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Posted: 03/27/20248,179 Views

Plan to spend a bit more if you want to visit the Galapagos Islands starting later this summer. According to Ecuador’s Ministry of Tourism, the entry cost for the remote islands located 600 miles from Ecuador’s mainland will double starting August 1, 2024. 

Galapagos Islands Entry Costs

Currently, the cost to enter the Galapagos Islands is $100 per person for nearly all foreign nationals. Starting August 1, the cost will increase to $200 per person. 

For those who are nationals of Mercosur trade bloc countries such as Argentina, Brazil and Peru, the current entry fee is $50. From August 1 onward the entry fee for them will be $100. 

Children under the age of two can enter the Galapagos Islands for free, regardless of their nationality.

Why Are Galapagos Islands Entry Fees Going Up?

According to Ecuador’s tourism minister, the increase, which is the first of its kind since 1998, is to help combat the negative effects of overtourism on the islands’ extremely sensitive ecosystems, which are home to a variety of rare plants and animals.

“The Galapagos Islands are not only a national treasure but a global one. It is our collective responsibility to protect and preserve this unparalleled ecosystem for future generations,” said Tourism Minister Niels Olsen.

Although the permanent population of the Galapagos Islands is only about 30,000, some 170,000 tourists visit each year, and local utilities and the natural ecosystem have been pushed to the breaking point.

“This is pushing waste management systems to the limit, exacerbating water and food insecurity, and increasing the threat of devastating invasive species being introduced to the Islands,” according to the Galapagos Trust, a UK-based charity via a statement on its website.

While this increase in cost is unlikely to make or break your vacation, it is important to keep in mind, as you must pay in cash when entering the Galapagos Islands. If you’re planning a trip, be sure to bring enough to pay your entry fee, and always purchase Galapagos Islands travel medical insurance or travel insurance before you go. 

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