Travel.State.Gov > International Travel > Country Information > Paraguay International Travel Information
See the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on Paraguay for information on U.S. - Paraguayan relations.
A passport is required to enter Paraguay. U.S. citizens arriving by air may obtain a "visa en arribo" (visa on arrival) at Silvio Pettirossi International Airport in Asuncion. This is a multiple entry visa with a validity of up to ten years. The current fee is $160, payable in U.S. dollars. Credit cards are not accepted. Border agents generally only accept crisp, new bills that are free of any ink marks, blots, or tears. If paying with $100 denomination bills, series CB and D are not accepted. If not arriving at Silvio Pettirossi International Airport, prior to traveling to Paraguay, you must apply for a visa in person or by secure messenger at the Paraguayan Embassy in Washington, D.C., or the nearest Paraguayan consulate, and pay the fee. Minor children may require a special notarized authorization from Paraguayan authorities to enter and exit the country, when not accompanied by both legal parents/guardians. For additional information regarding your situation and how to obtain this special permit, please visit the Embassy’s website.
To leave Paraguay by air, you must pay an airport departure tax. Some airlines include the Paraguayan airport departure tax in the cost of the airline ticket. It is recommended that you check with the airline in order to determine whether or not the departure tax has been included.
Visit the Embassy of Paraguay website for the most current visa information.
HIV/AIDS restrictions: The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Paraguay.
Security Messages: Messages regarding demonstrations, strikes, and weather-related events are posted on the Embassy’s website.
Terrorism: The U.S. Embassy is not aware of any specific threat to U.S. citizens in Paraguay. Nevertheless, you should remain vigilant at all times while travelling.
Crime: Transnational criminal organizations facilitate the illicit trafficking of arms, narcotics, and other goods in Paraguay, particularly along Paraguay’s eastern border with Brazil, most prominently from Pedro Juan Caballero south to Ciudad del Este, including the Tri-Border Area of Paraguay, Brazil, and Argentina. Coupled with the lack of sufficient police enforcement, the involvement of these organizations heightens violent crime in these areas. The U.S. Embassy in Asuncion requires U.S. government personnel and their family members to provide advance notice and a travel itinerary when traveling outside of the capital, particularly when traveling to Ciudad del Este, or to the departments of San Pedro, Concepcion, Amambay, and Canindeyu.
In addition, kidnappings targeting Paraguayan farming, cattle and police/military entities and their families have occurred in the interior of the country, particularly in the departments of Concepcion and San Pedro. Two victims have remained in captivity between 2-4 years respectively. The government of Paraguay alleges that members of the Paraguayan People’s Army (Ejercito del Pueblo Paraguayo, or EPP), a small, armed paramilitary criminal group operating in the departments of San Pedro and Concepcion, are the perpetrators. These kidnappings are financially and/or politically motivated, and kidnappers have generally selected targets based on their wealth, perceived willingness to pay ransom or ability to impact to certain internal political issues.
U.S. citizens visiting or residing in Paraguay should also avoid large gatherings or events where crowds have congregated to demonstrate, protest, or cause damage as a byproduct of celebrating an event, such as after soccer matches.
Street crime is prevalent in the cities and the number of pick pockets and armed assaults is increasing. Robbers are more regularly using motorcycles to suddenly approach victims with a weapon and demand a wallet or purse, before quickly fleeing.
Thieves have been known to pose as service people (e.g., mailmen, reporters, water meter readers, electrical repairmen, delivery persons, maintenance personnel) to gain access to your home. They sometimes wear uniforms and travel in vans and automobiles with markings that make the vehicle appear official. Do not let such people inside your residence unless you have contacted the service provider directly to verify the appointment.
Victims of Crime:
See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.
Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the Embassy for assistance.
For further information:
Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Penalties for possessing, using, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Paraguay are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines.
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.
Faith-Based Travelers: See the Department of State’s International Religious Freedom Report.
LGBTI Travelers: There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTI events in Paraguay. See our LGBTI Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights Report for further details.
Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance: Paraguayan law prohibits discrimination against persons with physical and mental disabilities in employment, education, access to health care, and the provision of state services, and the government seeks to enforce these prohibitions. Access to buildings, pedestrian paths, and transportation is extremely difficult for persons with disabilities, as mandated accessibility requirements exist but are rarely enforced.
Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers.
We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare does not apply overseas.
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.
We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.
If traveling with prescription medication, check with the government of Paraguay to ensure the medication is legal in Paraguay. Always carry your prescription medication in original packaging with your doctor-issued written prescription.
The following diseases are prevalent:
Vaccinations: Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Further health information:
Road Conditions and Safety: U.S. citizens have been injured and killed in traffic accidents throughout Paraguay. Only minimal standards must be met to obtain a Paraguayan driver’s license, and a driver’s education prior to licensing is not common.
Traffic Laws: Drivers throughout Paraguay routinely ignore traffic regulations. No vehicle insurance is required, and many Paraguayans drive without insurance coverage.
Public Transportation: Public transportation is readily available for urban and intercity travel. Buses vary in maintenance conditions and may not meet U.S. safety standards. Taxis are available and may be called using telephone numbers listed in newspapers. No passenger train service exists. Bicycle travel may not be safe because of traffic and other road hazards.
Most urban streets consist of cobblestones over dirt. Nearly all rural roads are unpaved, and during rainy periods and the rainy season (November-April), they may be impassable. Driving or traveling at night is not advisable outside of Asuncion, due to the presence of pedestrians, animals, or vehicles without proper lighting on the roads.
See our Road Safety page for more information. Visit the website of Paraguay’s national tourist office and national authority responsible for road safety. The Touring and Automobile Club provides some roadside assistance to its members. The club may be contacted in Asuncion by visiting its offices at 25 de Mayo near Avenida Brazil or by calling 210-550 to 210-553. Intercity highway maintenance is not equal to U.S. standards. The privately maintained toll road between Caaguazu and Ciudad del Este and the routes between Asuncion and Encarnacion and Asuncion and Pedro Juan Caballero are in general in good condition. The Trans-Chaco route is in fair condition except for the portion between Mariscal Estigarribia and the Bolivian border, which is unpaved and at times impassable.
Aviation Safety Oversight: As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Paraguay, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the government of Paraguay’s Civil Aviation Authority for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.