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, traveling by bus from Caracas to Chile, records voice messages to send at the next free internet spot while he waits to board the bus at a customs point in Quillagua, Chile, November 14, 2017. Not being able to keep in touch with loved ones, was one of the things that most worried the travelers during the journey, so they were always trying to connect to the internet. Adrian said several times that he missed his mother and his girlfriend, so he decided to record messages for them despite not being able to send them or receive an answer, until the next free wifi network. CARLOS GARCIA RAWLINS/REUTERS