CIGNA Expat Health Insurance

Login to Contact jstarr

About jstarr


Preparing to Move Abroad 



Currently Lives:

Asheville, North Carolina, United States

Citizen Of:

United States

My Website:


Some Forum Posts:

Ecuador: Coming mid-February to the Crucita area.:

Hi ! Coming to EC for about 3 weeks in mid-February. The first week will be spent in the Crucita area and then in Cuenca. I would really appreciate recommendations for a hotel in Crucita or a small rental. Thanks !

Colombia: cost of living, utilities per month?:

Regarding cost of electricity in Latin countries, Mexico has a tiered electricity payment system based on whether you're coastal and how much electricity you use. In Lake Chapala, US residents are bitterly complaining about doubled and tripled utility bills. In LC, where AC isn't necessary, electric can still cost $200-400. monthly. In Merida, the power company charges less per KWH in hot seasons while people are running AC and more in the cooler season when they are not. Electricity in Merida if you run AC in 1 BR only can be $400-600. per month. Electricity is very expensive in most Central American countries and also in Mexico.

Ecuador: why are we leaving and what do we like most in Ecuador:

Hello ! I was just about to write you an email thanking you for all the invaluable information that you sent the other day. You are a font of knowledge and experience, and gave generously to someone you've never met. You helped me in ways that perhaps no one else could have, so I thank you most gratefully. I feel compelled to respond to your post because some of the things you said caused me concern. I want to share that I am again proud to be an American and I'll give you one tiny example of why. At lunch today, I overheard 3 conversations. Each of them was political in nature and each conversation was about how to save our country. Each group complained bitterly about incompetent, corrupt government. Each had solutions that were shared. I've had lunch in various restaurants in various US states for umpteen years and I've never heard other Americans talking passionately about our country. I've heard gossip, fashion chat, other restaurant comparisons, arguing, romancing, but never intelligent, informed conversation about how to save our country. Today at lunch, I was very proud to be an American but also ashamed by many of the actions of the US government. When I read of people complaining about the corruption in the Dominican Republic or Ecuador, I could just laugh. Really ? Listen to Fox News for an hour and then get back to me on the concept and possible scope of corruption. That said, I am leaving our country too for reasons that have a bit to do with a corrupt, controlling government, inevitable terrorist attacks and perhaps much worse, but also the fact that I haven't explored enough of the world yet and I'm ready for some really great adventures in a new adopted home or homes. I'm proud to be an American because of other Americans, generous to a fault and good-hearted like you. We may be loud in public at times and spend too much money, but many of us are kind people who will walk a mile to help a person in need. It's my hope in expatriating to find others who want to return to our core 1950's American values and to create more genuine, less complicated lives than we've known in America. Thanks again for all your help. It was much appreciated and I look forward to the possibility of meeting you one day and seeing your lovely new home.

Panama: Boquete, Panama:

Hi ! For those looking for more info on Boquete, check out and There are helpful links from each to a local English newspaper with ads for rentals and others of interest. Also check out which is a real estate company with houses for sale or rent. I haven't been yet but later this year I will visit for a month. I'll keep you posted ! Jo

Ecuador: Considering/researching Ecuador for relocation/retirement.:

Hello ! I value your take on EC after 8 years of visiting and exploring the country. May I ask which beachside village you have chosen for home ? Is there advice you'd share with the community about pitfalls to avoid in building a house on the beach ? Can you share a realistic per square foot cost for construction on the beach ? Thanks ! Jo Ana

Global Expat Forum: HELP! Need Retirement Country for $1000. per month!:

Hello ! I've been investigating Ecuador as a place to live and been in touch with an attorney who can handle the pensioner visa. Ecuador only requires that an individual have an income of at least $800. required investment, etc. Many report that they can live comfortably in EC on $600. monthly. In the Andes, there is no heating or cooling required, no property tax and like Panama, there are huge discounts for seniors on everything from airfare, theater, cabs, utility bills, etc. There is a strong infrastructure in EC so High Speed and English cable TV is the rule not the exception. In addition, vegetables and fruit are cheap, the currency is the US dollar, gasoline costs $1.50 per gallon, restaurant meals are very inexpensive, the people are very friendly, the government although currently leftish is stable and the country is beautiful offering the Andes, also beaches, also the Amazon rainforests. IL has named Cuenca, a city in EC the #2 best retirement location in the world. After gaining your permanent residency for 2 years, you are eligible to acquire citizenship. All in all, an attractive package. Hope this helps, Jo Ana


Date Joined:


Total Posts:




Join Today (free)

Join Expat Exchange to meet expats in your area or get advice before your move. It's FREE and takes 1 minute!

Copyright 1997-2018 Burlingame Interactive, Inc.

Privacy Policy Legal