Airplane: the national airline in Chile is LAN Airlines. It offers daily flights from Frankfurt to Santiago de Chile with a stopover in Madrid. Feeder flights to the LAN transatlantic flights are offered by Lufthansa, Swiss International and Ibera.
Lufthansa and Varig fly daily directly from Frankfurt to Santiago de Chile. Swiss International flies from Zurich with a stopover in Sao Paulo or Paris to Santiago, from Vienna Air France and Austrian Airlines fly with a stopover in Paris.
There are regular direct flights from Madrid to Santiago with LAN and Iberia, several airlines offer flights from the main European cities with stopovers in Argentina or Brazil.
According to ezinereligion, Chile has direct flight connections with North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand, as well as with neighboring South American countries such as Argentina, Bolivia and Peru. There are currently no direct flights between London and Santiago.
Airlines that offer connections to Chile include Aerolíneas Argentinas, Air Canada, Air France, Alitalia, American Airlines, Avianca, British Airways, Copa, Delta, Iberia, KLM, Lan, Lloyd Aéreo Boliviano, Lufthansa, Qantas, Swiss, Taca, United Airlines and Varig.
Regional flight connections
Many airlines fly daily between Santiago and Buenos Aires, Argentina.
There are LAN flights from Santiago to Mendoza and Cordoba. Aerovia’s DAP in Patagonia flies from Punta Arenas to Rio Grande and Ushuaia (Tierra del Fuego) and from Puerto Natales to El Calafate from November to mid-March.
LAN and Taca have daily flights from Lima (Peru) to Santiago. LAN also flies from Lima to Tacna, which is just 50 km from the Chilean border town of Arica.
LAN flies daily from Santiago to La Paz, LAB flies from La Paz via Santa Cruz to Santiago.
Taca and Aviancafly daily between Santiago and Bogota (Colombia), either directly or via Buenos Aires. LAN also flies to Montevideo, Uruguay. Varig and TAM fly to destinations in Brazil and Paraguay.
In the United States, Miami, New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Dallas are the top departure locations for destinations in South America.
The South American Airpassis offered by the airlines TAM and TAM Mercosul and is valid in Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile (exception: Easter Island), Peru, Paraguay, Venezuela and Uruguay on all routes offered by these airlines. The South American Airpass is available for stays between 7 and 45 days, buyers must be outside of South America and have international round-trip travel. The Airpass must be purchased for a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 5 countries, a maximum of 8 flight coupons are allowed (if a destination is Iguazú, the maximum number is 9). A maximum of 2 flight interruptions are allowed per country traveled. The flight route must be determined and reserved in advance. Flights may be rebooked, but the flight route cannot be changed after purchasing the Airpass.
The Oneworld Visit South America Pass is offered by British Airways, American Airlines, Finnair, Cathay Pacific, LAN, Iberia and Qantas. He is in Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Chile, Peru, Paraguay, Venezuela and Uruguay. Valid on all routes operated by participating airlines. The pass is only sold to people living outside of South America and is valid for a maximum of 6 months after arrival in South America. The minimum number of flight coupons for this Airpass is three, there is no maximum number. Infants younger than 2 years travel free of charge, but they are not entitled to a seat. The entire route must be determined before purchasing the Airpass. Change of route or flight date changes are chargeable. Cancellations before the start of the trip are subject to a fee, after the start of the trip there is no refund of the price.
Airports: Most international flights land in Santiago, but there are also regional flights that land in airports such as Arica, Iquique, Temuco, Puerto Montt and Punta Arenas.
Santiago de Chile International Airport (SCL) (Aeropuerto Internacional Arturo Merino Benitez) is located 18 km to the west of Santiago. Minibuses and airport buses go to the city center (journey time around 30 minutes). There are also taxis and rental cars are also available.
Ship: The most important ports in Chile are Arica, Punta Arenas, Puerto Montt and Valparaiso.
Chile is also a destination for cruises, with the shipping companies Norwegian Cruise Line, Silversea Cruise and Holland America offering trips to Chile.
Rail: Buses are sometimes used on some rail lines to neighboring Chilean countries. The Tren Internacional runs between Ollagüe and Calama.
Car: Chile has borders with Peru and Bolivia in the north, with Argentina in the east. However, only a few of the numerous border crossings with Argentina are served by public transport.
Entry into Chile is usually easy as long as the passport is valid for at least six months beyond your date of arrival.
Theoretically, Chile requires a return or onward travel ticket when entering the country and occasionally the border officer may ask for an onward travel ticket if the return flight date is beyond the 90-day visa.
Unless you are entering from Chile’s extreme south, there is no way around the Andes. Spectacular landscapes are guaranteed, but public transport is only available at a few border crossings. Many passes are closed in winter.
Iquique to Oruro
A few isolated buses drive on a paved road from Iquique to Paso Colchane. From here trucks or buses run to Oruru every now and then.
Calama to Jujuy and Salta
A popular route across the Andes leads via San Pedro de Atacama and the Paso de Jama. There is a regular bus service (buying tickets in advance is highly recommended). The road is in fair condition and the border is open all year round. A little further south, on Ruta 23, drivers can enter or leave the country via the Paso de Lago Sico. This route is rougher and only passable in summer. The Chilean customs are located in San Pedro de Atacama.
La Serena to San Juan
The route over the Paso del Agua was built by the Argentine army in 1978/79 during the Beagle Channel dispute. It’s a nice stretch, but it’s unpaved and there are hardly any buses here. However, it is a good route for cyclists, and bike tours are also offered in the region.
From Copiapo to Catamarca and La Rioja
There is no public transport over the Paso de San Francisco, the runway should only be used by off-road vehicles. However, the landscape with the Laguna Verde is spectacular.
Talca to Malargüe and San Rafael
There is no public transport on the Ruta 115 over the 2,553m high Paso Pehuenche southeast of Talca.
Santiago and Valparaiso to Mendoza and Buenos Aires
Numerous bus companies drive along Ruta 60 through central Chile to the Los Libertadores tunnel. In winter, snow can sometimes make the route impassable, but it usually doesn’t last long.
Temuco to San Martin de los Andes
The most popular route leads from Temuco via Lago Villarrica, Pucón and Curarrehue to the Paso de Mamuil Malal (called Paso Tromen in Argentina). There is a regular bus service in summer, and in winter the pass is sometimes closed due to snow.
Temuco to Zapala and Neuquen
A good road leads over the 1,884m high Paso de Pino Hachado, east of Temuco on the Río Biobío. A little further south you can cross the Paso de Icalma on a dirt road. There is rarely summer bus traffic here.
Osorno to Bariloche via the Paso Cardenal Samore
This crossing is the fastest overland route in the southern Lakes District. It runs through the Parque Nacional Puyehue in Chile and through the Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi in Argentina. Buses run all year round.
Valdivia to San Martin de los Andes
From Valdivia there are buses to Panguipulli, Choshuenco and Puerto Fuy, followed by a ferry across Lake Pirihueico to the village of Pirihueico. Local buses run from Pirihueico to the Argentine customs at Paso Huahum. From here there is bus service to San Martín.
Puerto Ramírez to Esquel
There are two options. Start in Villa Santa Lucía on the Camino Austral. From here there is a good road that branches into Puerto Ramírez, on the southeastern Lago Yelcho. The northern branch leads to Futaleufu. You can cross a bridge here to Argentina, buses continue to Esquel.
The southern junction leads to Palena and the Argentine customs in Carrenleufú, from here buses go to Corcovado, Trevelin and Esquel. Customs and immigration services are much more efficient in Futaleufu.
Puerto Montt and Puerto Varas to Bariloche
This border crossing, which is open all year round, is mainly used in summer.
Chile Chico to Los Antiguos
From Puerto Ibáñez you can take a ferry to Chile Chico on the southern shore of Lago Carrera. From here a bus goes to Los Antiguos, where there are connections to the Patagonian coastal town of Caleta Olivia and El Chaltén and El Calafate.
Coyhaique to Comodoro Rivadavia
There are several buses weekly from Coyhaique via Rio Mayo to Comodoro Rivadavia. For private vehicles there is an alternative route from Balmaceda to Perito Moreno via the Paso Huemules.
Punta Arenas to Río Gallegos
Many buses operate the route between Punta Arenas and Río Gallegos.
Puerto Natales to Río Turbio and El Calafate
Frequent buses connect Puerto Natales with the Argentine city of Río Turbio. From here you can take buses to Río Gallegos and El Calafate. There are also year-round buses from Puerto Natales to El Calafate at Parque Nacional Los Glaciares.
Puerto Williams to Ushuaia
The ferry between Puerto Williams on Isla Navarino (accessible by plane or boat from Punta Arenas) and the Argentine city of Ushuaia does not always run regularly.
Punta Arenas to Tierra del Fuego
From Punta Arenas there is a ferry and flights to Porvenir in the Chilean Tierra del Fuego, where there are rare bus connections to the Argentine city of Rio Grande. Direct buses run between Punta Arenas and Ushuaia.
The road connections between Bolivia and Chile have improved considerably; the route between Arica and La Paz is very good. The stretch between Iquique and Colchane is also paved. There are bus connections on both routes.
The only (weekly) train connection runs between Calama and the border village of Ollagüe. From here there are connections to La Paz. There is also a road along the train route.
It is possible to travel from Uyuni in Bolivia via Portezuelo del Cajon to San Pedro de Atacama, but there is no regular public transport.
The only border crossing between the two countries is between Tacna and Arica, there are numerous buses, colectivos and taxis on this route.
Bus: There are buses to almost all South American countries, but trips to Caracas (Venezuela) or Quito (Ecuador) can take 4 to 10 days. The bus companies in Chile that also head for Argentina include: Andesmar, Buses Ahumada, Cata, Crucero del Norte (also goes to Paraguay and Brazil), El Rápido (also goes to Uruguay), Fenix Pullman Norte Internacional, Pullman del Sur, TAC, Tur Bus, Turismo Nevada.
Buses from Chilebus Internacional and Pluma go to Brazil, among others.