What is the change? Colombia has introduced visa-free travel for nationals of Montenegro and removed it for nationals of South Africa.

What does the change mean? Nationals of Montenegro may travel without a visa and apply upon entry for a temporary visitor permit (Permiso de Ingreso y Permanencia, or “PIP”). South African nationals are added to the list of “restricted nationals” who are no longer visa-waived and must apply for a visa at a Colombian embassy or consulate.

  • Implementation time frame: Immediate.
  • Visas/permits affected: Visa waiver.
  • Who is affected: Nationals of Montenegro and South Africa.
  • Impact on processing times: Visa waivers eliminate processing before traveling.
  • Business impact: Companies sending Montenegrin nationals to Colombia may take advantage of the PIP visas that are issued upon arrival; companies should anticipate longer time lines for South African nationals.

Background: In taking advantage of visa-free travel, companies and individuals using the PIP should be aware that activities are limited. Some permitted activities include attending business and sale meetings, touring a company facility and attending a trade show or training session.

South African nationals should be aware that as restricted nationals they are no longer eligible for a PIP and must apply for a visa. For business travelers, Colombia has four different categories of business visas, depending on the activities to be undertaken in the country.

BAL Analysis: Companies may use the PIP for Montenegrin nationals who intend to apply for a work permit if the intended activities are consistent with the PIP. Companies sending South African nationals to Colombia should factor in additional time and requirements to apply for a visa before travel and, if conducting business activities, choose the business visa appropriate for the activities of the foreign national.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Colombia. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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