A brief explanation of the CA-4 tourist visa:
When you, as a foreign national, first arrive in Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras or Nicaragua, you are generally awarded a maximum of a 90-day tourist visa (this is true at least for US citizens – please do further research for your specific home country!). This visa allows you to pass through all four countries without the necessity of a separate visa for each.
But there’s a bit of a dark side to the CA-4 tourist visa, too: the 90 days awarded are for ALL FOUR COUNTRIES, and your visa will NOT refresh when you cross between the CA-4 countries. In other words, passing from (for example) Guatemala to El Salvador doesn’t affect your ORIGINAL visa stamp at all – the clock keeps ticking on the original 90 days. This can be a negative thing, especially considering that if you plan to see a bit of all four countries, you’ll very possibly need more than 90 days to do so!
Rumor has it: upon entry to Honduras, travelers may be issued a fresh 90 day visa for the CA-4, but then again, maybe not (I’ve heard all kinds of things). Additionally, El Salvador may not honor this fresh Honduran visa should you cross to the south!
What are the penalties for overstaying my CA-4 visa?
The fee for overstaying your CA-4 visa in Guatemala is Q10 (about $1.30 US) per day of overstay. Nicaragua charges 50 cordobas per day (about $2.00 US). Clearly stated official information on El Salvador and Honduras overstay fees is very hard to find. After listening to many travelers stories, fines have been reported from as little as $50 to as high as $150 it pretty much depends on luck.
More about Honduras Travel
More about Honduras