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Flights to El Calafate, Argentina from the United States may require up to three connections, but you should still be able to make it in under a day. The northernmost US cities such as Seattle or Chicago may require a total trip time of over 30 hours, depending on your search parameters.
Currently, there aren’t any nonstop flights to El Calafate from any city in the US. It’s a small city and small airport in a remote area, so there aren’t many cities that fly there. Regardless of where you are flying from, you’ll most likely connect in Buenos Aires before making the final flight into Comandante Armando Tola International Airport, El Calafate, Argentina (FTE). Upon exiting the US, you may connect in Panama City, Mexico City, or Sao Paulo, amongst others, depending on your airline. Copa and AeroMexico provide many of the routes that’ll connect with your local US carrier. Be sure to check for the "self-transfer" label on your itineraries to be aware that you may need to re-check your luggage at one of your layovers. Selecting for different layovers and departure times should help you find a good deal on a flight to El Calafate.
During the warmer months, hikers around the El Calafate area find that parks like Los Glaciares National Park are the best for taking long walks with their families and/or pets. Those looking for this type of experience are likely best suited to fly to El Calafate in January, February, or March.
Aerolineas Argentinas is the airline most momondo users in United States opt for when booking flights to El Calafate. LATAM Airlines is also popular choice when flying to El Calafate from United States. Most major airlines flying from United States to El Calafate will offer flights on a regular basis, though your options may vary depending on what airport you fly from.
After your long flight, getting to the city center of El Calafate should be a quick ride. There isn’t any public transportation or train services from the airport, so you’ll have to get a ride from a taxi or private shuttle. Although Uber does operate in Argentina, it won’t likely be a reliable option in this remote part of the country. Many private transportation companies are serving the tourism industry on trips all over the area, so your tour company will most likely offer to give you a ride from the airport. You can always message your hotel or short-term rental host to see if they will offer to pick you up.
There is no visa required for US citizens to enter Argentina, but a valid passport is required.
It’s less about what’s in El Calafate, and more about all the ways to see the natural beauty that surrounds the town. El Calafate, Argentina lies less than an hour’s drive to the east of the Los Glaciares National Park, nestled in the heart of Patagonia. Much of the park is a huge ice cap, with many glaciers, such as Glacier Perito Moreno, easily accessible for viewing by boat, emptying into Lake Argentina. You can take in the peaks of the Andes Mountains and towering glaciers by hiking on and over them or by riding past on a boat tour. You can also go off-roading to the cliffs above and around El Calafate for a better look. Longer excursions into the Torres Del Paine National Park, just over the border from Chile, are also accessible from El Calafate. If you’re staying in the city for a rest day, be sure to check out the Glacier Museum to the west of town, or head to the Patagonia Historical Center, which gives a history of the region, dating back to the dinosaurs.
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