Requirements for Travelling to Chile
Foreign students of the orchestral conducting masterclasses should carefully read this section to know if they require a visa and passport to make their entry to Chile. It is very important that you verify this information before traveling in the Chilean consulate in your country due to possible changes in Chilean immigration legislation.
THE INFORMATION IN THIS SECTION IS ONLY REFERENTIAL AND SHOULD BE CHECKED BY THE PARTICIPANT.
South American Countries Exempt from Visa and Passport Requirement
Thanks to bilateral agreements, some countries do not require a tourist visa and passport to enter Chile; they only must present their national identity document. These are: Argentina (DNI), Bolivia (CI), Brazil (RG), Colombia (CC), Ecuador (CI), Perú (DNI), Uruguay (CI) and Paraguay (CIC). This allows citizens of these nationalities to stay for a maximum period of 90 days in Chile.
Countries Exempt from Visa Requirement
The following countries are exempt from the visa requirement; however, they must present their passport. This allows citizens of these nationalities to stay in Chile for a maximum period of 90 days. These countries are: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Costa Rica, Croatia, Denmark, El Salvador, Spain, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Holland, Honduras, Hungary, Indonesia, Iceland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Morocco, Mexico, Nicaragua, Norway, New Zealand, Panama, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, Dominican Republic, Singapore, Venezuela and Venezuela.
Countries Not Exempt from Visa
Citizens of countries that do not appear in the above lists should consult at the local Chilean consulate to request a visa. For more information you can consult the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Chile and the page Chile Abroad, belonging to this same body.
The International Police Office provides a duplicate form called a Tourist Card when you enter Chile. This card is personal and non-transferable, and its duration is 90 days, extendable for another 90 days. The copy must remain in the possession of the tourist for the duration of his stay in the country and must present it to the International Police upon leaving Chile. The extension of validity of the card is requested in the Regional Intendances, Aliens Office.
All passengers with passports from Albania and Australia must pay a Reciprocity Tax before passing through International Police.
Notary Authorization for Individuals Under 18
*Consult about immigration legislation and travel requirements for minors in your country of residence in advance of travel.
You must enter the country with the written permission of your parent, guardian or court if you do not travel with some of those persons. This authorization must be duly legalized in the competent local authority and Chilean consulate. If the minor enters Chile with the authorization of his father, mother, guardian or of the court, he or she is in full right to leave the country in the same way. If you are a tourist under 18 who enters the country in the company of your legal representative and
Facts about Chile
The official language of Chile is Spanish; however, the Spanish of Chile has some characteristics (use of slang words and pronunciation) that make it different from the Spanish that is currently spoken in other countries. Hence, many people are surprised to visit Chile and realize the number of words that are only used in Chilean territory and the way the spoken language sounds. In Santiago you can rather easily make yourself understood in English and Portuguese without major inconveniences.
First and foremost, be assured that Chile is one of the safest countries to travel within Latin America. As a visitor, you can move freely and without major precautions. Only, and as in any other parts of the world, you should avoid the slums of big cities and be careful in the downtown areas. There are few robberies with violence. However, you could become a victim of robbery or theft. Do not let anybody distract you (a popular tactic) in a crowd. Try to keep your purse or bag in front of your body, especially inside the bus or the subway. Always take care of your belongings; always keep bags and luggage in front of your eyes. Do not flaunt your possessions like jewelry, cameras, video cameras, etc. Tighten the cellphone when talking on the street. Leave large amounts of money, tickets, passports, etc. in a safe place in your lodging or take them in the waist or in a special wallet.
Make a photocopy of your passport and keep the original in a safe place unless you need it. Avoid walking alone in the San Cristóbal Hill area in Santiago, as well as in the hills of Valparaíso, and in Cerro Santa Lucía and certain parts of the Downtown area at night.
Typical Chilean dishes usually contain a lot of meat, particularly beef and chicken, rice and potatoes, fresh fruits and vegetables from the fields of the central area of the country, although preparations with fish could be the most common dish in Chile because of its extensive coastline stretching over 5000 km. Despite this, you will surely find a great selection of seafood and fresh fish in all the menus. Avoid eating uncooked foods (raw meats and raw seafood).
In restaurants and cafes, a tip of 10% is expected. It is not included in the check. You can include it in your payment, if you use your credit card or leave it in cash on the table as you depart.
Although Chile is a country with high hygienic standards, it is advisable to give your stomach some time to get used to Chilean food. For the first few days in Chile consider the following practical tips:
The quality of running water is good, although abundant in chlorine. Avoid drinks prepared with running water or ice cubes made with this water. When in doubt, it is best to stop eating lettuces, red fruits, tomatoes with skin and herbs, because they may have been watered with not so pure water.
Prefer to eat cooked vegetables than raw ones.
Do not eat raw fish or crustaceans.
Avoid eating at fairs or stalls.
Red Tide: It is a natural phenomenon caused by toxic algae that could focus on some seafood in certain periods in southern Chile and Patagonia. If in doubt, avoid them!
The peso is the legal tender of Chile. The code is CLP. There are coins of $10, $50, $100 and $500. Bills are in denominations of $1000, $2000, $5000, $10,000 and $20,000. Please only exchange foreign currency at banks or authorized places to avoid scams. Here is a list of exchange rates. Check the exchange rate of your national currency with respect to the Chilean peso before traveling: the information provided here is only referential.
$ 1 US Dollars (USD) is equivalent to $630 Chilean pesos.
$ 1 Euro (EUR) is equivalent to $750 Chilean pesos.
$ 1 Brazilian Real (BRL) is equivalent to $200 Chilean pesos.
$ 1 Argentine Peso (ARS) is equivalent to $36 Chilean pesos.
$ 1 Nuevo Sol Peruano (PEN) is equivalent to $195 Chilean pesos.
$ 1 Bolivian (BOB) is equivalent to $90 Chilean pesos.
$ 1 Uruguayan Peso (UYU) is equivalent to $21 Chilean pesos.
$ 1 Colombian Peso (COP) is equivalent to $5 Chilean pesos.
$ 1 Bolívar Venezolano Fuerte (VEF) is equivalent to $60 Chilean pesos.
$ 9 Paraguayan Guaraníes (PYG) are equivalent to $1 Chilean peso.
Living costs in the city of Santiago are expensive compared to other
cities in the world.
Please refer to these prices to get a general idea:
Restaurants, Cafes and Others
Big Mac Menu: 4.79 EUR/5.69 USD
Coca Cola 500 ml: 1.03 EUR/1.22 USD
Individual Mineral Water 600ml: 0.85 EUR/1.01 USD
Coffee: 2.74 EUR/3.25 USD
Beer 330 ml: 1.10 EUR/1.30 USD
Lunch: from 4.79 EUR/5.69 USD
Dinner (3 courses and wine): from 34.25 EUR/from 40.65 USD
1 liter of milk: 0.82 EUR/0.98 USD
250 grams of butter: 1.78 EUR/2.11 USD
400 grams of noodles: 0.89 EUR/1.06 USD
1 kilo of apples: from 1.08 EUR/1.28 USD
1 kilo of avocados: from 2.74 EUR/3.25 USD
1 kilo of tomatoes: 1.37 EUR/1.63 USD
1 lettuce: 1.30 USD/1.30 USD
1 kilo of bread: 1.37 EUR/1.63 USD
250 grams of cheese: 2.47 EUR/2.93 USD
1 kilo of meat: from 8.90 EUR/10.57 USD
1 bottle of 750ml simple wine: from 2.05 EUR/2.44 USD
Metro/Bus Ticket: 0.99 EUR/1.17 USD
Taxi (1 km): 0.89 EUR/1.06 USD
1 Liter of Gasoline: 1.05 EUR/1.25 USD
Intercity Bus (500 Km.): 19.18 EUR/22.76 USD
Accommodation in a Hostel per person: from 24.66 EUR/29.27 USD
Accommodation in a 3-star hotel (double room): from 65.75 EUR/78.05 USD
Internet-Café 1 hour: 1.10 EUR/1.30 USD
Cinema Ticket: 6.16 EUR/7.32 USD
Newspaper: 0.96 EUR/1.14 USD
20 Cigarettes: 3.84 EUR/4.55 USD
ARRIVING TO SANTIAGO
More than a dozen North American and European airlines arrive regularly and daily to the Santiago International Airport Comodoro Arturo Merino Benítez (SCL). The services of buses, taxis and transfers (shared rides) from the airport of Santiago operate 24 hours, in addition to other services such as restaurants, malls, shops and others. There is no train that connects the International Airport of Santiago with the city of Santiago. In the airport arrival area, after passing Customs, you will enter a very crowded area, which can expose you to thieves. Watch for your luggage and do not be distracted! You must also consider the large number of taxi drivers in the arrival area of the Santiago Airport, who offer their services insistently to tourists. Most of them have no license or passenger insurance, and in many cases, they appear with a vehicle in poor conditions. There have been cases where newcomers were cheated by illegal taxi drivers. Therefore, reject all offers with a firm "No, thank you" and go decisively towards the exit or to the counter of a company authorized to hire an official taxi or transfer. It is recommended to use these buses called Transfer, which cost about $ 8000 (USD $12) from the airport to any point in the city of Santiago. If you are a foreigner, the use of taxis from the airport is not recommended as they can charge you very high rates. If you take a taxi, do so only through official transportation agencies that are inside the airport and in no case, use the service of unauthorized taxis. Uber also leaves and arrives at Santiago Airport, however, due to the non- legal regularization of the Uber service in Chile, you can be exposed to uncomfortable control situations from the Ministry of Transport.
International Flight Companies
Air Canada, Delta Airlines, American Airlines, LATAM, Copa, Aerolíneas Argentinas, Gol, Qatar Airways, Avianca, AirFrance, Alitalia, KLM,
British Airways, Iberia, among others.
Domestic Flight Companies
JetSmart, LATAM Chile,
Latin American Wings y Sky Airline.
Bus or Private Vehicle
It is possible to travel to Santiago by land from Peru, Bolivia, Brazil or Argentina, either by bus or in your own vehicle, entering through any of the border crossings between these countries. It is necessary to have special attention in the months from May to September, particularly in the passage between Mendoza, Argentina and Los Andes, Chile, because you can find that the snows block you the passage for hours or days. You must look up the road condition information before making the crossing from any bordering country to Chile. Pay special attention to the permits and insurances that you must obtain if you want to enter and leave Chile in a private vehicle.
The transportation options in Santiago de Chile are varied and with different prices according to your requirements. Public transportation has an underground train (Metro), a system of intra-city buses (Transantiago), shared taxis with fixed routes and flat rates, taxis that will take you where you want with a variable rate, and available applications of private transport service Uber and Cabify. It is recommended for foreign students when arriving to Santiago, to buy a TarjetaBip! in any subway station to be able to use the entire public transport system. In case you do not use public transportation and opt for a private system, we recommend using Uber and Cabify instead of taxis, since, being a foreigner, the taxi service could charge you very high rates without your knowledge.
The metropolitan transport system, called Transantiago, combines the use of urban buses (Micros) and Subway (Metro) lines. The city is divided into zones, delimited and defined by a color and letter, which also identify the bus corresponding to that area. The buses in each area bring passengers to the subway and avenues where they can get on the main bus lines, white and orange, crossing several boroughs through the main streets of the city. When traveling on Transantiago buses it is important to plan the trip ahead, considering the color and letter of the area, both of origin and destination; only then you will not have problems later. The payment method is through the Tarjeta Bip! For more information:
Santiago’s Metro is the metropolitan railway whose network covers part of the city of Santiago. It is one of the most modern systems in Latin America, being the second longest after that of Mexico City; it is also the seventh most regular in frequency worldwide. Currently, it has 7 lines, more than 140 stations and an extension of 150 km. The Metro schedule is from 5:40 to 11:00 on weekdays. On Saturdays it opens at 6:30 and closes at 11:00 pm and on Sundays and in public holidays trains runs from 8:00 to 22:37. The ticket price varies according to the schedules: Rush Hours, Valley Hours and Low Hours, that consider the amount of existing traffic. For more information:
Metro and Transantiago are paid through Tarjeta Bip! The card can be bought and loaded in the Metro ticket offices, as in the machines located inside each station. The card has a cost of $ 1,550 (USD $3). You can charge your Tarjeta Bip! with the amount of money that you want from $ 1,000 to $ 25,500 (USD $2 to $55), and each trip is discounted from the amount already charged on your card. When paying your trip with Tarjeta Bip!, you can make up to two transfers without additional cost, provided you do not take the same bus line in the same direction. This is valid for 2 hours (120 minutes), from the start of the start of the trip or first Bip! You transfer only once to the Metro and another time to the Metro Tren Nos system. For more information:
Transantiago and Metro Ticket Prices
Low Schedule: $ 610 (USD $ 0.96)
Valley Schedule (regular schedule): $ 660 (USD $ 1.04)
Rush Hour: $ 740 (USD $ 1.17)