Requirements to travel to Easter Island / Rapa Nui on 2018

by Ale Werner
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Traveling to Easter Island or Rapa Nui is on the wish list of many people. Some have already managed to visit this island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean that is part of the Chilean territory, but others still have to discover it. If you want to visit this destination, we tell you about the new requirements to travel to Easter Island that will be asked from August 1, 2018.

With only 160 square kilometers of total surface, the island has wonderful beaches and a surprising and uncertain history, where the ancient natives carved Moais, huge sculptures of volcanic stone. The moais were then installed in different parts of the island with the aim of protecting it, or so the theories say.

Why do these requirements to travel to Easter Island where established?

Until a while ago the entrances of tourists and people outside from the island were governed by the same laws as Chile; so Chileans had free circulation between the mainland and Rapa Nui. However, due to the enormous deterioration that the island has had over time and the huge amount of tourists that day after day they want to enter, it is that they have decided to set their own access rules. Many foreigners decide to stay on the island, and it doesn’t have enough space or resources to harbor all of these people that are not part of the island natives.

Nowadays the historical heritage of the island has been strongly affected by the irresponsibility of tourists. They have had to close some areas and encircle others that were previously freely accessible by both the people of Easter Island and by anyone else. Although it is our responsibility to practice responsible tourism, many do not think of the damage they do. If you are interested in learning more about responsible tourism, click here.

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The ecology and nature of the island are also at risk. People are generating a huge amount of garbage and visitors perform activities such as diving and trekking without taking any care with the environment.

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If you would like to know more travel tips for Chile, click here!

The rules and requirements to travel to Easter Island.

As of August 1, 2018, the following rules will apply to all travelers (Chilean or foreign):

The maximum stay of travelers on Easter Island is a maximum of 30 days.

With this rule, the possibility of travelers migrating to the island and staying in it for long periods is being restricted. Due to its small size and limited resources, Easter Island cannot cope with an infinite number of people living or residing in it. This is one of the most important new requirements to visit Rapa Nui.

Formerly it happened that many travelers decided to stay for really long periods, and because there was no control of it there was also no control over the real population on Easter Island.

This condition applies to all foreigners, with the exception of:

  • People belonging to the Rapa Nui people and their families
  • Current residents
  • Workers hired or who carry out an independent economic activity on the island
  • Public officials, researchers, authorities
  • Pre-candidates and candidates registered in the electoral register.

Requirements to be presented to the PDI (Investigative Police of Chile) at the time of boarding to the Rapa Nui.

  1. Unique Entry Form: All those who wish to enter Easter Island must fill out a form with their personal data, place of stay and other things of interest to the authorities.
  2. Present an identity card (for Chileans) or passport (for foreigners) valid for at least 6 months after the date of boarding.
  3. Have a return or departure ticket from Easter Island previously acquired. This must comply with the rule of 30 days of permanence in the territory.
  4. Among the new requirements to enter Easter Island is that you have to present the reservation for accommodation in a place approved by the SERNATUR (National Tourism Service of Chile). Also, you can show a letter of invitation from someone belonging to the Rapa Nui people or another person that lives on Easter Island., which must be extended through the Provincial Governorate of Easter Island.

Do they remind you of something? We are recouped by the requirements to enter the Schengen Area in Europe.

Other tips for traveling to Easter Island.

  • The airlines recommend arriving at the airport at least 3 hours before boarding to have enough time and present all the necessary documentation.
  • The island is really small, so do not try to exceed your time of stay. Everyone knows each other and it is easy to keep track of who enters and who leaves since there is only one airport. Do not risk being fined or deported.
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