Ecuador Residence and Visa:
Obtaining your residency in Ecuador requires you to research and verify the accuracy of all information; also it might require some patience. The information below may be current at the present time but is always subject to change. For more up to date information you would need to contact your local representative of Ecuador Ministry of Foreign Affairs at your local Consulate of Ecuador.
It will be safe to hire a local Attorney if you do not speak Spanish; they will help you understand all the legalities required through the process while overseas or in Ecuador.
You would normally arrive on a Tourist Visa and get a T-3 stamp placed in your passport. This allows you up to 90 days in the country. If you are planning on staying longer than 90 days then seek advice from your local Ecuadorian Consulate. There you can apply for a 12-IX visa, or you could also apply for this visa while you are in Ecuador. Just don’t leave it until too late as these things take time in Ecuador, better get to it in the first 30 days after arriving in Ecuador.
You actually need the 12-IX Visa before you can apply for residency in Ecuador. It is a requirement that needs to be filed along with your residency papers. A resident visa allows you permanent residence and you can still travel outside of Ecuador. One really important issue is that you cannot leave the country for more than 90 days per year in the first two years of your residency; and after that you can only leave for 18 consecutive months while you have the Ecuadorian residency, by then you better apply for the Ecuadorian Citizenship.
There are several different visas that you can obtain and the one of the most used by retirees is the 9-I Pensioner Visa. For more details check the following link to Ecuador Foreign Ministry Office – Pensioner Visa Requirements
If you are considering investing at least $25,000 for one person then you can obtain a 9-II Investor of Real Estate Visa. Now this can be monies put into a CD or property.
The pensioner visa will entitle you too many of the retirement benefits in Ecuador except the right to vote.
For a 9-I Pensioner Visa, you will need to receive from a stable pension or trust fund a minimum income of $800 US. You will need to add $100 US for each dependent that you bring with you.
Senior Citizens Discounts and Benefits in Ecuador:
Ecuador still remains to be one of the best places in the world for retirees. It is one of the few countries in the world that allows you to enter with an automatic 90 day tourist visa, and it has great benefits for senior citizens.
The pensioner visa will entitle you too many of the retirement benefits in Ecuador except the right to vote.
For a 9-I Pensioner Visa, you will need to receive from a stable pension or trust fund a minimum income of $800 UD. You will need to add $100 UD for each dependent that you bring with you.
Under the 2008 Constitution, senior citizens receive prioritized attention, both in the public and private sectors, especially within the fields of social and economic inclusion. In accordance with Ecuadorian laws, senior citizens are those who are 65 years-old and over. (See Article 36 of the Constitution)
The Ecuadorian government guarantees to senior citizens the following rights:
- Access to free health care and medication.50% discounts in public and private transportation services.
- Discounts for special events such as galleries, theater plays and other related arts.
- Tax exemptions.
- Exempt from notaries and registration fees, in accordance with the law. (See Article 37 of the Constitution)
- 50% off electric and water bills.
- 50% off round trip international flights from Ecuador
Would these benefits/discounts be afforded to everyone, including American Citizenss whether resident or not?
The 2008 Constitution provides no distinction between foreigners and nationals regarding civil rights. However, according to “Ley del Anciano” (Law pertaining Senior Citizens), “the beneficiaries of this Act are those individuals who are 65 years-old or over, whether nationals or foreigners, who are legally established in the country (those who have Ecuadorian residency).”
If there are discounts/benefits, is there some sort of senior citizen’s card that is issued? If so, by whom?
According to the law pertaining Senior Citizens, Ecuadorian senior citizens are only required to present their National I.D. at the entity that provides the discount or benefit (such as a hospital, theater, when getting on a bus). In the case of foreigners, the rule is basically the same- required to present a form of I.D. (such as a passport, Ecuadorian National I.D., Ecuadorian Census card, etc.).
Who is the entity that is in charge of these benefits?
No particular entity, however a branch of government that is dedicated to raise awareness about senior citizens’ rights, among others, is the Ministerio de Inclusión Social y Económica.
Feel free to contact me for more references about Living in Ecuador: firstname.lastname@example.org
Olon Beach is one of the favorite stretches of beach along Ecuador’s Coastline. You have 8 miles of beach; also you can be 100 feet into the water and still only be knee deep and no rip tides. This laid-back coastal city sits approximately 195 km north of Guayaquil’s international airport and just 5 minutes from Montanita, another of Ecuador’s most popular beaches.
You can buy your Ocean view Luxury Condo at the best beach location in Ecuador and finance it through construction.
Prices starting from:
Suites: $79,000 US & Apart.: $92,000 US
• Pre-construction SALE
• 2 -3 Total Bedroom(s)
• 21/2 to 3 Total Bath(s)
• Approx. 1950 sq. ft.
• Balcony in each condo
• Luxury finishes
• Appliances included: microwave, stove and refrigerator
• Pre installed ducts for Air Conditioning
• 1 Car Garage
• Infinity Pool and BBQ area on the beach
• Direct beach access
• Building is on a corner lot
• Outdoors Family Area
• Landscaped Garden
• Building Security
• Fabulous Ocean View
Our financing will be for the 60% of the total price, which will be divided in the following forms of payments:
1. 20% at the purchase/sale contract.
2. 40% in quotas during construction period.
The project is held in escrow during the pre-construction phase by the selected title company, which is an insured account that holds your funds until construction starts.
SPECIAL ONE TIME PROMOTION: Inquiries at email@example.com
Great time off to take advantage and travel to new places in Ecuador. With four days in our hand, we decided to travel up the highland in to the amazing Andes Mountains to the Province of Chimborazo (named after this wonder of nature, the Chimborazo Volcano). I will share my pictures that can show you how fun it was and a really interesting gastronomic adventure. I decide way before the trip started that I will try just any interesting local treat along the road.
We planned to drive through local highways up to the mountains, which gave me a chance to check all that luscious vegetation that can only be found in a place like Ecuador, from the tropical Coastal greenery to the dry high altitude -Paramo- vegetation when crossing the Chimborazo.
Our trip was going to start at 5 am, which meant that BK was our first option to try on the road trip. So our first food stop was Pallatanga, which is a very small town about 3 hours from Guayaquil, just when entering in the Province of Chimborazo and the road starts claiming up hill. Here we found a Tortillas shop with the most amazing natural herbal infusion that really help me with the altitude and the cool weather.
Another purpose of this trip to the Chimborazo Province was any woman’s favorites: shopping, I was told that in the Town of Guano (another 2 hours on our road trip), I could find great leather shows, handbags and any leather accessory… they were so right, I was in real need for flats, and I found the most amazing designs and colors, also they felt so soft that I bought 3 pairs at $35 USD each, all leather and fit me perfectly.
Since was late morning, we needed a small snack, what better treat then CHOLITAS… is the one hundred year old traditional delight in this village. CHOLAS, what? Yes, Cholas, here I’ll explain. A Chola is made of a sort of biscuit like dough, with a center stuffed with delicious brown sugar, it is rolled into a ball and later baked in a wood-burning oven. You usually get 7 for a dollar.
After this treat, we decided to head back to the City of Riobamba for a quick lunch and to visit the place, this was about a 25 min drive from Guano. Here the traffic was chaotic, a lot of road construction and everybody was on the streets playing Carnaval, that is a serious festivity here up the mountains of Ecuador…. And we had to be so careful on avoiding no to get wet or hit with water balloons or Carioca foam…
Sadly Carnival in Ecuador has been known to be quite savage. Living it up has come to mean dousing your neighbors, family, friends and any other passerby with every liquid imaginable. The water is sometimes topped off with flour to make you a really sticky mess. There is Carioca a colored foam similar to shaving cream that has become very popular. It’s also less messy. 🙂
A law prohibiting Carnival savagery has been passed in Ecuador. During the weeks leading up to the days of partying, repeated television announcements are run urging the people to play nice.
Carnival used to be a two week affair in Ecuador, but with this new law you are usually safe up until the weekend before Ash Wednesday. And the streets are not safe with players seen in all out war, armed with their buckets and water guns.
So we basically decided to go for a quick bite in the City of Riobamba, park the car close to a deli that look nice and run in to avoid getting wet. On our way out getting into our car, one of us was almost hit by water thrown from a passing car, good thing they missed the shot, we just drove fast out of the city.
Our next stop was this nice Hacienda Hotel located between Rioabamba and Ambato. An incredible Spanish style hotel, every detail was in place for a great boutique experience, what an amazing lodging place… La Andaluza.
We enjoy our stay at the Hosteria, and for the next days we took small trips around the area to visit different highlights in the central part of Ecuador, like The Chimborazo Volcano were we found Vicuñas; and El Tren del Hielo (dress warm since it is 3600 meters above sea level and gets cold). Also Villages like Lago de Colta, Penie and Guayabamba.
On the way back, we decided to visit another Province of Ecuador, Bolivar, I need to taste those local hand made cheese, chocolates, and other sweets.. Salinas de Guaranda, in the Province of Bolivar, images speak by themselves, we bought Mozzarella and Fresh Cheese, Home made marmalade, cocoa tablets to make hot chocolate and few sweets for our friends back home.
Road Conditions — Most of the major highways in Ecuador are in pretty decent shape. But once you venture off the major thoroughfares, the situation deteriorates dramatically.
Even the major highways and tourist destinations are only sporadically marked with up-to-date signs and markers. And once you get off the beaten path, you may not encounter any signs or indications as you pass intersection after intersection.
Always keep an eye out for the sudden appearance of a pedestrian, bicycle rider, dog, or cow, even on major highways. It’s best to avoid driving at night, as very few roads or highways are illuminated.
The road through the Province of Bolivar was in a poor condition, there were lots of pot halls and un even pave road, which made driving difficult and slow us down a lot. It is always hard to drive in Ecuador; the way locals drive plus weather conditions like fog can be very challenging. It is best if you opt for the help of a local driver, or take your time to familiarize with local driving before you hit the road.
Some of my friends decides to visit some beach locations in Ecuador, they complain of a large crowd and everything more expensive than usual. Maybe is good to avoid those local’s hot spots and travel some other great places in Ecuador, check in the near future some of the images send by my friends..
Enjoy Ecuador, until next time…. Adios.
A new Touristic Train service is ready in Ecuador – Tren Crucero – following an investment of some $280 million, and the rehabilitation of 456 km (283 miles) of the country’s railway system. This amazing Ecuadorian Tour service aims at the high-end of the market that is ready to ride the rails.
The “Tren Crucero” will travel from the Guayaquil on the Coast to Quito, or vice versa, with overnight stays in traditional haciendas, and between visits to colorful indigenous markets, museums, towns, farms and national parks aboard the innovative carriages.
They offer 1 to 4-day adventure tours which will be an experience for all your senses. This will bring you into close contact with the Ecuadorian people and the landscapes of the Andes and Coastal regions. A once of a life time experience while riding aboard real comfortable custom-designed carriages – and, the train is using restored 20th-century steam locomotives.
The route includes the dramatic “Devil’s Nose” segment which connects the Andes and the Coast, the main reason the Ecuadorian system is regarded as “the most difficult railway in the world”.
The four thematically-styled carriages will carry 54 guests through different fascinating regions, people and culture. Two of the four carriages are furnished with tables and chairs where guests can enjoy a light aperitif, read a book or simply enjoy the scenery picturistic view through large windows. One of these coaches is equipped with personal lockers for storage, while a fourth one offers a coffee bar where the crew will serve beverages and snacks including Ecuadorian favorites.
The last carriage of the Tren Crucero consists of two sections: the first with a lounge area for socializing, and the second with an open terrace where guests can travel viewing all the elements as the train winds through Ecuador’s majestic landscapes.
Train trips includes: the train ride, overnights in selected hotels or haciendas, Ecuadorian meals in each region, guided excursions to main natural and cultural attractions, bilingual English/Spanish guides, excursions aboard a tourist bus.
The crew who will assist guests on board has been hand-picked and trained to the highest standards in customer service. This team will be led by the Train Director, responsible for the train operators, guides, stewards and all service staff.
More Ecuador Travel info at Ecuador Services – Travel section
This time I will like to provide some safe knowledge on local bus transportation, specially the inter provincial bus service that will take you between cities in Ecuador.
This is not a service I will use and recommend based on my personal evaluation while living here in Ecuador. I did try the service few times between travels to Quito, Cuenca and the Coastal region, but every time I did I was very disappointed and felt pretty unsafe. I am very open and understand the local culture, but the local bus service goes beyond real dangerous situations to its users. I will say they really do not respect users’ life and safety.
You must it heard by now, that it takes some daring to drive in Ecuador; I will simply put it that there is an aggressive driving condition on any road and city in Ecuador. Must roads have physically improved over time, what you have to be aware of it’s the dogging game you must play while driving. It is not uncommon to find drivers that do not respect street lights or signals, or driving on the wrong side of the road, or taking over a car without all the proper precautions. You will also find people or animals that will be crossing or walking with even noticing cars passing by.
All this happens on city streets as in any highway of Ecuador. Why do I mention all those local road and driving situations? Well, all of that reflects specially on local bus drivers, added to all of those road’s conditions, must drivers are over worked, they are put under time pressure for each trip, some of them do not even hold a professional driver’s license, and since they are not well paid, most of them work over time without taking the proper time out need it to rest.
My hall purpose here is to make you aware of the possible risks if you decide to take a bus to travel in Ecuador. You could always take all the proper precautions to avoid been robed or moped while on the bus, but there is no way to play safe on the driving conditions on your bus trip.
On daily basis you here of tragic accidents from buses on the highways, I often see them while traveling to the beach, if it is not the drivers fault they blame it on the bus mechanical condition, or some other vehicle cause the bus to run off the highway. Up to know law enforcement have try a lot of different tactics, but honestly I do not see any improvement or change.
Just last weekend that I was driving to Playas Villamil, Coastal Ecuador, I took my chance and started to tailgating (for research purposes) a buss driving from Guayaquil to Playas, the speed that the bus was traveling was of 130 kph, I was shocked of such a high speed for a public transportation. Just few kilometers before Playas, I was stopped by a Highway Patrol and got a speeding ticket; they had a picture of my car going at 111 kph. I would say that their radars are kind of off the track, and by the way the local maximum speed aloud is 100 kph.
I was so surprised that the bus I was tailgating was not stopped with me, so I stated my complaint to the officer, he ended up telling me that they are always getting speeding tickets. I don’t know what the logic behind that answer was.
We are not going to solve the bus driving situation in Ecuador, but we could avoid traveling on a weapon with wheels.
There are other options which I will always recommend, the best income airport is Guayaquil International Airport, it is rank as one of the best in South America, easy access and excellent services, and from there you could rent a car, hire a taxi, or even get local contacts that will be willing to provide you with safe transportation services. You will be spending some money, but your life means a lot more than few dollars.
Keep safe while retiring or traveling in Ecuador!
I was invited to visit a local architect in Cuenca for business purposes, what a brilliant opportunity for me to check the city as an expat, not only as the tourist visitor I had been before.
It was really impressive to see all the good work they had done on the highway from Guayaquil to Cuenca, the Molleturo highway. Driving time was around three in a half hour. It may vary depending on the weather conditions of the day; there is a dense fog that comes down through the mountains in the early morning and late afternoon. Also you will have to be a bit daring to handle all the sharp curves and up hills since it is a winding road; remember you are surrounding and passing through the Andes mountains range.
You could also flight from Guayaquil or Quito into Cuenca, personally that will not be my choice. There is only local airlines serving the city, and I am not really enthusiastic on the facility´s geographical location. It is a real personal choice, there is plenty of people flying in and out of Cuenca, lets not forget that it is the third largest city in Ecuador, and one of the most powerful economical group is base there.
To any new comer, this is a must sightseeing trip on the agenda. There is transition glow between the flat land of the coast to the mysterious even whimsical view of the valleys and the canyons between the mountains.
I would recommend arriving to one of the 2 international airports, Guayaquil (GYE) or Quito (UIO), and then drive, rent, or even take the executive transportation service (nice minivans) and go to Cuenca. There are local bus services that foreigners do use to travel inside Ecuador. If you need more details on any of these services please ask me.
Designated as a World Heritage Center by the UNESCO, you will find lots of helpful information about Cuenca on-line. I will have on going post about my experience there. They also ask me to promote some of the properties on sale by the project owner. I found great prospects in the construction area, as they tell you on must websites it is cheap to buy a house.
Cuenca is a very small city, at this point, I have come to the conclusion that the only metropolitan city is Guayaquil. Which is the significant economic, political, industrial and cultural center for the country and an important hub for regional or international connections and communications.
The market in Cuenca for brand new properties will provide you with high quality on wood work and ceramic tiles for a very reasonable price. I have not yet seeing in Ecuador something comparable to the wood work they have on kitchen, bathrooms and closets like the one I saw in Cuenca. They are also the manufactures of ceramic, marble and stone fixings; all of these together will deliver to you low-cost and great options.
In case your option it is to go for an old colonial building, you will have to hire a contractor that handles this type of renovations. There is a lot of empiric restoration done on some old colonial structures, but not well done enough to maintain its original qualities and beauties to last through another era in time.
I would imagine this as a great opportunity for job seekers in the construction and restoration area of colonial architecture. What you must keep in mind is that property owners, specially the local ones, can not afford spending on home maintenance as we accustom in North America. Please do assets the property with the help of and expert on the topic, this would be my valuable contribution.
Cuenca is well advertised as a heavenly destination to retire, there is no mistake on that, and you will find a crispy fresh air, colonial history and lots of fresh fruit and products suitable for low-budget retirees. This inland colonial town founded in 1557 still observes the formal orthogonal town plan that it has respected for 400 years. Cuenca’s architecture, much of which dates from the 18th century, was ‘modernized’ in the economic prosperity of the 19th century as the city became a major exporter of quinine, straw hats and other products.
This place feels like it is seating through time without acknowledging the mayor changes happening the world, this can be very attractive to the ones looking to leave behind our very hectic world. In my case, I found it lovely to visit, to know history, the close up to natural Andean surroundings.
On the far side, I had problems with altitude; it had happened before in other high altitude cities, I was lucky to find a pill for dizziness that worked wonderfully. Also it is to cold for me, mornings and evening range from 5 to 15 Celsius, and then it can go up to 22 Celsius under the sun during the day. I need warm hot weather to feel active and do all my outdoor sports and activities. Last, I need the ongoing development and even the hassle of modern life.
Cultural life it is an ongoing tradition in Cuenca, locals have a great cultural background for which they feel very proud of. There is high level of interest in art, writing and music.
My first choice will always be Guayaquil, here I have access to local and international events and information. I am the kind of person that likes the hands on experience which will not be the same in a smaller town of Ecuador.
My ideal setting it is purchase a “finca” or small property in Cuenca that added to my condo by the ocean will indulge me with the settings that I enjoy the must. As I have mentioned before it is really easy to travel from one place to the other in this small and amazing country which I am loving it more every single day. Ecuador is life at is purest, multiethnic and multicultural diverse.
…. great overseas option, but for now I´ll stick to Guayaquil.
During this trip I had a chance to meet a couple of expats living in Cuenca, hopefully I will be able to get inside views and experiences on their own words, the pros and the cons of doing business in Cuenca and their experience with locals and other expats…. Keep checking for our next posts.
Thanks to one of my readers, I came to the attention that in Ecuador there is no such a thing as “Short Sales” on properties. I will try to provide some inside view about Real Estate Sales in Ecuador.
Latin American countries have particular structural features that complicate the regulatory environment of capital markets and affect the effective execution of short sales on real estate properties. For local Ecuadorians to purchase a real estate investment through a lender (Bank or Government Agency) it is easy since the introduction of the US dollar as the official monetary unit for all banking and government transactions.
In theory financing is available in Ecuador, but in practice it is difficult to arrange for foreigners.
The Ecuador constitution guarantees free access to the banking and credit market to locals and foreigners alike. The same as it guarantees the free right to own and hold property.
You can buy real estate once you land in the country using only your passport as identification. This is not just a policy of the current administration that can easily be changed – the Ecuador constitution guarantees the right to buy and hold property for everyone, citizens and foreigners alike. In fact, once you are in the country with a valid visa, the Ecuador Constitution guarantees that you have the same legal rights as Ecuadorian citizens, with the exception that you can not vote.
Additionally, there are no restrictions on owning beachfront property as there is in some other countries. Real Estate problems have mostly been the result of buying property that the seller did not have the right to sell – a proper title search, or buying title insurance, mitigates this risk.
The difficulty that foreigners face on financing is the inexistence of a “credit rating” system in Ecuador. Adding to this, there is a high default rate in their financial system, so it’s hard to qualify for a loan without a local employment history or a co-signer.
A good credit rating in the US does not mean anything here. Interest rates are typically 12% or more, and 30% to 50% down payment is standard.
The great opportunity to take advantage is on Pre-Construction Featured Projects in Ecuador. You could finance your down payment free of charge and cero interest until the project is ready. Also you could sometimes get the sellers to provide future direct financing, but they will typically require at least 50% down payment.
Getting back to the term of “Short Sales”, the definition applied to this term in Latin America it is completely different, “short selling” relates to market shares or stocks. Latin American capital markets are characterized by the following factors affecting country risk perception from the international investor perspective:
- Reduced liquidity
- Limited price formation
- Unavailability of information
- Small economic size
All this facts makes it difficult to assess the appropriateness of short sales norms. Let’s say in Ecuador there is no currency market since their official monetary unit is US Dollar, so there is no possibility of short sell that would depend on the existence of a fixed or a floating exchange rate regime.
Therefore, Ecuador does not approved or makes it feasible to short sell in equity markets; there are no regulations on the topic.
This is the best place to invest in cheap property, not to go on market trading…
If you need help with information related to buying property in Ecuador at real cheap price let me know… Hereyou have a sample of a real cheap property only $ 65.000 US dollars on sale directly by owner, ocean side gated community in Playas Villamil, the best ocean weather in the world.
The actual performance of the region’s economies is surprisingly strong particularly when compared to past crises. China’s sustained demand for the commodity exports of the region and the timely monetary action of the IMF liquidity provisions, are two external factors that are undoubtedly part of the explanation.
However, internal factors played a major role too including greater macro policy resilience and the financial sector reforms in most countries over the last decade. One over looked factor is the contribution middle class consumption has done to the region; Latin America middle class is not the stereo typical one, they will be closer to poverty class in standard societies, and they also have limit access to aggregate demands that will condition micro economic growth, therefore domestic demands have allow this economies resilient to global crisis.
Future challenges will be: to secure domestic financial development against political pressures for short-term gains, to pressure the local financial sector as a market player while maintaining sound lending practices, and to adopt real government policies to sustained macroeconomic stability.
As for our self, if we are looking for new horizons to develop careers or retire while still contribute to society; this country will be a great opportunity to put in action collaborative strategies for development. A good starting point to contribute to real wealth and welfare should include strong education systems and investments in order to organize economics and promote better incomes distribution. Let´s make a better world for our next generations.
I will like to invite you to watch the following video
There are a lot of things going on in Guayaquil these days. Lately, I have been trying to catch up with all the business and social meetings all at the same time. My challenge is to keep up with the local paste to provide you with accurate information.
One good side of this “on the go” is learning the art of mixing business with pleasure. The smart and fun part of living and working in this small part of the world is realizing that Ecuadorians, especially people from Guayaquil love to entertain and socialize while doing great business deals.
After this cultural introduction let me tell you the latest news in this place…
Guayaquil as part of his itinerary, and he meet with British business representatives settled in this city. Through the meeting, he found out that they are expanding and doing well in their business. Examples of some of those are Unilever and SAB Miller.
Mr. Lamb came to the conclusion of needing a greater presence in this part of the country. UK aims to increase its investments in Ecuador and will make more inroads in the market for Guayaquil. Once in London, he will communicate to my authorities on the need to shift our resources from Quito to this city. Mr. Lamb also mentioned that UK Embassy colleagues agree that there are several business opportunities to explore here, at this new branch, they want to open new market opportunities for bilateral trade.
Such a great news for all of us that are investing in Ecuador, perfect timing and another good reason to add to the “Fiestas Octubrinas”. The city of Guayaquil – “La perla del Pacifico” is celebrating its independence day next Sunday the 9th.
There are a lot of cultural and social events this weekend. In my plans, I am starting the afternoon watching the soccer game as part of the selecting period for the “2014 World Cup in Brazil”, we will meet with friends for ceviche and beer. Later in the evening we all are going for some Salsa to the Duran Fair. Tomorrow I will visit the out door plazas with local painters exhibitions and shows, and Sunday on my way to Playas: biking, eating fresh seafood, and I must include a bit of work by visiting one of our on going projects to gather pictures for my clients overseas.
If you will like to know more about the local activities please watch the video and follow their link.
First working day of the month of October and by reading most of my friends and colleagues e-mails, I am realizing that weather change is approaching. It is getting cooler up north, and we are getting warmer here in our tropical Coastal Ecuador.
I use to enjoy and welcome fall and winter, it meant slowing down, looking intro perspective, and start building and planning my next steps in life. But also, this reminds me one of the main reasons to be living in Ecuador with this nice hot warm weather.
Around the year 2000, when I was developing my professional path in USA and Latin America, some health issues interrupted all my wonderful working and travelling plans.
Within all the travelling options, one was to visit family in Ecuador. Once on my trip, I ended up checking the local health and medical resources because of a severe pain crisis (spinal discs problems). I was basically pain managing for a couple of years but came to that point that I needed surgery.
Let´s make this story short, it was my second back surgery, I had already one done in Canada with success. So without even thinking or making my health a priority in my future plans, I review all the options and opted for the best ones at that specific moment:
1.- My medical expenses were covered here in Ecuador by my insurance policy
2.- I could opt for top level doctors and hospital beds, since the rates were lower here in Ecuador.
3.- All international insurance companies have local referrals that are practitioners who have done their studies in USA or Europe, even award winners professionals.
4.- Since I was covering expenses directly, I did not have to wait on line for tests or MRIs.
5.- I could set up myself in a nice upper scale condo with house help for less than 1.000 US. (I need 3 months at least to be able to drive again)
I had the surgery by a recognized worldwide surgeon, a nice recovering period, fresh home made food and care, and I was keeping up with my pending working projects and connected to the world by the internet.
Maybe this is not an option for everybody, still you could always research medical options overseas. There are online medical referrals to consult your options even here in Ecuador.
I will leave you with some nice pictures of some of my personal adventures here in Ecuador. I was asked by one of my readers if the posted pictures are original, I would say mostly they are. At times, some pictures are from other sources which may narrow the certainty of their originality.
P.S. Due to my health issues cold weather doesn´t agree with me, and in Ecuador, I am able to afford on going therapy and massages plus attend exercise classes like yoga and Pilates to manage my health as I am aging.