If you are interested in visiting Buenos Aires to find out if you’d like to pursue a job opportunity, or if you have a job and need to visit before making the actual move, a tourist visa is the best option.
Tourist visas are granted for people from certain countries when your passport is stamped upon entrance to Argentina. This visa is valid for 3 months, which means if you receive it on the 15th of May, it remains valid until the 15th of August. Citizens and nationals of the United States, the European Union, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and the Mercosur countries do not need to apply for a visa to enter Argentina; they will receive their tourist visas upon passing through immigration upon their arrival.
Upon entering into Argentina through the main airports (Ezeiza or the Aeroparque Jorge Newberry), all citizens of Australia, Canada and the United States are required to pay a “reciprocity fee” equal to the amount that Argentines pay to apply for a visa to enter their respective countries. The fee is for entry only, not for the actual visa. For Australians the fee is US$100, which applies for one year and covers multiple entries. Canadians can pay US$75 for a single entry or US$150 for multiple entries over a five-year period. For US citizens the fee is US$140 and it applies for ten years and multiple entries. However, these reciprocity fees are not charged at border crossings, only at the airport.
The tourist visa can be extended only once for another 3-month period by going in person to any of the National Immigration Offices (Dirección Nacional de Migraciones); the central office is at Antartida Argentina 1355 in the Retiro barrio.
Vaccinations are not required to enter Argentina, except for cholera and yellow fever, if you are traveling from countries where those diseases are endemic.
As a tourist, if you plan on staying in Argentina longer than 90 days, an easy option is to exit the country and re-enter after any period of time. Many travelers and expats take a boat (usually Buquebus or Seacat) to Uruguay at a round-trip cost of about AR$250. Upon re-entrance, your passport and tourist visa are updated and will be valid for another 3 months.
If you need to apply for a tourist visa, you need a valid passport, application form supplied by the consulate in your home country, one 4×4 centimeter passport photo (but bring at least four to be safe), payment of consular fee (which varies by country of citizenship), and proof that the you can support yourself in Argentina. The maximum length of stay allowed is 3 months, which can be extended by visiting any of the delegations of DNM (see website above) before the 3-month term expires.
The rules and guidelines for visas are outlined well in the Minister of the Interior website ( http://www.migraciones.gov.ar/accesibleingles – the menu to the left is available in English and will take you to English explanations) and it is recommended to visit an Argentinean embassy in your country of residence to check on any recent changes, and find out the various fees. The application process for obtaining a tourist visa tends to be simple and quick, but it is always a good idea to be prepared for recent changes in legislation that may effect this. Before visiting a consulate, be sure to call them first and make sure you have all the necessary paperwork that they will require.