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Colombia

Colombia
Republic of Colombia
Reconsider travel due to crime and terrorism. Exercise increased caution due to civil unrest and kidnapping. Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Reissued with updates to high-risk areas.

Reconsider travel due to crime and terrorism. Exercise increased caution due to civil unrest and kidnapping. Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Do Not Travel to:

  • Arauca, Cauca (excluding Popayán), and Norte de Santander departments due to crime and terrorism.
  • The Colombia-Venezuela border region due to crime, kidnapping, and risk of detention when crossing into Venezuela from Colombia.   

Country Summary: Violent crime, such as homicide, assault, and armed robbery, is widespread. Organized criminal activities, such as extortion, robbery, and kidnapping, are common in some areas.

The National Liberation Army (ELN), Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia - People’s Army (FARC-EP), and Segunda Marquetalia terrorist organizations continue operating and launching attacks in Colombia. They may attack with little or no warning, targeting tourist locations, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, local government facilities, police stations, military facilities, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, parks, major sporting and cultural events, educational institutions, airports, and other public areas. While terrorists have not specifically targeted U.S. citizens, the attacks could result in unintended victims.

Demonstrations occur regularly throughout the country. Large public demonstrations can take place for a variety of political and economic issues. Demonstrations can shutdown roads and major highways, often without prior notice or estimated reopening timelines. Road closures may significantly reduce access to public transportation and may disrupt travel both within and between cities. Nationwide protests in 2021 resulted in fatalities and injuries.

U.S. government employees must adhere to the noted restrictions:

  • U.S. government employees are not permitted to travel by road between most major cities.
  • Colombia’s land border areas are off-limits to U.S. government personnel unless specifically authorized.
  • U.S. government employees may not use motorcycles
  • U.S. government employees may not hail street taxis or use public transportation.

Read the country information page for additional information on travel to Colombia.

If you decide to travel to Colombia:

Arauca, Cauca, and Norte de Santander Departments – Level 4: Do Not Travel

Violent crime, including armed robbery and homicide, is widespread.

Terrorist groups are active in some parts.

The U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens as U.S. government-personnel travel to these areas is severely restricted due to security concerns.

Colombia - Venezuela Border – Level 4: Do Not Travel
U.S. citizens are advised not to travel to the border of Colombia and Venezuela.  U.S. citizens are at risk of detention when crossing into Venezuela from Colombia. The Colombia-Venezuela border is not clearly marked, and U.S. citizens should not go near the border due to the risk of crossing into Venezuela accidentally. U.S. citizens attempting to enter Venezuela without a visa have been charged with terrorism and other serious crimes and detained for long periods.   For more information, see the Venezuela Travel Advisory.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

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Embassy Messages

Alerts

Quick Facts

PASSPORT VALIDITY:


Six months’ validity is strongly recommended.

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:


One page required for entry stamp unless enrolled in Migración Automática, a program for frequent travelers.

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:


Not required for stays 90 days or less.

VACCINATIONS:


Yellow fever vaccination is required for travelers coming from certain countries or visiting certain national parks.

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:


10,000 USD maximum.

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:


10,000 USD maximum.

Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Bogota

Physical Address:  Calle 24 Bis No. 48-50, Bogotá, D.C., Colombia
Mailing address:  Carrera 45 No. 24B-27, Bogotá, D.C. 110111, Colombia
Telephone:  +(57) (601) 275-2000
Emergency after-hours telephone:  +(57) (601) 275-2000 and press 0
Email:  ACSBogota@state.gov

Consulates

U.S. Consular Agency Barranquilla
Calle 77B No. 57-141, Suite 511
Centro Empresarial Las Americas 1, Barranquilla, Atlántico, Colombia
Telephone:  +(57) 605-353-2001 and +(57) 605-369-0149
Emergency after-hours telephone:  +(57) (601) 275-4021
Email:  conagencybarranquilla@state.gov

For hours and services, please visit the U.S. Embassy Bogota website

Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Please visit the Embassy’s COVID-19 page for information on entry/exit requirements related to COVID-19 in Colombia. 

All U.S. citizens who do not also hold Colombian citizenship must present a valid U.S. passport to enter and leave Colombia.  U.S. citizens do not need a Colombian visa for a tourist or business stay of 90 days or less, or for cumulative stays of 180 days or less per calendar year.  Before your 90-day stay expires, you may request an extension of up to 90 additional days from the Colombian immigration authority (Migración Colombia).  You will face a fine if you remain in Colombia longer than allowed, and you may not be able to leave Colombia until the fine is paid.

Any traveler entering with a Colombian visa of any type (as opposed to visa-free entry described above) with more than three months’ validity must register the visa at a Migración Colombia office or online within 15 days of arrival in Colombia or face fines.  You may be denied entry to Colombia if you do not have a return ticket.  Visit the Ministry of Commerce, Industry, and Tourism website for the most current visa information.

Visit the CDC Traveler View website for vaccination information, and the Colombian Ministry of Health website for Yellow Fever vaccination requirements.

Special Entry/Exit Instructions for U.S. Citizens Born in Colombia:  

All Colombian citizens—regardless of dual citizenship—MUST present a valid, non-expired Colombian passport to enter and exit Colombia.  Colombian citizens traveling with non-Colombian passports may be unable to depart the country until they obtain a Colombian passport. 

Be aware that any person born in Colombia or of Colombian parentage may be considered a Colombian citizen, even if never documented as such.  

Be aware as well that all U.S. citizens, regardless of dual citizenship, must present a valid U.S. passport upon returning to the United States.  Persons who are both U.S. and Colombian citizens MUST travel between these countries with both passports, presenting the Colombian passport upon departing Colombia and the U.S. passport upon arrival in the United States. 

Additional Exit Requirements for Minors:  To prevent international child abduction, Colombia has implemented special exit procedures for Colombian children under 18 who depart the country alone, without both parents, or without a legal guardian.   

When exiting the country, a certified copy of the child’s birth certificate, along with a written, signed, and notarized authorization from the absent parent(s) or legal guardian must be presented.  The authorization must be notarized by a Colombian authority and explicitly grant permission for the child to travel alone, with one parent, or with a named third party.  If a parent is deceased, a notarized copy of a death certificate is required.  If one parent has sole custody of the child, that parent may present a custody decree instead of the other parent’s written authorization.  In cases where a Colombian citizen or dual national child has been adopted in a U.S. Court, the adoption decree must be legalized (via an exequatur process) by the Colombian Supreme Court.

U.S. citizens traveling overland must enter Colombia at an official border crossing.  If you do not, you may be fined or jailed.  We strongly advise against entering Colombia overland.  Colombia’s border areas are off-limits to U.S. government employees unless specifically authorized.

Lost or Stolen Passport:  If your U.S. passport is lost or stolen in Colombia, you must obtain a new one before leaving the country.  You can report the loss or theft on the Colombian National Police website.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Colombia.  

Find information on dual nationalityprevention of international child abduction, and customs regulations on our websites.

Safety and Security

Terrorism:  Terrorist groups and those inspired by such organizations are intent on attacking U.S. citizens abroad.  Terrorists are increasingly using less sophisticated methods of attack – including knives, firearms, and vehicles – to more effectively target crowds.  Frequently, their aim is focused on unprotected or vulnerable targets, such as:

  • High-profile public events (sporting events, political rallies, demonstrations, holiday events, celebratory gatherings, etc.).
  • Hotels, clubs, and restaurants frequented by tourists.
  • Places of worship.
  • Schools.
  • Parks.
  • Shopping malls and markets.
  • Public transportation systems (including subways, buses, trains, and scheduled commercial flights). 

In Colombia, the National Liberation Army (ELN), the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia - People’s Army (FARC-EP), and Segunda Marquetalia terrorist organizations continue plotting and executing attacks.  In February 2022 the ELN carried out a three-day armed strike throughout various Colombian departments, committing terrorist attacks against government forces and civilians.  In March 2022 the FARC-EP is believed to have been responsible for carrying out two IED attacks on police establishments in Bogota, killing two children and wounding several other people.

For more information, see our Terrorism page.

Crime:  Crimes and scams against tourists, and those perceived to be wealthy, are common and well-coordinated in urban areas, including in affluent neighborhoods.  Firearms and knives are prevalent in Colombia and often used in muggings and robberies under the threat of violence.  Drive-by motorcyclist snatchings of cell phones, bags, and valuables are extremely common.  Victims are often identified well in advance of the robbery based on visible jewelry, high value wristwatches, and general attire while in public places such as shopping malls, restaurants, and airports.  In August of 2021, several medical tourists visiting with large sums of cash for their medical procedures were robbed shortly after departing the airport and arriving to their hotel.

Additionally, the narco-trafficking group Clan del Golfo held an armed strike in May 2022, over the extradition of its leader to the United States by committing various attacks in northwestern Colombia leading to the death of three civilians and a number of police officers.

ATMs:  Use ATMs inside shopping malls or other protected locations, which are safer from robbery than ATMs on the street.

Taxis:  U.S. government employees are prohibited from hailing taxis on the street due to the risk of assault or robbery.  U.S. citizens have been killed during robberies while using taxis.  Use a dispatch service or cell phone app whenever possible.

Disabling Drugs:  We receive regular reports of criminals using drugs to temporarily incapacitate unsuspecting victims and then rob or assault them.  Scopolamine, a fast-acting incapacitating drug, is often surreptitiously applied to food, drinks, and hand sanitizer vials by criminals to rob or assault their victims.  Victims of scopolamine-related crimes are often targeted in bars, night clubs, or through dating apps.  Avoid leaving food or drinks unattended at a bar or restaurant, and refuse offers of something to eat or drink from a stranger.

Demonstrations:  Protests and demonstrations occur frequently, particularly in Bogota.  They may take place in response to political or economic issues, on politically significant holidays, and during international events.

  • Demonstrations can be unpredictable; avoid areas around protests and demonstrations.
  • Past demonstrations have turned violent.
  • Check local media for updates and traffic advisories.

International Financial Scams:  See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information.

Internet romance and financial scams are prevalent in Colombia.  Scams are often initiated through Internet postings/profiles or by unsolicited emails and letters.  Scammers almost always pose as U.S. citizens who have no one else to turn to for help.  Common scams include:  

  • Romance/Online dating
  • Money transfers
  • Lucrative sales
  • Gold purchase
  • Contracts with promises of large commissions
  • Grandparent/Relative targeting
  • Free Trip/Luggage
  • Lotteries
  • Inheritance notices
  • Work permits/job offers
  • Bank overpayments
  • Posing as U.S. government officials soliciting payment for services.

Victims of Crime:  U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault are encouraged to contact the U.S. Embassy for assistance.  Report crimes to the local police by dialing 123 and contact the U.S. Embassy at +57 (601) 275-2000 or +57 (601) 275-4021 after hours.  Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crimes.

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

We can:

  • Help you find appropriate medical care.
  • Assist you in reporting a crime to the police.
  • Contact relatives or friends with your written consent.
  • Provide general information regarding the victim’s role during the local investigation and following its conclusion.
  • Provide a list of local attorneys.
  • Provide our information on victim’s compensation programs in the United States.
  • Provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution.
  • Help you find accommodation and arrange flights home.
  • Replace a stolen or lost passport.

Domestic Violence:  U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence are encouraged to contact the Embassy for assistance.  Help in domestic violence situations is available, in Spanish, by calling 155 (*155 from a cell phone).

Tourism:  The tourism industry is unevenly regulated, and safety inspections for equipment and facilities do not commonly occur.  Hazardous areas/activities are not always identified with appropriate signage, and staff may not be trained or certified either by the host government or by recognized authorities in the field.  In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is typically available only in or near major cities.  First responders are generally unable to access areas outside of major cities or to provide urgent medical treatment.  U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance.  See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.

Venezuelan Border: The U.S. Department of State has categorized Venezuela as Level 4: Do Not Travel due to crime, civil unrest, poor health infrastructure, kidnapping, and the arrest and detention of U.S. citizens without due process or fair trial guarantees.  U.S. citizens are at risk of detention when crossing into Venezuela from Colombia.  The Colombia-Venezuela border is not clearly marked, and U.S. citizens should not go near the border due to the risk of crossing into Venezuela accidentally and being detained for illegal entry.  If you still choose to travel to Venezuela, do not attempt to enter Venezuela without a visa.  Visas are not available upon arrival.  U.S. citizens attempting to enter Venezuela without a visa have been charged with terrorism and other serious crimes and detained for long periods. The Maduro regime does not notify the U.S. government of the detention of U.S. citizens and the U.S. government is not granted access to those citizens. The U.S. government has extremely limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in Venezuela.

Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties:  You are subject to local laws.  If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from the competent local authorities prior to practicing or operating a business. 

Customs Regulations:  Travelers generally must not enter or exit Colombia while carrying cash or other financial instruments worth more than 10,000 USD.  If you do, you must declare it and be able to prove the legal source of the funds.  We have received reports of customs officials confiscating high-value jewelry that was not declared upon entry.

Colombian law prohibits tourists and business travelers from bringing firearms and ammunition into Colombia.  Colombian law also restricts the importation of plants and animals (or products made from either).

Artifacts:  Colombian law forbids the export of pre-Columbian objects and other artifacts protected by cultural patrimony statutes.  U.S. customs officials are obliged to seize pre-Columbian objects and certain colonial religious artwork brought into the United States.

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the United States, regardless of local law.  For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Arrest Notification:  If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately.  See our webpage for further information.

Penalties for possessing, using, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Colombia are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long pre-trial detention and lengthy prison sentences under harsh conditions, with significant expense and hardship for themselves and their families.  Colombian law may require that released offenders serve a lengthy period of parole in-country, during which the offender is given no housing and may lack permission to work. Family members must often support the offender until the parole period expires.

Colombia uses strict screening procedures to detect narcotics smuggling at its international airports.  Travelers are occasionally questioned, searched, fingerprinted, and/or asked to submit to an abdominal X-ray upon arrival or departure.  Luggage is sometimes damaged during screening procedures. Most airport inspectors do not speak English.

Ayahuasca/Hallucinogens:  Traditional hallucinogens, often referred to as ayahuasca, can be marketed to tourists as “spiritual cleansing,” and typically contain dimethyltryptamine (DMT), a strong psychedelic that is illegal in the United States and many other countries.  Risks to travelers while intoxicated include robbery, assault, illness, or death, often at great distances from reliable medical facilities.  We receive occasional reports of U.S. citizens suffering these consequences.  People claiming to be shamans or spiritual practitioners are neither licensed nor regulated.

Counterfeit and Pirated Goods:  Although counterfeit and pirated goods are prevalent in many countries, they may still be illegal according to local laws.  You may also pay fines or have to give them up if you bring them back to the United States.  See the U.S. Department of Justice website for more information.

Faith-Based Travelers: See the following webpages for details:

LGBTQI+ Travelers:  Colombia has one of the strongest legal frameworks in Latin America defending the rights of LGBTQI+ people; however, in practice protections remain a long way from full enforcement and harassment persists, especially in rural areas.  In many parts of Colombia, violence against trans people exceeds levels of violence against any other members of the LGBTQI+ community.  Criminals do utilize dating apps to target potential victims of theft, so travelers should use caution on such apps.  Certain regions, especially in rural areas, experience higher instances of harassment/violence against LGBTQI+ communities, and most recently there has been an uptick of homicides specifically targeting gay men in Medellín. LGBTQI+ associated and friendly establishments exist mostly in metropolitan areas, especially Cartagena, Medellin, and Bogota.

See our LGBTQI+ Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights report for further details.

Travelers with Disabilities:  The law in Colombia prohibits discrimination against persons with physical or mental disabilities, but the law is not fully enforced.  Social acceptance of persons with disabilities in public is not as prevalent as in the United States.  Many public places and transportation are not adapted to accommodate the needs of persons with disabilities.   The most common types of accessibility may include accessible restroom facilities, ramps, and elevators..  Expect accessibility to be limited in public transportation, lodging, communication/information, and general infrastructure, including sidewalks, intersections, buses, and taxis. There is a significant difference between the capital (and other large cities) and the rest of the country.

Repair and replacement parts for aids/equipment/devices are available. Sign language interpreters or personal assistants are available for hire.

Students:  See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers.

Cruise Ship Passengers:  See our travel tips for Cruise Ship Passengers.

Health

Please visit the Embassy’s COVID-19 page for information on COVID-19 in Colombia. 

For emergency services in Colombia, dial 123 from any mobile phone or land line. 

Ambulance services are widely available in larger cities, but training and availability of emergency responders may be below U.S. standards. Injured or seriously ill travelers may prefer to take a taxi or private vehicle to the nearest major hospital rather than wait for an ambulance.

We do not pay medical bills.  Be aware that U.S. Medicare/Medicaid does not apply overseas.  Most hospitals and doctors overseas do not accept U.S. health insurance.

Medical Insurance:  Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas.  Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments.  See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.  Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information on the type of insurance you should consider before you travel overseas.

We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.

Always carry your prescription medication in original packaging with your doctor’s prescription. Travelers can check with the Embassy of Colombia in the United States to ensure the medication is legal in Colombia.

Vaccinations:  Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  Visit the CDC Traveler View website for vaccination information, and the Colombia Ministry of Health website for Yellow Fever vaccination requirements.  Childhood vaccinations are required by Colombian law for children ages six and under.  Visit the Ministry for Health and Public Safety website for a list of required childhood vaccinations.

Further Health Information:

Air Quality:  Visit AirNow Department of State for information on air quality at U.S. Embassies and Consulates.

The U.S. Embassy maintains a list of doctors and hospitals.  We do not endorse or recommend any specific medical provider or clinic.

Health Facilities in General:

  • Adequate health facilities are available throughout the country, but health care in rural areas may be below U.S. standards.
  • Hospitals and doctors often require payment upfront prior to service or admission.  Credit card payment is frequently, but not always, available.
  • Private hospitals usually require advance payment or proof of adequate insurance before admitting a patient.
  • Medical staff may speak little or no English.
  • Patients bear all costs for transfer to or between hospitals. 
  • Psychological and psychiatric services are limited, even in the larger cities, with hospital-based care only available through government institutions.

Medical Tourism and Elective Surgery:

  • U.S. citizens have suffered serious complications or died during or after having cosmetic or other elective surgery.
  • Medical tourism is a rapidly growing industry. People seeking health care overseas should understand that medical systems operate differently from those in the United States and are not subject to the same rules and regulations.  Anyone interested in traveling for medical purposes should consult with their local physician before traveling and visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information on Medical Tourism. 
  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for information on medical tourism, the risks of medical tourism, and what you can do to prepare before traveling to Colombia.
  • We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation in the event of unforeseen medical complications.
  • Your legal options in cases of malpractice are very limited in Colombia. 
  • Although Colombia has many elective/cosmetic surgery facilities that are on par with those found in the United States, the quality of care varies widely.  If you plan to undergo surgery in Colombia, make sure that emergency medical facilities are available, and that professionals are accredited and qualified.

Pharmaceuticals:

  • Exercise caution when purchasing medication overseas.  Pharmaceuticals, both over the counter and requiring prescription in the United States, are often readily available for purchase with little controls.  Counterfeit medication is common and may prove to be ineffective, the wrong strength, or contain dangerous ingredients.  Medication should be purchased in consultation with a medical professional and from reputable establishments.
  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Food and Drug Administration are responsible for rules governing the transport of medication back to the United States.  Medication purchased abroad must meet their requirements to be legally brought back into the United States. Medication should be for personal use and must be approved for usage in the United States.  Please visit the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Food and Drug Administration websites for more information. 
  • Colombia does not allow the sale of certain psychiatric medications.  Travelers should carry a sufficient supply for their trips.  Please review the Colombian government’s open data website for drug unavailability.

Assisted Reproductive Technology and Surrogacy:

  • If you are considering traveling to Colombia to have a child through the use of assisted reproductive technology (ART) or surrogacy, please see our ART and Surrogacy Abroad page.
  • Although surrogacy agencies/clinics claim surrogacy is legal in Colombia, there is no legal framework for foreigners or same-sex couples to pursue surrogacy in Colombia.  As a result, surrogacy agreements between foreign or same sex intending parents and gestational mothers may not be enforced by Colombian courts.

Water Quality

  • In rural areas, tap water may not be potable.  Bottled water and beverages are generally safe, although you should be aware that many restaurants and hotels serve tap water unless bottled water is specifically requested.  Be aware that ice for drinks may be made using tap water.

Altitude

  • Many cities in Colombia, such as Bogota, are at high altitude.  Be aware of the symptoms of altitude sickness and take precautions before you travel.  Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Travel to High Altitudes.

Adventure Travel

  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Adventure Travel.

General Health:

The following diseases are prevalent:

In Chocó, Nariño, and Córdoba, use the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended mosquito repellents, and sleep under insecticide-impregnated mosquito nets.  Chemoprophylaxis is recommended for all travelers in the Amazon region, even for short stays.

HIV/AIDS:  Travelers should bring medication sufficient for their entire stay.

Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Resources for Travelers regarding specific issues in Colombia.

Air Quality:

  • Air pollution is a problem in several major cities in Colombia.  Consider the impact smog and heavy particulate pollution may have on you and consult your doctor before traveling if necessary.  
  • The air quality varies considerably and fluctuates. People at the greatest risk from particle pollution exposure include:
    • Infants, children, and teens
    • People over 65 years of age 
    • People with lung disease such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema. 
    • People with heart disease or diabetes 
    • People who work or are active outdoors 

Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety:  Due to the security environment in Colombia and poor infrastructure, U.S. government employees and their families are not permitted to travel by road between most major cities.  They also cannot use inter-city or intra-city bus transportation or travel by road outside urban areas at night.  Follow these same precautions.

Road travel in Colombia can be dangerous, especially at night.  Some roads are poorly maintained, or vulnerable to heavy rains and mudslides.  Mountain roads may lack safety features such as crash barriers or guard rails, and conditions are frequently made more treacherous by heavy fog.  Highways are often unmarked and unlit, and do not have signs indicating destinations.  Slow-moving buses and trucks frequently stop in the middle of the road unexpectedly.  In the countryside, livestock is often herded along roads or left to graze on roadsides.  Due to a lack of sidewalks, roads are also used by pedestrians.

The use of motorcycles and bicycles is widespread throughout Colombia.  U.S. government employees may not use motorcycles because of security concerns.

Traffic Laws:  Traffic laws are often ignored and rarely enforced, creating dangerous conditions for drivers and pedestrians.  Seat belts are mandatory for all passengers in a private vehicle.  Car seats are mandatory for children, and a child under ten years old is not permitted to ride in the front seat.  It is against the law to talk on a cellular phone while driving.

If you are involved in an accident, you MUST remain at the scene without moving your vehicle until the authorities arrive.  This rule is strictly enforced and moving a vehicle or leaving the scene of an accident may constitute an admission of guilt under Colombian law.

Public Transportation:  Do not hail taxis on the street.  U.S. government employees may not hail street taxis or use public transportation in Colombia because of security concerns.

See our Road Safety page for more information. Visit the website of the Colombia national authority responsible for road safety, the Instituto Nacional de Vias.

Aviation Safety Oversight:  The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of Colombia’s Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of Colombia’s air carrier operations.  Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

Maritime Travel:  Mariners planning travel to Colombia should also check for U.S. maritime advisories and alerts.  Information may also be posted to the U.S. Coast Guard homeport website and the NGA broadcast warnings.

Tourist Vessels:  Small tourist boats sometimes sink off the northern coast between Cartagena and the nearby islands, particularly in the months of December and January when seas are rough.  U.S. citizens have died in boating accidents.  Check for lifejackets and safety equipment before boarding a tourist vessel.

For additional travel information

International Parental Child Abduction

Review information about International Parental Child Abduction in Colombia.  For additional IPCA-related information, please see the International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act (ICAPRA) report.

 

Last Updated: February 23, 2022

Travel Advisory Levels

Information for Vaccinated Travelers

The CDC's latest guidance on international travel for vaccinated people can be found here.

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Bogota
Calle 24 Bis No. 48-50
Bogotá, D.C. Colombia
Telephone
+(57) (1) 275-2000
Emergency
+(57) (1) 275-2000 and press 0
Fax
No Fax

Colombia Map