The Cédula de extranjería is an identity document granted to foreigners of legal age and minors from the age of 7 who are holders of a Visa valid for more than three months. This document allows you to carry out legal procedures as if you were a Colombian citizen, for example, bank procedures, notarial procedures, and access to the Colombian health system (eps).

This process must be carried out at the Immigration offices no later than 15 calendar days after the visa issuance, but If the Visa were issued at a consulate abroad, the 15 days would count from the entry date into the country.

The validity of the foreign identity card will be for a term equal to that of the validity of the Colombian Visa. On the other hand, those granted a Resident Visa must renew their cédula de extranjería every five years at a Colombian Migration office, although this benefit is indefinite.

This article shows you the entire process of requesting your foreigner’s identity card.

Steps to apply for your cédula de extranjería for the first time:

1. First, you must schedule your appointment. Go to:


  1. Fill out the information
  • In type of procedure select: Cédula de extranjería
  • In sub-process: Por primera vez

In the date field, you will see the available appointment options. Choose the closest one and fill in the following information:

Click register, and you will get the following message:

Save the number of the appointment, and then you will receive an email with an online form that you must fill out, called FUT:


Fill out the Single Form for Procedures > Select Cédula de extranjería > and the Service Facilitation Center in your city residence.

Remember that you must fill in all the fields marked as mandatory, which include:

  • Your personal information
  • blood type (RH)
  • Information of an emergency contact in Colombia
  • The information related to the visa obtained and the activity that you are going to carry out in the country
  • It would help if you also chose the Immigration office in which you will receive your physical cédula de extranjería

Do not forget that in the ‘Files’ field, you must upload the photo of the main page of your passport and your electronic visa in PDF format.

Once all the form fields have been completed, fill in the captcha and click on I accept.

Once you have finished the online form, download the confirmation document, you must print it for the appointment with Migration.

And that’s it; with this, you can attend your appointment and request the Cédula de extranjería.

Note: To the registered email, you will receive information from Colombia Migration regarding the process of the Immigration Certificate that you are going to carry out.

What documents should I bring?

Requirements for the application:

• Original passport

• Photocopy of the page with the biographical data of the passport

• Photocopy of the electronic Visa

• Confirmation of the Single Form of Procedures filled out through the Colombia Migration website.

• Payment receipt for the issuance of the Cédula de extranjería

• Blood type and RH factor

• Minors (between 7 and 17 years old) who are visa beneficiaries must come in the company of the minor’s father, mother, or legal representative.


• General rate 246,000 Colombian pesos

Frequent questions

What do I do if I lose my ID?

  • Enter the website of Migración Colombia to schedule the appointment following the process described above, but in this case, you must select Sub-procedure ‘Duplicate.’

  • Remember that you must also fill out the Single Form of Procedures (FUT), as is the issuance of the cédula de extranjería for the first time.-Attend the Colombian Migration office on the scheduled date and time, showing your original passport, a copy of the visa, and the printed FUT.
  • Make the payment of $206,000 Colombian pesos.

How long does it take to get my cédula de extranjería?

  • Generally, it can take up to 10 business days from the date of payment. However, this time may vary according to the city and detailed factors of Migración Colombia.
Note: After these days, you can go without making an appointment; only bring your passport

Carry out your procedures with Expatgroup

Our agency has more than ten years of experience processing visas; many expats have successfully obtained their visas and cédulas de extranjería with us to enjoy a legal stay in the country.

Why Expatgroup?

-The satisfaction of our customers speaks of the quality of our services

-We are a bilingual team. Therefore, we can give you all the information without the language being a barrier.

-Our philosophy is to change lives and make the immigration process for our clients more straightforward, faster, and hassle-free.

We know this kind of process may be hard to follow. At expatgroup, we offer you a complete guide to getting your documents ready. Contact us for a quality service.

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23 comentarios en “Cédula de extranjería: Step by step guide

  1. Thank you for sending this but I don’t need information for a beginning cedula. I need an appointment for my second 5 year resident cedula. I’ve done the online thing including indicating today at 11-11:15 but heard nothing from migracion. I’m obviously doing something wrong AND NEED HELP GETTING THAT CITA. Thank you for your assistance.

    1. Hello David, I hope you are doing well.

      The process to renew the cédula is the same as it was for the first time. Only to schedule an appointment, you must select

      Type of procedure (tipo de trámite) > Immigration ID (Cédula de extranjería)
      In Sub-procedure (sub-trámite) > Renewal of foreign identity card (renovación cédula de extranjería)

      You can follow the rest of the process as the blog indicates. However, if you did so and did not have a response, you should contact migration.


  2. -What do I need to change my migrant visa to a residential visa after 2-years (marital)?

    -I legally changed my name in my country of origin, what is the process for realising this name change in Colombia on my visa and Cedula?

    1. Hi, Christopher, I hope you are doing well.

      Indeed you can change a migrant visa to a resident, but this is a specialized process. To give the best advice on both of your questions, please get in touch with us at (+1)8507714928.

  3. Hi, I am a US citizen that
    entered Colombia on May 10th 2022 on a tourist visa but would like to obtain a «jubilado» visa. Can you process this for me, if so how much is your fee and about how long will it take?

    1. Hi, Victor! Thank you so much for contacting expatgroup, the agency with more than ten years of experience processing Colombian Visas.
      Absolutely, we can help you to get the Colombia Retirement Visa, to give more accurate information please contact us at +1 (954) 799-3692
      looking forward to helping you!

  4. If while holding an M visa, I stay out of the country for more than six months would that also render my cédula de extranjería invalid?

    1. Hi, Andrea. According to Colombian law, if you have been abroad for more than 180 days, your visa is no longer valid, therefore your cédula is not valid either. The next step is to contact us when you return and start your Colombian visa process

  5. Hello, so I was given a volunteer visa with the condition that I can’t apply for another visa from within Colombia. If I married a Colombian, would this change things? Like would I still have to leave the country to apply for any kind of Colombian residence or permanence?

    Thanks so much.

    1. The visa restrictions do not change because you are married to a Colombian, in this case, to qualify for a Colombian Marriage Visa you must apply through the consulate of your country of origin or residence.

      To achieve greater success in your application or if you have doubts about how to start a new visa application, please do not hesitate to contact us at +19547993692

  6. Hello, thank you for your useful blog post. I have a Colombia M Visa and CE for one year, I am coming up to the expiration date and need to renew the visa and CE. Do you have to renew them separately? Does renewing your CE automatically renew your visa? After how many years with an M visa should I switch to a R visa?

    Thank you!

    1. Hi, Jenna,

      Thank you very much for your comment, the process to follow would be to apply about 45 days before your visa expires, first go through the visa renewal process, and once approved you go through the CE renewal process.

      To apply for an R visa for accumulated time with an M visa depends on the type, for example: with an M Retirement visa you can apply after 5 years, with an M Marriage Visa after two years.

      Write to us and we will help you to have a successful process in the renewal of your visa +19547993692

  7. Can you give an overview of all the benefits of having cedilla de extranjeria other than traveling within Colombia and not needing a visa? I have one and I am not sure, can I travel to countries that Colombians can enter visa free also or am I not eligible for that? Thanks

    1. Hey, Saul, I hope you are doing great!

      Among the benefits of having a CE:

      -Open a bank account
      -Affiliation to the EPS
      -Obtaining a driver’s license
      -Contract other essential services

      To be able to travel to countries where Colombians do not need a visa is with a Colombian passport, not with a CE.

  8. Thank you for being a great resource. I have a question, 4 years ago, I did the paperwork to get my cedula de extranjeria. My son was born in Medellin. Due to a family emergency, I had to go back to the states. Because it was an immediate decision, I wasn’t able to obtain my actual cedula de extranjeria card. Then the pandemic happened and I didnt come back until 1 month ago. Almost 4 years later, I’m back in Colombia, but in Cali, and my R Visa doesn’t expire until next year. It has been well over 180 days out of the country, where do I obtain my card and do I need to restart the process all over again? Any insight is greatly appreciated!

    1. Hey there, no, to issue the foreigner’s identification card (Cédula de extranjería) you must go directly to Migration Colombia since there they take your fingerprints and photo. Once the visa is granted and if you are in Colombia you have 15 days to issue it.

    1. Hi, Brian. I hope you are doing well. The Cédula de extranjería can only be obtained at a Migration facilitator center in Colombia, and remember that in order to obtain a C.E. you must have first a visa valid for more than three months. Regards

  9. Thank you for this post. Will I receive an email to tell me the card is ready? I took the pictures and finger prints and made my payment December 21st and it is now January 9th. I did the procedure in Bogota and asked that the card be picked up in Cartagena. Any advice? I have not heard any news.

    1. Hi, Michelle, I hope you are doing great. Normally, the issue of the Cédula de Extranjería takes 10 days, so you can go to the selected office to check if it is ready.

  10. Hello, I am currently in Colombia on a volunteer visa that expires on June 30th. Do you know if I can re-enter Colombia as a tourist in July and stay till the end of the year? My cédula would be expired.

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