Colombia’s rentista visa is intended for foreigners who receive income from a fixed income source like an annuity, rent from a rental property, dividends or interest.
Acceptable sources of income for a Colombia rentista visa include:
- Payments from an annuity
- Payments from a retirement fund
- Rents from rental properties
- Interest received from loaning money
- Dividends or interest payments from investments in companies
- Disability payments from an insurance settlement
- Payments over time from the sale of a business
Furthermore, unacceptable sources of income for a rentista visa include salaries or commissions. In addition, a pension would used for a retirement visa with a lower income requirement.
Income Requirement for a Colombia Rentista Visa
A Colombia rentista visa is a migrant (M) visa. According to Resolución 6045 (Resolution 6045) of 2017, the income requirement for the rentista visa is that your income must exceed 10 times the minimum monthly salary in Colombia. And the minimum salary in Colombia is 877,803 pesos per month in 2020.
So, in 2020 you need an income of 8,778,030 pesos per month ($2,267 USD at the exchange rate of 3,872 pesos to USD) to qualify for the Colombia rentista visa.
Note that the minimum monthly salary in Colombia increases each year. For example, in 2020, the minimum salary in Colombia increased 6 percent.
Coronavirus Visa Impacts
Editors note on May 20: According to the Minister of transport, international flights to/from Colombia will be restricted until August 31 due to the coronavirus pandemic with a pilot of international flights resuming in September.
Also, starting on March 24, the country in in a nationwide Colombia quarantine from March 24 to September 1, 2020. During this quarantine, the Migracion office in Colombia and Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores office in Bogotá are closed.
What does this mean for visa holders?
If you are not in Colombia, you cannot travel to Colombia even if you have a resident (R) visa, migrant (M) visa, beneficiary visa Visitor (V) visa.
And if you are in Colombia, if you leave Colombia you can’t return return even if you have a Colombian visa.
Has the visa process changed in Colombia due to coronavirus?
Yes, the Colombian visa process has changed due to coronavirus and the quarantine in Colombia. We have a separate article about the Colombian visa produces changes due to coronavirus.
According to ExpatGroup, the visa agency we partnered with, they are still submitting visa applications online without issues and are receiving visa approvals during the Colombia quarantine.
If you were approved for a Colombian visa and received electronic approval but can not get the visa stamped in your passport, register the visa or apply for a cedula due to the current coronavirus crisis, you basically can do this when things return to normal without paying a penalty.
How to Apply for a Colombia Rentista Visa
You can apply for a Colombia rentista visa online. In addition, you can obtain Colombian visas at Colombian consulates around the world. In the U.S., Colombia has consulates located in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Orlando, Newark, New York, San Francisco and Washington DC.
The Colombian visa process is fairly easy as it’s done online. You can apply for a Colombia visa online here. This application will require scans of all required documents in PDF files plus the photo in jpg format. In addition, a detailed guide for applying online is found here.
After receiving the online visa approval, if doing this in Colombia, you need to travel to Bogotá to get the visa in your passport. Or if at another country you can get the visa put in your passport at a Colombian consulate.
Visas in Colombia are issued at the Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores office in Bogotá. This is located at Avenida 19 # 98-03, Torre 100 Building, 3rd Floor. It’s open from 7:30 am until noon.
I successfully obtained three Colombian visas that I applied for my own in the past that were good for a total of five years. But the biggest challenge with doing a Colombian visa yourself is not benefiting from the experiences of a visa agency, which has processed hundreds of visas and knows exactly what is needed for each type of visa.
Also, another big benefit of using a visa agency is that they offer services to courier your passport to Bogotá to get the visa put in your passport. So, you can avoid a trip to Bogotá. The cost of a visa service including the service to courier your passport to Bogotá can even be cheaper than the cost of a trip to Bogotá.
So, for my latest visa received in 2018, a Colombia resident visa, I used a visa agency. And I found the experience painless and now highly recommend using a visa service over doing a Colombia visa application yourself. The bottom line is with a visa agency you are less likely to run into problems and you can avoid a trip to Bogotá.
Requirements for a Colombia Rentista Visa
Documents required for the Colombia rentista visa are as follows:
- Photocopy of the first page of your valid passport where your personal data is displayed.
- Photocopy of the page of your passport with the last stamp of entry or departure of Colombia is located.
- If you’ve had a previous Colombian visa, a photocopy of this visa.
- Certificate issued by a public entity or private company, specifying the income paid to the foreign visa applicant and the amount must be over 10 times the monthly minimum wage in Colombia.
- International health insurance policy certificate showing you have an international health insurance policy that covers you. This policy should be valid for at least a year, since the validity time of your visa is dependent on the validity time of your international health insurance. This health insurance policy should show that it has at least $60,000 USD in coverage. We have a separate article that looks at inexpensive travel insurance that meets this requirement.
- Passport style face photo with a white background, sized at 3 cm width X 4 cm height, maximum size of 300 kb jpg file for online application.
Having an international health insurance policy is a new visa requirement in 2020 for the rentista visa based on the experience of the visa agency we partnered with. Once you have a visa and cedula, you qualify for Colombia’s EPS health insurance, which is believed will be sufficient for renewing a visa.
Using a Visa Agency for a Rentista Visa
If you are in Colombia and not located in Bogotá and you don’t want to travel, you can use a visa agency to obtain a Colombia rentista visa. A visa agency can handle the online application. And it will courier your passport to Bogotá to get the visa in your passport.
Medellin Guru has partnered with what we believe is the best visa agency in Medellín to offer Colombia visa services. Features of this service include:
- Online chat – get visa questions answered fast.
- Online quotes – get immediate visa quotes.
- Courier your passport to Bogotá to get the visa in your passport.
- Office in El Poblado in Medellín.
- Competitive price compared to other visa services.
The Medellin Guru visa service partnership was launched in March 2019. And in the first 17 months, 239 visas were successfully received by clients.
We reviewed all the Colombia visa agency services in Medellín and found one agency that offers a more efficient visa service with more features and more comprehensive communications including online chat, WhatsApp, Skype, email and phone plus a low price and a convenient office in El Poblado.
Our visa partnership is an affiliate relationship (like the Amazon affiliate program). If you use our visa partner, Medellin Guru receives a small commission and you support the website. This is at no additional cost to you. The price remains the same, whether you use a button or affiliate link on this website or not.
Furthermore, the visa agency we partnered with offers visa services anywhere in Colombia. So, if you are located in another city in Colombia you can use this service.
Getting a Colombian Cedula
After you have successfully received your Colombian Visa you have a maximum of 15 calendar days to register your visa with Migración Colombia to get a Cedula de Extranjeria (Colombian ID for foreigners). Or if you received your visa at a consulate, you will have 15 calendar days after you arrive in Colombia to register your visa.
Due to being photographed and fingerprinted this must be done in-person at a Migración Colombia office.
Especially relevant, it is very important to register your Colombian resident visa within the allotted time frame. If not, you will be liable for a big fine of up to seven times the minimum monthly salary in Colombia. The minimum salary in Colombia is 828,116 pesos per month in 2019. So, the fine is up to 5,796,812 pesos in 2019.
To register your visa and apply for a cedula this must be done at one of the Migración Colombia offices. You can find Migración Colombia offices in major cities in Colombia.
- Barranquilla – Carrera 42 # 54-77, Barrio El Recreo
- Bogotá – Calle 100 #11B-27
- Cali – Avenida 3 norte # 50N-20
- Cartagena – Carrera 20 B # 29-18, Barrio pie de la Popa
- Medellín – Calle 19 #80A-40, Barrio Belén (the entrance is on the other side of the building on Calle 19A)
After having a migrant (M) rentista visa or other M visas for five years you are eligible to receive a resident (R) visa. And after having an R visa for five additional years you can apply to become a citizen of Colombia.
Also, you won’t have to give up your existing citizenship. Colombia permits dual-citizenship, as does the U.S. and many other countries.
Once you become a dual citizen with Colombian citizenship, you will no longer need to deal with visas anymore. Also, you will be able to travel to a few counties as a Colombian citizen without a visa such as Russia, which require a visa for U.S. citizens.
Also, if you have Colombian citizenship, this benefits you with the Mercosur trade block. Nationals of Member States (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay) and Associated States (Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru) do not need a passport or visa to travel around the region, with only a national identity card required.
In addition, the Mercosur Agreement grants the right to residence and work for citizens with no requirement other than nationality. Citizens of the Member States and Associated States that are part of the agreement enjoy a facilitated procedure for applying for a residence visa, as long as they have a valid passport, birth certificate and a negative certificate of criminal record.
To become a citizen, Colombia requires a citizenship test, just like the U.S. does. And you will be required to pass a test related to Colombian history, geography and the constitution. Also, a basic Spanish oral test is required. Those who have a bachelor’s degree from a Colombian university or are over 65 years old are exempt from these tests.
Furthermore, a complete list of the requirements for Colombian citizenship is found on the Cancillería website here.
Medellin Guru’s Comprehensive Visa and Passport Series
The Colombian visa changes that went into effect in mid-December 2017 were significant. So, on the Medellin Guru site, we have a comprehensive series of visa articles that are kept up-to-date and should answer most visa questions. These articles include:
- Colombia Visa Guide: Ultimate Guide How to Get a Colombian Visa
- How to Obtain a Colombian Visa with Up-to-Date Info – an overview of all the Colombian visas
- Coronavirus Impacts on Colombian Visas and Tourist Visas
- Visa Agencies: A Guide to Visa Agencies in Medellín and Colombia
- 7 Common Colombian Visa Mistakes: How to Avoid Them
We have looked in detail at the seven most popular Colombian visas used by foreigners:
Also, we have looked in detail at three additional Colombian visas, which are less popular for foreigners:
- Rentista visa (annuity visa) – for foreigners with a fixed income
- Beneficiary visa – for relatives of visa holders
- Expertise visa – for professionals
Furthermore, we provide information about travel insurance that meets the insurance requirement for Colombian visas. And we have a guide to how apply for a cedula extranjeria in Colombia and a guide to using notaries in Medellín and Colombia. Finally, Medellin Guru has partnered with a visa agency to offer Colombia visa services.
All of our Colombia visa articles were updated in early 2019 to ensure they are up-to-date and were updated again in early 2020. In addition, all visa articles on this website will be kept up-to-date as new details are disclosed.
The Bottom Line: Obtaining a Colombia Rentista Visa
Colombia’s rentista visa is relatively easy to get. But this visa is only intended for foreigners with a fixed income source like an annuity, rent from a rental property, dividends or interest.
Several other visas in Colombia are more popular with foreigners including the retirement visa, marriage visa, investment visa, work visa, student visa and resident visa.
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Editors note: updated on December 14, 2019 with information about the Mercosur agreement benefits of having Colombian citizenship.
Editors note: updated on January 21, 2020 with the new 2020 Colombia minimum wage information, which impacts the income requirement for the Colombian rentista visa.
Editors note: updated on March 11, 2020 to add a new rentista visa requirement, which is an international health insurance policy. Also, updated the rentista income requirement with the current exchange rate.
Editors note: updated on March 30, 2020 with Colombian visa process changes due to coronavirus and the quarantines in Colombia.
Editors note: updated on April 4, 2020 with information that the health insurance policy required for a rentista visa should have at least $60,000 USD in coverage.
Editors note: updated on April 8, 2020 to add information that the nationwide quarantine in Colombia has been extended to April 26.
Editors note: updated on April 21, 2020 with information that the national quarantine in Colombia has been extended to May 11 and international flights banned until the end of May.
Editors note: updated on May 6, 2020 with information that the national quarantine in Colombia has been extended to May 25.
Editors note: updated on May 20, 2020 with information that the national quarantine in Colombia has been extended to May 31 and that international flights will be restricted until August 31.
Editors note: updated on June 10, 2020 with information that the national quarantine in Colombia has been extended to June 30 and updated information about the Medellin Guru visa service.
Editors note: updated on July 3, 2020 with information that the national quarantine in Colombia has been extended to July 15 and added information about inexpensive travel insurance that meets the health insurance requirement for this visa.
Editors note: updated on July 8, 2020 with information that the national quarantine in Colombia has been extended to August 1.
Editors note: updated on July 29, 2020 with information that the national quarantine in Colombia has been extended to September 1.