No entry stamp on crossing into Colombia from Tulcan

Hi all

Just wondering if anyone else has had the experience of crossing into Colombia and there being no immigration staff so the taxi just drove through and now I am here without a visa (or exit stamp from Ecuador). 

I have been advised by the consulate that this isn't unusual and that I just need to go and get my stamp from Popayán - which I have made an appointment to do.  I am just wondering if anyone has done this and am I going to get a hard time when I go?  I also and this is completely my fault didn't know about the mig so i haven't done that either (although I am thinking about doing it before I go even if the dates are out a couple of days - is this better than not doing it at all??).

Any advice would be great because I am stressing out being here with no visa and that stupidly I didn't know about the mig, it wasn't mentioned at all on any of the sites I looked at regarding crossing the border but no excuses, i should have done better research.

Any advice from someone who has been in this situation or knows someone who had would be amazing.

Thank you!

The problem is that you have no proof as to when you actually entered the country, how are the immigration people know whether you came in two days or two years ago.  You better get an immigration attorney, don't be surprised that you may have to pay a big fine, hopefully they will not put you in jail.

Actually i do have proof i have all my bus tickets and each bus company tracks your passport number. I also have only been in south America for three months all spent in Ecuador which can be proven. I immediately contacted the Australian embassy and this was their response -

We suggest to go to the local Migracion Colombia office to get your stamp. The immigration control at the border is not always open and many people don't get their stamp. To solve this, you should go to Migracion Colombia. The address of their office in Popayán is Calle 4 norte # 10B – 66. You should book an appointment in advance at Agendar Su Cita - Migración Colombia (


******Borders exist between countries for a reason and does not have the sense to go from one country to another legally. Good luck with the authorities.

Moderated by Bhavna last year
Reason : condescending
We invite you to read the forum code of conduct

Señorita Rose,

I find this to be a strange circumstance you find yourself in. I have no experience crossing the border. I guess not getting the exit stamp from Ecuador is no big deal if you have no plans to return. The entry stamp in Colombia obviously is important so immigration can confirm you haven't overstayed your 90 days

One thing I will mention is Colombia supposedly requires a "check-mig" upon entry which  is a health declaration form. They could ask you about in Popayán. Good luck. … gistro.jsf

I have travelled all over the world and crossed many borders and have never had a problem, no one is more surprised than me that the border would be unmanned and that the taxi just crossed straight over.  The consulate and my host here in Colombia have both assured me that it is not unusual here.  I have my appointment with immigration on Monday and i have done the mig form.  I will let you know how it goes.

I have crossed that border (Puente Internacional de Rumichaca) Colombia to Ecuador and back numerous times (I live in Medellin but travel on long road trips in my personal car all through Colombia and Ecuador) and yes I understand how easy it is to simply continue driving past the Colombian immigration building but you need to stop and get stamped in, you should have stopped the taxi driver, got out right after you passed the bridge and went inside and sorted this out.

Of course it is not "unusual" for this to happen but ONLY IF YOU decide not to stop at the immigration office and get your passport stamped for legal entry. Also don't pay any attention to your Colombian "host" as they clearly don't have a clue of what they are talking about.

Now a bigger question for you is.........did you get an exit stamp out of Ecuador? If not you most likely return to the border and get your exit stamp out of Ecuador then get the entry stamp into Colombia.

And yes this border is manned in the sense that there are both Ecuador and Colombian immigration offices each located on the respective sides of the river/bridge/dividing lines but not a stop of every vehicle per se as you travel either direction.

Hope this helps. 

@Senorita Rose Better get the stamp on there , cuz if you want to fly out, you will probably be be screwed, and if you get or renew a visa, you definitely will be screwed

You are in the country "illegaly" until you get your proper Visa stamp-in and out

This would only work if they didnt stamp you when you left Colombia in the first place.

Who's on duty?

From the road it may appear that nobody is on duty

late at night, whereas if the motorist or taxi passenger

gets out of the vehicle, he/she may discover a door

to a building is open and an all-night duty officer or

two is in the back of the building and a case can

be presented.  I have personally encountered this.


I can actually see how an inexperienced tourist might get confused, particularly if they are accustomed to airplane travel and may not speak Spanish well. I might expect the taxi to stop at customs and/or be forced to do so by a police in the road. Of course, if I made it to Ipiales and had a hotel reservation, I might head back to the bridge that day or the next morning. to resolve.

That said, I was thinking of using Andes Transit the first time crossing, since they handhold you between Tulcán and Ipiales or even Quito to Ipiales. Or maybe I will just fly to Bogota.....or just not go. Who knows

@nico peligro I had an experience with this in Venezuela. It seems that they stamped my entry stamp in the exit portion of my passport. Upon leaving they made a great deal about it and we were detained and almost missed our flight. In the end my Colombian wife (novia at that time) was able to explain to them and show our tickets showing arrival in Caracas on the date stamped as exit and show her passport stamped correctly along with her ticket etc. We made our flight in the nick of time, I doubt that would have happened if I had been alone given my mid level Spanish skills. I now inspect my passport carefully at each crossing and keep my travel documents such as plane tickets as evidence. I also have all my documents in the cloud, passports, marriage certificates, birth certificates, visas, etc.