Want the chance to live in the lush hills of Colombia for up to two years, while working as a digital nomad or remote worker? Your wait is almost over. And phew, the hurdles aren’t nearly as bad as some other countries.
Colombia is already home to one of the more favorable exchange rates and stellar value for money for remote workers looking to soak up the views, culture and culinary highlights of this South American gem, but currently there are strict limits. Visitors must only enter for up to three months, though extensions have been possible.
Come this fall, that’s all set to change. Colombia has announced plans to launch quite possibly the easiest and least cumbersome digital nomad visa, and in theory, anyone who has at least “$684 in monthly available funds” may be able to apply.
Colombia Dips Into Trending Digital Nomads
A growing list of countries are deciding that they’re better off courting foreign workers who are happy to spend money in their countries, than kicking them out over arbitrary stay limits.
If people aren’t taking away local jobs, but are contributing to local economies and creating local opportunity, it’s a tough proposition to argue with. Expats are a tough crowd to beat, when it comes to dining out, drinking and boutique shopping. They may drive rents up, but that’s another debate for another time.
After a slew of regional rivals introduced their own nomad visas, Colombia wants in.
The South American paradise, with exciting cities ranging from Bogota to Medellin, not to mention some highly underrated beaches; will allow visitors to stay up to two years under the new plan.
Details aren’t yet bountiful, but the only named requirement thus far is that visitors must have at least $648 of monthly available income. What defines “available” may be a point of contention.
Other countries have typically asked for at least $50k of verified income to be eligible. Is that just $684 overall income, or proof you’ve got at least $684 in spending money available each month, to benefit Colombia?
Colombia’s Digital Nomad Requirements
Virtually all digital nomad visas require a few basics, like a valid passport, proof of employment abroad and generally an application fee too. As noted, Colombia hasn’t dished on the formal requirements yet, but all of the above are expected, in addition to health insurance for the duration of the stay.
One interesting footnote in the initial news, is that to qualify as someone who is employed abroad, the employer can’t have a presence in Colombia.
This could, in theory, prove difficult for anyone who works for larger multi-national corporations, but should be fine for most digital nomads, working at more boutique firms, or who are self employed in a different jurisdiction. Anyone who stays more than 183 days in a year will also be declared a tax resident, according to KMPG.
Exciting Times For Flexible Work
There’s never been a more exciting time to work remotely. Sure, your employer may be able to spy on you, but at least there are places you can jet off too, where you don’t have to constantly watch the clock to stay in compliance.
These new digital nomad visas from Colombia, set to launch later this year, will allow people to spend more time in the country without worry. Visitors may not want to spend more than 183 days in a year, due to tax implications, but the ability to stay long and travel slow is very cool.
We’ll update this article as more news emerges from Colombia, including where to apply!