Border Crossing: La Quiaca, Argentina into Villazon, Bolivia


Written by Neon

1

Argentine side of the border

I had not gone through the trouble of getting a Bolivian Visa like my hiking partner had while in the United States, so I had to get one at the border. I read many different blogs about crossing the border, and each one said something different. Even the Bolivian Consulate website said something different, so I am going to assume that each border crossing is its own special snowflake, and just give you the rundown of my personal experience.

Since Mendoza, I had been reading up on what I needed at the Bolivian border, and was able to put most of it together in Salta.

What I handed over:
– 2 copies of my bank statement
– 2 passport-sized photos
– 1 copy of my passport
– 1 copy of proof of yellow fever shot
– $160 in USD (actually had $200 and the border officer gave me change in Bolivianos)
– Passport (original, expires in 2024, they request it be valid for at least 5 years and have at one full page free for visa and entry stamp)
– A general understanding of the Spanish language

Items I didn’t have, and the border control officer supplied:
– Visa Application

Items I had and the border control officer didn’t ask for:
– Proof of yellow fever shot (original)
– Itinerary while in Bolivia (on my phone)
– Proof of onward movement (plane ticket purchase confirmation on my phone)
– Proof of place to stay (hostel confirmation on my phone)

2

Items for border crossing

Fidgit already had her Bolivian Visa, but had overstayed her 90 days in Argentina, so we decided to cross seperately. The border control officers immediately knew we were together, but didn’t seem to care. Because I got stamped out of Argentina so quickly, I walked into Bolivia – right past the window that I needed to stop at. Thankfully, there were some helpful people nearby I could ask for directions, and I returned to the window sheepishly. I was the only one there that Sunday morning, and I imagine that may not always be the case, especially if you arrive by bus. The original officer I talked to called over the other one, and they joked with me about it being such a cold morning. I then handed over my passport and the papers I had, and they gave me the visa application to fill out. One of the border officers came out to warm up in the sun, and we chatted while the other one processed my ‘request’ and handed back my passport, now with a Bolivian Visa and 90-day stamp in it.

This was way easier and less hassle than I imagined it to be, though at one point he did ask if I had another $100 bill (mine had gotten a bit worn from being in my backpack for 7 months). I didn’t, and he seemed to be alright with that. I was glad to have everything I may have needed, even if they didn’t ask for everything, and I believe greeting them with a smile helped as well.

3

We made it! The bridge between countries.

Click here to visit Neon’s blog page

8 thoughts on “Border Crossing: La Quiaca, Argentina into Villazon, Bolivia

  1. Lani smith says:

    Hi 😀
    Thank you SO MUCH for the note , I love ❤️ hearing from you of all your interesting short stories of your trek . I’m glad your safe and sound and all is well. If there’s anything I can do for you just leave me a note and I’ll do my best .
    Up here in Canada on the GDT we are having a great summer of Trail maintenance , dozens more new wonderful volunteers came out putting in so much effort and hard work on the GDT , it was lots of FUN. We can hardly wait till we meet you up here ! ❤️. Everywhere I go I keep informing friends and sharing your story of your wonderful Odyssey that your on… keep spreading the news !
    We’re all cheering you on forward
    Happy Trails Ladies
    Take care, Hugs 🤗
    Lani Smith
    GDT

    • Fidgit says:

      Lani, we love and so appreciate your words of encouragment. Seeing folks trickling in and following our FB page, half the time I’m like, “I bet that was Lani.”
      I am so hopeful that we will get to pitch in on trail work when we get up to the GDT. We already talk about it often and are so looking forward to it and to meeting up!

      From Copacabana,

      Fidgit

    • Fidgit says:

      Here’s hoping the next border crossing (East of Titcaca Bolivia/Peru) is even easier, we are going to be attempting something of a maneuver…
      Wish us luck!

  2. Rosalía Zunilda Fellay says:

    Good fr you. Gather you slready learned how things are down here n how yo deal with tem. Plsd you’re crecer. Tale care. Waiting yr next “experiencia”

  3. cliff rawley says:

    Congratulations on your successful entrance into Bolivia. Your adventures are amazing. You prepare so very well for each country requirements.

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