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Colombia Removes PCR Test Requirement For Tourists

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Effective November 4, 2020, the government of Colombia has removed the PCR testing requirement for entry into the country.

Previously, all arrivals (both foreigners and nationals returning home) were required to show proof of a negative PCR test, taken no longer than 96 hours prior to arrival into Colombia. As of November 4th, that requirement has been removed, making entry into Colombia much easier.

sunset in cartagena colombia

Colombia officially reopened their borders for tourism on September 21st after being closed for over 6 months due to the pandemic.

colombia

The removal does come as a surprise, as Colombia has seen an uptick in active cases since reopening.

colombia second wave cases

cases in Colombia: Worldometers

Travel to and from the nation is getting more attractive over the past few weeks, as restrictions and travel alerts have recently decreased.

On October 30th the US State Department dropped its level 4 ‘Do Not Travel’ advisory for Colombia to a level 3 ‘Reconsider Travel’. Now, with the PCR testing requirement dropped, more travelers will likely choose Colombia as a prime destination this winter.

colombia town

Many Caribbean and Latin American countries have been dropping their PCR test requirements over the last few weeks.

Mexico really started the trend, never requiring PCR testing for arrivals. After seeing the success in the re-bound of their tourism, the Dominican Republic soon followed suit, removing their PCR testing requirement on September 15th, with Costa Rica following on October 26th, and now Colombia as of November 4th.

There are still a few entry requirements in place that travelers to Colombia still need to be aware of.

Check-Mig Form

All passengers need to fill out the online migration form called  “Check-Mig” between 24 hours and 1 hour before the flight. This form will help pre-screen arrivals and speed up time at customs.

Heath Screening

All passengers will undergo a health screening upon arrival that mostly includes temperature and symptom checks.

San Andres Colombia - now open for tourism

Colombia’s Ministry of Health has some further advice for all travelers coming into Colombia, especially since the testing requirement has now been removed.

  • A mask is mandatory throughout the entire flight and in the airport terminal for every passenger over 2 years of age
  • Passengers are asked to refrain from using the bathroom or getting up from their seats on the flight as much as possible
  • Tourists are asked to self-monitor throughout their stay and report any symptoms to health officials
  • Follow social distancing markers and instructions while in the country
Bogota reopening flights and tourism

What is slightly confusing at this time is the press release issued by The Ministry of Health mentions that tourists will be monitored for 14 days after arrival, but there is no link nor official requirement to have a contact tracing app or similar reporting device.

The press release states: “It is provided in the new administrative act that passengers must respond to the strict tracking and monitoring that will be carried out by the EPS or the Secretary of Health of the jurisdiction where they stay, therefore this measure applies to both nationals and foreigners.”

This suggests that perhaps a contact tracing app will become mandatory, but at this time, no such requirement exists. Currently, tourists are just asked to report any symptoms to local authorities should they develop during their stay.

covid in bogota colombia

Before the pandemic hit, Colombia saw a record number of tourists in 2019, totaling over 4.5 million visitors. Now with the removal of the PCR test requirement, Colombia could start to recover a few of those numbers throughout the winter season.

cartagena colombia

Read More: See all of Colombia’s Covid-19 Entry Requirments, which countries in Latin America have reopened for tourism and companies that offer travel insurance that covers covid.

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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling.  Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories


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Roy Torres

Thursday 3rd of December 2020

Hi Kashlee have seen anything that indicates the PCR testing will again be required? I'm leaving in 1 week and I'm keeping my fingers crossed because near where I live there is no place that can do a test with results in less than 1 week.

Kashlee Kucheran

Friday 4th of December 2020

Update: It seems that the judge ruled for PCR tests and the Ministry of Health over-turned the ruling, creating a LOT of internal conflict. As of today, the PCR test has not been reinstated, but that does not mean it won't be in the coming days. We will have to wait and see the outcome of this little tussle between officals.

Kashlee Kucheran

Thursday 3rd of December 2020

Hi Roy - I am going to look into this in-depth over the next 24 hours and hopefully share my findings

David

Sunday 29th of November 2020

It looks like effective 12/1 they are going to require a PCR test again. (link)

Outcome on Tuesday but FYI for your blog.

Kashlee Kucheran

Sunday 29th of November 2020

Hi David - Thank you so much for sending in this tip! We will keep a close eye on it over the next few days to see if it in fact comes into effect.

gecko

Sunday 29th of November 2020

Hi, thanks for this positive info. I have a question for anyone familiar with the situation: is the movement and transportation between cities/provinces open and unrestricted? Masks are fine, as long as we can live our lives. Thanks.

Yazmine Ortiz

Friday 13th of November 2020

Hi. Thanks for this info. Do you know what it's like when you leave Colombia? Back to USA. Is there a covid test required? Thank you

Kashlee Kucheran

Friday 13th of November 2020

It depends on the state you are flying to, each one has different rules. You'll have to look up the specific state, but most of them do NOT have a test requirement

quasimodo

Tuesday 10th of November 2020

thanks for the good news!