New Colombian Visas for the New 12 months
Be sure to perceive the brand new guidelines, even in the event you’re a long run resident.
The visa course of in Colombia has modified just lately, making visas extra stratified and offering a number of extra choices, most notably for digital nomads. The preliminary teething issues, corresponding to a shutdown interval and a few gremlins within the on-line system, are actually primarily smoothed out.
Colombia nonetheless has three lessons of visa: V, M, and R:
- V (visitante) visas are for brief time period guests to Colombia, together with vacationers from some nations
- M (migrante) visas are for extra long-term international folks, usually working in direction of residency
- R (residente) visas are for long-term international residents in Colombia.
It’s value remembering that few folks enter Colombia on a vacationer visa however what’s generally known as Permiso de Ingresar, which is visa-free entry. That’s dealt with by Migración Colombia moderately than the Cancillería (basically the Overseas Ministry).
Alan Gongora of Langon Colombia, the main Colombian visa help firm, spoke to us on the finish of final 12 months to undergo among the key adjustments. He’s sceptical that immigration coverage is a excessive precedence for the Petro authorities, saying “plenty of these guidelines are advert hoc and natural.” He factors out that “plenty of what they’re making an attempt to do on a regular basis is professionalise the system. The extra methods they should verify data, the extra they’re able to be extra skilled. For instance, plenty of these purposes now require a legal verify.”
That’s commonplace in lots of different nations, after all, and neither is well being checking, particularly post-pandemic. Alan thinks that is extra attention-grabbing, as “plenty of retirees are coming to Colombia, so [the Cancillería] are increasingly more targeted on each common and psychological well being points. An increasing number of we’re getting the query, ‘If I’m a foreigner and never in one of the best well being, will I be denied?’ The following level is the higher deal with psychological well being. That’s one thing we’ve been seeing over the past six months or so.” He says it’s a public coverage concern, as there have been points with migrants who’ve army backgrounds. “It’ll be difficult to get a visa with critical well being issues.”
Learn extra: Dos and Don’ts for Colombian visa purposes
Transferring tides of Colombian visas
He’s optimistic within the brief time period, saying that he suspects the bugs within the system will go away over the following six months or so. He explains that Colombia remains to be uncertain as to the place they’re going long-term with immigration, however that funding isn’t a precedence. “I’ve a sense,” he says, “that early on they have been making an attempt to draw international funding and that was an enticement, however the market has matured sufficient that they don’t must incentivise folks to get international direct funding.”
He factors out that there could also be additional adjustments on account of inflation and so forth. “They’re targeted on journey. They see tourism as one of many development industries however they’re much less targeted on long run migrants. They’ve by no means seen themselves as a mecca for folks coming and staying in Colombia, at the least not historically.” He says that amongst 1000’s of purposes yearly, they solely fail with round ten, which is fairly constant through the years. That mentioned, he additionally warns that individuals who didn’t match into apparent classes earlier than could have worry and fewer choices because it professionalises. “If you happen to don’t match right into a class it’s going to be actually difficult,” he mentioned.
“The one I believe most individuals are going to be fascinated with,” says Alan, “is the deal with the Digital Nomad visa. Though it’s just one visa class, that’s going to essentially change how migration occurs in Colombia. It’s as much as two years, it’s a V visa, which gained’t get you residency, nevertheless it’s nonetheless a great way for somebody to reach and keep for some time.” As a brand new visa, it’s not clear how purposes will work in practise, however Alan says it’s fairly broad and many individuals will qualify for it. “In a short time, it will likely be one of the vital well-liked visas,” he summarises.
Modifications to funding visas, rentisa visa, and conjugal visas
Funding visas, however, have been “one among two that have been completely demoted. It’s not a residency visa,” he says. “The opposite is the rentista visa, which I name the belief fund infants visa. So long as you have got some money, you may keep and it was an M visa, may get you residency. Now not.” He connects this to the de-emphasis on direct funding and presumably a political angle.
Conjugal visas have additionally modified. “Earlier than you possibly can get married, have a civil or non secular ceremony and you possibly can get a wedding visa. Or you possibly can simply get a unión libre, a typical regulation marriage, and so they have been handled simply the identical. The primary possibility is months of paperwork and notarising, the union libre you simply want a passport. So the overwhelming majority of marriage visas have been unión libre. Not any extra.” Now, unión libre holders have to attend a 12 months earlier than making use of for a wedding visa. It would nonetheless be an M visa, however it would solely be a 12 months lengthy anyway. Full marriages stay the identical as earlier than.
Residency visas have seen some adjustments too, with some backdating. All residency visas, no matter date of concern and together with outdated everlasting residency, are actually thought of to be up to date R visas. Which means holders should apply for a traspaso each 5 years, simply as if that they had been issued an R visa just lately. There’s a two-year window for outdated visa holders, so you have got some respiration area. Nonetheless, watch out to not get caught out. It is perhaps smart to consider doing the traspaso in 2023 to get it out of the way in which. After all, cédulas must be up to date accordingly as nicely.
If you happen to want a brand new visa and need to get began on an utility, you should go to the Cancellería web site and comply with the directions there. It’s bilingual and comparatively self-explanatory, however a number of suggestions: put aside loads of time, disable adblockers in your browser and be sure that your pictures are small-sized, utilizing a web-based instrument if crucial. When you have uncommon circumstances or discover the method tough, discuss to Langon Colombia or different visa specialists for additional recommendation. Alan’s high suggestion for visa purposes? “Persistence,” he jokes, “a lot of endurance. But in addition be very clear as to what you need to do in Colombia. The exercise you need to do will decide your visa technique.”