How to Get a Chilean ID

**This article is part of an original series of expat resources we contributed to the Chile Pages, read the original here

Procedures, requirements and all information related to obtaining your Chilean ID. 

The Chilean I.D. card is called la cedula de identidad, simply referred to as el carnet or la cedula. Most importantly, it has your RUN, an assigned ID number. Aside from it being mandatory to have a valid ID, you will need it and your RUN for things like opening a bank account to signing receipts.

Required Documents:

  • Visa stamped in your passport
  • Passport
  • Certificado de Registro

Recommended Steps:

Step 1: International Police (PDI)
Once you’ve successfully jumped through the hurdles of having your visa stamped, you must register it at a PDI office receiving el Certificado de Registro within 30 days of receiving your visa. Pay for the document and take a number, finally answer some basic personal information, and smile for the camera.
Step 2: Copies, copies, copies!
Before heading to the Registro Civil, make photocopies of your passport photo page, visa, and Certificado de Registro.
Step 3: Registro Civil e Identificacion
Go to the Registro Civil which is easily identified by its around-the-block lines bright and early in the morning. Nothing eventful, until you’re called to take a photo and fingerprints, hand over the copies you made, answer basic questions, and pay for the ID.
You’ll receive a receipt and the supporting document (el comprobante). Take those documents with you to pick up your ID (and el Certificado de Registroand copy of passport to be safe), or they may give you a hard time! Is that really surprising for public workers anywhere?
Step 4: Status Update
The comprobante includes a pick-up date for your ID (around 8 weekdays). The best bet to check the status on their website to avoid multiple fruitless trips to the Registro Civil. Your cell phone number or e-mail address are also used to contact you when it is ready, but don’t hold your breath on this one – there have been both fails and successes.
Step 5: Registro Civil e Identificacion, again
The final step in the visa and ID process! Go to the Registro Civil, stand in the appropriate line, and pick up your card. Commence victory dance, you’re official now!


Certificado de Registro: $800 CLP

Chilean ID: $4.050 CLP

Helpful tips:

  • If you’re really determined to run a tramites marathon day, you may stamp your visa, register it and apply for your ID all before 2pm. Have faith, it has been done.
  • Be prepared to distract yourself for at least an hour at both the PDI and Registro Civil.
  • Santiago Centro has the busiest Registro Civil, is closest to the PDI and Extranjeria, but different Registro Civil offices will have fewer people. You decide.
  • You must get your CID within 30 days of receiving your visa or you will be sanctioned – you will have to sign a form as well as pay a fee, although the fee may be waived if it is your first sanction. It sounds much more dramatic than it really is.

Links & More information

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge