Updated Oct 1st | Visa extension El Salvador, how to renew CA-4 visa and not die trying


Last update: October 1st
CA-4 visa extension in El Salvador.
Step by Step guide how not to die trying

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If your CA-4 visa is about to expire and you want to keep traveling between Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras or Nicaragua this guide is for you. 

We have BIG NEWS, the Dirección General De Migración Y Extranjería offers an online service where you can apply for a CA-4 visa extension. Keep reading to find out how.

With our beautiful beaches, great surf, lovely people and delicious food we know it’s hard to leave our country. A lot of travelers end up staying way longer than they planned.


Do I need a visa to visit El Salvador?

Most of the countries don’t really need a visa when entering El Salvador. If you arrive at the airport or seaport from immigration officials you will need to buy a touristic card and pay a $12.00 fee, with this card you automatically get 90 days permission to explore El Salvador and CA-4 countries.

If you are traveling more often and this happened to you before, you are probably aware that after 90 days you have to leave the country because of the limited tourism visa.

We get a lot of questions from travelers which solutions there are for this (luxury ) problem. That’s the reason why we have written this step by step guide. We want to help you out with all your questions and doubts so you can enjoy more days in El Salvador!


What is CA-4 in Central America?

This is a treaty of free movements across borders between El Salvador, Nicaragua, Guatemala, and Honduras. This is important to know because the 90 days you get when you enter one of those countries, count for all those countries together.

So for example, if you entered the CA-4 region in Guatemala and spent there 10 days, you now have 80 days left to explore the rest of the CA-4 countries (El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua).

If you move to El Salvador next for 10 days, you will have 70 days left for Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua.

So don’t think that after crossing borders you get a new 90 days, this is a big misunderstanding!

If you want to stay longer than 90 days in El Salvador or in this region, you have two options. The first option would be to fly to another country that is not a member of the CA-4 region and come back.

This way you get another 90 days just like when you arrived here.

You could go to Mexico, Costa Rica or any other country outside of the CA-4 region. Since this is not the most ideal option, there is also another easier option.

Migracion y Extranjeroa el salvador ca-4 visa renewal

Where can I renew my CA – 4 Visa Extension while in El Salvador?

In order to apply for a CA-4 visa extension for non residents you need to visit the Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería offices located in San Salvador city, El Salvador.

Starting in November 2020 you can apply for a CA-4 visa extension online, woohoo! Yeah, that’s right, if you fill out a form you can do 90% of the process online.

How to renew the CA-4 Central American visa in El Salvador online

  1. Visit the official website of Migracion y Extranjeria here
  2. Download form F44 for Non-Resident Stay Extension from 1 to 90 days
  3. Complete the form and send it to the email: migracion.visas@seguridad.gob.sv
    do not forget to attach the requested information.
  4. Wait for a response, The information will be reviewed and validated, if everything is in order, an email will be sent to you with a link to make your payment online and continue with the process.
  5. You will be notified by email of the date and time of your appointment for the stamping and delivery of your extension, do not forget to bring your passport.
  6. Just a few days before your visa expires?
  7. If your visa is about to expire and you only have a few days left, we highly recommend you to go to their administrative office. You can only extend your visa if you still have at least 5 days remaining in your passport’s stamp. 

What documents do I need for a CA-4 visa extension?

You can find a full list of documentation needed in order to apply for a visa extension on the official website of Migracion y Extranjeria. Here we present you a list of the most important documents you have to bring.

    1. Visit the official website of Migracion y Extranjeria here 
    2. Download form F44 for Non-Resident Stay Extension from 1 to 90 days.
    3. Prove that you are leaving the country (a flight or bus ticket)
    4. A proof of your bank account with sufficient amount of money to be able to stay in this country.
    5. A passport photo
    6. A receipt of you hotel with the address on the receipt.
    7. Copies of all pages with stamps in your passport.
    8. $25 USD
    9. A local person who could confirm your purpose of staying. This person also has to go with you to the migration office and sign the paperwork in front of the migrations officer.
    10. A copy of the identification of your local friend
    11. One other local contact. (Just the name and phone number is enough)

Where is the inmigration office located?

The Direccion y Estranjeria offices are located in San Salvador city, Final Paseo General Escalón y Avenida, Masferrer#5019, San Salvador, El Salvador.

Note: The inmigration office is located in the same mall where a Burger King is located, it is in front of Redondel Masferrer or 1 minute walk from the famous Lips night club, ask any local where the Lips night club is located and they will give detailed information lol.

They can give you a maximum extension of 90 days, but if you have your departure date before, they will give you only the necessary neccesary days. If you want to go to another country in de CA-4 you should mention that as well, that is not a problem.

The migration officer checks all the paperwork and asks you and your friend to sign the papers. Then you pay the $25. After this you have to leave your passport at the migration office. They will give you a temporary one (make sure you have a copy yourself).


Enjoy our country!


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