Traveler help

Tips, documentation and requirements to travel to Ecuador

Ecuador is a country full of cultural wealth and places to see, so visiting it is highly recommended. However, as with every trip we take, we must take into account the requirements that we must meet and the documentation we will need throughout the process. Therefore, we advise you to read what follows to prepare everything you need and thus be able to travel quietly to this country.

Below you have an index with all the points that we are going to deal with in this article.

Required Documentation

  • Passport: all those tourists who wish to travel to Ecuador will have to carry the valid passport with them; It is highly recommended even for those tourists who come from countries for which it is not required to take it. Minors are included in this group. We recommend bringing at least two photocopies per passenger of the passport. It will also be essential to present it if we make flights within Ecuador.
  • National identity document: If you belong to the Andean Community (CAN), of which Bolivia, Ecuador, Colombia and Peru are members and to which Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Uruguay and Paraguay are associated, you can cross the border just by presenting your national identity document .
Andean Community (CAN)
  • Ticket back to our country of origin: although if we come from Latin American countries (except Mexico, Costa Rica, Honduras and Cuba), from the European Union (EU) or from the United States we do not need a visa, it is very likely that at our entrance to the country they will ask us to teach our Departure ticket in order to show that we leave before the 90 days allowed for tourists.
  • Driving license: The Organic Law of Transportation, Traffic and Road Safety (LOTTTSV) of the Government of Ecuador establishes that Ecuadorian and foreign citizens residing in the country and have a valid driving license, whether professional or non-professional, issued by a government abroad, they have the possibility to exchange said card for their equivalent of the Ecuadorian government. To do this, you will have to fill out a redemption request. You can find the redemption request form and more information about it by clicking on this link.
  • Travel medical insurance: It is highly advisable to take out travel medical insurance that covers all medical expenses, since the level of public health is relatively low.


  • Countries that do not need a visa: Latin American countries (except Mexico, Costa Rica, Cuba and Honduras), the European Union and the United States. However, tourists from these countries will have to apply for a visa if their stay exceeds 3 months (90 days). The rest of tourists have to get a visa to cross the border of Ecuador.
  • Countries that require a visa: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan and Somalia. They must apply for a visa regardless of the duration of their stay.
  • Processing: We can apply for a visa to travel to Ecuador at the Embassy of Ecuador that is in our country of origin or at the consulate of Ecuador. By clicking on this link You can check the address of the different Embassies of Ecuador around the world. We will have to complete the necessary application, provide two personal passport-sized photographs, the passport with a minimum of 6 months of validity, the return ticket to our place of origin, pay the established fee to obtain it and pass an economic solvency test.
  • Cost: tourists from Spain, Paraguay, Colombia or the United States are exempt from paying. For other nationalities, the rate may vary depending on the country. You will have to inform yourself at the Embassy of Ecuador or the Consulate of Ecuador that is in your country of origin.
  • Validity: tourist and business visas have a maximum validity of 6 months; student and cultural exchange visas have a duration of up to 12 months.
Visa to travel to Ecuador
  • Tourist visa: The information mentioned above must be provided.
  • Visa for students: in addition to the data mentioned above, those people who are going to travel to Ecuador for academic reasons will have to present a certificate of registration in a study center in Ecuador and also a certificate of economic solvency.
  • Cultural Exchange Visa: To the above data, a letter from the Ecuadorian organization, institution, study center or authority that will be in charge of the person traveling, whether a student or teacher, must be added. If it is a teacher, you will also have to write a letter in which you state that you are aware that you will not receive any salary from any Ecuadorian institution.
  • Business visa: they will have to add to the general processing data a letter from the applicant's company stating that they will be responsible for the expenses of their employee.

It is important to indicate what to do volunteer activities with tourist status It is considered as a migratory crime.

Work authorization

The Ministry of Labor Relations of the Government of Ecuador authorizes the foreign citizen to carry out the labor activity in the country, but for this he must first obtain the following documents:

  • Labor Visa 12-VI: those professions subject to admission are technical level professionals and specialized workers; the presidents or managers who are called by companies; persons or institutions established in the country to perform temporary work in their specialty or in industrial training; family members close to the person who is going to work in the country (second degree of consanguinity and first of affinity). The validity of this visa has a maximum of 2 years. Applying for it costs USD $ 30 (€ 25.88) and its expedition is USD $ 200 (€ 172.61). For dependent family members, the cost is USD $ 50 (€ 43.15).
  • Occupational Card: its cost is USD $ 5.00 (€ 4.31).

For more detailed information, you can click on this link.

Documentation to visit Ecuador

Visit the Galapagos Islands

If we want to visit these islands, we must bear in mind that the Galapagos National Institute, under the Special Law for Galapagos, has established as mandatory that all visitors have the Traffic Control Card (TCT) (in English, Transit Control Card), which we can request at the airports of Quito, Guayaquil, Isabela, San Cristóbal and Baltra.

To obtain it, we will have to register with the Office of the Government Council of Galapagos. We must keep it during our entire stay in the islands, which cannot exceed 3 months (90 days). The cost of this card is USD 10 (€ 8.61).

Visit Ecuador: the Galapagos Islands

At the airport, we will also have to go through a strict baggage check in the Agrocality Room, in order to avoid the introduction into the Galapagos Islands of species considered invasive that threaten to deteriorate the biodiversity of the islands.

Some of these prohibited products are: domestic and wild animals, seed plants, plant and propagation materials (except those approved by the Committee) and material of organic origin, soil and straw, including those materials that may be attached to plants (except those approved by the Committee), among others.


If we come from Europe, it is not mandatory to apply any vaccine to enter the country. If our country of origin is considered an endemic country (Venezuela, Bolivia, Brazil, Panama or Colombia and some African nations), we must take more precautions.

Here are some of the most recommended vaccines, whether you come from Europe or another country.

  • Yellow Fever Vaccine: Recommended for tourists from Europe, especially if they are going to visit any of the following areas of the country: Morona-Santiago, Pastaza, Napo, Orellana, Zamora-Chinchipe and Sucumbios. For people from a country considered endemic (mentioned above), this vaccine is mandatory. Tourists from the latter group will have to present an International Certificate of Vaccination against yellow fever upon arrival at the Ecuador airport. The vaccine must be applied within 10 days prior to your trip.
Vaccines to travel to Ecuador
  • Typhoid fever vaccine: This vaccine is highly recommended especially if we are going to visit places in the country that have poor hygienic conditions related to low water quality and poor food handling.
  • Hepatitis A and B vaccine: Those who have not previously contracted it or are vaccinated against it will have to be vaccinated against this disease.
  • Tetanus-Diphtheria Vaccine: It is advised that all travelers, where they come from, get vaccinated against this disease, since it is considered a disease of worldwide spread.

If you travel with children under 2 years of age, it is also advisable to vaccinate them against rabies and diphtheria, since these diseases exist in Ecuador, in addition to other countries such as Bolivia, the Philippines, China, etc.

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Finally, we have selected the previous and next article of the block "Prepare the trip"so you can continue reading:

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