Cruising visa requirements

Which visas will Victor need when cruising through several different countries?

Cruising visa requirements

Victor is planning a cruise which will stop at several different destinations, which is making arranging visas a little tricky. 

Q. Victor

I’ve booked a cruise from Fort Lauderdale to Los Angeles going down the east coast of South America and then up the west coast. This of course means visiting about six countries. I was looking for information on visa requirements but have had little luck so far. Can you advise what I will need?

A. Victor, it’s hard to know exactly which countries you’re visiting, but we're assuming Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Peru and Uruguay. The good news is that Australian citizens don’t need visas for these countries for short stays, such as those off a cruise ship.

The exception is Brazil. You’re in luck if you have an NZ or UK passport, but Australian citizens must have a visa in advance, which can be a slow and cumbersome process. Give yourself plenty of time to apply at the consulate in Sydney if you live in Queensland, New South Wales or the Northern Territory, or the embassy in Canberra if from another state. See the Consulate General of Brazil in Sydney for more. The hassle is worth it: Brazil is a wonderful destination which you’re sure to love.

Remember that, in general, your passport should also have six months validity and that visa requirements occasionally change, so double check before your departure. And the good news is that maost cruise companies will make your visa arrangements for you, but it is worthwhile double checking.

You can confirm the most up-to-date visa requirements by visiting


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    15th Nov 2014
    I was in Argentina earlier this year & they required an electronic visa paper (similar to the visa waver form that Australians need for USA). The form was easily completed online & the paper printed out & kept with my passport.

    As for the Brazil visa - the advantages of using a travel agent, meant that my TA organised that for me - but allow plenty of time. Nothing needed for Uruguay, Chile or Peru - on an Australian passport.

    Your cruise ship documentation usually mentions what visas may be required and when cruising, the ship company will often offer to organise the visas for you. Any small extra charge they make to your account is well worthwhile to avoid problems!

    Enjoy a wonderful cruise - I only cruised from Buenos Aires to Valparaiso - but the scenery is fantastic!
    15th Nov 2014
    We are cruising from Darwin to Hong Kong through Indonesia and the Philippines in March, then flying back to Brisbane. What visas do we need?
    15th Nov 2014
    This is exactly why Travel Agents are a must.
    If you want to get off the ship you will need a Visa.
    Common sense really!
    15th Nov 2014
    If you are internet savvy you don't need a travel agent. I've been on one cruise and am booked on another. I sent some time looking at various cruises and with each one the cruise company tells you which visa, if any, you need. Helen-Gran is correct, the ship I was on arranged visas for our stop in Tunis. Half the fun of a holiday is in the organising and using a travel agent takes some of that fun away for me.
    15th Nov 2014
    Victor I visited a travel agent who had offered to assist us with our visa applications. When the cost was double - I decided to apply online. A simple process and received the visas back in a little over a week.
    16th Nov 2014
    A visit to will advise you whether you need a visa or not. Allow yourself plenty of time. Visa such as for China can be purchased on line.or you can have a service look after your requirements. If on a cruise you will find that in some locations the ship will provide the visa for you and charge to your account. You will be advised of this when you get your ticket.. Countries such as China you will possibly need a visa for each port of call if on a cruise. It is best to say you want a visa which covers you for up to 6 months this protects you if you have an accident or similar and have to stay longer than expected. There should be no extra cost for this. Visa applications can add quite a cost to your trip so prepare well in advance and factor this in. A lot of countries will not require a visa check it all out. When cruising in areas which require a visa even if not planning on leaving the ship you will have to have one.
    21st Nov 2014
    Your Life Choices had an article on places where Australians don't need a visa....

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