From Chile Wiki
This article discusses all aspects of car ownership.
There is a separate article on car rental.
The content of all articles on this wiki should not be taken as legal advice and should be independently verified.
Importing a vehicle
Difficulties and costs: In general, new immigrants are advised against bringing motor vehicles to Chile. Importation of used vehicles is prohibited except for certain existing long-term residents of the Zona Franca regions, and Chilean citizens who are returning to Chile after an extended foreign stay. In both cases the rules are very restrictive and violators may be charged with tax evasion. Bringing new (zero-km) vehicles to Chile involves significant administrative and cost challenges, in addition to the transport costs (note that the amount paid for transport will also be taxed). The fees, taxes, and related costs in addition to transportation may result in about 25 to 30 percent of the value of the new vehicle, or more if the vehicle falls into a "luxury" category. Replacement parts, maintenance, and related services may be unavailable for many vehicles not normally imported into Chile. Offroad vehicles such as motocross motorcycles, which may never be legally registered or permitted on public roads, can usually be imported into Chile, subject to valuation by Aduanas and payment of corresponding taxes and fees, which may amount to 25 percent or more of the value of the vehicle.
Initial registrations require a "Certificado de homologación que permita entregar sello verde". That is basically proof to the government that the new vehicle meets the "sello verde" and other requirements. This is where some immigrants can get into trouble with attempting to import fancy new, zero-km vehicles: if such a vehicle is not in the Chilean government "homologation" database, then getting the all-important "sello verde" is at risk. If no sello verde then the owner may have to pay for a rather expensive set of tests and inspections.
See the Zona Franca article regarding some vehicle importation issues.
Temporary 'importation' of a vehicle by a tourist:
According to a Chilean government webpage, "A vehicle may temporary be brought in for a period of 90 days, counted from the tourist’s arrival date. A Temporary Admission procedure should be carried out." The period of 90 days is "per semester" (half-year) so you cannot get 3 months, leave the country for a few days, and then return immediately for another three months of temporary import permission.
Temporary use in Chile of a vehicle registered in another country is in accordance with Ley 18.290, Ley de Transito Article 52.
Chilean citizens who are returning to Chile may under some circumstances be allowed to bring one used or new to Chile when returning after uninterrupted residency of at least one year in another country. An Aduanas document describes the conditions, in "IMPORTACIÓN DE VEHÍCULOS AUTOMÓVILES POR LA PARTIDA 0033 DE LA SECCION 0 DEL ARANCEL ADUANERO." Available from this website:
Buying and selling a car
You need a RUT to register a car in your name.
A large variety of European, American, and Asian brands are available. There are many dealerships in large cities.
New cars are usually subject to the 19% IVA value added tax; used cars usually are not, BUT YOU SHOULD ASK.
Vehicle-related taxes can be found at the SII website.
is there a concentration of car dealerships in a particular area (a 'car alley') in any city/town?
Buying a used car
If you buy a used car, you should ensure the previous owner delinks the electronic tag from the car. See the toll roads section below.
You should also ask whether a used car has been used on any toll road without an electronic tag, as there could be unpaid tolls if that is the case.
The license plate ("patente" or "permiso de circulacion") registration of a used car need not be up-to-date, but if it is not, it might be wise to see if the annual 'technical revision' (safety inspection) is still valid on it. If it is not, have the car inspected to see what work the vehicle requires for it to pass the inspection. A car might need repairs to pass an inspection even if within the time period of the previous inspection.
In Chile you have to pay for all the years that the vehicle did not have a paid-up registration, even though it was sitting in someone's garage. So, check what the outstanding registration fees will be before agreeing to purchase a used vehicle.
You should also check whether the car has pending tickets or liens. These can be obtained at the Registro Civil, and is detailed by the "certificado de anotaciones vigente" or 'effective certificate of annotations', which reveals all the previous owners and liens and pending tickets. Because processes sometimes take months, there might be tickets which do not yet show up on the system.
You can search for a used car at these websites:
- Cámara Nacional de Comercio Automotriz de Chile (CAVEM)
- El Mercurio
done by what govt dept
how often must be renewed
how registration priced; proportion of car's value? how value assessed/determined?
If you are going to keep an unregistered vehicle, you can make a declaration at the municipalidad and effectively de-register that vehicle to avoid the obligation to pay for each year of non-use. You have to turn in the placas (plates) as part of this.
What is need from the previous owner?
For a vehicle previously registered in Chile, the selling owner goes to the Registro Civil with
- the padron (ownership document)
- the existing permiso de circulación
- his/her carnet and
The purchasing owner just provides a carnet.
How to register a transfer:
Go to the Registro Civil. There are four copies of the transfer document. Buyer and seller each sign all four copies, and are given an ink pad to ink the right thumb for a thumb-print on all copies.
Costs to register a transfer:
There is a fee paid directly to the Registro Civil in cash. But there is another tax to be paid and it cannot be done at the Registro Civil. The tax must be paid by going to a bank and getting a comprobante, which is essentially a receipt for the payment made at the bank. The comprobante is then taken to the Registro Civil for the final step. The requirement to pay at a bank means that more than one trip to the Registro Civil is needed, and the queues can be significant. One must also plan around banking hours for paying the tax via comprobante.
The annual inspection is called a "Revisión técnica" and is required for the annual re-registration. The revisión técnica due date is established separately from the re-registration date. (Registration for all vehicles is due by the end of each March. However, revisión técnica may expire in a different month.)
It is an infraction to operate a vehicle with an expired revisión técnica, and you must carry evidence of the inspection in your vehicle, subject to request and review by Carabineros at surprise road-side stops.
When returning to a revisión técnica station to renew the inspection, you must bring the documents from the previous inspection (certification of emissions and certificate of results of prior inspection).
Exhaust gas cert and revision tecnica documents are separate items and you must have them both for vehicle re-registrations.
A number of points are inspected and tested. These include exhaust emissions, brake performance, headlamp aiming, correct operation of all lamps and signals, condition of tyres, windscreen, exhaust system condition (e.g., no leaks in the muffler). At times there may be verification of VIN, chassis, and/or engine numbers.
Occasionally a "planta" (station) for revisión técnica may collude with a repair shop and give an indication of a failed item which should be repaired at a particular repair location. While this practice is reported to exist, it does not appear to be common.
Santiago-area authorised locations who conduct vehicle safety and pollution checks required when renewing vehicle registrations are available at http://www.uoct.cl/uoct/mapas_info/rev_tecnica.htm
Vehicle registration plates
In Chile there is a vehicle registration plate on both the front and back of motor vehicles, including motorcycles. There are penalties if a plate is even partially obscured.
There are no 'vanity' registration plates in Chile, that is, choosing the characters on a plate.
Chilean vehicle registration plate colours are
01.- 4 letters and 2 digits, black on white = private auto or truck. Motorcycles have same colours but smaller plate.
02.- 4 letters and 2 digits, black on orange = standard taxi
03.- black on yellow = "colectivo" taxi
04.- white on orange = "executive" taxi (radio taxi)
05.- 2 letters and 2 numbers, black on orange = provisional/temporary - for test drives, usually used by car dealerships
06.- white on light blue = international organisation or diplomat
- CD = Cuerpo Diplomático
- CC = Cuerpo Consular
- AT = Asistencia Técnica Personal
- CH = Cónsul Honorario
- OI = Organismo Internacional
- PAT = Permiso de admisión temporal
07.- green on white = Transantiago vehicles (buses)
08.- 2 letters and 4 digits, black on white = commercial trailer; sometimes private auto or truck
09.- white on black = carabineros
10.- maroon on white = small privately-owned trailer. The comuna in which it is registered is at the top of the plate.
11.- white on maroon = the old "Zona Franca region" plates for motorcycle and private autos and trucks. Still in use, but ZF regions now using also the normal black lettering on white plate.
In addition to these plates, the Chilean armed forces have special registration plates.
what insurance provided with or required for registration (Example: in oz, medical insurance for vehicle drivers and passengers is required before registration issuance or renewal)
additional, optional insurances if only driving in chile (Example: in oz, own vehicle's malicious theft/damage, own vehicle's damage in collision, others' vehicle or property damage)
additional insurances if driving to Argentina, Bolivia, Peru, etc.
where/how buy car insurance
Chile has toll roads, known as an autopista de peaje, both in the Santiago area and outside it.
Toll roads in Santiago are privately owned and operated and require an electronic tag or purchasing a daily pass when driving on them. Most toll roads outside Santiago are owned and operated by the national government and do not have electronic tag facilities, therefore requiring cash payment at toll booths.
Where are they?
Santiago area toll roads can be seen on this map. The Santiago toll roads are
- Autopista Central; http://www.autopistacentral.cl/
- Costanera Norte; http://www.costaneranorte.cl/
- Tunel San Cristobal; http://www.tunelsancristobal.cl/
- Vespucio Norte Express; http://www.vne.cl/
- Vespucio Sur; http://www.vespuciosur.cl/
The national roadway system is built around the north-south orientation of the Pan American Highway or 'Ruta 5', which is sometimes called 'the spine of the country'. There are few other major north-south roads. Most routes that are not part of the Panamerican Highway are called transversales, whether in the Santiago area or otherwise.
An electronic tag, sometimes called a televía or just TAG, can be used on any of the five toll roads in the Santiago area. The term 'free flow' is sometimes used to imply a toll system using electronic tags.
A TAG is obtained by contracting with one of these four 'concesionaria' organisations: Autopista Central, Costanera Norte, Vespucio Norte Express, Vespucio Sur. (See links to them above.)
The TAG remains the property of the concesionaria with whom the contract is signed. One of the concesionaria (as of September 2011) requires a rental payment of CLP461 per month for a TAG; CLP400 per month if contracted via email.
A TAG account accumulates charges which are then subsequently paid by the vehicle owner either online or at designated retail locations.
According to this webpage, a non-Chilean must fulfil the following requirements to obtain a TAG:
- own a national identity card
- have a stable address in the country
- provide vehicle ownership papers and
- be able to set up an automatic payment on a credit card or current account at a Chilean bank.
In one sentence it says a non-Chilean with only a tourist visa must use daily passes. In another sentence it seems to say that a non-Chilean on a tourist visa must pay a deposit of 1.28 UTM   for a TAG contract an automatic payment with a credit card.
How a TAG works: A TAG responds to a radio frequency query from a 'toll booth' at each toll road entry and exit. When a TAG is operating correctly it emits a single beep when it answers a toll booth query. The applicable toll is calculated from the time each toll booth is passed.
If a TAG is removed from its support cradle, it will signal that it is being stolen. This appears to suspend the TAG's account until the owner coordinates with the concessionaire to reinitiate the account. This minimises theft but also prevents a tag being used on multiple vehicles.
General TAG information, personal tag account data and toll road information can be obtained at http://tag.cl/
TAG issues upon vehicle sale
A TAG is associated with a specific vehicle's registration plate in the toll roads' database(s). The vehicle's owner who contracted for the TAG is responsible for the account related to that TAG.
When a vehicle changes owner, the TAG is usually removed and the new owner obtains and attaches a TAG for which they are responsible. A TAG can be transfered between vehicles upon notifying the organisation who manages the TAG's account.
It does not happen often, but a person selling a vehicle can notify the TAG concessionaire, then the new owner can establish a new account in his name and with the existing number of the licence plate (placa patente) with the TAG device left in the vehicle. Trouble arises when a vehicle seller removes a TAG and does not immediately cancel the account. The new owner cannot get a TAG account for that vehicle because the licence number is already associated with an active TAG account. Nor can the new owner use a day pass, since the concessionaires prohibit the use of a day pass when a licence number is still associated with a valid account.
Usage costs apply to electronic toll roads and those requiring cash payments.
Electronic tag toll road charges are based upon the toll road rate per kilometre applicable for the
- the type of vehicle (e.g. large trucks are charged more than passenger cars)
- direction travelled
- time of day and
- day of the week.
Toll roads usually have a 'base rate' (TBP) and, for times of less traffic, a discounted off-peak rate (TBFP). Some also have a higher 'saturation' rate. The TBP and TBFP times vary between toll roads and directions travelled. Base rates for cars are approxmately CLP82/km and off-peak rates are approximately CLP41/km.
For toll roads using electronic tags, the applicable amount is deducted from the account to which the tag is linked. For toll roads collecting cash, the relevant amount of cash is collected at a toll booth.
Some cash-payment toll roads charge the same amount throughout each day and every day. Some charge different amounts on weekend days than on weekdays.
Usage costs can be found listed here.
The day-use substitute for the tag is called Pase Diario Único.
A tag purchased before using Santiago toll roads, the same day or up to two days after using toll roads for CLP4400 (for autos and pickups) but if you buy it three or more days after using the toll roads the price goes up to CLP6300.
Passes can be purchased at physical locations such as
- Servipag service locations and
- Pronto Copec fuel stations.
When driving toward Santiago, there are places to stop and buy the day-use permit, e.g. in Rancagua at a large Copec roadside restaurant-service station, where there is a self-service kiosk.
Non-payment of tolls
There is a fine for using a toll road without either an electronic tag or a daily pass. One website said (in September 2011) the fine is CLP30.000.
As of 2011, a record of an unpaid TAG fine can prevent a vehicle owner from renewing the registration, or "permiso de circulacion."
|Chile||Argentina||Australia, UK, US||note|
|bencina||nafta|| petrol (Oz, UK)|
gas, gasoline (US)
| In Chile, a vehicle using this fuel or a station vending it is a "bencinera".|
In Argentina an engine or vehicle using this fuel may be called a "naftero".
|diesel, petroleo||diesel, gasoil||diesel||In Chile, a vehicle using this fuel is a "petrolera".|
|GLP (gas licuado de petróleo)||LPG (liquefied petroleum gas), autogas|| GLP/LPG is supplied a pressure of ~2.2 bars. It is mostly propane, with some butane.|
It is used in several Chilean cities for smaller vehicles (e.g. taxis), and is supplied in bottles to homes and businesses for use in cooking, water heating or air heating.
|GNC (gas natural comprimido), sometimes gas comprimido vehicular or NGV (natural gas vehicular)||GNC, GNV||CNG (compressed natural gas)|| CNG/GNC is stored at a pressure of 200 - 250 bars. It is mostly methane, similar to the natural gas (gas natural de petroleo = GNP) delivered to homes and businesses in pipes (gasoconducto), from which it is compressed.|
CNG/GNC is used in several Chilean cities for larger vehicles such as buses. It is dispensed into vehicle tanks.
|GNP (gas natural de petroleo)||natural gas||Delivered to homes and businesses in pipes (gasoconducto). It is mostly methane.|
|GNL (gas natural licuado)||LNG (liquified natural gas)|| LNG/GNL is mostly methane (like GNC/CNG and GNP), but is more dense because it is stored cryogenically at minus 120 to minus 170 degrees Centigrade.|
LNG/GNL is used on large vehicles only (e.g. trucks), so they can travel further without refueling.
Leaded fuels are not available in Chile.
Indicative fuel prices in CLP per liter were:
|where, when||93 octanos||95 octanos||97 octanos||diesel|
|Punta Arenas, Aug 2011||771||791||811||620|
|Santiago, Sep 2011||797||810||831|
|Santiago, June 2012||758||801||846||578|
The Chilean government provides the price of petrol online here: http://www.bencinaenlinea.cl/web2/
well-supported or badly-supported brands?
any brands costly to maintain?
advice to avoid ripoffs
Vehicle parts sources recommended by residents of Chile (though the source might not be in Chile):
- www.rockauto.com, according to a forum post
The Chilean automobile association is Automóvil Club de Chile. It provides roadside assistance, driver training, car rentals, international driving permits and other member benefits.
roadside assistance, by any organisations besides the automobile owners association?
any other costs/issues to run/own a car in Chile?
Permiso de circulación
A permiso de circulación must be purchased from a communa each year by the end of March. It permits a vehicle to drive on roads. (A permiso de circulación is not normally required for a vehicle only used off-road.)
The cost varies depending on the model and year of the vehicle. The amount is set by the national government so is uniform throughout Chile. As an example a 2005 Nissan V-16 EX Saloon cost CLP30.917 for 2012.
When paying the permiso de circulación, all previous years' permisos must be paid and any outstanding traffic tickets against the vehicle must be paid, even if they were not paid while the vehicle was owned by a previous owner. Even if a vehicle has been "out of circulation" for many years, perhaps as a "classic" that was being restored and not registered, all those years of unpaid registrations now become due.
In most comunas you must present:
- Current SOAP - obligatory insurance. There is a user copy, and a "municipalidad" copy - the latter you submit during annual re-registration. In some locations the SOAP insurance sellers will set up little sidewalk stands so you can buy SOAP right there.
- Current cert from Revisión Técnica
- Current cert showing vehicle emissions provided at Revisión Técnica
- Padron (vehicle ownership papers) for the vehicle; not always required.
- Prior permiso de circulación for the vehicle; not always required.
The address that the comuna has for your vehicle may not be the same as the national registry database since they may not talk to each other. So just because you have one address on the nationally registered ownership cert (the Padron) doesn't mean that it is automatically corrected on the comuna-registered Permiso de Circulacion - you might have to do that separately.
In some communas, the registration queues grow longer and longer as the end of March draws near. In others, there are no queues.
Some comunas facilitate permiso payments online if there has been no ownership change over the last year and the vehicle is not new.
Payments can often be made using credit card and/or Redcompra.
Pollution control driving restrictions
There are pollution control driving restrictions for the following areas:
- Santiago; more data in the Santiago article
- San Antonio
The following webpage has information about restrictions in these areas, but use the information with caution, as some of the information on the Santiago page varies from how it was implemented in June 2012: http://www.subtrans.gob.cl/subtrans/vias/restriccion.html
The government announces pollution control driving restrictions for Santiago (and possibly other areas) on the following webpage. http://www.uoct.cl/
There is a driving licence (licencia de conductor) legal guide.
Municipal governments issue driving licences.
Non-professional driving licences (classes B and C) and special licences are renewed every six years.
Professional driving licences are renewed every four years.
There is more information about restrictions when towing trailers in the trailers article.
Using a non-Chilean licence in Chile
From the forum : "The requirement is for you to get a Chilean license, once you have full permanent residency. We have dozens and dozens of clients with companies that own vehicles in Chile, being driven by foreign workers in all sorts of visa status. NEVER, has the issues been brought up."
Using a non-Chile driving licence in Chile is governed by Ley 18.290, Ley de Transito Articles 53 and 54.
Classes of licences
The relevant law is Ley 18.290, Ley de Transito Article 12.
translation of legal guide approximate only
- Classes A1 through A5 are professional licences.
- Class B is for a motorised vehicle
- of three or four wheels
- with up to 9 seats
- whose weight is up to 3,500 kilograms
- towing a mass no more than than the mass of the motor vehicle when the combined mass does not exceed 3,500 kilograms.
- Class C is for a vehicle of 2 or 3 wheels.
- Class D is for automotive machinery like tractors and mechanical shovels.
- Class E is for animal-drawn vehicles (unsure of this)
- Class F is for motorised vehicles of the Armed Forces, police and firemen.
The fee charged to obtain or renew a driving licence varies by comuna, licence class and whether it is an initial or renewed licence.
For class B and C licences the fees varied between 0.50 UTM and 0.65 UTM for those comunas researched.
Requirements to obtain a licence
The relevant law is Ley 18.290, Ley de Transito Article 13.
translation of legal guide approximate only
- Year 8 education. (Some adults with foreign driving licences have been asked to provide documents proving education or to take an education test, sometimes based upon local knowledge. It would be wise to emigrate to Chile with a legalised translation of one's education graduation documents.)
- Chilean identity card.
- Eighteen years of age; 17 years of age if have completed a driver training course and have parental permission (unsure of this).
- Pass a theory examination. They are only provide in Spanish.
- Pass a practical examination.
- Pass a psychotechnological medical examination; which reportedly just proves one has a minimum level of visual and motor skills.
Some or all of these requirements must be fulfilled by a foreigner with a foreign driving licence when they apply for a Chilean driving licence; which requirements must be and which tests must be passed depends upon the commune, the person, the weather, the phase of the moon and perhaps other factors unknown.
Some comuna require proof of local residency ("acreditar residencia"). Carabineros can provide a certificate, for which they charge a fee. A bank statement or utility bill with your name and a local comuna mailing address is adequate proof for some comuna.
Licence acquisition process
The following forum entry explains the process at one communa: http://www.allchile.net/chileforum/topic9995.html#p115838
But practice varies between communas.
The earliest age one can get a Chilean driving licence is 18 years of age. is this true?
A person applying for a Chilean driving licence must prove they have passed through the eighth grade at school.
learning to drive process; series of licence stages; what tests must be taken, when?
Driving theory test
In August 2012, there was a news report stating the driving licence theory test will be changed.
This webpage http://examenteorico.conaset.cl/postulantesbyc.html says the driving licence theory test questions will no longer be public knowledge.
Instead, a licence applicant must study the driving book(s) linked to that web page. The Class B (car driver) book is 169 pages long. The Class C (motorcycle driver) book is 36 pages long.
The New Driver book wiki article is a paraphrasing in English of the Class B book.
The Ministry of Transport makes available some downloadable materials that may be helpful in learning the regulations. On this page there is a downloadable Zip file of 16 MB covering MANUAL DE SEÑALIZACIÓN DE TRÁNSITO (traffic signage).
Also from the Ministry of Transport there is an illustrated "Libro del Nuevo Conductor" (New Driver Manual). The abundance of clarifying illustrations may be useful for those not fully competent in Spanish. That manual can be downloaded here:
Links on the page lead to FAQs regarding the theory tests:
- there are 800 potential questions
- each applicant will receive 35 questions; 32 worth one point each and three worth two points each, for a total maximum possible of 38 points (The two-point questions are regarding "Velocidad, alcohol, cinturón de seguridad, casco y sistemas de retención infantil".)
- a passing score is 33 points
- an applicant has up to 45 minutes to take the test
- the theory test can be attempted a second time within 25 days for no additional cost; if the applicant fails the second attempt they must wait a month before taking the theory test again.
The subject was discussed on an allchile forum thread.
The motorcycle licence theory manual is here: http://examenteorico.conaset.cl/descargables/LIBRO%20DEL%20NUEVO%20CONDUCTOR_MOTOCICLISTAS.pdf
Old driving test theory questions:
This is a PDF of the Spanish version of questions 1 through 280, with answers.
This is a PDF of an English translation of questions 1 through 150, without answers.
This is a PDF of the answers to questions 1 through 150, in English.
This is a PDF of an English translation of questions 151 through 280, with answers.
All four of the above documents are included in this zip file.
Knowledge of the theory questions can be tested online on several websites, including
Using a Chilean licence elsewhere
The holder of a Chilean driving licence can obtain an international driving permit from the automobile club: Automóvil Club de Chile.
The holder of a Chilean driving licence does not require an international driving permit to drive in Argentina, Bolivia or Spain.
The automobile association provides links to several laws and regulations: 
Road rules to note
- "daylight running of lights": This regulation requires low beams to be turned on outside of built-up areas during daylight hours. It is a bit ambiguous about where the built-up area ends but there is usually a blue sign warning motorists of the requirement, along with a low-beam symbol. This also applies in Argentina.
There is a vehicle safety legal guide. It says one must (translation approximate only)
- wear seat belts
- in cars built 2002 and later
- in vans used for school transport built 2007 or later
- in interurban buses built 2008 or later and
- in interurban minibuses built 2012 or later
- not transport children less than eight years old in the front seat of a vehicle unless it is a light truck
- transport children less than four years old only if they are in a special seat
- wear a helmet when on a motorcycle, motor scooter or a bicycle (when the bicycle is in an urban area)
- keep lights on during the day when on a motorcycle or motor scooter, and bicycles must have reflecters
- not transport an animal in the front seat of a car. If an animal is in the back of a light truck it must have a special harness.
- not open a microbus door while in motion, nor pick up or drop off passengers in the road
- not speak on a hand-held cell phone while driving
- not throw a lit cigarette from a vehicle.
Financial fines are listed in the guide, as well as penalties for drug or drink driving.
According to artículo 79 de la Ley de Tránsito:
- Motor vehicles (autos/pickups) require the following
(generally - if no back seat in a pickup truck then no seat belts required there)
- Windscreen must be intact and allow " perfect visibility" into and out of the vehicle. Officially, items hanging from rear-view mirror may violate this regulation.
- Windscreen wipers - operational and in serviceable condition
- Adjustable internal rear-view mirror
- "Bumpers" (North American term; fender in UK/Oz) front and rear, not wider than the vehicle.
- Fire extinguisher
- Two "reflective triangles" - the basic law does not specify triangular shape but interpretations call for the approved type triangles.
- Spare wheel+tyre and the tools necessary to effect a roadside change.
- First aid kit only required for cargo-carrying vehicles (e.g., trucks/lorries) - which also have to carry two wheel chocks.
- If the vehicle is fitted with a " back seat" then seat belts and seat belt use for occupants is required.
- "Tinted" windows (called "polarizados" in Chile) are generally prohibited, with some minor exceptions. If there is a passenger back-seat with side windows separate from the driver or front-seat windows, in the past those back-seat windows have been allowed tinting. Carabineros generally allow the topmost few inches of a windscreen to be tinted though technically this may be in violation. Check for recent changes in the laws surrounding this topic.
any anomalies from rules elsewhere?
Unique (or not so unique) driving habits
When a Chilean driver approaches a road-maintenance or similar "flag-person" location where vehicles must stop until allowed to proceed, the driver first arriving turns on his 4-way flashers to alert others behind. Then as each newly arriving vehicle in his turn arrives and turns on flashers, vehicles not at the end of the queue shut their flashers off.
Not using turn signals when changing lanes.
Blocking someone who uses turn signals when changing lanes.
Passing on the left side of someone who has signalled they are making a left turn off the road.
Starting out from a red traffic light before it changes to green, especially if a taxi cab . . . or perhaps treating a red traffic light as if it was a stop sign.
Driving through red traffic lights.
Honking within 100 milliseconds of a traffic light changing to green.
Driving tickets and fines
A legal guide communicates how much each type of fine costs and the penalties for drink/drug driving.
translation approximate only
- Infracción gravísima: 1,5 a 3 UTM  . The fine is doubled if one of these is committed within three years of the first commission; tripled if one of these is committed within three years of the first commission.
- Infracción grave: 1 a 1,5 UTM. The fine is doubled if one of these is committed within two years of the first commission; tripled if one of these is committed within two years of the first commission.
- Infracción menos grave: 0,5 a 1 UTM
- Infracción leve: 0,2 a 0,5 UTM.
paying/challenging a ticket?
is there a driving licence demerit point system?
In the event of a collision
Paraphrased from a Spanish-language webpage:
What to do in case of accident:
1. Report the fact the closest police unit.
2. Indicate the licence plate numbers of the vehicles involved
3. Include identification of any injured persons.
4. From the Carabineros office where the accident was reported, request reports covering the injured and the data concerning the accident, with specific reports on the circumstances for the persons injured or killed, according to the situation.
Present to your insurance company the following:
A. In case of a death
1. Legal death certificate showing death as result of injuries from accident
2. Original of report from carabineros, showing name and RUT of the deceased
3. Marriage certificate, birth certificate, or other similar document covering the beneficiary for insurance death benefits
B. Reimbursement for medical costs for the injured
1. Originals of bills for medical exams, x-rays, etc., for verification of costs covered by the policy, together with the medical office orders calling for the exams or other services
2. Original of certificate (report) from Carabineros identifying the name and RUT of the injured.
C. Indemnification in the event of total or partial disability
1. Medical certificate showing the nature and degree of disability and showing that it is the result of the accident, and including name and RUT of the disabled person
2. Original report from Carabineros with name and RUT of the injured
- if you have a camera, take your own pictures of every aspect of the accident and the persons including witnesses
- some insurance companies might have other specific requirements; the above should be regarded as an example or "general guidelines"
Replacing lost vehicle documents
From allchile forum thread 9961.
The only thing needed to start was a Chilean ID card and being present personally. These were the steps:
1: Registro Civil: one minute processing time: cost ca. CLP 1.000: Incripcion de Vehiculo (aka padron)
2. Municipalidad: three minutes processing time: copies of poliza SOAP (mandatory personal accident insurance) , certificado de revision tecnica, certificado de emisiones contaminantes
3. Insurance Company: two minutes processing time, using the copy of the poliza SOAP they gave me the original of the 2012 policy (which is valid until the end of March) and paying the premium for the 2013 also the 2013 SOAP policy certificate
4. SGS Chile (Revision Tecnica): five minutes processing time, cost CLP 6.000: certificado de revision tecnica, certificado de emisiones contaminantes
5. Municipalidad: two minutes processing time: no additional cost: permiso de circulacion 2013