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Visa & Residency Guide to Guatemala

Published December 3, 2020 in Guatemala , Visa & Residency Information - 0 Comments

Want to know how to live in Guatemala on a tourist visa or with residency?

This article will provide you with the basics of how to achieve that.

 By first talking about living in Guatemala on a tourist visa…

Then moving onto the nuances of that…

Such as the possibility of doing a visa run….

And also the consequences of overstaying your visa…

Before ending it on the topic of the temporary and permanent residency programs that exist.

For those who wish to live in this country longer than what a tourist visa allows…

And do to so legally and with more security.

So let’s get to it!

Tourist Visa in Guatemala

If you plan on visiting Guatemala on a tourist visa, you will be given 90 days to be there legally.

If you want more time in Guatemala, you can always extend your visa by another 90 days by requesting it in the capital of the country – Guatemala City.

Overstay the Visa?

From what I have heard, the fine for overstaying your visa is about 10 Quetzales a day.

So it’s not that much.

Just pay it at the airport and give yourself enough time to pay it off before your flight out of the country if you happen to be overstaying the visa.

Visa Run?

From what I have read, you can do a visa run in Guatemala by simply leaving the country and coming back.

Which will give you another 90 days if you want.

Though I have only visited Guatemala and never lived there…

If I was you, I’d just get my visa extended locally for another 90 days and do the visa run after every 180 days.

Seems more logical to me from an outsider’s point of view.

However, from what I read online, your time outside of Guatemala has to be about 72 hours to minimize the risk of migration authorities rejecting your reentry into Guatemala.

Again, not sure if this is true from personal experience – just reporting what I have read online and heard from others.

Temporary Residency in Guatemala

There are different ways to get residency in Guatemala.

One of them is through marriage obviously.

Another being work where you have been invited by an employer in Guatemala to work there.

Also, you can get residency through investment or guaranteed income.

With the guaranteed income option, you need to prove an income source that will last until the end of your days and it has to be at least 1,000 USD per month and 200 USD for each dependent.

Could be a pension for example.

However, from what I have read from expat sources online, apparently that is the technical rule but the Guatemalan government has accepted those whose income sources were not guaranteed income sources.

Such as online work for example.

Again, that is what I have simply heard from people claiming to have gone through the process online.

Now, if you want the investment visa, you have to invest at least 60,000 USD in Guatemala.

There also exists other temporary residency visas for foreign students or teachers, religious workers or diplomats.

Now what if you want permanent residency in Guatemala?

Permanent Residency in Guatemala

If you have completed a two year temporary residency visa in any of the programs available, you can apply for permanent residency.

Apparently the process to do so takes about a year.

However, if you are married to a Guatemalan or have a child in Guatemala, you can skip the two year requirement.

Anyway, that’s the basic information!

Got any questions or comments? Drop them below in the comments.

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Best regards,


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