Foreign Entry Requirements and Travel Tips:

Foreign Entry Requirements and Country Information

International Travel Information for US Citizens


Entry Requirements




Passport Required?


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Visa Required?


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Immunization Required?


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Invitation Required?


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Additional Requirements?


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Print or Email Requirements

Legend:  =Required   =Not Required

Entry/Exit Requirements
A valid U.S. passport is required to enter and depart Bolivia. U.S. citizens require a visa for all travel to Bolivia as of December 1, 2007. Tourist visas are issued for a period of five years from date of issuance with multiple entries. U.S. citizens can enter up to three times per year with the total stay being less than 90 days per year. U.S. citizens whose passports are lost or stolen in Bolivia must obtain a new passport and present it, together with a police report of the loss or theft, to the Bolivian government immigration office in La Paz, Cochabamba, or Santa Cruz in order to obtain permission to depart. An exit tax must be paid at the airport when departing Bolivia. Travelers who have Bolivian citizenship or residency must pay an additional fee upon departure. The Bolivian Government does not require travelers to purchase round-trip air tickets in order to enter the country; however, there have been instances in which airlines have required travelers to purchase round-trip air tickets prior to boarding aircraft bound for Bolivia. There is no requirement under Bolivian law that an incoming traveler's passport have at least six months of validity remaining from the time of entry into Bolivia; however, there have been instances in which airlines flying into Bolivia have refused to board passengers whose passports have a validity of less than six months.

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR MINORS: In an effort to prevent international child abduction, the Bolivian Government has initiated procedures at entry/exit points. Minors (under 18) who are citizens or residents of Bolivia and who are traveling alone, with one parent or with a third party, must present a copy of their birth certificate and written authorization from the absent parent(s) or legal guardian, specifically granting permission to travel alone, with one parent or with a third party. When a parent is deceased, a notarized copy of the death certificate is required in lieu of the written authorization. If documents are prepared in the United States, the authorization and the birth certificate must be translated into Spanish, notarized, and authenticated by the Bolivian Embassy or a Bolivian consulate within the United States. If documents are prepared in Bolivia, only notarization by a Bolivian notary is required. Using these documents, a Travel Permit can be obtained from the Juzgada de Menor. This requirement does not apply to children who enter the country with a U.S. passport as tourists, unless they hold dual U.S./Bolivian citizenship.

In an effort to prevent international child abduction, many governments have initiated special procedures at entry/exit points. These often include requiring documentary evidence of relationship to the person traveling with the child and permission for the child's travel from the parent(s) or legal guardian not present. Having such documentation on hand, even if not required, may facilitate entry/departure. Please refer to Traveling with Children for detailed information
8,724,156 (July 2004 est.)
noun: Bolivian(s)
adjective: Bolivian
Country Name
conventional long form: Republic of Bolivia
conventional short form: Bolivia
local long form: Republica de Bolivia
local short form: Bolivia
La Paz (seat of government); Sucre (legal capital and seat of judiciary)
varies with altitude; humid and tropical to cold and semiarid
boliviano (BOB)
Government Type
U.S. Embassy Location
chief of mission: Ambassador David N. GREENLEE
embassy: Avenida Arce 2780, San Jorge, La Paz
mailing address: P. O. Box 425, La Paz; APO AA 34032
telephone: [591] (2) 2430120, 2430251
FAX: [591] (2) 2433900
Legal System
based on Spanish law and Napoleonic Code; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Roman Catholic 95%, Protestant (Evangelical Methodist)
Country Background
Bolivia, named after independence fighter Simon BOLIVAR, broke away from Spanish rule in 1825; much of its subsequent history has consisted of a series of nearly 200 coups and counter-coups. Comparatively democratic civilian rule was established in 1982, but leaders have faced difficult problems of deep-seated poverty, social unrest, and drug production. Current goals include attracting foreign investment, strengthening the educational system, resolving disputes with coca growers over Bolivia's counterdrug efforts, and waging an anticorruption campaign.
Safety and Security
U.S. citizens should avoid roadblocks and demonstrations at all times. Demonstrations by various local groups protesting government or private company policies occur frequently, even in otherwise peaceful times. Protesters have blocked roads with stones, trees and other objects, and have sometimes reacted violently when travelers attempted to pass through or go around roadblocks. Protesters occasionally use explosive devices and in some cases, the police have used tear gas and force. Strikes and other civic actions can occur at any time and can disrupt transportation on a local or national level.

U.S. citizens considering a visit to Bolivia should keep apprised of current conditions and monitor local news sources or contact the U.S. Embassy before considering overland travel within the country.

In February and October 2003, approximately one hundred people died during violent demonstrations and protests in downtown La Paz and the nearby city of El Alto. These demonstrations also affected Cochabamba and other towns and villages in the Altiplano. While the protests and demonstrations have subsided, many of the underlying social, political and economic causes remain.

Since 2000 the resort town of Sorata, located seventy miles north of La Paz, has been cut off by blockades on three occasions, ranging from one week to one month. Visitors contemplating travel to Sorata should contact the Consular Section in La Paz prior to travel.

In the Chapare region between Santa Cruz and Cochabamba and the Yungas region northeast of La Paz, violence and civil unrest, primarily associated with anti-narcotics activities, periodically create a risk for travelers to those regions. Confrontations between area residents and government authorities over coca eradication have resulted in the use of tear gas and stronger force by government authorities to quell disturbances. Pro-coca groups have expressed anti-U.S. sentiments and may attempt to target U.S. Government or private interests in Bolivia. U.S. citizen visitors to the Chapare or Yungas regions are encouraged to check with the Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy prior to travel.

For the latest security information, Americans traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department's Internet web site at http://travel.state.gov where the current Worldwide Caution Public Announcement, Travel Warnings and Public Announcements can be found.

Up to date information on security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the United States, or, for callers outside the United States and Canada, a regular toll line at 1-317-472-2328. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
Street crime, such as pick pocketing and theft from parked vehicles, happens with some frequency in Bolivia. Theft of cars and car parts, particularly late-model four-wheel-drive vehicles, is common. Hijacking of vehicles has been known to occur, and travelers should take appropriate precautions to avoid being victimized. In November 2003, an American citizen was murdered during an attempted carjacking in Santa Cruz.

Thefts of bags, wallets and backpacks are a problem throughout Bolivia. Most thefts involve two or three people who spot a likely victim and wait until the bag or backpack is placed on the ground, often at a restaurant, bus terminal, Internet café, etc. In other cases, the thief places a disagreeable substance on the clothes or backpack of the intended victim, and then offers to assist the victim with the removal of the substance. While the person is distracted, the thief or an accomplice will grab the bag or backpack and flee. In such a situation, the visitor should decline assistance and walk briskly from the area. To steal wallets and bags, thieves often spray water on the victim's neck, and while the person is distracted, an accomplice takes the wallet or bag. Sometimes the thief poses as a policeman, and requests the person to accompany him to the police station, using a nearby taxi. The visitor should indicate a desire to contact the U.S. Embassy and not enter the taxi. All visitors should avoid being alone on the streets, especially after 6:00 PM.

Three years ago female tourists reported being drugged and raped by a tourist guide in the city of Rurrenabaque, in the Beni region. Visitors should be careful when choosing a tour operator and should not accept any type of medication or drugs from unreliable sources. The Embassy has received numerous reports of sexual assaults against female hikers in the Yungas Valley, near the town of Coroico. Visitors to Coroico are advised to avoid hiking alone or in small groups.

The loss or theft abroad of a U.S. passport should be reported immediately to the local police and the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. If you are the victim of a crime while overseas, in addition to reporting to local police, please contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate for assistance. The Embassy/Consulate staff can, for example, help you find appropriate medical care, contact family members or friends, and explain how funds can be transferred. Although the investigation and prosecution of a crime is solely the responsibility of local authorities, consular officers can help you to understand the local criminal justice process and to find an attorney if needed.
Medical Facilities
Medical care in large cities is adequate for many purposes but of varying quality. Medical facilities, even in La Paz, are not adequate to handle serious medical conditions, such as cardiac problems.


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