Bogotá’s post-Easter restrictions

By Emma Newbery April 6, 2021

Pico y cédula is back – and there’ll be another full lockdown this weekend.

Jenny and Martha (right) at their orange juice stall in Parkway, Teusaquillo. The mother and daughter team are worried by the threat of a new COVID-19 lockdown in Bogotá, having lost three months of informal work in the last year. “We’ve used our savings to pay rent and living expenses, and so far have no help at all from the government, not cash or even any food support,” Martha told The Bogotá Post today. Photo: Steve Hide

As was to be expected, even after slightly muted Semana Santa celebrations, authorities plan to shut down the city again this weekend.

ICU occupancy is now at 67.7% and Mayor Claudia López fears a third wave is not far away. The original plan was only to tighten restrictions if the emergency ward occupancy went above 70%, but the mayor is stepping in early.

Another reason for concern is that at least one person with the Brazilian variant has died in Colombia. A mid-March announcement said that the variant had been identified in an elderly man who passed away at the end of January. He had not travelled to Brazil or Leticia.

With their mobile stalls selling cell phone accessories, Omar and José (right) often find themselves playing cat and mouse with police during lockdowns periods in Bogotá, but try their hardest to keep working informally. The two migrants left Venezuela two years ago to better their chances in Colombia. “We can’t sit around locked up inside, or we won’t survive,” José told The Bogotá Post. Photo: Steve Hide

Bogotá’s April restrictions

From now until April 19, pico y cédula will operate in the capital. If your ID ends in an even number, you can go shopping on odd days and vice versa. The current curfew is still in place between midnight and 5 am.

The following measures will apply in Bogotá from 11.59 pm on Friday (April 8) until 4 am on Tuesday (April 13). 

  • Shutdown: Neither people nor vehicles will be allowed to move around the city unless they are exempted.
  • No alcohol sales: Ley seca will be in place, but you can get alcohol delivered domicilio.

All the usual exceptions apply, including:

  • One person per household is allowed out to buy essential medicine and groceries between 5 am and 8 pm
  • Essential workers can carry on as usual
  • You can walk your pet for 20 minutes
  • You can exercise for one hour
  • You can go to medical, veterinary or vaccination appointments

The new measures will be reevaluated on April 13. It remains to be seen how strictly these measures will be followed or enforced.

Additional reporting: Steve Hide