Travel to Central and South America: A Reopening Timeline, Country by Country

Crowds Line Up at Caixa Economica Federal to Receive the Second Installment of the Urgent Government Benefit Due to the Coronavirus (COVID - 19) Pandemic
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COVID-19 surged in many parts of South and Central America, where borders were closed and most commercial flights to the region were halted. While some countries remain closed, many others have reopened for international tourism. American travelers are welcome in most countries, so long as they can meet the testing and quarantine requirements for entry.

Read on for a country-by-country listing of border status, quarantine restrictions, and more information on travel throughout Central and South America.

Argentina

U.S. citizens are allowed to enter Argentina as long as they can show proof of vaccination and a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours. Another PCR test will be required for all travelers on their fifth day in Argentina. Before flying, travelers must also complete a sworn statement online. Any unvaccinated traveler, including minor children, entering Argentina must quarantine for seven days. All travelers arriving from any African country will also be required to take an antigen test on arrival and quarantine for 14 days.

Belize

U.S. citizens and all other foreign tourists are allowed to enter Belize with different entry requirements for each kind of traveler. Everyone traveling to Belize must show proof of vaccination or a negative PCR test taken within 96 hours. Tourists will only have the option of using approved Gold Standard hotels and tour operators and transportation will be pre-organized. After February 15, all visitors will be required to purchase health insurance.

Bolivia

Bolivia’s quarantine and travel restrictions vary from city to city. All travelers will need to have proof of medical insurance and a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours before their flight, depending on the traveler's origin. Regardless of vaccination status, a minimum 10-day home quarantine is required. All travelers will need to disclose the location of their quarantine in a sworn statement and take a PCR test on the seventh day of the quarantine period.

Brazil

Foreigners, including U.S. citizens, are allowed to fly to Brazil. All travelers will be required to show a negative PCR test, however, unvaccinated travelers will be required to quarantine for five days and must be tested again at the end of the five days. All travelers must also complete the Traveler Health Declaration before checking into their flight.

Chile

Chile reopened to foreign tourists in October. All travelers will need to show proof of vaccination, complete the Affidavit of Travelers, and apply for a Mobility Pass, which could take up to four weeks to process. All travelers will be PCR tested on arrival and must quarantine at a hotel or private residence until they get a negative result back.

Non-resident foreigners arriving from South Africa, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, Lesotho, Eswatini, or Mozambique will not be allowed to enter Chile.

Colombia

All travelers above the age of 18 will need to be fully vaccinated to enter Colombia in addition to completing the online health form within 48 hours of boarding. Travelers who are not yet fully vaccinated, but have had at least one dose, can show a negative PCR test, taken within 72 hours, as an alternative.

Costa Rica

Costa Rica has opened up to all U.S. citizens and it is no longer necessary to show a negative test or quarantine. Only unvaccinated travelers are required to show proof of medical insurance and complete an online epidemiological form. Costa Rica's immigration officials have the authority to determine the length of any visitor's stay as it corresponds to the coverage dates of their insurance policy.

Ecuador Continues On Alert For Coronavirus
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Ecuador

Ecuador is open for all foreign tourists, but travelers will need to provide a vaccination card and a negative PCR test taken within three days before their arrival, or proof of recovery from COVID-19. Travelers presenting symptoms will be tested on arrival. If a traveler tests positive, they must isolate for 10 days. To visit the Galapagos, tourists will need either proof of vaccination or a negative test was taken within 72 hours of departure in addition to their transit control card. As of December 1, any traveler arriving from South Africa, Botswana, Egypt, Mozambique, Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Eswatini, or Namibia will not be allowed to enter Ecuador.

Guatemala

All foreign nationals, including U.S. citizens, will be allowed to enter Guatemala as long as they can show proof of vaccination and a negative test taken within 72 hours of arrival. There is no quarantine requirement. Guatemala has restricted travel from South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Mozambique, Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Egypt, and Eswatini.

Honduras

U.S. citizens are allowed to enter Honduras but if they are not vaccinated, they will need to show a negative test taken within 72 hours. Only travelers showing symptoms will be required to quarantine. All travelers must also complete the immigration pre-check form and should print out their confirmation before departing for Honduras.

Nicaragua

The Nicaraguan government does not have any travel bans in place and most airlines have resumed service. U.S. citizens are allowed to enter Nicaragua if they can show a negative test result and do not need to quarantine if they are not showing symptoms.

Panama

Vaccinated travelers only need to show proof of vaccination to enter Panama. However, unvaccinated travelers from the U.S. must submit a negative PCR test before flying or they will be tested at the airport and required to quarantine for at least 72 hours, even if the results return negative. All travelers must sign an online affidavit before checking into their flight.

Panama has suspended entry from the following countries: South Africa, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, and Malawi.

Peru

Peruvian airports have reopened for international travel between Peru and the U.S. Regardless of vaccination status, all travelers over the age of 12 will need to show proof of vaccination or a negative test taken within 72 hours of their flight and sign an affidavit of health. U.S. citizens are not required to quarantine.

Uruguay

U.S. citizens may now enter Uruguay with proof of vaccination and a negative test taken within 72 hours. Unvaccinated travelers may enter, but they will be required to self-quarantine for at least seven days. On arrival, travelers will undergo a health screening and must present proof of health insurance in addition to completing the Online Health Declaration Form.

Venezuela

Americans with a visa are allowed to enter without quarantining but will need a negative PCR test taken within 48 hours of arrival.

Article Sources
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  1. U.S. Embassy in Argentina. "COVID-19 Information." January 12, 2022.

  2. U.S. Embassy in Belize. "COVID-19 Information." December 7, 2021.

  3. Belize Tourism Board. “Belize COVID-19 Travel Updates." August 9, 2021.

  4. U.S. Embassy in Bolivia. "COVID-19 Information." December 28, 2021.

  5. U.S. Embassy & Consulates in Brazil. "COVID-19 Information." January 13, 2022.

  6. U.S. Embassy in Chile. “COVID-19 Information.” January 13, 2022.

  7. Chile.Travel. "Requirements for Entering Chile." January 17, 2022.

  8. U.S. Embassy in Colombia. "COVID-19 Information." January 7, 2022.

  9. U.S. Embassy in Costa Rica. "COVID-19 Information." January 11, 2022.

  10. U.S. Embassy & Consulate in Ecuador. "COVID-19 and Travel Information." December 27, 2021.

  11. U.S. Embassy in Guatemala. "COVID-19 Information." January 10, 2022.

  12. U.S. Embassy in Honduras. "COVID-19 Information." January 7, 2022.

  13. U.S. Embassy in Nicaragua. "COVID-19 Information." January 12, 2022.

  14. U.S. Embassy in Panama. "COVID-19 Panama Information." December 9, 2021.

  15. U.S. Embassy in Peru. "COVID-19 Information." January 7, 2022.

  16. U.S. Embassy in Uruguay. “COVID-19 Information. November 24, 2021.

  17. U.S. Embassy, Venezuela. "COVID-19 Information." January 12, 2022.

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