TRAVEL AND VISAS
A valid passport is required for travel to mainland Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands. According to information provided by the Ecuadorian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, most nationalities do not require visas for Ecuador and the Islands to stay for up to 90 days. Upon entry visitors are automatically given a 90-day tourist visa. Upon arrival in Ecuador or on your flight to Ecuador, you will fill out a T3 Tourist Information Card. This will be turned into immigration upon arrival and a copy of it will be returned to you along with your passport. You will be required to turn it in when you leave the country. Your passport also needs to be valid for a minimum of six months beyond your travel dates.
Only citizens of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cuba, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Senegal and Somalia require visas, but please verify potential updates to your home country requirements. The Local Organizing Committee (LOC) will work with such participants to provide any necessary letter of invitation. Travelers also need to show proof of future departure from Ecuador to customs and immigration as they arrive in the country; this can simply be a return or onward airline ticket.
Please note however that there is a 100 USD tourist fee upon arrival to the Galapagos Islands as it is a national park. This is payable only in US dollars and needs to be in cash.
The main airport on the Galapagos Islands is Baltra airport (airport code: GPS). Baltra airport is served internationally by LAN Ecuador and additionally by the following Ecuadorean airlines: AeroGal and TAME. The transfer from the airport to the town of Puerto Ayora will be arranged by the LOC only from/to this airport on arrival dates (March 11th,12th) and departure dates (March 18th).
All flights to the Galapagos Islands start from mainland Ecuador (Quito or Guayaquil). The existing airlines which service Galapagos, TAME and Aerogal, currently do not have direct international flights to Galapagos. For international flights, the International airline LAN (based in Chile) has received permission from the Ecuadorian government to begin service to the Galapagos Islands. All these airlines offer one daily flight from Quito-Guayaquil-Baltra.
The Galapagos Islands is a highly visited tourist zone with a high demand for airline tickets, so it is suggested to make your travel arrangements several months in advance.