The Colombian Flag – Photo from WikipediaColombia’s popularity continues to grow as a great place for expats and digital nomads. If you want to stick around for longer than 90 days, that can cause some problems. If you want to stick around, things get tricky, but there are still many ways you can stay in the country legally for much longer than the 90 days that are allowed with a passport.
How Long Can You Stay in Colombia as a Tourist?
Colombia offers a 90-day tourist, on arrival, visa to many countries in Europe like Germany, Spain, The Netherlands, Austria, Italy, Finland, Poland and France.
Ways To Extend Your Stay In Colombia as a Tourist
Extend Your Vise With The Immigration Office
In the Americas like Peru, United States, Argentina and Brazil. In Asia and Australasia, Australia, Japan and South Korea. You can stay longer by extending your tourist visa by extra 90 days. However, this is the maximum period a tourist can stay in Colombia under a tourist visa.
It is quite easy to extend a Colombian tourist visa to allow you to stay in Colombia for a maximum of 180 days in a calendar year. You can either go online here or show up in person. In the case that you do show up in person, make an appointment ahead of time or show up early.
You will have to bring some items with you including a passport style photo of you with a white background, your passport, photocopies of your entry stamp, information page and proof of an upcoming, by land, air, or sea, journey. Check the full list of centers that are available via the immigration office’s website.
Leave The Country and Come Back
You can also extend your tourist visa to reach 180 days by simply flying to another nearby country or traveling by road to neighboring countries like Venezuela and Ecuador and when you enter Colombia again you will be able to get another 90-day visa.
Make sure you don’t exceed the 180 days as if you did, you will have to pay a fee when you are leaving the country.
Can I Work With As A Tourist?
You can always search for online jobs if you want to earn some extra cash or even work in tourist-oriented unofficial jobs like hostels. However, you are not allowed to work in any formal position or institution without a work visa.
How Can I Stay In Columbia Longer Than 180 Days a Year?
For Colombia lovers, if a 180-day visa is not enough, you can still get a longer-term visa but it will require more money and time to plan it. You can do this by timing your trip to align with the new year, and before the 31st of December you can plan a trip outside the country and then return back to Colombia in the new year, then, you will be able to get another 180 days.
There is also another way to get your visa, this way is for those who have cash saved in a bank. You can put USD 100,000 into a Colombian property and you will get a visa for life!
You can also get a student visa, this visa is available for any student who is studying a 25-hour or more course in any accredited Colombian institution. This way is one of the easiest ways to get a visa especially if you are a student because the university or the school might help you during your application process.
Another, more classic and older, way to get a visa is by marrying a local, you will then be granted residency status. Finally, whichever option you choose, always be prepared that it might take a lot of time, effort and money to deal with all the papers, documents and bureaucracy, you might also face some obstacles, but don’t worry this is totally normal!
Do Not Overstay Your Visa!
Overstaying your visa in Colombia is a serious issue and I’d strongly suggest avoiding it. Occasionally you will get lucky and just get a fine but I had one friend physically deported and banned from Colombia for overstaying a month.
He is an expert travel advisor and enthusiast. He has traveled extensively in the USA, Central American, South America and Europe. He has visited every Sandals Resort and is one of a select few Diamond Elite members of the Sandals Chairman’s Royal Club.
Dan graduated from Johnson & Wales University with an associate degree in Culinary Arts. Later he graduated from the University of Utah with a bachelor’s degree in International Studies with a focus on people and culture.