Bolivia visa requirements for some foreign citizens traveling to Bolivia have changed and many of you must now apply for either a tourist visa or a specific purpose visa.
Use a tourist visa if you plan to visit only. If you plan to live, retire, study, volunteer or work in Bolivia for more than 90 days you will need a specific purpose visa to enter the country.
Not all tourists need a tourist visa. It depends on the treaties that exist between Bolivia and your country. However, ALL foreigners who plan to apply for residency must obtain a specific purpose visa.
Need orientation on residency? 20 Questions!
If you are not in Bolivia yet, and are just researching Bolivia as a possible place to move, you can submit your questions about getting residency in Bolivia to get responses from BoliviaBella Expat Services by email. We will answer your first 3 questions at no cost. After this, if you require an in-depth analysis or further orientation, you can submit up to 20 questions for a flat fee of $30. Please note that Expat Services cannot help you obtain the visa you need to travel to Bolivia, as you must either obtain your visa prior to travel, or will be issued one upon arrival.
We provide assistance with residency, not tourist visas.
Information about the Bolivia tourist visa
Laws about Bolivia visa requirements for tourists, and the pre-requisites for obtaining one, vary depending on your country of origin because Bolivia applies the "rule of reciprocity". Citizens of some countries need a tourist visa, while others do not. Contact the Bolivian consulate nearest you to be sure you understand the laws concerning Bolivia visas for citizens from your country prior to entering Bolivia.
The information on this page should be used only as a general guideline. Use the blue search box to your right, to see Bolivia visa requirements for your country.
Foreigners have been classified into 3 main tourist visa groups. Click the links below to see which group your country is in. Search for the name of your country in Spanish.
GROUP 1 countries that DO NOT need a Bolivia tourism visa.
GROUP 2 countries that DO need a tourist visa but do not need to get it via a Bolivian consulate (you can get it upon arrival).
GROUP 3 countries that DO need a tourist visa and must get it in the country of origin from a Bolivian consulate, prior to traveling.
Common questions about the Bolivia tourist visa
What if I didn't know I needed a tourist visa? If you can prove that you fulfill all the requirements to obtain the tourist visa you may possibly, and exceptionally, be issued a tourist visa upon arrival.
How long can I stay in Bolivia on a tourist visa? For however long your visa allows, but no more than 90 days per year. No tourist may stay in Bolivia longer than 90 days per year. This is strictly enforced.
How long can I stay in Bolivia if I don't need a visa? Even if no tourist visa is required of you, the 90-day per year rule applies to all tourists. Your entry date will be stamped in your passport upon arrival.
Why was I given only 30 days, not 90? If you obtain your visa upon arrival, officials at borders and airports may stamp your passport for 30 days. Tell them you plan to stay longer, or extend it at Immigration.
What if I need to stay longer than 90 days? If you need to stay in Bolivia longer than 90 consecutive days, enter the country on a specific purpose visa and apply for residency.
What if I overstay my 90-day tourist visa? Tourists from all three groups (including those who don't need a visa) will be fined Bs. 20 per day if they stay in Bolivia past 90 days per year.
If I was given a 30-day stamp and overstay it, will I be fined? If you need more than 30 days, you must request an extension at a local Immigration office. If you don't, you will be fined.
How many times per year can I enter Bolivia? Tourists may enter Bolivia up to three times per year as long as they do not remain in Bolivia more than a total of 90 days per year.
Information about the specific purpose visa
This is the option you will choose if you are planning to live in Bolivia for a length of time greater than 90 days per year, no matter what country you are from, and even if tourists from your country don't need a visa. This visa is valid for 30 days, not 90 days. This means that once you arrive in Bolivia you have only 30 days to process your application for residency.
If you arrived on the correct (specific purpose) visa, Expat Services can help you process your application for residency in Santa Cruz. Once you've turned in your residency application, you can remain in the country until you've received your residency response from Immigration.
It is extremely important that you enter on this visa if you plan to live in Bolivia. Citizens of most (but not all) countries are not allowed to change migratory status once they are here. This means you cannot apply for residency if you have entered on a tourist visa. Immigration has, in some - but not all - cases, allowed foreigners to pay a fine to obtain a specific purpose visa in Bolivia. However, it is a very large fine, and a lengthy process. Visit our Bolivia Visa Requirements Forum to post additional questions or to share your experiences.
Requirement for a yellow fever vaccine
Biministerial Resolution 01/2007 states that everyone over 12 months of age must have a yellow fever vaccination card or immunization certificate to enter Bolivia. However, according to the Vacuna Contra la Fiebre Amarilla document, found on the same website, Ministerial Resolution 0028 was passed on 21 January 2009, whereby the yellow fever shot will be required only of foreigners who will be traveling to zones at risk of yellow fever (there's a list of those zones) and they must have the yellow fever vaccine a minimum of 10 days prior to entering Bolivia. This page explains the yellow fever virus, causes, symptoms, and treatment plus where and how to get the yellow fever vaccine, who needs the vaccine, the Bolivian vaccination card requirement, and more.
August 2012: Some travelers are telling us, and some Bolivia consulates overseas are telling travelers, that immigration authorities are no longer requiring the yellow fever vaccination certificate.
Disclaimers regarding the info on this page
1. Before you travel, check with the Bolivian consulate nearest you as immigration laws can change. Use the information on this page as a general guideline only. It should not be understood as legal advice. All of the above information was obtained from the Bolivian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website, emailed questions to the Ministry of Foreign affairs, several websites of Bolivia consulates overseas, and personal discussions with Bolivian immigration officials.
2. Each person/case is handled individually by immigration officials in Bolivia and consular agencies overseas. No two persons' situations are identical. Therefore, relying solely on information posted by other travelers is not a good idea. Get your information directly from a Bolivian official or authority whenever possible.
3. When you read through our Bolivia visa requirements forum, keep the above in mind AND also take a look at the dates next to the messages posted by other travelers. What may have been true one or two years ago, may not apply now. Enter your own new message or question if you cannot find the information you need.
Processing your Bolivia travel visa
Click here to Locate a Bolivian Consulate near you to find out what the visa requirements will be for your specific case. Alternately, there are companies that assist travelers in obtaining travel visas and passports. If you don't feel comfortable applying for a travel visa yourself, try contacting VisaHQ.com for a Bolivia Visa online.
Expat Servicescannot assist you in obtaining a Bolivia travel visa for entry, as you must do this prior to, or upon arrival. However, if you are moving to Bolivia we can assist you with your application for residency, househunting, translation, and many other relocation and destination services in Santa Cruz. We established this company as a result of the many requests for assistance we receive online from expatriates who are planning to, or already do, live in Bolivia.