The Foreign Ministry of Ecuador announced that the government of Ecuador will launch an electronic visa for foreign visitors at the end of January. It is expected that this electronic visa will replace a regular consular visa. Through an online visa registration, travelers will be able to validate their migratory status and travel to Ecuador. Alfonso Morales, Deputy Minister of Human Mobility Subrogante, said that Ecuador wishes to incorporate the modern, efficient and newer computer system. The reduction of issuance times, procedures and requirements will make it easier for eligible citizens to obtain a visa to Ecuador.
Foreign Ministry of Ecuador sets up Internet Portal
The Foreign Ministry of Ecuador has set up an Internet portal that will allow foreign citizens to access the electronic visa system. According to the Ministry, the electronic visa for Ecuador will be available as of January 28th this year. The electronic visa is "a document with high levels of security that makes it possible to speed up and facilitate the regularization of foreigners."
Ecuador's Chancellery officially announced via their Twitter account the launch of the electronic visa system. The government has also created a video sharing the advantages of the electronic visa for foreign travelers and the benefits for the people of Ecuador. One tweet reads "the implementation of the Ecuador electronic visa would save the country 500.000 dollars." Some of the advantages mentioned in the official video include:
- Procedures are simplified and processes are streamlined
- The implementation of the electronic visa will save money
- Services will be transparent and more efficient
In order to obtain the electronic visa to travel to Ecuador, eligible applicants will need to complete a form with their personal details including their name, passport number, date of birth and citizenship. Travelers will be required to provide a valid email address, and the system will send an email with essential details about their application. An applicant must verify the information provided on the application form and ensure all details are accurate. Once the application has been revised, the applicant will need to choose a day and time for their embassy or consulate appointment.
Visa Policy of Ecuador
Ecuador has one of the most lenient visa policies in the world and most foreign travelers are not required to obtain a visa for stays of up to 90 days. Citizens of Peru and Venezuela can stay in Ecuador for stays of up to 180 consecutive days. Citizens of China are granted a stay of 90 days per calendar year.
Upon arrival in Ecuador, foreign visitors must hold a passport valid for six months with the exceptions of Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Paraguay, Peru, and Uruguay.
Nationals of the following countries need a visa to travel to Ecuador:
- North Korea
Once the system for the electronic visa for Ecuador is launched, citizens of the aforementioned countries will be able to obtain their visa through an online form.
Anyone who wishes to visit the Galápagos Islands is required to pre-register online to obtain a Transit Control Card at the airport.
Why visit Ecuador
There are plenty of reasons why Ecuador is an ideal travel destination. The country features historical towns, beaches, stunning natural landscapes, and indigenous heritage. Set in the northwest of South America, Ecuador is home to charming colonial centers, the Amazonian rainforest, and the Andes.
Some of the top landmarks and spots to visit in Ecuador include:
- Galápagos Islands - are an archipelago of volcanic islands in the Pacific Ocean. Many of the species that live in these islands can't be found anywhere else in the world. Most of the islands are devoid of vegetation. It's a fragile ecosystem that Ecuador fights to preserve.
- Quito Old Town - the capital of Ecuador, Quito is situated between mountain peaks. The center of the city is a picture perfect area, featuring colonial structures. The Old Town of Quito is a Unesco World Heritage Site. Travelers will find restored blocks with 17th-century facades, squares and plenty of churches.
- Parque Nacional Cotopaxi - the heart of Ecuador's most popular national park is the impressive Cotopaxi volcano, at 5897 meters. Around the volcano, visitors can hike and enjoy from a closer look at the Andean condor, white-tailed deer, and the Andean fox.
- Parque Nacional Yasuní - This is Ecuador's biggest mainland park and features rivers, tropical forest, and marshes. It is a Unesco Biosphere Reserve with over 600 bird species as well as jaguars, pumas, and tapirs.
- El Chato Tortoise Reserve - Visitors can observe giant tortoises in the wild. The reserve is home to short-eared owls, Darwin's finches, yellow warbles, Galápagos rails, and paint-billed crakes.
- Volcán Alcedo - This volcano is famous for its 7km-wide caldera and steaming fumaroles. Travelers will find hundreds of giant tortoises, especially from June to December.
Before traveling to Ecuador, check that you have the necessary documents. A valid passport is essential to travel to the country and citizens of some countries will need to apply online for their electronic visa for Ecuador.