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In the realm of global destinations for digital nomads, Colombia has emerged as a sizzling hotspot in recent years. With Its breathtaking landscapes, captivating cities and towns, wallet-friendly cost of living, and the recent introduction of a digital nomad visa. it’s not hard to see why.
If you're yearning to learn Spanish, bask in a tropical climate, or simply immerse yourself in the enchanting ambiance of South America, Colombia might just be the ideal haven for you.
In this blog, we unravel the mysteries of Colombia's digital nomad visa, providing insights on how to apply including its requirements, benefits, costs, tips, and more. At the end of this blog, you will see why this captivating country should be your next nomadic adventure
WHY CHOOSE COLOMBIA AS A DIGITAL NOMAD
Working as a digital nomad in Colombia provides numerous advantages, making it an attractive destination for remote professionals. Here are several benefits:
- Affordable Living: Colombia's comparatively low cost of living enables digital nomads to manage their expenses efficiently, with affordable accommodation, transportation, and food options contributing to a comfortable lifestyle.
- Diverse Landscapes: Colombia's diverse geography, including beaches, mountains, rainforests, and vibrant cities, offers digital nomads a variety of environments to explore, fostering a sense of adventure and discovery.
- Vibrant Culture: Immerse yourself in Colombia's rich and colorful culture, with opportunities to engage in local music, dance, and festivals. The welcoming nature of the Colombian people makes it easy to connect with the community.
- Co-working Spaces and Infrastructure: Major cities like Medellín, Bogotá, and Cartagena boast reliable co-working spaces with modern amenities, fostering a productive work environment and providing opportunities for networking with fellow digital nomads.
- Delicious Cuisine: Colombian cuisine offers a diverse and delicious array of dishes, from traditional specialties like arepas and bandeja paisa to fresh seafood.
- Safety and Security: Colombia has made significant strides in improving safety, especially in major cities and tourist destinations. While caution is advised, many areas are considered safe for travelers and digital nomads.
- Cultural Experiences: Working in Colombia provides a chance to immerse oneself in the country's rich cultural tapestry. Learning Spanish, participating in traditional dance classes, and exploring museums and historical sites contribute to a deeper understanding of Colombia's history and heritage.
- Travel Opportunities: Colombia's central location in South America facilitates easy exploration of neighboring countries like Peru, Brazil, and Argentina, allowing digital nomads to broaden their horizons.
COLOMBIA VISA: Visa V Digital Nomads
Colombia has launched the Visa V for Digital Nomads, allowing remote work or telecommuting services for foreign companies. This visa covers independent or labor-related work, as well as ventures in digital content or information technology. Digital nomads can stay in Colombia for up to 2 years, and the visa now provides a pathway to immigration and citizenship, which was not available before.
This initiative reflects Colombia's recognition of the changing nature of work and its openness to contributions from the global community of digital nomads.
REQUIREMENT FOR VISA V DIGITAL NOMADS
To apply for the visa, you will need the following:
- Valid Passport: Ensure your passport is valid for at least six months.
- International Passport Copy: Provide a copy of the first page of your passport, displaying personal information.
- Passport Photo: Include a passport-style photo with a white background (3 cm x 4 cm, max 300 kb in JPG format).
- Proof of Legal Entry: Submit a copy of the passport page with the most recent entry or departure stamp for Colombia.
- Letter from Foreign Company: Include a letter from one or more foreign companies stating your relationship, and type of remuneration, and, if applicable, provide a copy of your contract.
- Motivational Letter (for Entrepreneurs): If an entrepreneur, submit a letter detailing your project and available financial and human resources.
- Bank Statements: Provide bank statements showing income equivalent to three times the Current Minimum Legal Monthly Wages (approximately $700) over the last three months.
- Proof of Health Insurance: Show evidence of health insurance covering all risks within Colombia for the entire stay, including accidents, illnesses, maternity, disabilities, hospitalization, death, or repatriation.
- Employment Confirmation (if applicable): Include a letter or contract from your non-Colombian employer confirming your employment and salary.
APPLYING FOR A COLOMBIA DIGITAL NOMAD VISA: A STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE
Step 1: Collect Required Documents
- Ensure you have all the necessary documents.
Step 2: Access the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Website
- Visit the official website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Colombia to access the digital nomad visa application portal.
Step 3: Complete Application Form
- Fill out the official application form for the Colombian Digital Nomad Visa.
- Provide relevant personal and employment information as required.
Step 4: Attach Required Documentation
- Ensure all documents are submitted electronically as part of the application process (NOTE: maximum weight allowed for all attachments is 5 MB).
Step 5: Pay the Application Fee
- Before submitting the application, pay the application fee of approximately $52.
- Use a credit card or follow the specified payment options provided during the application process.
Step 6: Wait for the Decision
- After submission, patiently wait for a decision on your digital nomad visa application.
- The processing time is typically around 30 days; check the online portal or contact authorities for updates.
Step 7: Pay Visa Fee Upon Approval
- If your digital nomad visa is approved, pay the issuance fee specified in the approval notification.
- The fee can range from $170 to $230, depending on factors like nationality.
Step 8: Receive an Electronic Visa
- Once the visa fee is paid, your Colombia digital nomad visa will be delivered electronically within ten days.
TIMELINE FOR APPLYING FOR COLOMBIA DIGITAL NOMAD VISA
First, you’ll have to get all your documents in order and have them ready to be published. Once that is sorted out, you can fill out the application form.
The visa application waiting times have increased upon the release of the Digital Nomad Visa. This means immigration authorities will adjudicate visa applications within 30 days, and when approved, e-visas will be issued within 10 business days.
BEST COLOMBIA CITIES FOR DIGITAL NOMADS
1. Medellín: The City of Eternal Spring
- Vibrant city nestled in the Aburrá Valley, surrounded by lush mountains.
- Robust infrastructure with modern coworking spaces.
- Efficient public transportation system.
- Monthly rent: Col$1,492,337 (~$322 USD) for a one-bedroom apartment in the center
- Diverse cultural scene and vibrant nightlife.
- Proximity to national treasures like Tayrona Park and the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta.
2. Bogotá: Capital Blend of Cosmopolitan and Heritage
- A capital city boasting cosmopolitan amenities and rich cultural heritage.
- Thriving coworking scene with renowned spaces like WeWork and Impact Hub.
- Monthly rent: Col$1,521,702 (~$329 USD) for a one-bedroom apartment in the center
- Traditional neighborhoods like La Candelaria with cobblestone streets and historic buildings.
- A dynamic fusion of modernity and historical charm.
3. Cartagena: Caribbean Charisma and Colonial Charm
- UNESCO World Heritage site with well-preserved colonial architecture.
- Monthly rent: Col$2,212,741 (~$477 USD) for a one-bedroom apartment in the center
- Coworking spaces like Coworking Cartagena and Epicentre.
- Charming Old Town with historic walls and delightful cuisine.
- Ideal blend of work opportunities and relaxation by the sea.
- Gateway to Tayrona National Park and Lost City adventures.
These cities offer digital nomads a diverse range of experiences, from the lush landscapes of Medellín to the historical charm of Bogotá and the Caribbean allure of Cartagena. Each city provides an optimal environment for remote work, coupled with unique cultural, culinary, and natural attractions, making them standout destinations for a fulfilling digital nomad experience in Colombia.
HEALTH INSURANCE FOR DIGITAL NOMADS IN COLOMBIA
Health insurance for digital nomads must cover accidents, illnesses, maternity, disability, hospitalization, and death/repatriation. You can buy health insurance from a private company in Colombia, or from a company that specializes in offering health insurance for digital nomads, like SafetyWing.
PAYING TAXES AS A DIGITAL NOMAD IN COLOMBIA
If you find yourself spending more than **183 days a year in Colombia, you're officially considered to have tax residence. This means you'll need to disclose all your income, whether it's earned locally or from abroad.
The good news is that there's a 'tax discount' that allows digital nomads, as foreign nationals, to acknowledge taxes paid in other countries on our foreign income. However, it's worth noting that any income earned for services provided within Colombia, no matter where it's paid, falls under the category of national-source income.
CONCLUSION- Colombia Awaits!!
Colombia's Digital Nomad Visa opens the door to a world of possibilities for remote workers seeking inspiration amidst vibrant landscapes and rich culture. With a streamlined application process and the promise of prompt visa approvals, the journey begins with getting your documents in order and navigating the exciting path of living and working in this dynamic South American gem.
So, pack your laptop and a sense of curiosity – Colombia awaits, ready to be both your workplace and your playground. Your digital nomad story could find its perfect setting in the heart of this diverse and welcoming nation. Start the journey today, and let Colombia redefine the way you work and live.