Honduras/Nicaragua Border Crossing with Dogs

We crossed at the Guasaule (HON) – Somotillo (NIC) border on March 22, 2014 at one o’clock in the afternoon. We had been dreading the drive through Honduras after hearing about multiple checkpoints and corruption. During our easy 80 mile or so drive we only saw one checkpoint and were not stopped. This border crossing was very straightforward and it took us 2 hours to get out of Honduras and into Nicaragua. No one at either of the borders really spoke English and the helpers actually listened when we said no thank you.

Documents needed

  • We needed:

    • Passports

    • Drivers Licenses

    • Vehicle Title

    • Honduran Import Permit

  • Neli needed:

    • International Health Certificate from the US

    • Spanish Language Health Certificate from Mexico

    • Valid Rabies Vaccination Certificate (not more than a year old, not less than 30 days)

    • Vaccination Record

    • Honduran Import Permit

  • Maya needed:

    • Spanish Language Health Certificate from Guatemala

    • Honduran Import Permit

Exit Honduras

  • When you start seeing the helpers swarm your car you know you have arrived. Park next to the large yellow building.

  • Honduran Immigration: When you enter the building, go around to the other side of cubicles to the window marked Migracion. If you happen to have a small puppy, the friendly lady will ask you to push your puppy through the hole in the glass so she can play with the puppy. After she has carried the puppy around for a little while and shown all of the other immigration officers, she will return your puppy and ask for your passports and tourist visas. She will stamp your passports and keep your visas. No Fee.

  • Honduran Cuarentena: At the OIRSA window next to Migracion, hand in your dog permit. They will stamp the dogs out of Honduras and give you a copy. No Fee.

  • Honduran Customs: On the other side of the cubicles, where you originally entered the building, look for the window marked Turismo. Hand over the driver’s passport and your original Honduran vehicle permit. The customs officer will keep the permit and write in your passport. No Fee.

Enter Nicaragua

  • Drive out of the parking lot and into Nicaragua.

  • Nicaraguan Fumigation: When you approach the border area, stay to your right. Roll up your windows to avoid helpers and get fumigated. Go to the window right after you get fumigated (on the right) to pay and get a receipt. Keep receipt as you will need it later. 3.75 USD

  • Continue driving ahead and make a sharp left. Park next to the large building.

  • Nicaraguan Immigration: At the Migracion window, hand over your passports and receive tourist cards. 620 NIO

  • Nicaraguan Cuarentena: Hand over all your original dog paperwork plus one copy. They will write down payment instructions on a piece of scrap paper. Take the payment instructions to the bank and pay. Go to the copy shop and make two copies of the receipt. Return to Cuarentena where they will return your original paperwork but keep the canceled Honduran import permit and give you a new Nicaraguan import permit. 359 NIO for the permit plus 16 NIO for copies.

    • NOTE: The copy shop is outside, on the other side of the building.

  • Nicaraguan Customs: Hand over your vehicle title, driver’s passport plus one copy and driver’s license plus one copy. They will ask where you are going and then issue an import permit. No Fee

    • Check the import permit carefully. Ours said Jason was from Slovakia. When we pointed out the error, the customs woman typed up a correction on the bottom of the form.

  • Nicaraguan Insurance: Outside of the Immigration building, there was a friendly lady selling insurance. She will look at the driver’s license and issue you insurance good for one month. 12 USD

  • Drive out of the parking lot to the right. Just after parking lot, an official will ask to see your tourist card receipts and passports. Another official will want you to hold up the vehicle import permit but he won’t actually look at it.

Total Cost: 54.60 USD

  • Nicaraguan Fumigation: 3 USD

  • Nicaraguan Immigration: 630 NIO (25.20 USD)

  • Nicaraguan Cuarentena: 359 NIO (14.40 USD)

  • Nicaraguan Insurance: 12 USD

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