Where Can Americans Go in Central and South America?
*Editor’s Note: Each week, we’ll be covering regions and updating you on which countries are open to Americans for travel and what you need to know before you go. Check PeterGreenberg.com for all of the latest, weekly updates. This week, we look at Central and South America.
Belize reopened for travel and tourism on October 1st. A negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of boarding will “fast track” you upon arrival. You must also download the Belize Health app which has a form that you’ll need to fill out. If you’re a foreign tourist, you must stay at a Gold Standard approved hotel (list found here). Social distancing and face masks required in public spaces.
International flights are operating to and from Brazil. COVID-19 testing or quarantine is not required for entry, but officials recommend anyone who experiences symptoms to self-quarantine for 15 days. As of October 2nd, the Government of Brazil no longer requires foreign travelers to present proof of health insurance valid in Brazil in order to enter. Even though Brazil no longer requires proof of health insurance, the U.S. Department of State continues to recommend that all travelers purchase insurance before departing the United States. As of October 14th, Brazil also extended the restrictions on entry of foreigners by land (unless for transit) and sea, through at least November 12th. The entry of foreign visitors traveling by air for a short stay of up to 90 days is currently permitted. Note: Brazil currently has the third highest rate of positive COVID-19 tests in the world (behind the U.S. and India).
International flights have resumed and Americans are allowed to enter. Requirements for entry include a negative COVID-19 PCR test result that must be issued no more than 96 hours before your departure flight and an immigration form filled out no earlier than 24 hours before your flight. Land and maritime borders will remain closed to foreign travelers until at least November 1st.
As of October 15th, Costa Rica is opened to American tourists from the following states:
Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Washington, D.C., Florida, Georgia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas, Virgina, Vermont, Washington, and Wyoming.
And as of November 1st, all U.S. citizens and residents of the U.S. will be allowed to enter Costa Rica. To enter Costa Rica, you must:
1) Fill out the electronic epidemiological Health Pass form, available at https://salud.go.cr.
2) Provide a negative COVID-19 PCR diagnostic test (the sample must have been taken within 72 hours of travel to Costa Rica).
3) Provide a driver’s license or State ID proving that you live in an approved state mentioned above until November 1st (this requirement excludes children traveling with their family).
4) Provide a certificate proving international travel medical insurance either in the U.S. or you must purchase insurance in Costa Rica through the National Insurance Institute.
International flights have resumed as of early June, and you are allowed to enter the country upon providing a negative COVID-19 PCR test that must be taken within 10 days of arrival. If you do not present a negative COVID-19 PCR test upon arrival, you will need to self-isolate for 10 days at your own expense. Also, entry into the Galapagos Islands requires a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 96 hours of arrival, and health insurance as well as a health declaration form are required. Travelers entering Ecuador without negative test results will have the option to take a test at the airport, at their own expense, and will need to quarantine at a hotel, hostel, motel, or other temporary accommodation until negative results are received.
International flights are open. To enter the country, you must produce a negative COVID-19 PCR test within 72 hours of arrival. Masks and social distancing are required in all public settings.
Twenty-four hours before your arrival, you are required to register online via the Guatemalan Health Pass form. Once you have submitted your details, you must print the form and bring it with you. You must also present a negative COVID-19 PCR or Antigen test dated no more than 72 hours before your arrival to Guatemala International Airport.
Airports in Honduras are now open for domestic and international travel. You must follow the social distancing rules and wear a mask at all times while at the airport. Prior to arrival, you are required to pre-register online with Honduran Immigration. You must also present a negative COVID-19 test result upon arrival from a test that was taken in the previous 72 hours. Keep up to date with this website for important information regarding COVID-19 in Honduras.
All Mexican airports are open to Americans. There are health checks at all airports but no testing requirements. The land border, however, is still closed to non-essential travel until at least November 21st.
Many flights have resumed operation as of October. All passengers arriving into Nicaragua must bring a negative COVID-19 PCR test, which must be taken no longer than 72 hours before arrival. This also applies to transits. There are no quarantine requirements.
Panama recently reopened for tourism on October 12th. Upon arrival, you must show a negative COVID-19 test taken within 48 hours of your flight. If your results are older than 48 hours, you will be required to take a rapid test at the airport, which will cost about $30. On top of that, you must sign an electronic affidavit ensuring you are in good health and agree to comply with the Ministry of Health’s COVID-19 measures in Panama.
Uruguayan borders are currently closed to non-Uruguayan citizens and residents, but there are some exceptions:
1) Family reunification between parents and minor single children or adult children with disabilities, or between spouses or common-law spouses.
2) Drivers for international transportation.
3) Airplane pilots.
5) Entrance may be authorized for humanitarian reasons or for labor, economic, business or judicial purposes, as managed by the National Migration Directorate or by the Ministry corresponding to the area of activity involved and based on reasons of urgent need.
If you meet the above-criteria, you must provide a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of the flight, show proof of medical insurance, and if you are staying longer than seven days, you must self-quarantine for 14 days or until you can provide a negative test that has been taken after seven days of quarantine.