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Residency Visas and Cédulas



For individuals who receive a stable pension or another form of consistent income of at least 3 minimum Ecuadorian minimum wages [$1380 per month]. You do not have to be 65 years of age or older to qualify for a Pensioner’s Visa.  As long as you have an income of $1380/mo (and $200/mo for each adult children dependent) coming to you in perpetuity, and you can prove it, you qualify for the Pensioner’s Visa.



For individuals who invest at least 100 minimum wages at an Ecuadorian bank or 100 minimum wages in a real estate property.  This is perhaps the most common method of achieving residency., The minimum wage in Ecuador in 2024 is $460,00 USD.



For professionals with university degrees recognized by the Ecuadorian government, who wish to practice their profession in Ecuador. To read a comprehensive list of the types of visas you can apply to get a residency visa in Ecuador click here  


Obtaining your Ecuadorian Residency Visa


When you first enter Ecuador you will receive a T-3 tourist stamp in your passport, allowing you to stay in the country for 90 days for free. However, if you wish to stay more than 90 days within a year, we can help you apply for the Special Tourist Visa, which allows you to stay in the country for up to 180 more days.  If you are planning to apply for a Temporary Residency Visa or Permanent Residency Visa, we advise that you start the process right away so you do not waste money and time on a tourist visa extension.


The changes in the human mobility law effective February 5, 2021, allows all temporary residents to travel as often as they need. They can also renew their temporary residence visas several times which means that there is greater freedom of mobility for those people that previously were restricted by the condition of not being able to leave for more than 90 days each year with a temporary residence. The most direct change due to this law is that the fines for staying out of the country for more than 90 days were eliminated.

Article 65 of the Human Mobility Law says about the Continuity of Residence. – The temporary residence visa permits entering and leaving the country multiple times during the validity of the visa and does not limit the duration of time spent outside of the country,


After 21 months of being a temporary resident and continuously living in Ecuador, you can apply for a Permanent Residency Visa (PRV). Under the Permanent Residency Visa, you are allowed to stay out of the country up to 180 days  during the first two years, each year. After the second year, you can be out of the country up to 2 years to keep Permanent Residency Visa status. In a case of non-compliance to this law, a fine of up to 50% of the basic unified salary must be paid. Following the second year, permanent residence holders may remain outside the country for up to two years. If the holder does not return to the country within the two year time frame, the visa will be cancelled.


With residency status, you must get an Ecuadorian ID Card called a cedula. You can use your cedula to enroll in the national healthcare system (IESS - Instituto Ecuatoriano de Seguridad Social), and if you are over 65 years of age you can qualify for senior citizen discounts on a wide range of services from municipal taxes to airline tickets to household utilities.  Read more about those benefits here.


The most popular types of resident visas are as follows:


Residency Visa Pricing


For our professional guidance and legal advice to obtain a residency visa we charge a fee from  $299 to $700.  Our fee includes legal counseling throughout the process, the compilation of all paperwork, interpreting/facilitating services at notaries, going to government offices,  submission of your visa application, and follow-up and troubleshooting every step of the way.  It also includes 12% tax.

That fee does not include Translation Fees (we charge $20/page), Notary Fees, or official Government fees.  With those fees included, a Residency Visa process usually ends up costing between $1,500 and $1,700, depending very much on the individual's situation and personal paperwork needs.


Contact us for a detailed and personalized estimate of expenses.



Still have questions about visas and residency?  


Take a look at some FAQs.

Cedula: Resident's ID Card








The cedula is not the same as the visa, but it is another necessary step in your Residency process.  After receiving and registering your visa, you must apply for you cedula within 15 days.  Currently, we take care of all Cedula services out of our Manta office. The EcuaAssist fee for Cedula facilitation is $150 per person.  As with the visa, this fee includes taxes but not expenses.

Expenses like Notary Fees, Government Fee, and Transportation Costs generally add up to about $20-$40.


Facilitation means compilation of your application by our experienced staff in Quito, Cuenca and Guayaquil, interpretation services at the notary and then at the Civil Registry.  We will be there to submit your application, interpret all communications with registry staff, address any questions they may have regarding your application and generally help you navigate the process.  



Visitor's Cedula Package:


If you are coming from somewhere else in the country to complete your cedula process, for an additional $50 fee we can 


  • Reserve you a room at one of several client-approved hotels, according to your preferred price range and style

  • Provide you with a packet of information on tours and other fun local activities

  • Help you coordinate your bus or plane travel to and from the city​

Cedula for Expats Ecuador
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