After you have successfully received a Colombian visa, you have a maximum of 15 calendar days to register your visa with Migración Colombia and apply for 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.. We provide a 2023 update on how to obtain a cedula.

Due to being photographed and fingerprinted this must be done in-person at a Migración Colombia office. The only exception to going in person for an application is if you are applying for a duplicate Cedula de Extranjeria due to your cedula being stolen or lost.

Especially relevant, it is very important to register your Colombian Beneficiary 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 $1,160,000 COP per month in 2023. So, the fine is up to 8,120,000 COP pesos in 2023.

Once you have a Colombian cedula it will make your life easier in Colombia. Most banks in Colombia require one to open an account. In addition, having one will make it easier to open accounts for Internet, TV and landline and cellular phone services.

Furthermore, you can travel domestically in Colombia with just your cedula and can leave your passport at home.

How to Apply for a Cedula Extranjeria

Applying for a Colombian Cedula Extranjeria is a relatively straightforward process as follows:

1. Get your blood test to determine your blood type if you do not know it.

If you are in Medellín or Bogotá, you could go to one of the best hospitals in Colombia or one of the many clinics found in each city. When I went for a blood test, I went to Clínica las Américas in Belén, which is the third best hospital in Medellín. I used to live within walking distance to this hospital. And it only took about 15 minutes to get my blood test showing my blood type.

If you previously had a Colombian cedula there is no need for a blood test as they already have your blood type from your previous cedula.

The report is not mandatory if you know your blood type. But be aware, you need to be sure about your blood type as if you are unconscious they use your blood type on your cedula for any medical care.

2. Fill out an online application.

Migración Colombia has an online application for a cedula that is available in English or Spanish. In the past Migración Colombia used paper applications that were available in their offices.

This online application asks some basic information including some personal information, emergency contact information and foreigner registration information as seen in the following three screen shots.

Personal information

Personal information

Emergency contact information

Emergency contact information

Foreigner registration information

Foreigner registration information

3. Schedule an appointment at one of the Migración Colombia offices.

Before going to Migración Colombia, you must make an appointment. And this can be done online here.

New entrance to Migracion Colombia in Medellín, on Calle 19A

New entrance to Migracion Colombia in Medellín, on Calle 19A

You can find Migración Colombia offices in the 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)

A complete list of the Migración Colombia offices by regions is found here.

4. Go to the Migración Colombia office on your scheduled date with the following required documents:

  • Your original passport 
  • Photocopy of your visa.
  • Photocopy of your blood test showing your blood type if this is your first cedula and you don’t know your blood type.
  • Photocopy of the data page from your passport.

The cost of the Cedula Extranjeria is currently 246,000 pesos ($54 USD). You can pay this fee at the Migración Colombia office with a credit or debit card.

After applying, you can check online here to see if it is ready to be picked up.

Migracion Colombia office in Bogotá

Migracion Colombia office in Bogotá

My First Three Cedula Application Experiences

I applied for my first three Colombian visas myself over the past several years. After receiving each visa, I also applied for a cedula. Each cedula will be valid for the same duration as your Colombian visa.

In addition, when you renew, the new cedula will have the same number as your previous one.

The first three times I applied for a visa, I traveled to Bogotá. And after I received the visa in my passport, I walked to the Migración Colombia office in Bogotá to apply for my cedula.

The Migración Colombia office in Bogotá is conveniently located within walking distance office from the Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores office where you get your visa.

In Bogotá, the cedula application for me only took about an hour each time in the morning at the Migración Colombia office. So, it is possible to receive your visa and apply for a cedula in the same morning in Bogotá if you don’t run into problems.

You can apply for a cedula in Bogotá and request that it be sent to the Migration Colombia office another city. 

The first three times I applied for a cedula, I was told that it would be ready in three days in the Bogotá office or if sent to Medellín it would take 7-10 days.

However, my experience was that two of my four cedulas took longer than this:

  1. My first cedula arrived in Medellín about three weeks after I applied in Bogotá.
  2. My second one was ready in the Bogotá Migración office three days after I applied.
  3. My third one arrived in Medellín after more than a month. This delay was due to problems Migración Colombia was having with the vendor they had outsourced cedula production to.
  4. My fourth cedula arrived in about 10 days after I applied in Medellín.

In addition, one problem I have found out is the number of my Cedula Extranjeria is the same as the number of a Colombian citizen’s Cedula Ciudadania who lives in Bogotá. This caused me problems when trying to sign up for some store rewards programs in Colombia as their systems don’t support both types of cedulas with the same number.

When you see the your cedula is ready online you have to go to pick it up. And bring your passport with you, as they will want to see your passport.

My experience in 2018 Getting a New Cedula

After receiving my fourth Colombian visa recently, a Colombia resident visa, I needed to also go to get my fourth cedula. I used the visa agency for my resident visa. And after I received the visa they filled out the online cedula application for me and provided me with the paperwork needed for a cedula:

  • One page proof of applying for the cedula online with a confirmation number.
  • Photocopy of the data page from my passport.
  • Photocopy of my visa.

I went to the Migración office in Medellín on a Friday without an appointment. I arrived at about 8 am and was finished a little after 10 am. So, it took a little over 2 hours. I had to wait for over 1.5 hours before seeing a Migración officer. I then turned in the paperwork, answered a few questions, paid 190,000 pesos for the cedula  with a debit card and they took my photo and fingerprints. Also, note the price increased to 246,000 pesos in Frebruary 2023.

I started checking online daily after five days to see if my cedula was ready to be picked up. And after eight business days (10 calendar days) my cedula was ready to be picked up. Overall this was a very painless process.

Duplicate cedula page on the Migracion website

Duplicate cedula page on the Migracion website

How to Obtain a Duplicate Cedula de Extranjeria

If you Cedula de Extranjeria is stolen or lost, Migracion Colombia has a streamlined process for obtaining a duplicate cedula.

To obtain a duplicate Cedula de Extranjeria, go to the Migracion page to request a duplicate cedula. This website page asks for your cedula number. And after entering your cedula number you validate your name and enter your email address and the city in Colombia where you want to pick the duplicate cedula.

This website then goes to a payment page where you can print out a receipt to pay 245,000 pesos at Banco Occidente. Or you can pay online from a Colombian bank account.

I had my cedula stolen during a robbery in Laureles in January 2020.  When I used this duplicate cedula process to obtain a duplicate cedula, I paid the same day at Banco Occidente. And I received an email from Migracion saying that the duplicate cedula would be ready to pick up in about three business days. A week later, I checked online and the duplicate cedula was ready to be picked up in five business days.

Medellin Guru’s Comprehensive Visa and Passport Series

The Colombian visa changes that went into effect in mid-October 2022 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:

We have looked in detail at the seven most popular Colombian visas used by foreigners:

  1. Digital Nomad Visa
  2. Retirement visa
  3. Marriage visa
  4. Investment visa
  5. Resident visa
  6. Work visa
  7. Student visa
  8. Visitor visa

Also, we have looked in detail at three additional Colombian visas, which are less popular for foreigners:

In addition, we have a guide to Colombia tourist visas and how to extend a tourist visa. Also, we have a guide to renewing U.S. passports in Colombia and a guide to obtaining a Colombian passport.

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 2022 to ensure they are up-to-date and are being updated again in 2023. In addition, all visa articles on this website will be kept up-to-date as new details are disclosed.

Using a Visa Agency for Visas

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.
  • Bilingual team.
  • 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 47 months, 630 visas  were successfully received by clients.

Also, our visa service renewed 68 American passports in Bogotá using our passport renewal service.In addition, 53 clients extended tourist visas using our tourist visa extension service.

So, in total we had 751 clients of the Medellin Guru visa service in 47 months.

In addition, many more visas are in process – short, medium or longer term, depending on client needs.

Use the Medellin Guru Visa Service

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, videocall, 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.

sample of cedula de extranjeria

sample of cedula de extranjeria

The Bottom Line: Receiving a Cedula Extranjeria

After you receive a Colombian visa the process to receive a Cedula Extranjeria is relatively easy with few documents required.

Once you have a cedula your life will become easier in Colombia. You will be able to open bank accounts in Colombia; apply for Internet, TV and phone services; start to establish a credit record in Colombia plus you can travel in Colombia with just your cedula and leave your passport at home.


Editors note: updated on December 31, 2017 with the new 2018 Colombia minimum wage information.

Editors note: updated on August 16, 2018 with current cost of a cedula.

Editors note: updated on September 26, 2018 with Jeff’s recent experience in obtaining a new cedula.

Editors note: updated on January 1, 2019 with the new 2019 Colombia minimum wage information.

Editors note: updated on March 2, 2019 with the current cost of a Cedula Extranjeria.

Editors note: updated on July 11, 2019 to add that only visas that are valid for more than three months need to be registered with Migración Colombia.

Editors note: updated on December 11, 2019 with new links to the Migracion website, as their website has changed.

Editors note: updated on January 27, 2020 with current 2020 information and added information about how to obtain a duplicate cedula if your cedula is stolen or lost.

Editors note: updated on March 30, 2020 with Colombian visa process changes due to coronavirus and the quarantines in Colombia.

Editors note: updated on September 19, 2020 with information that Migracion Colombia offices reopen on September 21 with services including obtaining cedulas.

Editors note: updated on January 26, 2021 with the current cost of the Cedula Extranjeria and updated other information so it is current.

Editors note: updated on January 20, 2022 with the current cost of the Cedula Extranjeria and updated other information so it is current.

Editors note: updated on March  9, 2023 with updated information regarding costs and requirements.

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