Visa Know How: Colombia TP-6 Volunteer Visa

Visa Know How: Colombia TP-6 Volunteer Visa

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Visas, Visas, Visas   — The topic no one enjoys talking about yet the topic everyone needs to know a lot about. Our ITA Alumni Ambassadors have been in your shoes when it comes to visas. It's a foreign topic to most, no matter how experienced of a traveler you are. Our Alumni Ambassadors have been through the visa process firsthand and were tasked with walking us through the steps they took for their visa. In this edition, Lisa Koprosky discusses the visa process she went through for teaching English in Colombia. Get your notebook ready and enjoy!

By Lisa Koprowsky


Visa Type

→ TP-6 Volunteer Visa (in Bogota, Colombia)

(Please note that the TP-6 Volunteer Visa is not the visa that most teachers work on in Colombia.  This was offered to Lisa as she was working for volunteer purposes or charity to begin.  The majority of teachers receive the M-5 Work Visa). 

Where Did You Process Your Visa?

I arrived in Colombia on a Tourist Visa and applied for my TP-6 Volunteer Visa in-person in Bogota. If you tell the people at the border that's what you plan to do, you won't have any trouble. 

Learn how to get a visa to teach English in Colombia

Required Documents

The documents needed to get a TP-6 Volunteer Visa in Colombia include:

 Copy of Passport
→ Entry stamp into Colombia
 Copy of your teaching qualifications

One copy of each document was required, but I recommend making a couple of passport copies to be safe.

Your work will be required to provide other documents such as:

→ Employment Contract
 Their bank statements
 Form from the Immigration website

It is pretty simple process in Colombia, and most of the burden will fall on your employer to provide the documents. The Immigration website provides a clear list of requirements for each one.

Notarization, apostillation, or authentication wasn't required for any of my documents.

Click here to receive your TEFL & Teaching English in Colombia Guide Learn how to get TEFL certified and find a job teaching English in Colombia. Everything you need to know is in this free Colombia TEFL Guide.

Where Did You Send Your Visa Documents?

After filling in a form online, you have to take your documents in person to the Visa office. It only accepts people until 11am, so get there early! From there, they send you down the street to register your visa at the Immigration Office and receive your Cedula (Colombian ID card). The whole process has taken me anywhere from 3 to 8 hours, so pack a snack!

Teach English in Colombia on a TP-6 Work Visa

Visa Fees

The first year fee was covered by my school, however the last year I had to form out the money, roughly $250 USD.

Visa Validity, Renewal & Restrictions

Processing Time:

You apply and receive your visa on the same day - you are required to wait at the Visa Office while they process it. The visa is valid for one (1) year. 


The visa is renewable. I am not at a different job though, so I will need to reapply.

Visa Restrictions:

The visa allows me to both work and study. I can leave and enter Colombia as many times as I like. 

**NOTE: Colombian Immigration is a bureaucratic nightmare. If you encounter any problems, demand to speak with the supervisor if the people helping you can't resolve it.**


Take me back to the Alumni Ambassador Corner

Lisa Koprosky - ITA AmbassadorAn avid traveller from northern Canada, Lisa has spent time living abroad in New Zealand, South Africa, and Kenya. She is currently living and teaching English in Bogotá, Colombia. Lisa did volunteer projects in Kenya and South Africa that gave her a taste of teaching, and she really enjoyed those experiences. After university Lisa was looking to learn a new language and have a job that was dynamic and exciting.

Related Resources:


Posted In: Teach English in Colombia, Teach English Abroad Visas

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