Colombian visa for Indians

Colombia visa for Indians

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 Visa Update for Indians

Colombia Visa Update for Indians



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 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!

A&Z in Medellin, Colombia

A&Z in Medellin, Colombia


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!

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  • Nichelle Says

    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. :)

  • Anshul Says

    Hi Ash,

    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?


    • Ashray Says

      Hi Anshul

      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 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

      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!


  • 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!

  • Pingback: My favourite travel blogs! – UrbanDuniya

  • sinu Says


    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 ?

  • Nishith Says

    Indian citizen with a valid US visa or Schezen visa does not require a visa to enter in Colombia

  • Pradeep Medida Says

    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…

  • shreta Says

    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….

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