Update (Great news):
Colombia has started offering a visa exemption (yes, that also means free entry) to Indians who hold a Schengen C/D visa (should be valid for 180 additional days) or any class of US visa (except transit, same validity rules apply). You get to stay 90 days in Colombia with this exemption. This is incredible news for people backpacking in Latin America as now Ecuador and Colombia have become hassle free for Indians to access. I hope Brazil and Peru follow soon!
Here is the official update from the immigration authorities in Colombia. The relevant info is presented in Article 3. Indian, Thai, Vietnamese, and Chinese citizens with Schengen or US visas may enter Colombia without applying for a visa. The Colombian consulate published this document which clearly specifies that Indian nationals (amongst others) who have a valid visa or residence permit from the United States (EEUU in Spanish) or a Schengen visa do not require a visa to visit Colombia.
Colombia is an amazing country to visit! We went there in June 2014 to celebrate Zara’s birthday and spend time traveling the country. A visa for Colombia is fairly easy to get (and very quick for Indians) because their systems are quite organized and streamlined.
I applied for my Colombian visa in Santiago, Chile. The visa process was fairly simple and they required the usual gamut of stuff:
- The visa form (filled online through a rather slow system, your visa type as a tourist will be TP-11, make sure you fill the right type)
- Flight reservations in and out of Colombia
- Hotel reservations for the duration of the stay (refundable/post-paid booking.com style are fine)
- Means of financial ability (bank statements should be okay, credit card copy and statement may also work)
I filled up the form online and set up an appointment for myself. I went to the consulate armed with all my documents. I was given a token at the reception and then asked to wait. Here’s the catch. You should ask at the reception to go and pay your visa fees prior to getting a token. They may advise you to do so as well. Head to the bank they specify and pay the visa fees, then come back to the Consulate and get your token.
Back at the consulate, I got a new token and I waited for my turn while watching Shakira videos on the big screen in the waiting area. Oh, this time things were much more complicated because I planned the trip to Colombia as a surprise for Zara so there was no “Spanish translator” available. I was on my own!
Just my luck that when I finally got my turn to meet the lady who processes visas, she would only speak Spanish! In fact, she INSISTED that I speak Spanish, even though she understood English alright. Well, so I went on in my broken Spanish explaining my situation. Then, she wouldn’t accept my bank statement in English! She kept saying that it has to be in Spanish. I said “Pero, los números son los números, ¿no?” (but, numbers are numbers, no?). She didn’t agree, neither did she find it funny.
Luckily I had my work contract with me at the time (we live in Chile..) so she was happy to look at it. She said she would go ask the consul. The consul of course said “Give him the damn visa!”. So she came back, suddenly much more friendly, and said she’ll do everything.
She even started recommending places for me to see, etc. Thankfully, India is on the list of ‘approved’ countries for Colombia. This means that Indians can get their visas on the same day, it’s fairly straightforward.
We were traveling for 3 weeks as per my tickets and they issued a visa for an extra 6 days. So I had my visa within half an hour.
In the end, the visa was fairly easy to get. I’m not a big fan of the fact that they issued a 27 day visa when I paid for 90 days, but our plans were fairly fixed so it was alright in this case.
It’s possible to even get a Colombia visa when you are not in your country of residence since they did not ask for any residence specific documents. You may be hassled for a Spanish bank statement, or you may not, but it’s worth a shot!
Colombia is a wonderful country to visit and should be on everyone’s list!
Wow, that’s so sweet of you to surprise your girlfriend. Indeed, it was fairly a smooth transaction. Sounds like you two had lots of fun in Columbia. That view is breathtaking. :)
Guys , I have a american green card with indian passport and visiting colombia for three days , is there a visa thats required? have the rues changed. Please let me know.
thanks a lot for the post. Been a long time follower of your blog and the LP visa thread section for Indian passport hassles.
I had a question to ask. Is it possible to get the visa done if there are no flight bookings? Say we are going to Colombia via land route. would they require train/bus tickets then or a covering letter from the applicant should be okey. What do you think?
It really depends on the person you meet at the consulate. But, I have a tip for you. Since the Colombian visa takes about 2-3 hours to process you could make a flight booking on Expedia.com. New US regulations require US travel agents (Expedia is a US travel agent) to allow customers to cancel flights for free within 24 hours. As such, you can book a flight on expedia and get a full refund within 24 hours for free with no penalty. (it will say this next to your booking on Expedia.com)
So you could book the flight the morning when you go to apply for your visa and then cancel it once you receive your visa. In my experience though, they don’t really care if the flights are “CONFIRMED” so even if you take a printed itinerary with tentative flights, that should be fine too. Also, train or bus tickets OR a cover letter *should* work but you know how fussy embassy staff can sometimes be… (and also how cooperative they can be at other times…). Paper pushers love papers ;)
Let me know if you have other questions!
Hi i am planning to visit colombia but i have normal indian passport.Please guide me how i go to colombia or i can visit ecuador and from there can i get colombian visa reply as soon as possible thanks.
Why don’t you get a Colombian visa before going?
Anshul, yes. I crossed to Colombia from Ecuador by the land route in 2008. All they would need to see is your exit tickets back to India (from wherever, mine were from Brazil). And yes, a covering letter is also a good idea.
I got my visa from Quito, and let me tell you the officials were very helpful and left a great impression on me.
Happy travels! :)
It’s great to know the Colombia’s visa is relatively easy to get for Indians. Thanks for sharing!
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Thansk for teh information on your blog, it is helpful. I am travellig to peru in april and i hold an indian passport and work in USA, having a valid USA work visa. Would i need to take a columbian visa before hand. Coud you please help me ?
Indian citizen with a valid US visa or Schezen visa does not require a visa to enter in Colombia
I just came to know about this blog n glad to hear real expeditions. I’m currently in US on F1 Visa and I wanna visit Colombia to meet a friend. My question is, does i need a Visa prior to enter Colombia or not. Can anyone suggest me the process if any…
this is great information!! i came upon this by just hitting colombian visa for indians. i hold a b1 b2 visa for united states……stoked to travel to colombia! and i am following ur blog now:)
Bro that’s great. I need a help actually I too have a girlfriend in Colombia,Bogota. So i wanted to meet her and give her a big surprise. So can you tell me how much it costs for Colombia tour visa for a week??
I hope you will let me know….
i would like to visit Columbia for tourism purpose. I am holding a B1/B2 valid visa of USA which expires in 2023. Is there any requirement of applying for a tourist visa for Columbia.
In January I am traveling to US for 2 weeks on business meet. I hold B1/B2 US visa expires in 2022 and valid Indian Passport expired in 2021, planning to meet my Cousin in Colombia and visit few tourism places stay for a week (7 days). Can I enter Colombia without Colombia visa? If yes, Any documents needed during immigration at colombia port of entry?
Your responses would be helpful
Nothing is required. Just to be on a safe side, do carry proof of your onward journey from Colombia.
Thats it .
Can you give me the link that says no visa required if you have USA visa? I can’t seem to find the link on Colombia consulate website
Did you have any trouble? I’m doing something similar so wanted to check
I have a valid US work permit, but my US visa expires in 170 days after my date of arrival. Can I still take a chance?
My Passport is expiring in next 5 months and I have Colombian visa, Can I travel to bagota.
If you are Indian National and not holding any valid visa stamp , i mean holding fresh passport, can you apply Columbia visa, i mean if u are taking itinerary all flights are either via Europe or USA and will they accept this itinerary for visa processing
Thanks , shall await for response
Indian citizen with NO any visa holding currently and living in India but i want to travel for tourism purpose so please help me how can get a visa, I checked online visa site but there is no option found for tourist (visit) visa.
Please help me, planing to visit in August for two months.
Hi I am Morshed from Bangladesh.I want to go colombia for tour.Anybody help me of this matter.
I wish to apply for a fresh tourist visa to columbia. This is my first international visit. Can I get tourist visa for 3 months. Kindly help me. Wat questions do u need to handle at visa consulate?
I am a sailor, I have C1D us visa that is basically a transit visa. Can I get visa on arrival when in Columbia.
I’m traveling to Bogota this month (Oct 2017) and just wanted to ensure that no visa is required if I have a valid US visa? I called the Embassy in Delhi and they said that it’s not required as long as I have a valid US visa (which doesn’t expire for 6 months) and a yellow fever vaccination. Are there other documents that I should take?
Hi im living in Thailand i have work permit here i want to visit Colombia for bussiness purpose what documents required plz suggest thank you
Hello ! I am ADIL ALAM from India Rajasthan now presently I live in India Rajasthan I want to go colombia too meet my Colombian friend how can I get visa please tell me full details. Thank you!
Its nice to receive the updates regarding visas
Thanks a lot buddy
I am travelling to Equador next month in July. My wife is in Colombia and a colombian citzen who will meet me in Equador too
Can I apply for Spouse Visa in Quito in Colombian Embassy as Colombian Embassy in India is giving me hard time for my Spouse Visa
I honestly don’t know if you can apply in Quito. Ask the embassy there please.
Our understanding is that Indian passport holders with Schengen visa can travel to Colombia without a visa. However, we do not know if there is a regulation that the Schengen visa should be valid for 180 days from the date of landing? Can you please check and confirm?
Hello, I am an Indian Passport holder as well as I have a German national Visa(Work permit) valid for next 5 months.
Can I just take a flight to Columbia and travel? Or do I need to apply for a VISA.
Currently I am in Germany. How can I do it from here?
All the information you need is in the above article. Please read the update right at the top.
I am following this blog to visit Colombia, Bogota and Bucaramanga for tourism. I am Indian national with regular passport with valid US work visa until Dec 2019. Can you please share and guide on following:
1. Link to government website which says no Colombia visa is required if you have USA visa
2. What is mean by no visa required? Will i still need on arrival visa at airport?
3. What are the documents I need to carry while traveling to ensure that I will be given an entry by Colombian immigration?
4. Will there be any risk of criminal activities, such as extortion, robbery, and kidnapping for ransom, on tourist in Bogota and Bucaramanga?
5. Also please add if you would like share more about the process and hassle-free entry in Colombia.