you go to PerÚ
Peru Border Crossing Basics
There are various border posts located on the
boundaries between Peru and its five neighboring countries: Ecuador and Colombia
to the north, Brazil to the east, Bolivia to the southeast and Chile to the
These border points vary greatly in terms of traffic. Some are bustling and
slightly chaotic transportation hubs, while others are remote outposts with
little more than a wooden shed and a simple gate. In general, the border
crossing process is straightforward.
Problems can occur, however, so it’s a good idea to be prepared and have all
your documents in order.
Peru Border Crossing Formalities
If your paperwork is in order, you shouldn’t have many problems with border
officials when you cross between Peru and neighboring countries. For most
tourists, the only necessary documents are a passport and some form of visa or
For Peru, the standard tourist “visa” is the Tarjeta Andina de Migración (TAM,
or Andean Migration Card). If you enter Peru by air, you should receive your TAM
during the flight. Fill it in and present it upon arrival. The bottom third of
the TAM will be handed back to you -- keep it safe, as you’ll need it to exit
If you exit Peru to a neighboring country, you will hand over your passport and
TAM to the Peruvian border official. The official will stamp your passport and
retain your TAM. You now cross over to the border post for your next destination
(Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia or Chile), show your passport and collect
the relevant entry form for that country.
If you enter Peru from a neighboring country, just reverse the process. If you
are coming from Chile, for example, you first need to exit the country at the
Chilean border post. You then pass through to the Peruvian border post, where
you collect, fill out and hand over a fresh TAM with your passport.
Potential Peru Border Problems
If your paperwork is not in order, you will have problems exiting or entering
Peru. Potential problems include:
have overstayed your time in Peru: for each day spent in Peru beyond your
originally allotted time (normally 183 days), you must pay a one dollar per day
overstay fine. You can pay this at the border post or airport before exiting
Peru (read more about Peru tourist visa extensions).
Your have lost your passport or your passport has expired: you will need a new
passport before entering or exiting the country.
have lost your TAM: you will need a replacement TAM, available in various
immigrations offices across the country.
need a yellow fever vaccination: you do not need a yellow fever vaccination to
enter Peru. Some South American nations, however, require proof of vaccination
are carrying illegal or prohibited items: whatever you do, do not attempt to
carry drugs or other illegal items between borders. You’ll also need to check
the customs regulations before crossing. Carrying items such as fruit and
vegetables between countries is often prohibited.
Border crossing areas are notorious for attracting criminals and other
undesirable characters. Keep a firm grip on your bags and watch out for
pickpockets. If someone other than a border official approaches you -- perhaps
offering to help you with your paperwork -- the safest option is to say no.
Be aware of potential scams at all border crossing points. There have been
reports of taxi drivers scamming tourists along the Peru-Chile border. On the
Peru-Bolivia border near Lake Titicaca, police officials have reportedly
confiscated money from tourists, claiming that the cash is counterfeit. Avoid
carrying large amounts of cash across borders; ideally, take only what you need
to get you across the border.
Transport across Peru's Borders
If you’re travelling by public transport in Peru, the most common overland
border crossing options are bus, minibus and taxi. Depending on the nature of
the border, some drivers will take you to the exit point and wait for you on the
other side of the border.
Sometimes, however, you may need to arrange further transport once you have
crossed the border. There are usually plenty of taxis and buses waiting for
passengers, so you shouldn’t have many problems arranging onward travel.