Unless you are a visa-exempt national, you will need a Chile visa to travel to Chile. The Chilean government has made the process of obtaining a Chile visa easy and smooth, allowing you to apply online from your own home.
The type of Chilean visa you have to apply for depends on the reason you are traveling.
Who Needs a Chile Visa?
Certain nationals are free to travel to Chile with simply their passport (and sometimes only an ID card) for stays of up to 90 days. Nationals of those countries are not required to apply for a Chile visa prior to traveling, but they will receive a Tourist Card from the immigration authorities upon their arrival.
All other nationals who are not Chile visa-exempt have to apply for a visa before they are allowed to travel to Chile.
Please click here to see whether you need a Chile visa.
What are the Types of Chile visa?
The most common types of Chile visa are:
- Chile Tourist Visa issued to foreign nationals for the purpose of tourism for stays of 30-90 days.
- Chile Student Visa issued to foreign nationals who want to pursue their studies in Chile. You must be enrolled/accepted in a Chilean educational institution before you travel.
- Chile Work visa, issued to foreign nationals who have found employment in Chile. You need to have an already existing work contract with a Chilean company or a foreign company that operates in Chile.
- Chile Temporary Residence Visa, issued to foreign nationals who have family ties in Chile, want to make an investment or are considered of advantage to the Chilean economy. It is issued for a maximum duration of 1 year.
- Chile Working Holiday Visa issued to young nationals of Australia, Canada, and New Zealand who want to partake in the Working Holiday Programme.
Chile Visa Requirements
When applying for a Chilean visa, you must have several supporting documents, such as:
- Copies of your passport pages, including personal information, issue/expiry date, and any previous visas.
- Your passport must be valid for at least six more months.
- Proof of legal status in your country of residence, if applicable (eg. if you are a Permanent Resident in a country other than your country of origin, include a copy of your PR card).
- One digital passport-size picture:
- It must be taken in a studio (professionally taken)
- It must have a plain white or off-white background
- It must be colored
- It must show you clearly and with a neutral facial expression
- It must be 4.5 x 4.5 cm (2 inches x 2 inches) in size
- You must not wear hats or headgear which cover your hair/hairline or face.
- You must wear plain, day to day clothes.
- You must remove your glasses.
- Flight itinerary and reservation.
- Hotel reservation/proof of accommodation.
- Bank statements from the past three months.
- A letter explaining the reasons you are traveling.
- Letter of invitation (if applicable)
You have to attach the documents in PDF format on the online Chile visa application service. You must name the documents accordingly. For example, if you are attaching your flight reservation, name the document “YourLastNameFlightReservation”.
Additionally, you must have originals of all the documents you uploaded when you visit the nearest Chile consulate to obtain your visa.
Keep in mind that this is not an exhaustive list of requirements. You will receive a checklist when you make your online application. Furthermore, additional documents may be required based on your purpose of travel, such as for work or study.
Chile Visa Requirements for Minors Under 18 Years of Age
If a minor is traveling to Chile, they must also have the following documents for their visa application and for when they arrive in Chile:
- Birth certificate.
- A notarized written authorization to travel from the parent/s or legal guardian/s if the child is traveling alone or with someone other than the parent.
- Notarized permission from the other parent or legal guardian, if the child is traveling with only one parent/guardian.
Additionally, the child must leave with the same adult they entered the country with or hold an authorization signed by both parents.
When to Apply for a Chile visa?
You must apply for a Chile visa at least 30 days before you intend to travel. The Chilean authorities will not accept applications which are submitted within 30 days of traveling and they do not have a rushed application process option.
Chile Visa Application
Chile has digitized the visa application process, but in some cases, you may be allowed to apply in person at a Chilean Consulate as well. You will have to contact them to find out. Additionally, foreigners requesting a diplomatic/official visa have to apply in person as well.
You can apply for a Chile visa online through this Chilean Ministry of Foreign Affairs website. After you submit your online application, you must visit the nearest Chile Consulate to receive the visa on your passport. During the initial phase of the online application, you will be informed of the location where you must submit your passport (ie. the Consulate in charge of handling your application*).
*Sometimes, you may have to collect your Chile visa in another country. Check to see whether they accept passport submissions by mail/courier. If they do, make sure to mail it by a trusted and secure method.
The Chile visa application process is as follows:
- Start the online Chile visa application.
- Answer all the questions.
- Attach electronic copies of all the required documents.
- Wait for the visa to be processed.
- Show up at the consulate/embassy.
- Pay the Chile visa fee. You only have to pay a fee if your visa application is approved.
- Get your Chile visa.
Start the online application
Once you access the Chile online visa application website, you can select the language you want to complete your application in. Next, you will see several buttons. To start your application, select “Visa Application” and you will be redirected to your online application form.
Answer the questions
First, you have to register by giving your nationality and age, the details of your trip and the type of passport you have. Once you complete this section, you will receive a Verification Code which you can use to go back to your application later.
Next, it’s the identification information section, which asks your name, gender, country of birth, etc.
On the third section, you have to answer details about your family, such as your parents’ names, nationalities and address/es.
On the “General Description” passage, you must answer details about your physical appearance (eyes, hair, skin, height) and your educational and professional background.
Then, you must select the answer regarding the activity you will take up in Chile from a dropdown box and answer the required questions.
Attach the copies of documents
Finally, you will be redirected to the “Attach Documents” section, where you must unload the electronic files of the required documents.
After you complete each section, you can press “Save and Continue” to proceed to the following section. You can also go back and exit the application to complete it later. This is useful because, in the interim, you can obtain the required documents and upload them.
Wait for the visa to be processed
The Chile visa application is processed in about 15 to 20 working days. However, you should also take into account the date when your appointment at the Chilean consulate will be set.
This is why it is advisable to apply for a Chile visa between 30 and 60 days before you intend to travel to Chile.
Show up at the consulate/embassy
If your visa is approved, you visit the Chilean Consulate handling your application and submit your passport and originals of all the required documents.
Chile Visa Fees
There is no standard set of visa fees for Chile. The fee prices can range from around $50 to $150, depending on your nationality and the type of visa you are applying for (a single entry visa is cheaper than a multiple entry visa, for example).
When you submit your online application, you will be informed about how much you have to pay.
However, the Chilean authorities do not require you to pay for the visa upfront. You only have to pay the Chile visa fee at the Chilean Consulate after you receive your visa. The Chile Consulate officials will affix your visa to your passport. You can use it to travel to Chile within 90 days.
How Long is a Chile Visa Valid For?
A Chile tourist visa is issued for a period of up to 90 days, based on the decision of the Chilean authorities.
Can I Extend a Chile visa?
If you wish to remain in Chile past the expiry of your visa, you can apply for a visa extension at the Departamento de Extranjería del Ministerio del Interior (Department of Immigration of the Ministry of Interior Affairs) in Santiago.
Visa extensions are issued at the discretion of the Chilean authorities on a case-to-case basis.
How to enter Chile if you Don’t Need a Visa?
Foreign nationals who do not need to apply for a Chile visa prior to traveling can obtain a Tourist Card (Tarjeta de Turismo) after they arrive in the country.
The Chilean immigration authorities at the airport/point of entry will issue you with the Tarjeta de Turismo, which comes in an A5 paper format. You must keep this document for the entire duration of your stay because you will need to show it to the immigration authorities once you depart the country.
What Happens if I Overstay in Chile?
Once you arrive in Chile, regardless of whether you are a visa-required national or not, you will receive a Tourist Card which states the number of days you are allowed to stay in the country. A tourist card is issued for up to 90 days but can be issued for less.
If you overstay the permitted time, you will have to pay a fine. You cannot leave the country unless you have paid it, so you should do so before you arrive at the airport.
You can pay the fine at the Departamento de Extranjería (Department of Foreigners) in Chile. If you arrive at the airport before paying the fine, the immigration authorities will confiscate your passport and send you back. In this case, it is an entirely longer and more complicated process to pay the fine and get the passport back.