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Colombia-Venezuela Border Crossing: Cúcuta

From Cúcuta, the highway winds 16 kilometers (9.6 mi) to Villa del Rosario, and another four kilometers (2.5 mi) to the Puente Internacional. This is the most common border crossing between Colombia and Venezuela. Local transportation is more geared toward these nations’ citizens’ comings and goings, and not needing to stop at immigration to deal with bureaucracy. This makes it a bit trying for foreigners, since buses and collective taxis will not wait for you. For those travelers needing passport procedures, this border is only open 8 a.m.-6 p.m. on either side.

 

Take a bus as far as the border, debark at the Colombia side of the international bridge ($0.80); a taxi that will wait for you to go through the rigmarole will cost about $25. On the left side of the road is DAS in the white house. Then cross back over the road and flag down a bus heading to San Antonio del Táchira, Venezuela, at the other end of the bridge. Tell the driver you are going to the DIEX (a.k.a ONIDEX, or immigration) office. If you are feeling energetic, you could also cross the bridge on foot; however, be very aware of your surroundings, since robbery is a possibility. Six blocks from the San Antonio side of the puente (bridge) is the Venezuelan immigration office. In all there is about 1 kilometer (0.6 miles) between the two migración posts.

 

Immediately on the Venezuela side is a tourism information booth on the left side of the road. At San Antonio del Táchira there is frequent transportation to San Cristóbal del Táchira, from there you can travel to Mérida, Maracaibo, Caracas and otherpoints in Venezuela.For journeyers traveling with their own vehicle, check with the Venezuelan consulate in Cúcuta or the Colombian Consulate in San Antonio for the complete procedures. In general, from Colombia to Venezuela the process will be: DIAN (customs) and then DAS (immigration). The DIAN office is a distance from the border, near the airport. See Cúcuta for addresses of the consulate and Colombian customs and other offices. If leaving Venezuela, the exit tax is approximately $20 (at official rate, less at black market rates).










By Lorraine Caputo

Upon re-declaring her independence at age 29, Lorraine Caputo packed her trusty Rocinante (so her knapsack's called) and began...

26 Sep 2011



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