Last Updated: November 15th, 2021
Traveling post COVID-19 lockdown looks a little different. Airlines, tour operators and hotels are starting to make appropriate changes that will ensure the protection of both travelers and workers in the industry. It’s clear that we are not “going back to normal,” but instead we’re “finding a new normal.”
Here at EcoCamp Patagonia, we started another fantastic season in Torres del Paine National Park in September 2021. The borders are slowly reopening but with one of the most successful vaccination campaigns on the planet (about 90% of the objective population has completed the vaccination process) experts and actors in the tourism industry trust that Chile will fully reopen its borders to tourism very soon!
We are so excited to get back on the trail, embarking on active adventures and admiring amazing natural landscapes.
But in order to create a safe and comfortable environment for all, we are implementing new regulations and will have flexible booking policies put in place. It is our first priority to protect each and every traveler to the best of our ability, while also creating a memorable Patagonian experience.
Keep reading to learn what you can expect while traveling to EcoCamp post COVID-19 lockdown.
Traveling to Chile in 2021
We are very happy to announce that from November 1st, there is no more mandatory 5-day quarantine for those arriving in Chile if you test negative for a PCR test upon arrival.
Together with the above mentioned, it is mandatory to comply with the following requirements:
- To have a negative PCR, taken 72 hours before departure to Chile, counting from the last boarding on flights with stopovers
- To have received a complete vaccination program, which you must validate before entering Chile at mevacuno.gob.cl to obtain a mobility pass, which becomes active after the mandatory confinement. Vaccines must be those approved by the Chilean Public Health Institute (ISP), the World Health Organization (WHO), the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the European Medicines Agency (EMA). Please be aware that validation could take up to 30 days and you have to complete this not before 45 days before your arrival to Chile.. Check here steps to follow.
- Fill out the “Affidavit for Travelers” form online, up to 48 hours before departure, in which you will provide your contact and health information and your travel details. This form will issue a QR code as a means of verification. This form is available at www.c19.cl
- To have medical insurance with a minimum coverage of USD 30,000, which covers any expenses caused by Covid-19.
- For 14 days after you enter the country, you will receive a follow-up form sent daily to your email. Timely completion is mandatory.
- Foreigners as well as Chilean and Non-Chilean residents may enter Chile by air through the airports in Santiago, Iquique and Antofagasta.
- If you are planning to travel to Magallanes Region (Torres del Paine National Park, Punta Arenas, Puerto Natales, Navarino) be aware that you will need to have a negative PCR test, taken no longer than 72 hours before arriving in the Region.
- If you are travelling with kids, please be aware that from 6 years old they must have a complete vaccination program validated before entering Chile. If they are younger they must remain in mandatory isolation for seven days.
As of December 1st, 2021 travelers with a complete vaccination program and a booster vaccine dose (of no more than 6 months) will be able to enter the country without a negative PCR and without any mandatory quarantine. Children under 6 years old will be able to enter Chile without having to quarantine as long as they have a negative PCR. The following land border crossings will reopen : Chacalluta, Colchane and Pino Hachado.
As of January 1st, 2021 the following land border crossings will reopen : Paso los Libertadores, Cardenal Samoré and Río Don Guillermo (which will allow travelers to do the Torres del Paine (Chile) - El Calafate (Argentina) overland trip.
Extra Sanitation Measures
This season, we are taking extra sanitary precautions at EcoCamp and during our tours in Patagonia.
First off, we are insisting that every traveler brings a mask on his/her trip. We will also have hand sanitizer and EcoCamp face masks available. It is a simple, yet effective way to ensure proper personal hygiene.
We are also making group tours smaller and will be operating our hotel at partial capacity. There is appropriate physical distancing during excursions and in transit around Patagonia. This includes in our vans, restaurant, tour groups and in communal areas at EcoCamp.
Additionally, we are making adjustments in our Community Domes, where our bar and restaurant are located. This season the buffet meals (breakfast and box lunch) will be served by staff members. We also improved air circulation and are using just one door for entry and one for exit.
The community of Puerto Natales and Torres del Paine is working together to collectively establish appropriate protocols and safety measures for everyone in the tourism industry. This collaboration will help unite tour companies and create a "COVID safe" environment for all travelers and residents in the region.
Before the start of the new season, we trained the EcoCamp staff and ensured that everyone understands the new safety regulations. It is so important that our staff members feel protected in the workplace and are fully confident doing their jobs.
Cleaning staff is providing extra disinfection services to all areas of the hotel, offices and vans. Additionally, all luggage is disinfected upon arrival to prevent any potential trace of COVID-19 from entering the facilities.
Lastly, any traveler that presents symptoms of COVID-19 will be required to isolate and seek medical attention. Guides and staff members will be trained on the proper protocol to take in this specific situation.
Looking for more information? Check out our Health Protocols here
Maintaining the Spirit of EcoCamp
While we may have new policies put in place, the adventurous and communal spirit of EcoCamp and Torres del Paine will remain the same.
A trip to EcoCamp is still a chance to connect with nature and marvel at some of the world’s most extraordinary landscapes. We will continue offering our top-rated tours, such as the W Trek, Wildlife Safari and Multi Sport Adventure, all led by expert guides.
By day, travelers can venture to the base of the Paine Towers, kayak down the river or even get a glimpse of Patagonia’s elusive puma. While at night, travelers return to their own cozy eco-dome and enjoy a tasty meal made from local ingredients, paired alongside a glass of Chilean wine.*
Here's a little trailer of our upcoming season!
So what are you waiting for? The EcoCamp experience is one trip that you just can’t miss! Get in touch now and book your Patagonian adventure.
Like our blog? Check out our inspiring post “7 Reasons Why Patagonia Should Be Your Next Big Adventure.” Also follow us on Instagram for daily photos of the beautiful Torres del Paine.