Colombia is a mesmerizing country known for its vibrant culture, beautiful landscapes, and warm hospitality. If you find yourself falling in love with this South American gem during your initial 90-day tourist stay, you may be wondering how to extend your visa to continue your Colombian adventure. In this guide, we'll take you through the step-by-step process of extending your visa in Colombia, ensuring a smooth and hassle-free experience.
Step 1: Plan Ahead
Before we dive into the visa extension process, it's essential to remember not to procrastinate. To avoid unnecessary stress, plan to extend your visa 10-15 days before your initial 90-day tourist permit expires. The Colombian visa extension allows you to stay up to an additional 90 days, starting only after your current limit runs out.
Step 2: Colombia Visa Extension Requirements
To ensure a smooth application process, you'll need to gather the following essential documents:
- Passport Bio Page: The main page of your passport containing your picture, name, and date of birth is mandatory. If your passport has an address page, it is not necessary to upload it.
- Entry Stamp: The page in your passport that indicates the date of your entry into Colombia.
- Onward Flight from Colombia: You must provide proof of an onward flight ticket taking you out of Colombia. Ensure that the departure date falls within the initial 180 days of your arrival. The itinerary should be from any Colombian city to a non-Colombian city.
If you are extending the visa for children, you will need to submit additional documents, such as the children's birth certificates and the passport of one parent.
Step 3: Submitting the Online Colombia Tourist Visa Extension Application
Now that you have your documents ready, it's time to start the application process. Go to the official website of Colombia Migraciones and select the English option if available. Choose "Permiso Temporal de permanencia para Prorrogar Permanencia" under "Tipo de Tramite" to begin the extension process.
While the English version of the website may not fully translate everything, you can use Google Translate or try the Spanish version if you're comfortable with a little Spanish.
Complete the application form and upload the required documents. Make sure to combine all three documents (passport bio page, entry stamp, and onward flight) into one PDF, not exceeding 1 MB in size.
Step 4: Pay the Fees to Extend Colombia Tourist Visa
After submitting your application, you should receive an email indicating that your application has been pre-approved. The email will include payment instructions. If you are a national of an EU country, the extension is free. Otherwise, you will need to pay the equivalent of around $30 in Colombian pesos.
You can make the payment online, at a Banco Occidente bank, or at a Migracion Colombia office. Be patient during the payment process, as the website can sometimes be slow and prone to errors.
Step 5: Receive Success Email for Colombia Tourist Permit Extension
Once your payment is confirmed, you will receive a PDF stating that your tourist permit has been extended. Print this document and keep it with your passport as proof of your extended stay.
Problems with Extending Colombia Tourist Visa & Possible Solutions
While the visa extension process is generally straightforward, some common issues may arise. Here are potential problems and their solutions:
- Rejection Email: If you receive a rejection email, check if you missed any documents or if the uploaded PDFs were of low quality. Resubmit a fresh application with all required documents.
- No Rejection or Approval Email: If you don't receive any emails after submitting your application, wait for at least 24 to 48 hours. Check your spam folder and note down your case number.
Visiting the Migracion Colombia office may be necessary as a last resort, but the results can vary depending on the immigration officer's mood.
2023 Passport Stamp Updates:
Due to the impact of COVID-19 and the large amount of visa requests Colombia is getting, the visa extension process may take longer than usual. Some expats reported not receiving emails for up to two weeks.
However, you should be fine if you respond 10-15 days before your passport stamp expiration date.
Extending your visa in Colombia allows you to immerse yourself deeper into this captivating country, explore its diverse landscapes, and experience its rich culture. By following the step-by-step process and ensuring you have all the required documents, you can smoothly extend your stay and continue your Colombian adventure.
Remember to plan ahead, avoid procrastination, and keep an eye on any updates or changes in the visa extension process. While navigating bureaucracy can be challenging, with patience and persistence, you'll soon be enjoying more of what Colombia has to offer, from its bustling cities to its stunning natural wonders. So don't hesitate to extend your stay in this extraordinary land of beauty and hospitality.
Daniela Cordoba is a lawyer specializing in immigration and commercial law. Daniela Cordoba has helped individuals and businesses live and operate in Colombia for over a decade. She also has training in compliance with the respective accreditations to serve as Compliance Officer.
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