Chile is reopening its borders in October ©Lara Henriquez (Newlink)
Chile is reopening its borders in October ©Lara Henriquez (Newlink)

International tourists can visit Chile starting in October

TripFalcon September 21, 2021

Last Update: 2021-09-21 19:45:27

Some of the world's best hiking trails—through deserts, volcanoes and snow-capped peaks—will soon be available to tourists when Chile reopens its borders in October, just in time for summer in the southern hemisphere. And while there are plenty of new attractions to look forward to, including a new UNESCO site, traveling there won't be a straightforward process, regardless of your COVID-19 status.

From October 1, fully vaccinated travelers from around the world will be welcomed back to Chile. However, testing and quarantine rules remain in place. Travelers must present a sworn affidavit, take a COVID-19 test no more than 72 hours before boarding their flight, and undergo a mandatory five-day self-isolation once they get there at an address of their choice. For tourists that could be their hotel or Airbnb accommodation.

Unvaccinated visitors, including children, will not be permitted to travel to Chile at this time.

All travelers will have to present a negative COVID-19 test result ©Lara Henriquez (Newlink)

International visitors will also need to get their vaccination certificate validated by the Chilean health ministry through the mobility pass app before traveling to Chile, a process that could take about a month. Chile's public health secretary Paula Daza has warned travelers not to book their trip until that step is completed to avoid the potential hassle of rescheduling flights.

Vaccines the Chilean Health Department is currently accepting include Moderna, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca, Sinopharm, Sinovac, CanSino and Sputnik V.

In addition, travelers will need to take out health insurance with a minimum coverage of $30,000 USD to cover any medical expenses should they contract COVID-19 on their trip. Once they're in Chile, a tourism spokesperson said "every person must comply with the traveler’s follow-up process, which is done over a period of 14 days and consists of daily self-reporting of health status, current location, and testing" through the mobility pass. 

Travelers will also have to complete a five-day quarantine upon arriving in Chile ©Lara Henriquez (Newlink)

Chile has reported a successful immunization campaign with almost 87% of the eligible population fully vaccinated, according to the health ministry. But despite the decreasing infection rate, Chile doesn't plan to cut back on precautions too quickly. For now, it remains under a State of Emergency through September 2021, and nightly curfews are still in place throughout the country.

When borders reopen, visitors will be permitted entry through dedicated airports in the capital Santiago, the beach resort of Iquique, and Antofagasta, the gateway to the Atacama Desert. American Airlines is planning direct flights between New York and Santiago later this year, with a launch date to be announced soon.

There are also plenty of exciting attractions for travelers to enjoy too. Earlier this year, Chile added its seventh UNESCO site: Arica and the mummies of Chinchorro. The Chincorro people are believed to be the world’s oldest ancestral civilization and their mummies date back some 7000 years, meaning they pre-date the Egyptian mummies by two millennia. The glass-protected mummies can be viewed at a smaller version of the anthropological Museum of San Miguel de Azapa, just outside Arica, before a new and larger version of the museum opens in 2024.

Source: lonelyplanet