Entry Requirements for Ecuador & Galapagos

July 13, 2020

During Covid-19 in Ecuador (and the world)

UPDATE – August 17

You will happy to know that Ecuador and the Galpaagos islands are now open for tourism! Of course, with special requirements.

Tourism is a huge industry in Ecuador with 973,113 visitors arriving in 2018, and 1,032,503 visitors in 2019.

The Galapagos islands are no different, with their economy relying almost 100% on tourism, as we have since seen proven with the closure of the islands for 3.5 months and the hardships that everyone is facing out here on the islands right now. The closure is the first time even since the National park opened in 1959 (Ecuador’s oldest National park by the way).

There has been a steady growth in tourism in the Galapagos islands since 1959, with only 3 years in the last 10 showing a decrease in visitors – 2012, 2016, 2019. Though now we can safely add on a fourth as 2020 will receive the lowest number of visitors in the last decade.

In 2018, 275,817 visitors entered the Galpaaogs islands, with a 1.7% decrease in 2019 seeing 271,238.

Our biggest market is Ecuador, with 33% of visitors being Ecuadorian nationals. Visitors from the USA follow cloesly behind at 29%, then the UK – 5%, Germany – 5%, Canada 3% and Australia (my home country) 3% – we need to do something about this!

So, with the Galapagos economy depending on tourism we are ready to have you back!

The Galapagos and Ecuadorian authorities, as seen below, have been working overtime to brainstorm and produce protocols to keep Ecuadorians safe and also you, the tourists, when entering Ecuador and Galapagos.

We want you back, we need you back, and we will keep you safe whilst in our Country!

  • The Ministry of Tourism
  • Galalapgos National Park
  • Consejo de Gobierno (the special governemont in Galapagos)
  • National Risk and Emergency Managemnet Service

So, the question of the day – What do I have to do to get into Ecuador and then to the Galapagos Islands?

Here is your checklist for 4 different scenarios.

* Update as of August 17, 2020.

entry requirements

Flying into the Galapagos islands for passengers already in Ecuador

  • To enter Galapagos you need to have a Negative SARS-COV 2/COVID-19 PCR test – real time: Nasopharyngeal (not the rapid test). You must enter within 96 hours of the test being taken.
  • You must have a tour package, cruise, hotel or tour booked in Galapagos. The ministry of Tourism wants all tourists registered with their itineraries. If you don’t want to book a whole package you can still enter Galapagos, but you need to have something booked, hotel or tour, so you are registered with an authorised agency or hotel.
  • You will need to get the “Salvo-conducto” (safe passage) document from your travel agency, hotel, who ever you booked with. They will need to process this with the Ministry of tourism and provide you with a copy. You will need to show this along with your Negative PCR test at the airport to enter Galapagos.
  • You must wear a face mask at all times in Ecaudor and the Galapagos islands and during your flights. They are readily available for purchase now pretty much everywhere you go, so if you run out, lose, break your masks you will be able to buy replacements.
  • The flight protocol to Galapagos will be the same as your international flights. Your temperature will be checked before entering the aiport in Ecuador mainland and on arrival to Galapagos. If your temperature is above 37.9C you will ne be permitted to board the plane or enter Galapagos.
  • All foregin passengers are required to have Health/Travel insurance.

Flying into Ecuador – staying in Ecuador mainland for tourism

  • To enter Ecuador you need to have a Negative SARS-COV 2/COVID-19 PCR test – real time: Nasopharyngeal (not the rapid test). You must enter within 10 days of the test being taken. (Please see the instructions below for Galapagos, these are more strict)
  • On arrival to Ecuador passengers will be required to sign a Declaration of good health document – stating where they wil stay in Ecuador and Galapagos.
  • On arrival to Ecuador IF YOU PRESENT WITH SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19 passengers must take a 2nd SARS-COV 2/COVID-19 PCR test – real time: Nasopharyngeal (at cost to the passenger). The passengers must stay in the Ecuador continent for 48 hours whilst waiting for the results IN A HOTEL ON THE PRESCRIBED LIST FROM THE AUTHORITIES.
  • If the result is Negative the passengers can continue on their journey. If the result is positive the passengers will have to complete the cumpulsory quarentine.

Flying into Ecuador and then directly to the Galapagos islands

  • To enter Ecuador you need to have a Negative SARS-COV 2/COVID-19 PCR test – real time: Nasopharyngeal (not the rapid test). You must enter within 10 days of the test being taken. GALAPAGOS STILL REQUIRES A NEGATIVE TEST WITHIN 96 HOURS, so if you do not accomplish this you will need to take another test in the mainland Ecuador.
  • On arrival to Ecuador passengers will be required to sign a Declaration of good health document – stating where they wil stay in Ecuador and Galapagos.
  • On arrival to Ecuador IF YOU PRESENT WITH SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19 passengers must take a 2nd SARS-COV 2/COVID-19 PCR test – real time: Nasopharyngeal (at cost to the passenger). The passengers must stay in the Ecuador continent for 48 hours whilst waiting for the results IN A HOTEL ON THE PRESCRIBED LIST FROM THE AUTHORITIES.
  • If the result is Negative the passengers can continue on their journey. If the result is positive the passengers will have to complete the cumpulsory quarentine.
  • You must have a tour package, cruise, hotel or tour booked in Galapagos. The ministry of Tourism wants all tourists registered with their itineraries. If you don’t want to book a whole package you can still enter Galapagos, but you need to have something booked, hotel or tour, so you are registered with an authorised agency or hotel.
  • You will need to get the “Salvo-conducto” (safe passage) document from your travel agency, hotel, who ever you booked with. They will need to process this with the Ministry of tourism and provide you with a copy. You will need to show this along with your Negative PCR test at the airport to enter Galapagos.
  • You must wear a face mask at all times in Ecaudor and the Galapagos islands and during your flights. They are readily available for purchase now pretty much everywhere you go, so if you run out, lose, break your masks you will be able to buy replacements.
  • The flight protocol to Galapagos will be the same as your international flights. Your
  • temperature will be checked before entering the aiport in Ecuador mainland and on arrival to Galapagos. If your temperature is above 37.9C you will ne be permitted to board the plane or enter Galapagos.
  • All foregin passengers are required to have Health/Travel insurance.

Flying into Ecuador, staying for more than 96 hours and then flying to the Galapagos islands.

  • To enter Ecuador you need to have a Negative SARS-COV 2/COVID-19 PCR test – real time: Nasopharyngeal (not the rapid test). You must enter within 10 days of the test being taken.
  • If you decide to take some tours, do some sightseeing and stay a few days on the mainland Ecuador before coming to Galapagos your PCR test has now passed the 96 hour
    s you will need to take another test at any one of these authorised Public or Private labs. The tests range in Price from $80-$120. You can find a list here for the Public and Private labs authorised by the Ecuadorian government. Please remember you will need to do this at least 48 hours before your flight is due to depart to Galapagos to make sure they will have the results in time. http://www.calidadsalud.gob.ec/laboratorios-autorizados/
  • Then follow the rest of the instructions to enter Galapagos as above.

 

Join us discovering more information about the Galapagos islands at these links. Where are the Galapagos Islands, breathtaking dive sites, available tours and packages, how to get to the Galapagos islands, and much more!

 

 

 

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