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EXPLORE OUR QUICK GUIDE ON TRAVEL ENTRY REQUIREMENTS FOR THE COUNTRY OF CHILE LOCATED IN SOUTH AMERICA. BELOW WE COVER TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS, IMPORTANT TRAVEL DOCUMENTS AND ALL THINGS TRAVEL VISAS.
Of all the South American countries, we felt like Chile might just be the one with the most adventure opportunities. For starters, the country is pretty darn big. Measuring over 4,300 kilometers (or 2,670 miles) north to south, this long country is smack dab in the middle of the Andes mountains (to the east) and the Pacific Ocean to the west.
And due to its length, the country is home to numerous types of landscapes - including the driest desert in the world, the Atacama, located up in the north, as well as hundreds of islands and fjords down in the south.
Really what we are trying to say, is that this South American country has a lot to offer travelers - especially those looking for epic outdoor adventures. So now the question is, what requirements are needed to actually enter Chile as a traveler?
Below you will find all of the information you need; including, what to know about visas and necessary documentation.
EVERYTHING TRAVELERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT ENTERING CHILE
\\ Traveling to Chile
Below we outline everything travelers need to know about entering Chile; including, any specific Chile entry requirements, what kind of visas are available (and what you have to do to get one), and what steps need to be taken to enter the famous Easter Island (Rapa Nui), one of the most remote places on Planet Earth.
So let's dive in!
| Are borders open? Yes! Currently, you can enter Chile via land, air and sea.
| Are there any specific Chile entry requirements? We talk about this in detail below, but for the most part no. It is pretty easy to enter the country right now.
| Does Chile have travel insurance requirements? Travelers visiting Chile are no longer required to show proof of travel insurance. But the country still recommends you get it (just in case something happens). We suggest checking out SafetyWing for all of your travel insurance needs.
| What kind of money does Chile use? The country uses the Chilean peso (CLP), the exchange rate obviously changes but you can think of it as 1,000 CLP = $1 USD (roughly).
| Is it expensive to travel to Chile? What should my Chile travel budget be? As of 2022, Chile is the most expensive country to visit in South America. You can expect higher prices for lodging, food and transportation compared to many other places on the continent. Expect to spend between $50 and $100 USD a day.
Before you even hop on a plane to Chile you will need to prove that you are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 (a certification of vaccination). We did this by simply showing our individual vaccine cards at the airline desk.
❔ GOOD TO KNOW: we only showed our vaccine card once (at the airline check-in desk in the USA). At customs, we didn’t have to prove our vaccination status again.
If you are not fully vaccinated, then you must show a negative result in a PCR test within a maximum of 48 hours from departure time. Also, if you are under the age of 18, then you do not need to show proof of vaccination or a negative test result.
RAPA NUI | EASTER ISLAND
There are slightly stricter entry requirements if you are planning to head to Rapa Nui (Easter Island), which is located far off the Pacific coast of Chile. To enter the island you will need:
| A certification of vaccination.
| A Single Entry Form (or FUI), check it out here.
| Proof of a round-trip ticket.
| Proof of a reservation at either a tourist service registered in SERNATUR or an invitation letter from the Provincial Delegation.
| A 5-day health follow-up.
TRAVEL VISAS FOR CHILE
For most travelers, you should be given a 90-day visa upon arrival (both arrival via air and land). There are a number of exceptions to this though - so make sure to check this list of what specific countries require a different visa.
If you are coming from Venezuela, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Cuba and Dominica, then you will need a Transitory Stay Visa (find it here).
Whereas if you are from Australia, then you will need to secure an E-Visa. This type of visa is a bit different since there are 3 types, with two of them requiring a fee based on reciprocity. Learn more about the Australian E-Visa here.
➳ Don’t want the hassle of trying to figure out visas for Chile? Consider checking out iVisa, which has everything you need in one easy-to-use spot.
LANDING IN CHILE
When we landed in Santiago we were able to breeze through customs. The customs officials will (likely) only ask for your passport once you get up to their station. It took all of 5 minutes for them to check our passports and give us the expected 90-day visa.
💬 INSIDER TIP: after customs, you will have to go through another screening area. It was here that Madalyne got pulled aside because one of the security dogs smelled food in her bag. Chile is quite serious about not allowing in outside produce (including fruit), so they confiscated her oranges.
Once you leave customs you will need to fill out a quick immigration form (in Santiago you can find it at the large red desk in baggage claim). This paperwork requires your name, the address you will be staying at in Chile, passport number, and date of birth (the usual stuff).
When you have the paperwork completed, you will need to hand it to the officials BEFORE you head out of the baggage area. You should easily be able to see the officials at the exit door.
\\ Chile Travel Essentials
CHILE TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS
There are currently NO travel restrictions in Chile. For the most part, you should be completely fine traveling around the entire country. The only present safety issue in the country travelers may need to be aware of is an increase in political demonstrations, mostly in the capital city of Santiago.
IS CHILE SAFE?
Chile is quite a safe place for travelers - especially once you leave the major metropolises (like Santiago) behind. Obviously, like with any other place in the world, you should always be aware of your surroundings and stay vigilant when in busy places (pick-pocketing does occur).
If you use the same common sense as you would in your own home country, you should be totally fine.
WHAT TO PACK FOR CHILE
Chile is a massively long country that has many different biomes and climates. Because of this, you will likely need to pack gear that can handle all different types of weather - including rain, wind, snow, and intense heat.
At minimum, we suggest packing one set of warm clothes - especially if you are planning to head to the far southern Patagonian region - a rain jacket, a sun hat and sunglasses, a swimsuit (there are a ton of lakes as well as the Pacific Ocean), good hiking boots and some comfortable shoes you can walk around in all day.
HOW MUCH TIME DO YOU NEED IN CHILE
Chile is a very large country. While it is not very wide - only 350 kilometers or 217 miles at its widest point - it is over 4,000 kilometers long. But besides its size, it also just has a whole lot to offer travelers - especially adventure travelers.
We would say you need at least 2 weeks in Chile - though you could probably spend a year there and still not see it all. As usual, we suggest focusing on one specific area or region for your travels instead of moving around to various major points.
Some interesting facts about Chile that may pique your interest:
| The Atacama Desert (located in the northern half of the country) is one of the driest places in the world. In fact, the Atacama Desert receives less than 12 millimeters (0.47 inches) of rain per year. Likewise, there are areas of this desert that go hundreds of years without receiving any rain at all. Only specific places in Antarctica are drier.
| Chile is the world's southernmost country that is geographically on the mainland. It also claims 1.2 million square kilometers of Antarctica as part of its territory (though this is somewhat disputed).
| According to the Köppen system, within the borders of Chile there are at least 10 major climatic subtypes; including, a Mediterranean climate and alpine tundra.
| Technically, it is possible to ski and surf on the same day - though this would of course involve a decent amount of driving (~3-4 hours). In Chile you can ski at various resorts in the Andes (including Valle Nevado, El Colorado, and Portillo) and then drive west until you reach the coast.
| There are six UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Chile and 41 national parks. In fact, over 20% of Chilean territory is part of a national park. Woot!
Chile is a truly magical country that has so much to offer - especially if you are an adventure traveler looking to head out into the insane landscapes and do some serious exploring.
Luckily, Chile makes it really easy to enter their country. Hopefully, this quick guide on Chile entry requirements helps you start planning and preparing for your own Chilean adventure. Remember, if you have any questions or comments, please leave them below or reach out to us directly.
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EXPLORE MORE SOUTH AMERICAN TRAVEL INFORMATION
PACKING ESSENTIALS FOR CHILE
| Reusable water bottle: we cannot imagine traveling without our LARQ water bottles thanks to their fancy rechargeable filter that eliminates up to 99% of bio-contaminants.
| Eco-friendly sunscreen: we love MadHippie sunscreen because it’s cruelty-free, vegan, broad spectrum, and reef safe. And even better, they donate $1 for every purchase to conservation efforts.
| Allbirds shoes: comfortable shoes can make or break an adventure or travel day, these eco-conscious and cozy shoes from Allbirds have been our faves for years.
► Find our full sustainable travel packing list here.
STAYING SAFE & PLANNING AHEAD
| SafetyWing: make sure you are staying safe with this easy-to-sign-up health insurance that is specifically meant for digital nomads. You can even sign up once you are already abroad.
| WayAway: this flight aggregator helps travelers find the best rates on airline tickets to tons of different locations.
| BusBud: explore millions of bus routes and destinations in one easy-to-use search; plus, you can compare prices and book your tickets online (in your language).
| Rentalcars.com: check out the world’s biggest online car rental service that is available in over 150 countries.
| iVisa: this site helps make sure you have all of the necessary documents and entry requirements while traveling.
| Wise: this app makes it super easy to transfer money between currencies while abroad, keeping you from worrying about whether you are getting the right exchange rate or not.