How To Extend You Tourist Visa In Cuenca Dimensiones Personalizadas (1)

How to Extend Your Ecuador Tourist Visa in Cuenca

Today, we’re unraveling the secrets of extending your tourist visa. Join me and Kim on this journey as we navigate one of the most commonly requested services for expats in the process of making Cuenca their home. 

Kim has spent a couple of months in Ecuador and she’s considering making it her permanent home and reached out to us to look at properties to purchase. As a little “yapa” or extra, I took her through the visa extension process so she could comfortably spend more time in Cuenca and search for her ideal property. 

Hopefully, you can also use this step-by-step guide to extend your tourist visa in Cuenca.

Let’s go!

Understanding Ecuador’s Tourist Visa Extension Process

Tourist Visa Extension Basics

Here’s a common scenario: you’ve spent an incredible 90 days soaking in the beauty of Ecuador, but you’re hungry for more. I’m here to guide you through the basics of extending that tourist visa, granting you an additional 90 days to explore, experience, and fall deeper into this remarkable country.

Time Limitations and Travel Plans

Residents of the majority of countries do not need to obtain a visa in advance of arriving in Ecuador. You’ll be provided a tourist stamp upon entry which grants entry for your first 90 days.

During these first 90 days, your time effectively “stops” if you leave Ecuador. For example, let’s say you take a 2-week holiday in Peru and then come back. These 2 weeks will NOT count towards your 90-day allowance.

However, this is different for your second 90 days. If you took the same 2-week holiday to Peru, time doesn’t “stop” and you’d effectively have 2 weeks less you can spend in Ecuador.

So, plan your trips accordingly and try to maximize the advantages of time “stopping” on your original 90-day tourist stamp. 

When to apply for your visa extension (updated mid-2023)

You now need to apply for your visa during days 80 and 90 of your tourist stamp. They may even let you apply for it a bit early (ie from day 70). This is such a welcome change from the previous rules.

Under the previous rules, you needed to apply from day 91. This was awkward and stressful as your visa had technically expired. Even though you do have a 30-day grace period, it still didn’t quite feel right and we’re very glad that they’ve changed this rule.  

Step-by-Step Guide to Extending Your Tourist Visa in Cuenca

1. Gather Required Documents

You’re going to need the following: 

  • Your passport
  • Color copy of key passport pages: main photo page and the page that shows the date of entry.
  • Application form – feel free to complete it before you arrive. Use “Turismo” as the reason for extending. Maybe bring a spare copy with you just in case. 

2. Visit to the Migration Office

Now I’d suggest making your way to the Migration Office. Whether you choose the tram, hop on a bus, or opt for the classic taxi ride, the office awaits on the second floor of Cuenca’s Airport. Not in Cuenca? Here’s a list of migration offices around Ecuador you can use. 

The idea of this visit is to show your completed application form to the migration officer, get their feedback on it, and then action any advice you’ve received. You can potentially skip this step if you’re certain you know the correct amount to pay and the process hasn’t changed recently. 

The migration officer may give you a small piece of paper with the address of the closest Banco del Pacifico. 

3. Visit to Banco del Pacifico

You won’t be able to pay the visa extension fee at migration. For this, they’ll send you to Banco del Pacifico to pay. The closest branch is near the Chola Cuencana roundabout, right here

The current fee is one-third of the Ecuadorian basic salary. When we did this extension for Kim, the basic salary was $450, so the visa fee was $150. However, the basic salary is increasing to $460 in 2024, so the fee will increase to $153.34.

You can also expect a small transaction fee of something like 50 or 60 centavos. 

Also, be sure to grab the Comprabante de Transaccion which you’ll need to show migration as proof that you’ve paid. 

4. Back to Migration for Finalization

With documents in hand and that golden receipt from Banco del Pacifico, return to the Migration Office. Here, you’ll receive your “Comprobante de Prorroga” – your ticket to spending another 90 days in Ecuador. Take a moment to confirm your departure dates and the start of your next chronological year as this is when you’ll be allowed back into Ecuador during your NEXT visit. 

Optional: Online Application and Considerations

There’s an optional route – the digital journey. Consider applying online for your visa extension, but Ecuador’s e-charms might not be for everyone. For a process as simple as extending your Ecuadorian visa, I would suggest just doing it in person as it only takes a couple of hours. 

I don’t consider the Ecuadorian government to be digitally savvy, meaning the website may be down or not functioning properly. The best case scenario is it will likely take you an additional day to apply – ie you likely won’t be able to apply online and receive your extension the same day. 

Kim is now free to explore for another 90 days

Kim was happy with the outcome as she now has more time to find her ideal Cuenca apartment to purchase. We didn’t charge Kim for assisting with the visa extension process as she is a real estate client.

However, we do need to be careful with expectations here. Whilst we often find ourselves going above and beyond for clients like Kim, we can’t guarantee that we’ll be available to help with your visa extension. But, you’re always welcome to ask and if we cannot assist, we’ll be able to put you in touch with a quality service provider who can. 

Wrapping up

Extending your stay in Ecuador is one of the easiest bureaucratic processes you’ll find. With this guide, most will find these steps can be taken by themselves. Of course, if you do need help, feel free to contact us and we’ll point you in the right direction. 

Now you can easily enjoy 180 days in Ecuador each year. Go and make the most of it!

View full video transcript

Leave a Reply

You may also like

Related Posts

Stay updated & Win

Subscribe To Our Weekly Newsletter

And go into the draw to win a YapaTree Card. New winner every month. 

Subscribe Form Sidebar