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Requirements to live in El Salvador

Our country, El Salvador, is characterized by its warm climate, beautiful beaches, and mountainous landscapes where it is possible to appreciate the nature surrounding us. However, this is not the only attraction of the country but also its gastronomy, the type of activities that can be done and its low cost of living because it is much lower than other countries. For this reason, foreigners have become more interested in researching the requirements to live in this country and thus enjoy everything it offers.

Know the different requirements you must meet if you want to live in the country; However, it should be clarified that these will be divided into 3 sections: stay for less than 90 days, stay for more than 90 days, and permanent residence.

Stay for less than 3 months

This type of stay is characterized by the following:

  • Offer stay for a maximum of 3 months (90 days).
  • It is used for tourist purposes, emergencies, medical check-ups, or family visits.
  • Only a passport with at least 6 months of validity is required.

Stay for more than 3 months

This type of stay is characterized by:

  • Applying for a stay permit or a kind of visa available (tourism, investment, consular or temporary residence) that allows you to stay in the country for more than 90 days, but always considering that this authorization has a maximum duration of 1 to 2 years, although there are cases where it can be extended up to 5.
  • Below are the general requirements and steps to follow for the visa application, as some criteria may vary depending on the purpose of the visa:

General requirements

  • Passport with at least 6 months validity
  • Copies of previous visas issued in El Salvador if applicable.
  • passport-type photographs.
  • Visa application form.
  • Document endorsing the immigrant’s accommodation.
  • Medical insurance plan and certificates of the immigrant’s health status.
  • Guarantee of the absence of criminal record supported by the country of origin.
  • If it is a trip with a return date, the date of the return flight confirmed by the airline will have to be presented.
  • If the immigrant has been hired by a Salvadoran company, he must attach the contract with the corresponding legal validity.
  • Bank statement with movements that affirm that the immigrant has economic stability to pay for his stay in the country.
  • Marital status of the foreigner applying for the visa.

Next Steps

  • Schedule an appointment at the nearest embassy of El Salvador, although it is also possible to do the procedure online or by mail if there is no embassy in the country.
  • Submit and sign the application form mentioned in the general requirements.
  • Wait a maximum of 2 months to receive El Salvador’s approval response.

Permanent Residence

It is important to clarify that to obtain permanent residence in El Salvador, the origin of the immigrant is taken into account, and for this reason, applicants are classified into 3 categories:

  • Central Americans. They can apply for their residency directly in San Salvador.
  • Latin Americans and Spaniards. They will need to wait one year after approval of their long-term visa before starting the residency process.
  • Remaining foreigners. They will only be able to access permanent residence after the third renewal of their temporary permit.
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