Uruguay: how to get there and traffic
Arrival to Uruguay
Uruguay is generally open to tourists and visitors from all countries and does not even require citizens of many countries to have a visa when entering the country (more information is available here >>>). So basically it is very easy to enter Uruguay.
The Uruguayan airline Pluna and the Spanish Iberia offer connecting flights from São Paulo, Asunción, Santiago de Chile and Madrid. Meanwhile, other airlines have Montevideo, the capital of Uruguay, on their route plans. American Airlines flies non-stop from Miami to Montevideo four times a week all year round. American Airlines also offers flights via Buenos Aires. In general, most long-haul flights go via Buenos Aires, Santiago de Chile or São Paulo. In addition to the regular flight connections between Europe and Uruguay, which are guaranteed by Iberia, the LAN connects Australia and New Zealand Montevideo with a stop in Chile.
The international airport of Uruguay is located east of Montevideo and is called Aeropuerto Internacional de Carrasco. A second international airport can be found at Punta del Este.
There is very limited commuter rail traffic around Montevideo, but there are also some tourist trains, which however do not have a fixed timetable. Therefore, contact the Montevideo train station for the most up-to-date information. There is no longer any regular long-distance rail transport, as the bus is the main means of transport for longer journeys in the country.
Incidentally, Uruguay has a rail network of around 2,075 kilometers.
Many buses run from Brazil (Porto Alegre, São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro), Argentina (Buenos Aires, Cordoba, Mendoza and Entre Rios),Paraguay (Asunción) and Cile (Santiago de Chile) to Uruguay, and also within the country the bus is the main means of transport. The three main bus stations of Montevideo are the Terminal Tres Cruces, the Agencia Central and the Terminal Ciudad Vieja.
Traveling on Uruguayan buses is very safe and there is a bus service available for international connections that is even better than the average European one.
Due to the ongoing conflict between Uruguay and Argentina over the construction of two cellulose factories (= papeleras) in the border area around Fray Bentos, the bridge over the common Uruguay River is closed. It is therefore more advisable to use the ferry to Colonia del Sacramento and not to take the bus for the whole journey between the conflicting neighbors.
The ferry Buquebus run between Buenos Aires, Colonia del Sacramento and Montevideo. Some routes continue to Punta del Este. Those who opt for the Buquebus ferry from Buenos Aires to Uruguay’s Colonia del Sacramento can be on the way for either three or one hour. The difference is of course in the price.
Incidentally, Uruguay offers 1,600 kilometers of navigable waterways. Most of these are provided by rivers. The country also has nine ports, the main ones of which are Colonia del Sacramento, Fray Bentos, Montevideo, Paysandú and Punta del Este.
Travel and traffic in Uruguay
Uruguay has a total of 64 airfields. 14 of them have asphalt runways. Domestic air traffic is guaranteed by the national airline Pluna (= Primera Línea Uruguaya de Navegación Aérea). There are local and regional airports in Colonia, Paysandú, Florida, Rocha, Salto, Rivera, Tacuarembó and Artigas, among others.
Uruguay has an extensive national bus network, with most of these buses departing from Tres Cruces train station in Montevideo. There is also the starting and ending point of international routes. The buses run very often, and many companies offer similar routes, so it is very worthwhile to compare prices. Air conditioning is mandatory in the intercity buses.
There is very limited commuter rail traffic around Montevideo, but there are also some tourist trains, which however do not have a fixed timetable. Therefore, contact the Montevideo train station for the most up-to-date information. Regular long-distance rail transport is no longer available, as the bus is the main means of transport for longer journeys in the country. Passenger trains outside Montevideo were abandoned in 1988.
Driving taxis in Uruguay is very safe and quite affordable when you look at it from a European perspective. Allow around $ 2 USD for a kilometer. All taxis in the country use taximeters and have fixed prices. A price list can be obtained from the driver. Within Uruguayan cities it is also possible to rent taxis by the hour for a flat rate.
Hitchhiking is very common in rural areas of the country and is as safe as it is in other parts of the world. Since Uruguay (outside of Cuba) has the lowest number of violent crimes in Latin America, hitchhiking is not life-threatening. But it is not recommended in Uruguay either!
In Uruguay you drive on the right. In addition, the rule right before left also applies there. Whether everyone adheres to it is a completely different question.
Road conditions and motorways
The country has almost 9,000 kilometers of roads. More than 8,081 kilometers of this are paved or asphalted. The Uruguayan highways are also very good. Uruguay’s main highway is the highway between Montevideo and Punta Del Este, the country’s main tourist city. It has two lanes on each side. Most of the other highways in the country are single lane and you should be careful if you drive behind a car for a long time and try to overtake it.
The maximum speed in Uruguay on the highways is between 90 km/h and 110 km/ h. But controls are rare and most drivers stop at 120 km/h and slow down a little when they see a police car.
For emergencies, emergency numbers are shown on the edge of the motorway that can be called in the event of an accident, etc. The country itself is not dangerous, but it is very agricultural and therefore very sparsely populated in many regions, so that it can take a while before help can be expected. A cell phone (e.g. from Ancel) should therefore always be carried with you.
International driving licence?
If you want to drive in Uruguay as a foreigner, you need the Carta Verde. You can get this in the embassy.
If you want to rent a car in the country, you can go to www.rhinocarhire.com.
General traffic rules
The driving style of the Uruguayans is to be classified as fast-paced compared to the German. The right of the stronger and the faster is unwritten in Uruguay, but it is common practice. You should always be careful on the streets and not be surprised about children on motorbikes or gauchos driving cattle who suddenly populate or cross the streets. In addition, there are many very old vehicles on the road, most of which also have no liability insurance.
International license plate
According to Abbreviationfinder, Uruguay’s international license plate is:
Uruguay: Embassies, Consulates and Tourist Office
Visit Countryaah for a full list of Uruguay embassies and consulates in each country around the world.
Representations of Uruguay in Germany
The Embassy of Uruguay is located on Budapester Straße right next to the Embassy building of Yemen. Opposite is the Elefantentor, one of the entrances to the Berlin Zoo and the entrance to the Zoo Aquarium.
The Bahnhof Zoo with its long-distance and local transport connections as well as the underground lines U2 and U9 is only a few 100 m away.
Embassy of Uruguay
Budapester Straß 39
Tel: 0049 – (0) 30 – 26 39 016
Fax: 0049 – (0) 30 – 26 39 0170
Consulate General of Uruguay in Hamburg
Tel: 0049 – (0) 40 – 41 06 542
Fax: 0049 – (0) 40 – 41 08 401
You can find other honorary consulates in: Bremen, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt am Main, Munich, Potsdam and Stuttgart.
German representations in Uruguay
Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany in Montevideo
La Cumparsita 1417/1435
Plaza Alemania, Casilla de Correo
Tel: 00598 – 2 – 902 52 22
Fax: 00598 – 2 – 902 34 22
info @ embajadaalemana-montevideo.info
Austrian representations in Uruguay
The embassy in Argentina is responsible (see here >>>).
Honorary Consulate General Montevideo (without passport authorization)
German-South American Bank and Dresdner Bank, Misiones 1381, Oficina 102
Tel: 00598 – 2 – 915 54 31
Fax: 00598 – 2 – 601 14 89
Representations of Uruguay in Austria
Embassy of Uruguay in Vienna
Palais Esterhazy, Wallnerstraße 4/3/17
Tel: 0043 – 1 – 535 66 36
Tel: 0043 – 1 – 535 66 57
Fax: 0043 – 1 – 535 66 18
Swiss representations in Uruguay
Swiss Embassy in Montevideo
Embajada de Suiza
Calle Ing.Federico Abadie, 2936/40 – Piso 11
Tel: 00598 – 2 – 711 55 45
Fax: 00598 – 2 – 711 50 31
Representations of Uruguay in Switzerland
Embassy of Uruguay in Bern, Chancellerie
Tel: 0041 – 31 – 311 27 92
Tel: 0041 – 31 – 312 22 26
Fax: 0041 – 31 – 311 27 47
Consulat de l’Uruguay
Lange Gasse 15
Tel: 0041 – 61 – 277 01 23
Fax: 0041 – 61 – 277 55 88
Ministerio de Turismo y Deporte
Rambla 25 de Agosto de 1825 y Yacaré
Tel: 00598 – 2 – 18 85 100
Entry and exit regulations
Formalities and visas
Tourists are only allowed to enter the country if they have a return ticket and sufficient financial resources to finance their stay in the country themselves.
Issuing of visas in Germany Visa department of the Embassy of Uruguay
Budapester Strasse 39
Tel: 0049 – (0) 30 – 2639016
Fax: 0049 – (0) 30 – 26390170
Consulate General of Uruguay Visa Department of the Embassy of Uruguay
Tel: 0049 – (0) 40 – 410654
Fax: 0049 – (0) 40 – 4108401 Import and export of
The import and export of weapons, ammunition or explosives is strictly forbidden. In addition, the import and export of plants and animals protected under the Washington Species Protection Act is prohibited. Violation can result in severe penalties.
Entry with pets
A health certificate is required for pets to enter Uruguay. This must confirm that the animal is not infected by parasites. In addition, every animal that is to be imported into Uruguay must be vaccinated against rabies. The rabies vaccination must not be more than a year ago and must have taken place at least 30 days before the date of entry.
Uruguay: Travel Medicine, Vaccinations and Warning Labels
In Uruguay, the following infectious diseases are to be expected in Germany and Central and Northern Europe:
- Malaria, there is no risk of malaria in Uruguay
- Chagas disease
- Dengue fever, incidence nationwide
- Intestinal infectionscaused by contaminated food or water, including amoebas, lamblia, salmonella, shigella, worm infestation and all kinds of viruses and bacteria
- Hepatitis A and B
- Polio, polio
- Typhoid, but only for travelers who come into contact with contaminated water or infected food
when traveling to Uruguay, the following vaccinations recommended:
- Diphtheria, a vaccination against diphtheria, should always exist in your home country.
- Hepatitis A and B, vaccination against hepatitis B, is only required for those travelers who may come into contact with human blood.
- Tetanus, a vaccination against tetanus, should always exist in the home country.
- Typhoid, but only in travelers who may come into contact with polluted water or contaminated food.
Vaccination requirements There are no vaccination requirements when entering or staying in the country.
Who pays for vaccinations in Germany?
Most children in Germany are vaccinated against a number of infectious diseases at an early age. However, the vaccination protection only lasts up to 10 years, in some cases even shorter. Therefore, before traveling abroad, you should carefully consider against which infectious diseases a vaccination is necessary or useful in the country concerned and whether the vaccination protection, if applicable, was not too long ago.
Most statutory health insurances have been reimbursing the costs for the following vaccinations since June 2007. There is even no 10 € practice fee – but the insured usually have to pay the statutory co-payment, which is 10% of the vaccine price – that is at least 5 € and a maximum of 10 €. Under these conditions, the following vaccinations are free of charge:
- Early summer meningoencephalitis (TBE)
- Yellow fever
- Hepatitis A and B
- Meningococcal meningitis
- Polyo (polio)
- Tetanus (tetanus)
Some health insurance companies also reimburse the cost of malaria prophylaxis.
As a rule, private health insurance companies (inquire beforehand) also cover the costs mentioned.
Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany
Phone: 0049 – (0) 30 – 5000 – 2000
Fax: 0049 – (0) 30 – 5000 – 51000
Uruguay: Currency, Shopping, and Exchange Rate
The national currency of Uruguay is the Uruguayan peso (UYU).
1 peso = 100 centésimos
You can find a currency converter here: www3.forium.de
Bank opening hours
- Monday to Friday: 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
- Saturday and Sunday: closed
Shop opening times
Monday to Friday: 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Saturday: 9 a.m. to 12.30 p.m.
Inexpensive or country-specific goods, souvenirs
The traditional luxury items for export are leather goods. In addition, a “globalization flea market” has spread in Montevideo, second-hand bookshops next to bright mobile phone shops, computer shops next to butcher shops. However, tourists rarely find their way there.