The Chilean government will remove the reciprocity fee charged to Australians upon arrival in Chile from Monday, 16 December 2019. However, Australians will be required to apply for an eVisa before travelling to Chile from 16 May 2020.
This means that, from tomorrow, Australian citizens arriving at Santiago International Airport will no longer be required to pay USD117, which is equivalent to $170 at current exchange rates. It also means Australian visitors will no longer need to queue up at special booths to pay this fee before clearing Chilean immigration and customs in Santiago.
The following notice appears on the Chilean embassy website:
As of the 16th of December 2019 the administrative reciprocity fee of USD117 charged on arrival at Santiago airport will be removed. Australian passport holders will not be required to pay this reciprocity fee to enter Chile.
Starting from 16th of May 2020 Australians passport holders will be required to obtain an e-visa to enter Chile.
There will be single entry and multiple entry visas available. More information of this process will be made available shortly.
Overall, this is great news for Australians travelling to Chile. For a family of four, a holiday in Chile is now $680 less expensive!
The Chilean capital of Santiago is served from Australia with direct flights on Qantas and LATAM Airlines, and is a gateway to South America. (Qantas will even increase service to Santiago to daily from next June.)
The reciprocity fee, until today, was charged to all tourists entering Chile on an Australian passport for up to 90 days – even if just stopping over for less than a day. It was not charged to passengers in international transit.
However, it is not yet clear what the process of obtaining an eVisa will involve, and whether there will be a cost for this service. Presumably, being an eVisa, it will at least be possible to complete the application online.
The reciprocity fee that has been charged until now was equivalent to the fee that the Australian government charges to Chileans for a tourist visa. Despite the removal of the Chile reciprocity fee for Australians, the Australian government still charges Chileans $145 for a visitor’s visa for stays of up to 3 months. Chileans must also wait several weeks for their visa to be processed by the Australian embassy, which says that 75% of applications are processed within 19 days.
In June 2019, the Brazilian government introduced visa-free travel for Australians visiting Brazil.
Join the discussion on the Australian Frequent Flyer forum: Chile reciprocity fee [removed from 16/12/19]