To receive the most updated information available we recommend you monitor our twitter account: https://twitter.com/USEmbassySV and visit our webpage https://sv.usembassy.gov/
Is it true that there are flights going to the U.S.?
Yes. We are actively coordinating repatriation flights to depart from the international airport in El Salvador. Please visit our website ( https://sv.usembassy.gov) for the latest information on flight opportunities.
I do not have COVID-19, but I have a minor cold. Can I still travel?
No. Anyone with flu-like symptoms will not be allowed to board a flight. Travelers exhibiting flu-like symptoms should not come to the airport. These individuals should self-quarantine and seek medical attention if their symptoms worsen.
How are there flights to the U.S. when the airport is closed?
Repatriation flights have special permission to land in El Salvador and provide one-way travel to the United States. These flights are only available to U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents.
Who can purchase a ticket for these flights?
Humanitarian flights are for U.S. citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents of the United States and can be purchased directly from the airlines according to the information on the embassy website.
Why does the humanitarian flight ticket cost more than commercial prices before the airport closed?
Humanitarian flights are operated by private airlines who set their own prices, which we have seen are higher than the pre-COVID market pricing. However, these flights offer a travel schedule to a set location. You may get one to two luggage allowances, and you can work with the airline on pet travel options. If you have an urgent need to return to the USA, we strongly urge you to consider this option.
Are we going to get stopped if we travel to the airport?
In order to aid you with safe transit to the airport, either the private airline you booked your flight with or, for government-sponsored travel, the U.S. Embassy, will be sending you a transit letter via email. We recommend that if possible, you print out this letter along with your flight ticket, or have it readily available on your phone if printing is not an option.
How do I get to the airport? Can a friend drop me off?
The U.S. Embassy has facilitated humanitarian flight permissions for United Airlines to depart from El Salvador to the United States. We recommend that the person who drops you off at the airport has a copy of the transit letter that is provided to you by United Airlines as well as a copy or a picture of your passport. Please be informed that if you have purchased a ticket with United Airlines, they are providing their passengers with the transit letters. They usually send the letter 24 to 48 hours before the flight. If by then you have not received the letter, please check in your spam or junk folder or request it directly with United Airlines. You may contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 2207-2040 / 2136-7590.
Do you know if/when more flights are coming up?
The U.S. Embassy in El Salvador is actively working to arrange additional travel possibilities for U.S. citizens who wish to return home. Visit our website for daily updates.
When will the airport be open again?
For information on the airport status we refer you to the official El Salvador government channels. The U.S. Embassy in El Salvador has no control over the measures currently in effect by the Salvadoran Government.
I need to go to a different state than the humanitarian/evacuation flight. Will you help me get to my final destination?
Destination options are limited. While the flight will land in the United States, you will be responsible for arranging and paying for travel to your final destination, including domestic flights, lodging, and local transport costs. The destination will be announced as soon as the information becomes available.
U.S. Citizen FAQ
The USG issued a Level 4 Health advisory, but I can’t return to the USA because El Salvador’s airports are closed for a national quarantine. What should I do?
We have no higher priority than the safety and security of U.S. citizens overseas. We are continuously assessing travel conditions in all areas affected by COVID-19, and will continue to update our travel advisories and safety information for U.S. travelers as situations evolve.
Is the US embassy still open and available to pick up passports? Can we go to San Salvador and pick them up?
As of march 18th until further notice, the Embassy has suspended all immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments. We will resume these services as soon as possible but we are unable to provide a specific date right now. We recommend to check our social media platforms and the website https://sv.usembassy.gov/es/visas-es-nonimmigrant-visas-es-tu-visa-tu-tramite/
U.S. citizens in El Salvador should:
- Monitor the Embassy’s website for the most up-to-date information
- Enroll in STEP at STEP.state.gov to receive the latest updates from the Embassy
- Follow the advice of the CDC and local health authorities that you can find at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.
- Check with your airlines regarding any updated information about your travel plans and/or restrictions.
- Monitor the Department of State’s COVID-19 website at https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/ea/covid-19-information.html
I am a lawful permanent resident (LPR) of the United States. Does the Presidential Proclamation affect my LPR status?
On April 22, the President signed a Proclamation which suspends the entry of certain immigrants to the United States for a period of 60 days. The Proclamation is not retroactive. No valid visas will be revoked under this Proclamation. The Proclamation includes exceptions for, among others: lawful permanent residents; immigrants seeking to enter as a healthcare professional; spouses, children, and prospective adoptive children of U.S. citizens; and certain Special Immigrant Visa applicants. You may find a full list of exceptions in the Proclamation itself: https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/proclamation-suspending-entry-immigrants-present-risk-u-s-labor-market-economic-recovery-following-covid-19-outbreak/.
I am a lawful permanent resident (LPR) and I’m currently outside of the United States. How long can I remain outside of the United States?
Generally, a lawful permanent resident can remain outside the United States for up to one year without having a problem to re-enter the United States. You can find more information by visiting: https://www.uscis.gov/green-card/after-green-card-granted/international-travel-a-permanent-resident
IV & NIV FAQs
Can I schedule an appointment for an immigrant or non-immigrant visa?
In response to significant worldwide challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department of State has temporarily suspended routine visa services at all U.S. Embassies and Consulates. Once visa services at the Embassy resume, we will inform the public on the steps to take. Please continue to monitor the Embassy’s website and social media accounts for more information.
My immigrant visa will expire soon, but I am unable to travel due to the airport closure and the quarantine in El Salvador. What should I do?
At this time, all visa processing at the U.S. Embassy in San Salvador has been suspended. Your status as a qualified immigrant remains valid even though your immigrant visa has expired. Once visa services at the Embassy resume, we will inform the public on the steps to take to renew expired immigrant visas so you may continue with your travel to the United States. For more information, please contact the Visa Information Center at 2113-3122.
I am currently in the United States with a valid B1/B2 visa. Do I need to request an extension to remain in the United States?
For more information, please visit the following page: https://sv.usembassy.gov/information-for-salvadoran-citizens-in-the-united-states-during-the-covid-19-emergency/