Before my arrival

In order to carry out the necessary procedures to reside in Uruguay, and to be able to study, work or start a business, it is advisable to arrange for some documents in the country of origin, such as:

  • passport (or valid identity card) with at least 6 months validity at the time of travel and in good condition.

  • birth, marriage or death certificates (to be valid they must have less than 30 days of issue);

  • certificate of criminal record, of the country of origin and of the country where you have resided in the last 5 years; 

  • identity card and/or valid passport in good condition (no translation or legalization required).

  • certificates of studies;

  • medical exams (the Basic Labor Health Card is mandatory and can be processed in Uruguay, but you can also bring from your place of origin some documents: certification of antitetanic vaccine, sealed and signed laboratory exams and in the case of women over 21 years old Papanicolaou results and those over 40 years old mammography results;

  • bank references; and

  • visa application, in case you come from a country that requires it (more info here). 

​All foreign documents submitted must be apostilled or legalized (according to Law N° 15.441)) and translated into Spanish by an Uruguayan public translator, except for those issued in Brazil. 

The Apostille is an internationally recognized system that replaces consular legalization through the application of a seal on the public document of one country, which certifies its authenticity in another. Many procedures are simpler and less costly since Uruguay's inclusion in the Hague Apostille Convention.

Where can you find out if your country has an agreement with the Apostille and who carries it out?

The legalization of any document is required when it is issued abroad by a country that is not a member of the Hague Apostille system.

How should a document be legalized? 

  • Legalize the document before the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the issuing country.

  • Legalize the document with the Uruguayan Consulate of that place.

  • Legalize the document with the Uruguayan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, upon arrival in the country. 

Upon my arrival

I. Validation of documents

In those cases with documentation of civil status authenticated by a consular agent but not apostilled, once in Uruguay, the signature of the Uruguayan agent must be authenticated.

II. Translations

Documents issued abroad in another language must be translated into Spanish in order to be valid in Uruguay (except in the case of Brazilian citizens). The only translations valid for Uruguay are those made by:

  1. Uruguayan Consular Agent: authenticated, accompanied by the originals properly authenticated,

  2. Colegio de Traductores del Uruguay.

III. Inscription in the Register of foreigners.


This is the transcript of the foreign civil status certificate, legalized or apostilled and translated (as appropriate). With this, an Uruguayan certificate of registration is obtained, containing the data found in the foreign certificate of registration.
Where is it done? At the Ministry of Education and Culture, General Directorate of the Civil Status Registry, enter here

IV. Start the process of applying for the residence online, see details here.

V. Apply for Health Card, see details here.


VI. Obtaining the Uruguayan ID (after having started the residency process), see details here.

TIP: Click here to access the full booklet "Live in Uruguay -  Immigrant Support Guide"  




These are the authorized banks by the Central Bank of Uruguay (see original source here):


Public banking:


Private banking:


Can I open an account without being a legal resident?


These banks offer accounts for no residents: BROU, BANDES, BBVA, HSBC, Heritage and Santander


As general requirements you may present:

  • Identity Card

  • Resident certificate

  • Certificate of income certified by Public Accountant or income receipt

  • Two bank references

  • Account statement of the bank where you are operating, and card account summary

Can I open an account when I am out of the country? 

BROUItaú and Santander banks have options for opening bank accounts remotely. 



Foreigners who want to settle down in Uruguay may enter: as unaccompanied baggage without charge and in a condition of loading: clothes, used personal belongings, books and newspapers, furniture and other goods for domestic use; and tools, machines, devices and instruments necessary for the exercise of their profession, art or trade, individually considered. The enjoyment of the benefit is subject to the previous verification of the activity developed by the traveler.

The custom process is free and can be done personally or through a representative.


Unaccompanied baggage must arrive in the Customs Territory within three months before or until six months after the arrival of the traveler and will only be released after the arrival.


  • Arrive in the condition of load and from the same origin of the traveler.

  • The procedure can be done by the interested person or his/her authorized representative by the power of attorney.

  • It should begin with the presentation to the Customs Authority of an electronic GEX file with the following documentation, application for admission, a list of personal effects intervened by the Consulate of the country where you reside and proof of entry to the country granted by the Migration Directorate.

  • The luggage will remain in storage until authorization.


For foreigners, as long as they are not granted permanent residence in the country, their assets may be admitted under the Temporary Admission regime and will be asked for a guarantee due to the corresponding taxes and it will be returned once the final residence in the country has been proven. The process is done by the interested party or who represents it, with the Customs Authority. 

How to do it?

Before entering the country you must apply at the Uruguayan Consulate of the country of origin for the intervention or the visa of the list of personal effects to be transferred.


Once in Uruguay, the procedure can be carried out by the interested party or by his authorized representative by Notary Power Letter. The documents needed to be presented to the Customs Authority are:

  1. application form

  2. list of personal effects intervened by the Consulate.

  3. the record of admission to the country granted by the Directorate of Migration. (Certificate of Arrival).


The luggage will remain in storage until the corresponding authorization.


A foreigner who comes to the country can enter a vehicle only if their situation falls within the provisions of articles 2 and 3 of Law 16.340:

  • Being retired 

  • Receive a minimum of U$S 1,500 (one thousand five hundred dollars of the United States of America) per month for retirement or other foreign-generated income.

  • To have acquired a real estate property for home occupation in the Uruguayan territory, which must have a minimum value of U$S 100,000 (one hundred thousand dollars of the United States of America) and may not be sold during a period of ten years. The value of the property referred to shall be accredited by means of reliable evidence.

  • Otherwise, having acquired in Uruguay public bonds issued by the Government of Uruguay for a minimum nominal value of U$S 100,000 (one hundred thousand dollars of the United States of America) which will remain in custody at the Banco de la República Oriental del Uruguay for a minimum period of ten years. However, at any time the property may be exchanged for public securities and vice versa, as well as any of them for another investment, always in amounts not less than those mentioned above. 

(*) If the country of residence is Brazil, the documents must be apostilled.

In the city of Porto Alegre there are three Tabelionatos where you can ask for this procedure:


  • First Tabelionato: tel (51) 30795300

  • Tercer Tabelionato: tel (51) 321233876

  • Noveno Tabelionato: tel (51) 33312535

Where to do it?

Before leaving, in the country of origin:

  • Uruguayan Consulate: see map here


Then, upon arrival in Uruguay:

  • Customs in Montevideo: Rambla 25 de agosto de 1825 nº199. Access Yacaré, Ground Floor. Hours: 9 am to 5 pm.

  • In the rest of the country: at any Customs Administration located at the point of entry to the country.


More information: 

International Transport Services



At the moment, used vehicles cannot be imported into the country, except for the exceptions detailed in Decree 266/013, which require certain procedures before the competent agencies. However, it is important to note that a new regulation is expected to be approved soon to make this point more flexible, allowing for easier entry of used vehicles. 

According to the current regulations, the exceptions include: specialized vehicles that cannot be assembled in the country; donations received from abroad, of units with a perfectly determined non-profit purpose; cabins for vehicles included in the current items 8704.22, 8704.23 and 8704. 32 corresponding to the third amendment of the harmonized system of codification of goods; vehicles considered as sports or classic, with more than twenty years of age, whose exclusive destination is to exhibit or participate in competitions and according to the regulations issued by the Ministry of Industry, Energy and Mining for such purposes; special vehicles for the transportation of persons in sports fields.

In the case of Uruguayan citizens returning to the country, it is possible to enter vehicles that meet the following requirements 

  • Uruguayans who have been abroad for at least 2 years

  • decided to reside definitively in the country, would be able to introduce for only one time, free of any exchange proceedings and exempt from any kind of customs duties, taxes or related charges: the personal property and effects that belong to his house; the tools, machines, apparatuses and instruments related to the exercise of his profession, art or trade; a motor vehicle of his property, which could not be transferred until a period of two years had elapsed since his entrance to the Republic.


The intervention of the customs broker is not required in the operations contemplated in this article. Consular legalizations are provided free of charge in the documents related to the procedure of definitive residence in the country of the compatriots and their family nucleus.


In order to enter a domestic dog or cat in Uruguay, it is necessary to obtain a certificate from the corresponding official agency of the country (Ministry of Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries).


The certificate must include and prove that the animal:

  • is free of communicable diseases,

  • does not show clinical signs of any disease and

  • is vaccinated against rabies (if older than 3 months of age).  The rabies vaccine must be given at least 30 days before entering the country, or maximum one year before the date of the transfer.


​The certificate must include the identification of the owner of the animal and the animal, as follows:

  • The owner of the animal: full name, address of residence.

  • Of the animal: name, race, sex, date of birth, size, coat, particular signs.

In addition, the certificate must include the country of origin and destination, and indicate that the animal was controlled within 10 days prior to the date of its transfer. The certificate must be signed by an official and with clarification of signature.

For dogs, treatment against Taenia Echinococcus (Hydatic Cyst) with an antiparasitic containing Praziquantel as active agent must also be checked within a minimum period of 72 hours and a maximum of 30 days before admission.

Remember that in case of pedigree animals, in order to register such pedigree in the respective Uruguayan Registry, the document must be previously legalized by the Uruguayan Consulate (paying the consular fee) or apostilled with the corresponding local authority.

In addition to these entry requirements, keep in mind the shipping formalities, which may vary by country and airline.


Official Agency in Uruguay: Ministry of Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries

  • Animal Health Division of that State Secretary - Department of International Trade Control

  • Website: www.mgap.gub.uy 

  • Dra. Rosario Guerrero rguerrero@mgap.gub.uy

  • Phone: (00598) 2412 6338


To enter any other domestic animal


More information here.



To transfer from Carrasco Airport to Montevideo, you can choose from the following options:

1- Public buses to Montevideo, suburban and interdepartmental:

2- Cars or private transport


Some of the following websites offer counseling services to migrants: 


Go back to the main webpage of LIVE section


Check the requirements and guidelines on how to obtain visas, residency and legal citizenship. 

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What is the educational system like? Check out the details and how to get homologations. 

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The health system has both public and private providers. Learn more about it here. 


Check out the wide and varied cultural offerings that Uruguay has to offer. 


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