Hacking Colombia: Everyday Acronyms you Need to Know

In this article we list and explain some of the key abbreviations you’ll run into while living or visiting our country.

  • SOAT: Seguro Obligatorio de Accidentes de Tránsito. This is the mandatory personal liability insurance every driver must obtain. It’s sold in many places, including banks.
  • RUT: Registro Único Tributario. Income tax registration, whether personal or a corporation, with Colombia’s DIAN (tax department)
  • NIT: Número de Identificación Tributaria. Income tax number resulting from your RUT. The DIAN says that this doesn’t obligate you to file a tax return, unless you have crossed certain thresholds (we’ll cover this in a future article)
  • CC / CE: Cédula de Ciudadanía / Cédula de Extranjería. Your national ID number if you’re a citizen, or in the latter case, a foreigner.
  • EPS: Entidades Promotoras de Salud. Private health services providers. You will likely have an EPS, say Sura for example.
  • EPM: Empresas Públicas de Medellín. If you live in the Medellín are, your utility bills (water/electricity/sewage) will be from this entity (though actual nservices may be from other entities)
  • INDER: Instituto de Deportes y Recreación de Medellín. These guys organize the ciclovía on Sundays, among other things.