Guatemalan Immigration Requirements
To enter Guatemala, the U.S. and Canadian citizens, EU countries, as well as a few other countries need a valid passport with at least 6 months of validity before expiration. After completing immigration and customs forms on arrival, visitors are given permission to remain in the country for up to 90 days. Beyond 90 days, a visa is required, or it is necessary to leave the country for 24 hours and then reenter to be granted another 90-day stay.
Students from other countries who require visas are responsible for obtaining visas on their own as CASAS does not offer this service.
The official directory of Guatemalan Consulates, the official site of the Guatemalan Institute of Migration, containing all accurate visa requirements.
Travel to Guatemala City
International flights arrive at Aurora International Airport, located in Guatemala City. After arranging their flights, students should email their itineraries to Semilla.
Transportation to/from Airport
Upon arrival, students pick up their luggage and clear customs. CASAS staff with identifying signs (“CASAS” or “SEMILLA”) greet students at the passenger pick-up area in the airport lobby adjacent to immigration.
CASAS students stay the first night on campus at the Casa Emaús guesthouse. Breakfast begins at 7:30 the next morning, followed by a Spanish placement test and general orientation. For CASAS students participating in homestays, families come to CASAS in the afternoon to pick up their students.
The CASAS facilities are located on the campus of SEMILLA Latin American Anabaptist Seminary. CASAS students and staff share lunch and snack times with SEMILLA faculty, staff and administration.
The campus facilities include:
- Casa Emaús guesthouse;
- Lounge area with a sink, stove, and refrigerator where mid-morning breaks are held;
- Spanish classrooms, larger meeting rooms for CASAS lectures or chapels,
- Offices for SEMILLA and CASAS faculty, staff and administration;
- Kitchen/dining area;
- Spanish/English library with significant holdings in the areas of theology, anthropology, and Latin American and Anabaptist history.
Small lockers are available for CASAS students where such items as passports, plane tickets, and cash can be stored safely.
There is a laundry area that is intended mainly for use by Casa Emaús staff and guests but is available to students if needed. Each load costs $2.00 USD. There is a dryer and an area where clothing can be line-dried.
It is difficult to say exactly how much spending money to bring, as different people have different needs. While housing, room, and board are taken care of, CASAS suggests bringing extra funds for gifts and non-program-related travel. When traveling in Guatemala, students can expect to pay $10-$25 a day for transportation, food, and lodging, depending on destination and lifestyle. Cash is generally accessible via ATMs throughout the country. Credit or debit cards with the PLUS, Visa or Mastercard symbol are the easiest to access.
Students will also need $30-$40 extra to cover book expenses, and around $10/month money for local bus transportation.
CASAS can provide transportation to exchange dollars at the nearest bank, but we have found the easiest method to access money is to use an ATM card. There are ATM’s within easy walking distance of the campus, as well as many others throughout the city and country.