Expat Advice: Dream vs. Reality of Expat Life in Guayaquil, Ecuador
What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?
Describe how you "dreamed" expat life would be before you moved overseas. Please provide as much detail as possible.
Our dream of moving overseas began years ago. We originally visited Guayaquil, Ecuador for 5 years during our summer break.This was a big plus as we became familiar with the country and city where we would eventually move. Ideally we wanted more time as a family and to slow down. Semi-retire so to speak. We were bringing our youngest daughter so schools were important. We weren't sure what our day to day lifestyle would consist of but we were open to finding out. My personal advice is research, research, research. Knowing the language is also helpful. Having realistic expectations is a must as once you leave a first world country, life is different. There are going to be wonderful times and also some sobering moments where you realize you are not in your home country. I would advise anyone interested in moving overseas to do so because it opens a whole new world to you and your family.
How has your expat experience met the expectations you dreamed about before you moved abroad?
Our experience has met and exceeded our expectations. We have met some incredible people. We have more friends than we could have imagined; not to mention a "social life", something we barely had in the States. We have visited some beautiful places and had experiences with our family visiting and living here that I could have never dreamed of....Galapagos is one example!
How has your expat experience NOT met the expectations you dreamed about before you moved abroad?
Bureacracy, patience, and tolerance - three of the most important words I can think of that one must keep in mind when moving. Things move at a much slower pace and do not happen as planned. We were used to living in a world where one phone call was all it took to solve a problem. In another country, it is a whole new ball game. Sometimes it feels as if it is impossible to get something done, but my motto is "one day at a time"! It does eventually get done, it just may take may take a month instead of a week. Realize that you have to have patience and prioritize what you really need and want to happen!
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