Shopping in Colombia

Shopping in Colombia

Southern America



The following articles may be imported into Colombia duty-free (people over 18 years):

200 cigarettes and 50 cigars and 50 grams of tobacco;
2 bottles of alcoholic beverages;
Perfume and eau de toilette for personal use (women only).

Gifts up to the equivalent of US $ 1500.

Import regulations

A special permit is required for weapons and ammunition.

Prohibited imports

Plants of all kinds and their products.

Export regulations

A receipt confirming the purchase is required for the export of emeralds and other precious stones, as well as items made of gold or platinum. Original cultural goods are subject to an export ban.

Shopping in Colombia



When buying souvenirs made of skin and feathers in Colombia, a country located in South America according to ethnicityology, one should be careful – carrying out cultural artifacts and objects of animal origin such as the ones mentioned is prohibited and is severely punished.


Popular souvenirs are gold jewelry, antiques, handicrafts, cotton, wool and leather items, especially woolen blankets, ruanas and travel bags. Colombia produces first class gemstones, and the emeralds are among the most perfect in the world. However, counterfeits are common. Before buying gemstones, you should be recommended to reputable sellers and acquire a solid basic knowledge.

Bogotá has numerous large shopping centers and a few shopping streets. The Zona Rosa is home to designer fashion and high quality jewelry stores, while La Candelaria is home to independent, unique shops.

In Cali, Parque Artesanía sells authentic handicrafts and goods from around the country that are perfect souvenirs. There are also ultra-modern shopping centers in Cali, such as Chipichape, where the usual products such as clothes and shoes are offered at prices similar to those in Europe. In the shopping malls there are bars and restaurants where you can have fun in the evening, as well as large food courts where North American and Colombian fast food is served.

Colombian coffee is available across the country, not just in the Zona Cafetera; However, one should note that the packaging may be opened during customs clearance.

Opening hours

  1. A. Mon-Sat 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 6.30 p.m.


When buying souvenirs made of skin and feathers, one should be careful – carrying out cultural artifacts and objects of animal origin such as the ones mentioned is prohibited and is severely punished.



1 Colombian peso = 100 centavos. Currency abbreviation: $, COP (ISO code).

Banknotes are in circulation in denominations of 50,000, 20,000, 10,000, 5,000, 2,000 and 1,000 pesos.

Coins worth 1000 (currently no longer minted), 500, 200 and 100 pesos.

The 20 and 10 pesos coins are still in circulation but are no longer minted.

Warning: There are many US $ flowers in circulation in Colombia.

Credit cards

Most hotels, restaurants and shops accept international credit cards, especially Master Cards and Visa. American Express and Diners Club are only accepted in the most exclusive locations. At some ATMs you can withdraw cash with a credit card, some machines are very outdated and retain the card. A replacement card is recommended when traveling. The daily limit for withdrawals is currently 300,000 to 400,000 pesos. Details from the issuer of the credit card in question.


Maestro card / Sparcard / ec cards with the Cirrus or Maestro symbol are accepted throughout Europe and worldwide. Further information from banks and credit institutes. ATMs can be found in tourist areas and larger cities, and ATMs are often inoperable. The daily limit for withdrawals, except in Davivienda, is 300,000 to 400,000 Pesos. EC cards are not suitable for cashless payment.

Attention: Travelers who pay with their bank card abroad and want to withdraw money should find out about the possibilities of using their card from their bank before starting their journey.

Bank opening times

Mon-Fri 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Some banks also offer extended opening hours, including at night and on weekends. On the last day of each month, the opening time ends at 12 noon. There are restrictions during Holy Week and at the turn of the year. The banks are often well attended at lunchtime. However, it is recommended that you choose the busier times of the day for withdrawal purposes, despite the longer waiting time.

Foreign exchange regulations

Unrestricted import and export of national and foreign currencies; Declaration obligation from an equivalent value of US $ 10,000, declaration recommendation also for smaller amounts. Export of local and foreign currencies is limited to the amount declared upon entry, but may not exceed the equivalent of US $ 10,000.

Currency Exchange

The exchange rate is i. General cheaper on the Caribbean coast than in Bogotá, Medellín or Cali. The most common are US dollars, which can be exchanged in hotels, banks, shops, travel agencies and exchange offices (exchange office opening times: Mon-Fri from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sat from 9 a.m. to noon); a fee is charged everywhere. However, not all banks exchange dollars and there are usually time restrictions on exchanging foreign currency. Euros can also be exchanged. It is forbidden to change money with unrecognized dealers.