MagazineMar 8, 2018
Poorer by the day, hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans have concluded that escape is their only option. With the country's currency virtually worthless and air travel beyond the reach of all but elites, buses have become Venezuela's caravans of misery, rolling day and night to its borders and returning largely empty to begin the process all over again. For nine days, a reporter and a photographer from Reuters accompanied the migrants as they headed for what they hoped were better days in Ecuador, Peru, Chile and Argentina.
For nearly 5,000 miles, they rolled through some of South America's most spectacular landscapes, including the vertiginous Andean mountain range and the world's driest desert in Chile. But even though the Venezuelans were awed by the views whizzing by their window, their minds were mostly on the land they had left behind - and the uncertainty facing them in the lands ahead.
Adrian Naveda (C) and Natacha Rodriguez, who are traveling by bus from Caracas to Chile, sleep sitting on the floor while they wait in line to have their passport stamped at the binational border service centre in Huaquillas, Ecuador, November 11, 2017. After four days of traveling, the fatigue among the passengers was evident. Having boarded the last bus in Guayaquil after midnight and travelled approximately four hours to the border between Ecuador and Peru, many fell asleep on the floor while queuing to get their passports stamped. CARLOS GARCIA RAWLINS/REUTERS