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Essential information

At a glance

‘Hello’ in:
‘hola ’
( o-la )
‘saqarik ’
( sa-ka-rik )
‘jeeka ’
( jee-ka )
Plug combo ab
Best time to go
Current Time
GMT -5

Money and costs

Quetzales (Q)
Exchange Rates
Rates provided by Open Exchange Rates. Last updated July 04, 2019 10:47AM UTC
Daily Costs
Budget (up to)
  • Dorm bed: Q60–100
  • Budget hotel double room: Q130–200
  • Set meal in a comedor (cheap eatery): Q30–45
  • Three-hour 'chicken-bus' ride: Q20
  • Hotel double room: Q200–550
  • À la carte meal in a local restaurant: Q100–130
  • Archaeological site admission: Q50–150
  • Three-hour shuttle-bus ride: Q150
Top end (more than)
  • Superior hotel double room: Q550 or more
  • Meal in an elegant restaurant: Q150 or more
  • Guide at archaeological site: up to Q450
  • 4WD car-hire per day: Q650


Many nationalities do not require tourist visas and will be given a 90-day stay upon entry, though citizens of some countries do need visas.

Get the latest visa advice for Guatemala from our community.

When to go and weather


Getting to Guatemala

With land borders on three sides, river- and sea-port entries and two international airports, it's not hard to get into or out of Guatemala. Flights, cars and tours can be booked online at www.lonelyplanet.com/bookings.

Getting around Guatemala

Pullman Bus Running only on major highways, these are the most comfortable choice. Seats are numbered and they run either semidirect or direct.

Shuttle Minibus Booked through travel agents, hotels etc, these nonstop minibuses run between major tourist destinations, offering door-to-door service.

Chicken Bus Recycled US school buses, these are cheap, go everywhere, stop for everybody and have no maximum capacity.

Pick-up Truck In areas where there is no bus service this is a common way to get around. Flag one down wherever, climb into the back and hang on. Fares are equivalent to chicken buses.

Car If you’re accustomed to crazy Latino traffic, driving is a great way to get off the beaten track.

Tuk-tuk These little three-wheelers are great for short hops around town at a fraction of a taxi fare.

Health and safety

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Advice for travellers

Travelling with children

Young children are highly regarded in Guatemala and can often break down barriers and open doors to local hospitality.However, Guatemala is so culturally dense, with such an emphasis on history and archaeology, it's easy to overwhelm kids. That said, the...

Read More

Working and volunteering

Some travelers find work in bars, restaurants and places to stay in Antigua, Panajachel or Quetzaltenango, but wages are usually barely above survival pay. If you're looking to crew a yacht, there's always work being offered around the Río Dulce...

Read More

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