I finally have a visa to visit Peru!
March 2017 Update
Exciting News! The Peruvian government has signed a declaration waiving visa requirements for Indian nationals who hold certain visas. If you are an Indian citizen and hold a valid visa or residence permit for the US, UK, Australia, Canada, or a Schengen member state then you can enter Peru for 180 days per year without a Peruvian visa. Your visa should be valid for at least 6 months. This decree comes into force on 27th March 2017 so Indians with the right visas can travel visa free to Peru starting then. More information is available here (English) and here (Spanish – Official source). There is also an update from the Indian Embassy in Lima. The Embassy of Peru in India has also uploaded a document about the new visa rules for Peru.
My prior struggle with the Peruvian visa (July 2012)
For those of you that have been following the comments on this site, you might have noticed that my struggles with the Peru embassy started about 5 months ago. I couldn’t get the Peru visa in India since I’d need to use it within 90 days. It’s not usually complicated to get this visa, but if you aren’t a resident of the country you’re applying in, then good luck!
We planned to visit Peru, and Machu Picchu during May this year. However, the lack of a peruvian visa foiled our plans. So here’s the story of how I finally managed to attain this elusive stamp!
During February, while we were in Brazil, Zara called up the Peru embassy in both Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. Both were quite uncooperative and insisted that I must return to my home country (India..) and apply for my visa to visit Peru. We tried to explain that we had been traveling for many months, etc. but they were quite firm. We called more than once and they just ended up getting irritated at us and hanging up. So, oh well, we thought it ain’t gonna happen in Brazil, lets try somewhere else.
A month down the line, while we were in Quito, we visited the Peruvian consulate in town. Again, the guy there was absolutely adamant. He kept saying that I should go back to India and apply. We exclaimed incredulously “But we’re here, in Ecuador, in front of you, and you want us to go 10,000 miles away and come back ?!”. He went inside those big consulate doors and then came back with a lady. She sang the same tune and said that the only way they could give me a visa was if a Peruvian friend of mine got me an approval from Lima. WTF ? In a moment of pure cheekiness, I asked her to invite me. Obviously, that didn’t work out.
We had called the Peruvian embassy in Guayaquil and they said that they could process the visa but I would need to get a police clearance certificate from India! I asked my father to get me one but the police in India refused to give him a certificate. Well, they agreed initially only to later turn around and say, if he isn’t here we can’t give it. So then we decided to head to Chile and apply there.
By now it was June and we had missed our plans to visit Peru in May. However, Peru is great in August. So we decided to head to the Peruvian embassy in Santiago. Unfortunately we bumped into a rotund receptionist who really didn’t want to let us through. She said that we needed a letter from the Indian consulate in Santiago saying that I am a tourist in Chile and I want to visit Peru. As if my presence and passport weren’t enough.
Anyway, so I contacted the Indian consulate and asked if I can have such a letter. The man there assured me that they would do such a letter for me. By this time, we were traveling in Patagonia so I decided to set aside a week in Santiago during July for one last shot at the Peru visa. We had spoken to the Bolivian embassy and the visa was easy to get so we decided that if not Peru, we would head straight to Bolivia.
We arrived back in Santiago on the 18th of July. I visited the Indian embassy and in classic Indian style they told me ‘We don’t do letters like that, you need a police clearance certificate and it takes two weeks!’. WHAT ?! Not only that, there was this other idiot at the Indian embassy who decided that it’s a great idea to add fuel to other people’s fires. While I was trying to explain to the guy at the Indian embassy that all I really wanted was a letter, this other Guru decided to chime in with “Oh yeah you can only apply for any visa at your home country blah blah blah”. I told him “Guruji, I have applied for visas around the world so I’m certainly aware of what’s possible.” Mind you, Guruji was a visitor at the embassy and not embassy staff. Finally the verdict was that no such letter is possible and I would need a police clearance certificate that the embassy would get for me. So I paid $30 and I requested that they expedite the process since I was in Santiago for a week and this was really my sole purpose of being there.
Right after, we decided we would give the Peruvian embassy another shot on the same day. So we headed there and this time instead of the rotund receptionist, there was a young man in a suit talking on the phone. He was quite friendly and we asked him about visa requirements, etc. We explained that we’ve been traveling for a while and he even asked us about our time in Cuba. Finally, he said “No problem, just come and apply with your documents”. He didn’t mention any letter from the consulate.
We applied on Monday (with flight tickets and hotel reservations, and paid about $36) and sure enough, in 24 hours the Peru visa was ready! No letter from the Indian consulate required! The lady giving me the passport did say that it would be nice to have a letter but it’s not necessary. Also, they gave me a 60 day visa just incase :) (I had requested 30 days..)
I still went to the Indian embassy to collect the letter the same afternoon and instead of a police clearance certificate it finally ended up being just a regular letter stating that I was a tourist in Chile, planning to visit Peru. So they do apparently give such letters…
Finally after FIVE months of struggling for a Peru visa, I shall be heading to Peru in mid August.
I hope you’re ready Machu Picchu!
oh my! I don’t know if I would have been so resilient… you really gave it your all… what an adventure!
I cant believe they have these incredibly inane rules to get a visa to Peru! I am sorry to hear about your experience at the Indian embassy in Santiago. I lost my passport in Chile and got it replaced at the Indian embassy Santiago and had a great experience when I got a new one. Do you plan to get a visa to Bolivia from Santiago? If so, I recommend the embassy for its efficiency. :)
Wow I was very lucky in South America, I was able to just go to the border and get the visa there. If you have time head to Northern Peru, it’s one of my favourite parts of South America.
Do you happen to know if I can get the Bolivian visa in Peru. I am an Indian citizen too.
I believe that should be possible. I’ve spoken to the Bolivian embassy in Sao Paulo, Quito and even Santiago de Chile. They’ve always said that the visa is free, that you need to provide proof of hotel reservations and sufficient funds (credit card copy). The visa is granted on the spot and the process appears to be quite painless. I do know someone who knows someone who got a Bolivian visa in Peru or Chile. I’ll see if they can reply here and help you out!
I am a Indian passport holder and nowadays the Bolivian visa is not free. they charge 660 Bolivia and thats about $100 dollars
I am in Santiago Chile for some business meetings and was planning to visit Machu Picchu. Can you please let me know about the VISA requirement I have to prepare before going to Peru Embassy here for the VISA. Also let me know if there is any specific thing I have to keep in mind. Is it easy to get the VISA for Peru.
Hi, I got the Bolivian visa in Santiago – not once but twice because I lost my passport after getting it once. Went back with the new passport again to get it. It was a very painless process – no questions asked. We provided bank statements and took hostel accommodation confirmation for one day, but I dont think they saw it. Oh yes, they definitely ask for Yellow fever certificate. Its free of cost for Indian citizens and is valid for 30 days. Good luck!
BTW – when I went the second time, our yellow fever certs were lost too and we didnt have a copy. They dug through their records, fished out the copy we had submitted the first time and made us several copies for our records. And warned us not to lose our passport again when we left! Really friendly people.
That was really nice of them to even give you copies!! :)
But such a pain that you also lost visas when they robbed your passport, that really sucks!
I am going for a tour and to see Maccha Pichu in peru in April,2013. Since there is no direct flight from India I am going via NEW YORK.I have 10 years USA visa and will apply for Peru visa in Jan 13…Will there be any problem?…Do I need any vaccinations?I have travelled throughout Europe and USA and will provide them with confirm return tickets,hotel and tour bookings etc as per requirement.
If you’re going to apply in India there should be no problem. No vaccinations are required for Peru. You’ll need a yellow fever vaccination if you go Bolivia however.
Thanks for the advice,My flight from USA dont have stop in Bolivia nor I intend to go there ,
so I hope I dont need one.Thanks once again!
i am also in exactly same situation as you.hope to meet you in peru in april
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“I couldn’t get the Peru visa in India since I’d need to use it within 90 days.”
I could not find similar information on the Web.. did you confirm with the embassy in India?
Thanks and happy travels
Yeah I did confirm with the Peru consulate in Dubai back in 2011. However the rules may have changed now. It’s best to call the Peru consulate in New Delhi and confirm :)
This one looks like a newer experience by an Indian in US
Hi ! Need your inputs regarding a few South American country VISAs. Me and my friend are planning to quit our company and travel to Brazil, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Bolivia and Ecuador for 4 months. But our enthusiasm is now majorly dampened by all the VISA requirements. Our travel agent says they require a leave letter from the company that we are granted leave for the entire 4 months for most of these countries. But since we are quitting we are not sure if we can get those. We are only able to get a letter from the company saying we are full-time employees currently. Any idea if we should take our chances for the VISA without a leave letter?
Why not? As long as your reason for traveling is legitimate, there should be no problem. You could perhaps supply a letter from your previous company but I wouldn’t think it’s necessary at all. As long as you can provide all the documentation for the visas (especially flights and hotels) plus a healthy bank account balance, it should be completely fine. Travel agents tend to harass people, if you are located in New Delhi or Mumbai, I would recommend dealing directly with the consulates. Let me know if you have more questions, I’m happy to help! Ecuador and Bolivia do not need visas to be pre-arranged. You can get a Bolivia visa even while traveling in South America and it’s super easy.
That sounds encouraging! We have to and fro flights out of Sao Paulo and are planning to travel between countries by road. Also since it is 4 months, the itinerary is quite open. We have made a tentative itinery but havent booked tickets between the 6 countries. We thought we could book bus tickets depending on where we are. Is it mandatory to provide bus tickets between countries? If so, do you know of any sites which lets you cancel bus tickets in South America for free?
Unfortunately the consulates can be quite finicky about the tickets. They see them as the way to decide the dates on your visa.. Andesmar let’s you book bus tickets online between Chile and Argentina. But if you cancel the ticket later you lose about $5. I would recommend it as I did the same for Argentina a few months ago. For the rest, perhaps refundable flights are the best option. Try Expedia with the refundable option checked under preferences. They cost a lot more but you can get your money back.
That sounds great. We will Check that out. Right now we are still a bit overwhelmed with the VISA requirements. Would you know the validity period and the number of days the tourist VISAs are issued for – Brazil, Peru, Chile and Argentina? We are finding it a little difficult to sort of get the itinery right with the VISA validity issues.
Most of them have a maximum validity of 90 days but can sometimes be issued for shorter durations. You should perhaps have a tentative plan on when you want to enter and leave a country. You can be flexible on what you do inside. Some of these countries also have the requirement that you should use the visa (first entry) within 90 days of issuance so that’s something to keep in mind. I think that’s a lot of countries for 4 months so unless you’re flying a lot, or moving every day, it’s a very challenging plan! These are all very big countries!!
With 4 months you shouldn’t run into any validity issues but you can make a plan and get visas issued accordingly. Shouldn’t be a problem. Just make sure you enter the last country within 90 days of visa issuance.
Since Chile and Argentina are at the fag-end our current plan, and since the VISA validity will be for 90 days from the date of issue, we feel it would be difficult to get into the last country within 90 days, so are thinking of getting our Chile and Argentina Visa in Brazil. What would you suggest? And out of the 3 countries – Brazil, Peru and Bolivia where can we take the Chile and Argentina VISA?
I suggest that you take the visa in advance as getting a visa on the road can be quite stressful. Some consulates might agree to process your visa on the road but as you can tell, if you’ve read this article (and others), it can be quite a hassle. Chile should be the easiest to process while traveling but there are no guarantees. If you can obtain prior approval that you can indeed process your visas at the consulates abroad, that’d be best.
Just for an update called up the Peruvian embassy in New Delhi twice and they confirmed the VISA is valid for a year and no restriction that one should enter the country in 90 days and the VISA would be multiple-entry for the number of days asked for in the application.
One more question – I was checking out the flight rates between the countries and they seem to be prohibitively expensive. Any advice on travel between countries by road? Also, it is possible that my friend may not make it. So what advice would you give to a solo-female traveler in South America?
My brother who is an Indian citizen is visiting the US on a 10 year tourist visa. Can he apply for a tourist visa to Peru from the USA or does he have to do that from India? Any help is greatly appreciated!!!!
I want to go to Peru with my parents who are Indian citizens. I live in US and our plan is for them to visit me, and get the peruvian visa in US. Do you know if they can apply for Peruvian visa while visiting US on the tourist visa? Thank you!
It might be possible for them to apply in the US while on a tourist visa but this is at the discretion of the Peruvian consulate. As you can see, I had quite a bit of trouble in Latin America. It’s quite uncomplicated to apply for a Peruvian visa in your country of residence so I’d highly recommend that. My complication arose because you must use most of their visas within 90 days of issuance and that wouldn’t have been possible for me. Hope this makes sense :)
Do please let me know if you have any questions. Good luck!
Finally in Latin America… Started with the first leg of our journey and in Brazil right now ..! Already having trouble with our Brazil visa. The consulate is now telling us that the Visa is valid only for 90 days from the date of first entry. We had confirmed with them many times when we were in India for the same. We have our return tickets from Sao Paulo on December 4th ( we used the actual flight tickets to get our Visa!)
Anyway my question is about Uruguay. Have you guys visited the country? If so what places in Uruguay do you recommend? And where did you get the Visa from?!
Hi Ashray, I had an effortless time at the Peruvian consulate in New York. The only thing they were hung up with was entry / exit flight tickets to Peru. I had entry tickets but since I was taking a bus to Ecuador which I did not care to book online, no exit tickets. Anyway the consulate had no trouble accepting the entry ticket along with an airbnb email exchange and issued the visa (valid for a year) within the week. They did not really ask for my residency status in the US though as a precaution I submitted my I20 anyway. Overall quite helpful [they even called back when I left a voicemail] though the requirement of tickets was a little tricky, especially after Chile where no such requirement existed. Overall very warm consulate staff with a nice informal attitude. Our embassy has a lot to learn from them!
I have one quick question. I’m on my way to Bogota from la paz bolivia connecting through lima. I am wondering if you are aware of Peruvian immigration if they have a transit terminal? Cos I’m in no mood to try for a Peruvian transit/regular visa just for transit.Help!
Yes, they do have a transit terminal in Lima and you’ll stay airside as long as your bags are checked through.
My girlfriend is an peruvian and i am planning to go lima even i have invitation letter from her parents along with their valid id’s. So this will help me to get peru vise eaiser?
UN AMIGO DE LA INDIA,TRABAJA EN BARCO CRUCERO,EN 3 MESES,ELDESEMBARCARA(FORT LAUDARDALE,FLORIDA)VACACIONES,EL DESEA PASAR 15 DIAS EN EL NORTE DE PERU,EL QUIERE VOLAR DE EE.UU A PERU,COMO SERIA ESTO POSIBLE,,GRACIAS POR SU PRONTA RESPUESTA.
YO SOY PERUANA
Could you please tell me about Peru. How is the cost of living in Peru and how safe
I received 183 days multiple entry Peru visa.Just want to check with people is it easy to find a job in Peru in Hospitality sector like hotels,restaurants or bar ?Hows the cost of living in Peru ? How safe is Peru ? Any guidance,suggestions or comments ?
Awesome news on Peru visa. Thanks. Wish more South American countries would do this.
Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia are now easily accessible to Indians with certain other visas. Also, several central american countries have the same rules so it’s a great region for Indians to travel long term without worrying too much about visa issues.
actually plan to visit peru for one month (on end of December) as well as mexico. the tickets i will raise from india to peru, return peru to india, after reach the peru stay few days over there then visit mexico for 15 days, the back to peru and stay remaining days the back to india. for that what are the procedures i have to follow and where i can get the visa.
Get the visa from the Peruvian consulate in India. Also, from the Mexican consulate. If you have a US visa you won’t need a visa for either country.
Thanks for updating about the new visa exemption rule. This is great news. Time to make travel plans.
I have US visa valid till Jun 2018 and Canada visitor visa valid till Jun 2020. I’m residing in the US. If I travel in Feb 2018 (which is less than 6 months validity of US visa) can I get the visa exemption based on my Canada visitor visa?
Hey Rahul – did you get this resolved? I am in the same position,. did you need a peru visa or did your canada visitor visa work.
Dude! you are da bausss of all things travel. Thanks for posting the Peru update. I was about to go to the Peruvian embassy for a visitor visa today! Sending major good vibes to you both…
I have an Indian passport and I have a H1B visa which is valid for more than 6 months. The article says visa holders with more than 6 months validity dont need a visa. When I contacted the Peru consulate in Denver I was told that the visa waiver applies only to Indian Passport holders with Green Card and H1B visa holders still need to apply for a Visa. Is this the correct information? Has anyone actually travelled to Peru with a US H1B visa?
The information from the Peruvian consulate is incorrect. Although in theory one expects consulates to provide accurate information, in reality, this is rarely the case when it comes to visas on arrival and other exceptions (you can see the same thing happening over and over again if you read our article on Cuba Visas for Indians).
You can read the translation of the Peruvian decree yourself over here:
It’s pretty unambiguous. If you still like, go ahead and get a Peruvian visa, but you definitely do not need one.
I had called in Peruvian embassy at SFO and they told that the ones holding H1B don’t need to apply for Peruvian visa. However if someone is visiting US on B1/B2 will have to apply for Peruvian visa in the home country.
That information you have been given is incorrect as per both the government of Peru and the Press release by the Indian Embassy in Peru. The consulates of Peru are notorious for giving wrong information as you can see from this thread itself where Denver said one thing and the one in San Francisco said another. I would urge readers to follow the laws that are clearly published by the Peruvian government and the Indian Embassy there. I have linked to both in this post. B1/B2 visa holders can get a visa exemption to visit Peru, you don’t need to hold an H1B specifically to avail of this. Any class of visa works as long as it meets the validity requirements.
Hi Ashray , I have an Australian visa , howwever Australian visa is an e visa , so is it sufficient that i carry the visa paper and i do not need a visa for peru
Unfortunately, I don’t know the answer to this. As per the rules, the paper visa should be enough but I don’t know how they would verify it. Did you already travel to Australia and have entry/exit stamps from there? Perhaps you should contact the Peru embassy in New Delhi.
This is very good news. I was backpacking through South America last year and the Peruvian consulate in Quito, Ecuador flatly refused to consider my tourist visa application for Peru. I had to book a very expensive flight to Chile and make my way into Bolivia. I missed out on Peru but I am glad things are easier for Indian passport holders.
My girlfriend is an peruvian and i am planning to go lima even i have invitation letter from her parents along with their valid id’s. So this will help me to get peru vise eaiser?
Hi, I had a question. I was relieved after reading the post but then reading the comments made me ask this question. My friend is coming from India to US. She has a valid US tourist visa. According to the new update she shouldn’t be needing Peruvian visa right? Since she has a valid visa for US for more than 6 months.
Where do you think I can enquire more about this and be sure before travelling?
Everything you need to know is linked in the above article. There’s nothing more to enquire about. Just go.
any your email i will send peru work visa copy please chek information visa
Thanks much for the update with regards to he visa requirements to visit Peru. Your info. was very useful to me and I cascaded it to few of my friends.
Why did you apply for visa as I understand if you’re in U.K. Or US , you can enter visa free? Or one still needs to get a confirmation from the Peru embassy?
Did you read the article? I traveled to Peru before this system was in place.
Oh thanks. Am going in 2 weeks so wanted to confirm. Thanks again.
Thanks for the update.
That’s fantastic news.
My cousin and me ran into the same issue when in S America. The Peruvian consultative in Quito , the receptionist wouldn’t even let us present our case !!
So we had to skip it at the time.
Thanks for the great tips Ashray. I scored a Peru visa in Santiago. The process was easy, but I am so glad to hear that a US visa would now suffice to enter Peru. I also wrote about my visa experience and have linked your article. Have a look :)
Need your help. WhatsApp number. I am stuck in Venezuela
I am working in New Zealand and want to visit peru for my friends wedding may be just for 2 weeks. I am from India and have valid visa to stay in NEw Zealand. Do I need to have Peruvian visa or any other document which I can enter peru ?
Yeah you’ll need a Peruvian visa. New Zealand doesn’t seem to be on the list of exceptions that allow you to enter without a visa.
Re: Visitor Visa to Peru
I visited Peru in July, 2019. As an Indian passport holder, living in the US as a permanent resident, visitor visa will be issued upon arrival. But please remember, this applies to the Indian permanent residents in the US, issued at least six months prior to the date of travel.
Peruvians are very warm and welcoming. Enjoyed visiting places on the regular route, Cusco, Lake Titicaca and Lima. Will visit again to see other great places.
I have been referring to your blog for many tips and it has been very informative so far. Thanks for writing all the details. I had a couple of queries related to visa and entry into countries. We are a couple from India visiting 4 SA countries – Chile, Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador starting next week.
1. Chile allows entry for US B1/B2 visa holders starting this April and we wish to enter with our US visas. Is it mandatory to possess an exit ticket out of Chile (next country is Bolivia) especially since we do not hold a Bolivian visa (we plan to get it at Santiago or worst case fly to La Paz for a VOA) and plan to travel overland from San Pedro De Atacama to Uyuni.
Would you know how strict they are about the tickets and Bolivian Visa?
We didn’t find any bus companies that provide online tickets between these countries.
2. We have a similar problem entering Ecuador as well from Peru. We plan to do overland and didn’t find any reliable bus tickets that we can show while entering Peru. Is this mandatory since we can enter using our US visa and technically not applying for a Peruvian Visa
3. I read in the comments that Bolivian embassy in Santiago is quite friendly, would they insist on tickets showing entry to Bolivia? If yes we will be forced to book a flight from Iquique to La Paz and miss out on the salt flats!
Appreciate if you could help us out with this. Thank you in advance!
Keep Writing and Safe Travels to both of you!
I really liked your blog and it certainly helps clarify all the initial questions regarding trip planning to South America. I just got the standard visitor UK visa (6 months) on my Indian passport which is valid from the 19th October 2019 and is valid through 19th March 2020. However, i arrive in UK post the 24th of September 2019 and head to Peru post 2nd October. Will I be eligible for visa free arrival to Peru considering that my UK visa validity will be 166 days – which is just shy of 6 months? Thanks so much in advance.
I would like to know
My girl friend is in peru and we want to get marry
So how will I get a visa to marry her
I’m from India