluctuates so would take $300.0 pesos for a cushion.

For updated info on fee, procedures you can send an email to   acsgdl@state.gov   you will receive an automated response, then a actual response from a real person!

Bank Form Banamex.pdf_page_1.jpg

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I would suggest that you apply for renewal and go for pickup at The Legion, not LCS.

Consulate folks typically arrive lakeside 30-60 minutes late. First stop is at The Legion. They stay at The Legion until everyone who is waiting for them is serviced, regardless of how few or how many, and then head off to LCS, which can take another 30 minutes depending on traffic.

By the time they leave for LCS you could have had a nice, hot breakfast in the comfortable dining room at The Legion and be home before they arrive at LCS with your mission accomplished and the rest of your day free, rather than sitting outside at LCS wondering when they will get there.

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These instructions worked great! But, alas, the Banamex check was rejected.

So, I wanted to put a little caution here, for those who might've read a suggestion in another thread to put your name and DOB on the check:

http://www.chapala.com/webboard/index.php?/topic/61102-check-for-passport-renewal/#comment-483366

These instructions are not applicable to paying for  your renewal at LCS. The Banamex cashier's check was (correctly, for our situation here) made out to "United States Disbursing Officer", but I made the mistake of printing my name and DOB on the check, as I thought that was a good idea in case the check gets detached from my application.  Unfortunately, this was rejected by the consular officials at LCS today. There can be no (additional) writing on the check. They said I was the second person today to have made this mistake. I'm posting this to help others avoid this pitfall.

My suggestion is to check the Consulate's relevant web page,  https://mx.usembassy.gov/embassy-consulates/guadalajara/lake-chapalaajijic-services/

and LCS's relevant web page,  http://lakechapalasociety.com/weebly/us-consulate.php

Has anyone any recent experience getting a Banamex cashier's check refunded / re-done, possibly for a new amount? (I'll wait for a couple weeks to find out if the Consulate's exchange rate will change for the Feb 1 visit.)

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Why not send the renewal form, pictures, US bank check and old passport to the Passport Center in the US using my iShop mailbox then they mail the new ones back??

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I reccommend the Legion as you can eat and if you make a mistake then you still have time to fix it and meet the consulate at LCS. 

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