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About pato23

Status:

Expatriate  

Gender:

Male

Currently Lives:

San Salvador, El Salvador

Citizen Of:

United States

Dual Citizen Of:

El Salvador

Past Expat Posts:

Guatemala


Mexico


Honduras


Nicaragua


Poland

HR/Relo
Professional:

Help Manage Expat Programs for My Company

Some Forum Posts:

El Salvador: Moving to San Salvador:

!Claro que si! agregarse con https://web.facebook.com/centroespanolsv/?fref=ts en San Salvador..... 83 avenida norte, Paseo General Escalón. Colonia Escalón. San Salvador 503 2264 3955 Closed until tomorrow 7:00AM - 8:00PM Typically replies within an hour Message Now http://www.centroespanoles.com/ ademas tanto miembros del https://www.internations.org/el-salvador-expats son de Espana y otros paises. Si usted necesita el consejo antes de la llegada o ayuda después su llegada eviame mensaje...saludos. Yrabajaba con muchos espanoles en El Salvador.

Colombia: How To Apply For TP7 Visa and Cedula:

thanks, will go to Bogota Embassy FBU Page - Do you need Apostille for Birth Certificate and do you need a US Address? I an in Central america now, fed up with it, fluent in Spanish, no 'things' to move heavier than clothing and Avianca is now our Airline.......

El Salvador: housing:

And now over 3,000 members, most are natives selling or renting to gringos!

El Salvador: Safety on the beach:

You can purchase and run a place in El Salvador on a tourist visa as long as you hire Salvadorans...you can then apply for Business Residency, Getting Residency of any kind is a long drawn out process in El Salvador, easier if you have Guatemalan residency. A friend of mine, an Ex Pat, Salvadoran wife but no residency owns and operates a Hotel and Hostel in San Salvador and would be glad to assist you with advices - Malcolm - Hostal Cumbres del Volcan - E mail info@cumbresdelvolcan.com We also have a good friend from Romania who owns and operates a Beach Resort West of La Libertad. He -Marius - returns in March - as Well Robert "El Gringo" Salvadoran/American owns a Hostel, Restaurant, Bar and Tour Opreration in Suchitoto, El Salvador and is very helpful Contact Robert via his website www.theotherelsalvador.com The El Salvador "Ex Pat" Group on Facebook is probably the most supportive and least abrasive Ex Pat Group in Central America. Closed Group apply to join. Gluck haben.

El Salvador: looking for american job:

Sure if you speak fluent Spanish, have connections (cuello) and an invittion from a Company that will get you a work permit.... otherwise local English Academies will hire you at $5 a class hour working off the books, no benefits..etc. In the Call Centers of El Salvador are working for $600 Month unemployed Doctors, Lawyers, Engineers 100% bilingual, problem is they are over 35 years old and many replaced with younger workers, thousands of qualified bilingual or multilingual Salvadorans unemployed want an 'american job' stay in the usa!!!!!!

El Salvador: Moving:

If you two had Social Security and or pension amounting to plus $2,000 a Month for both of you, El Salvador would be perfect, even the Call Centers require you to be legally in El Salvador, resident with permission to work or work permit, average Salary in Call Centers $600 a Month, for 44 hours a week, Teachers in the English speaking International Schools need be certified Teachers at home and to apply 6 months in advance of School Year which begins late August as in USA, if you have money to invest and live on for a year you could open a small travel related business, the few luxury boats that are in El Salvador are docked at the Marina in Bahia de Jiquilisco, some 80 km. SE of the Capital City, I doubt there are jobs for Boat Mechanics, if you have no income nor substantial savings do not come expecting employment, especially do not sell your home stateside if you bring a vehicle you will have to matriculate it and pay high import taxes or take the vehicle out of country and return again and again. Unemployment is high here and as for teaching English in a small school with no work permit, you would have no benefits, long hours and low pay around $400 a Month or so, they have schools here that hire native speakers, pay low, benefits zero and high turnover! Many Ex Pats that come here are married to a Salvadoran, with family and connections, without those, would recommend an English speaking country where it is easier to get residency, Belize. Good luck.

Nicaragua: Bringing in personal items on a 90 day visa:

There are 2 crossings from Tapachula to the South Coastal Plain Costa Sur of Guatemala, Cd. Hidalgo-Tecun Uman is 30 km. out of Tapachula, most of the truck traffic goes through here, long bridge from Hidalgo, quiet town to Tecun Uman "Little Tijuana" lots of illegals waiting to cross to Mexico, lots of bars and 'houses of ill repute' don't hang around! The other border Talisman only 18 km. out of Tapachula more peaceful, very little truck traffic, if coming from Mexico with US or CAN plates you will need to purchase CA 4 insurance at Guat customs if you have CA 4 plates no problem, just a permiso paper for Guatemala, use Talisman if possible, if you are bringing in goods watch the corrupt Guate PNC at the checkpoints beyond the borders, there is a nice Beach near the MEX border and also Champerico, due south of Quetzaltenanago turn right (South) at km. 187, the Talisman border is km 252 from Guatemala City. If you have CA4 residency, no charges, foreign passports $10 USD for Tourist Card 90 Days CA 4 Guatemala, ESV, Honduras and Nica. If importing a car it needs to be 6 years old or less.I drove many times also lived in Quetzaltenango awhile and in those days we went shopping in Tapachula when it was cheaper, always used Talisman!!!

El Salvador: how to find a place to rent:

Are you in ESV now? Do you speak, read and write well in Spanish? There are Realtors and expect to pay a commission. Best on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays are the classified Ads in the 2 large ESV Daily Newspapers - Print, hundreds of Ads for Real Estate from apartments, Houses, Beach Houses-Ranchos in all areas of Metropolitan San Salvador, often for sale or rent directly from the owner, If you have no Spanish skills hire a native speaker to make calls for you and ask prices, if you have no vehicle hire a native driver-guide who speaks at least basic English. Also a good resource is the "El Salvador Ex Pats" Group on Facebook, lots of people on there who rent, all bi lingual, the Group is Closed so you must apply. There are Realtors on the Internet but initial f2f contacts are best. Nice homes in upscale areas go from $500/600 up a month, unfurnished, 1 Month's security and 6 Month contract, references required on house/apartment rentals.

Nicaragua: Nicaragua Schools:

Good post! Often 'connecting' with someone on an anonymous forum is not easy, on Facebook are now many Nicaraguan and Central American Facebook Groups where it easy to connect, if someone wishes to deal with me or vice versa I need a profile not blank name blank country of origin blank blank. At any rate if you are planning on relocating and have a target country or region it is best to travel there first, maybe stay 6 months and rent and if things do not work out, well it is a wide wide world. And yes many people in the USA have travelled as tourists, some come to a resort in the tropics and get 'tropical fever' and become as the Ex Pats say in CR "Pineapples" who see the new country through rose colored glasses with no knowledge of culture, customs, laws, beaurocracy, a Woman recently PM ed me she was bringing an RV and another vehicle in tow to "settle" somewhere in Central or South America, here they give the vehicle 45-60 days if you have foreign plates, otherwise you need matriculate if under 6 years old. One US Citizen went to Panama, rented some land and set down his RV with US Plates, in a few months Customs had the RV in tow! Those of you who wish your residency in Central America, Ecuador, etc. and are patient may then import a vehicle and household goods tax free. Good luck to all if you and hope you all find your Rincon (little corner) of Central America! Good information on the School in Granada, remember if bringing kids that "International Schools" abroad are quite expensive.

Nicaragua: Yet Another question - rentals:

Follow the advice on majicjack's very informative post, when I lived for awhile in Nicaragua in the 1990s had local contacts and I stayed in a hotel for a week, friends owned the hotel, went around with my local friend in his pick up and found a nice small apt in a private home $100 month, stay away from Gringo Realtors when you first arrive and still in culture shock and vulnerable, find an Ex Pat mentor not involved in Real Estate and make friends with locals and don't make your 'deals' online or in Gringo watering holes, anyway rent for the first 6 months at least and try to rent directly from owner. This applies worldwide and not just Nicaragua, overseas information and connections are as valuable as money. Buena suerte.

Nicaragua: Trip in June SJDS:

Don't bring a lot of luggage with you in you fly into Liberia, CR and decide to bus it into Nica, first of all the Airport is some 20 km. west of the Pan American Highway in Liberia (Look for the Burger King as you arrive, that is the Pan Am CA 1 highway), get off on main highway and flag down any bus heading to CR-Nica border some 2 hours ride north, cross the border and on the Nica side are shared (cooperativos) taxis that go to Rivas, a city 22 km. north of the border, from Rivas another coop taxi to SJDS, about a 5 hour trip cost buses and taxis about $25 per person, a taxi from Liberia Airport to the border is about $70 - $75 so if you have a group of 3 or 4 traveling with luggages, passports and valuables (stay off of crowded chicken buses in Nica on arrival, once your valuables are safe in Hotel you can chicken bus...) The special air fares are out of LA, if you plan to bus it plan to arrive in morning, if you arrive late evening stay overnight in Liberia and leave at dawn for the border. Liberia is small safe city of about 50,000. There are ATMs there in banks. Change Colones CR and USD at the border, enough to get you to SJDS and Hotel there, there are a couple great SJDS Ex Pat groups in Facebook. Check out SJDS, Sites and Hotels on http://vianica.com/go/specials/1-Pacific_Beaches_Nicaragua.html also try to purchase "Moon's Nicaragua Handbook" at home or on Amazon dot com before departure.

Nicaragua: Looking for penpals "of a certain age":

There are a couple of very good Ex Pat Groups for Nicaragua and also specific to Granada many members are over 50 and retired, you can use private messaging on Facebook and avoid giving out your E mail address.

Ecuador Welcome Forum: Gringos?:

I have Salvadoran family - parientes politicos - My Uncle who fled Europe in 1941 to El Salvador married a native Salvadoran, one of my younger 2nd cousins was 'punished' by his Salvadoran/American Father in California USA for DWI and sent to El Salvador to live and find work, his Spanish was perfect but with a 'gringo accent' as he was taken to USA when he was 3 years old, he landed a jib at TACA airlines and in training they made fun of his Spanish, although my Spanish is excellent it is not perfect and sometimes I act stupid so the locals can feel superior, by now have 'gone native' and when the 'well to do' so called local society people, some snotty Ex Pats included find out I live on my pension, with a few exceptions, don't 'befriend' me, some Ex Pats are aghast I take the local buses to get around, I live in the capital city and at my age a car is an albatross, have met nice people from time to time on the bus. It is all 'classism' here in Latin America anyway, have Guatemalan and Salvadoran American friends who think like I do, some were deported and work now teaching English or in the Call Centers. saludos y gracias por contar este tema.

Guatemala: Driving from Arizona To Guatemala City June Room for 1 or 2 more:

For caravan information contact www.99DaysToPanama.com/ or www.southboundtravels.com/ Has an active forum for those driving to Central America, if you speak no Spanish, not recommended to drive alone PS Traveler's Checks are now practically obsolete and very difficult to change, some Banks now charge 25% to cash, due to fact ATM's called "Cajeros" are everywhere and accept most Credit and Debit Cards, best bring Visa logo, then Mastercard, in CA Gas Stations and Supermarkets accept International Credit Cards, carry some small US Bills for purchases, bribes, etc. and hide your 20's No one on the road accepts 50s and 100s. Make copies of your Drivers Lic., Car Papers, Passport, etc. and never give original to Police on the Highway, Make sure you get your Transmigrante Visa for Mexico and information what you cannot bring through Mexico. You are now required to purchase insurance entering Guatemala as well as Mexico.

Nicaragua: info from expat:

I have Facebook friends living in SJDS, best to make a contact or two before you make the trip, try to get an Ex Pat Mentor who is not trying to rent or sell you Real Estate, all newbies are hounded by Realtors at first, the Realtors are Gringos not Nicaraguans! PM me.

El Salvador: El Salvador now 10th Happiest Country in the World.:

http://www.natureknows.org/2014/05/top-10-happiest-countries-in-world.html

Nicaragua: By Car Through Central Ameri to Nica:

I drove down to and within Central America for 15 years, attached is some more topical information..facts, not opinions. Good luck...buen viaje!!! You will not get very good information on the Forum, you had best contact the websites dedicated to those driving from North America to Central and South America.....I would first suggest that you go to A Mexican Consulate in USA and obtain your Transmigrante Visa and information on the paperwork and the ONLY border crossing allowed by Mexico for Transmigrantes to Central America, and a list of what you can and cannot bring through Mexico in your vehicle, Mexico Insurance is obligatory and available at US-Mexico border crossings or online with Sanborn's and other companies, check the websites below for more information, Central American CA4 Insurance must be purchased on entrance to Guatemala, Insurance is good for Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua, minimum policy, having extra insurance for fire, theft, collision for CA recommended. Can be purchased before you leave states, each CA country will allow you to keep the car in their country 45 days, if planning to move to Nica you must realize you are unable to import vehicles over 6 years of age and you did not note in your post, you were not specific as to whether you are planning to stay in Nica, if so, and if wishing to obtain your residency, is better to fly down, spend several months getting residency, when you will be able to import vehicle and household goods without paying heavy import taxes, join "Ex Pats in Nicaragua" group on Facebook, not 'anonymous' but far more helpful than this forum...you have a lot more 'homework' to do!!!!! Visit http://www.drivemeloco.com/the-drive/ http://www.escapeartist.com/Travel/eBooks/Driving_Pan-American_Highway/ http://www.99DaystoPanama.com/ http://mexicomike.com/central_america/drivingfacts.html http://www.southboundtravels.com/ Has an active forum for those driving to Central America, if you speak no Spanish, not recommended to drive alone PS Traveler's Checks are now practically obsolete and very difficult to change, some Banks now charge 25% to cash, due to fact ATM's called "Cajeros" are everywhere and accept most Credit and Debit Cards, best bring Visa logo, then Mastercard, in CA Gas Stations and Supermarkets accept International Credit Cards, carry some small US Bills for purchases, bribes, etc. and hide your 20's No one on the road accepts 50s and 100s. Make copies of your Drivers Lic., Car Papers, Passport, etc. and never give original to Police on the Highway, be noted southern Honduras worst for bribes, do bring 2 Red Triangles and Fire Extinguisher plus flares or you will be fined, Border crossings in Central America difficult, try not drive alone if possible! Worse comes to worse bring a dog!!!!! Saludos y buena suerte. Research websites above and contact me by PM if you have any specific questions, I live in CA

El Salvador: mature singles:

There is no "Expat Exchange" Group in ESV, the group is called "Internations" the website is dot org so look up the San Salvador chapter, monthly get togethers in the evenings at Restaurants in and around SS.

Nicaragua: Nicaragua Forum:

It is a really good thing people are anonymous on these forums, a native born Nicaraguan who is dual US, Canadian or other citizen, fluent in Spanish, both formal and street slang, knows the culture and the customs and who has connections with the sane members of ex pat community as well as the locals, Also the Math there are 4,000 legal US citizen residents in all of Nicaragua, no doubt about 2,000 or so in and around Granada, a city with a native population of 104,000!! And I hope by "progressive" you do not mean a snarky charismatic US lefty loon, the kind of person who spit on us Vets when we returned from Vietnam. I just love the know it alls todopoderosos who come to Nica and the rest of Central America and have not made sense of living here as yet! By the way we are all "Americans" USA, Central and South americans, part of my family is from CA. I am "estadounidense" I have met many US and English Canadian ex pats who cannot even pronounce it.

El Salvador: Moving to El Salvador next year:

There are articles everyday in the local El Salvadorian press about Gang Members being captured, like Chicago and other large cities in US, Gang Members live in marginal areas, Ex Pats and Tourists who use common sense stick to areas known to be safe, long term Ex Pats and Natives will advise you, of course if you are frightened, don't bother to relocate here, you will find crime everywhere, visit first at least a month, I lived in NYC USA 13 years, mugged 5 times, El Salvador and Guatemala 28 years, mugged 0 times. Some petty theft when I did not use common sense. http://www.wtf-elsalvador.com/ informative website for visitors.

Nicaragua: Are you living out the ultimate fantasy on a tropical beach?:

Come to El Salvador and I will guide you to all the Ex Pat, Native and off off the beaten path Beaches attached below is the document from my Facebook Central America Group http://www.facebook.com/groups/discovercentralamerica The Beaches of El Salvador have a rhythm of their own join my group, open and bi lingual and enjoy "Surf Happy's" daily photos of the surfing beaches, hardly anyone here lies in a hammock and drinks Margaritas but a lot a living out their fantasies, I have been a member of ExPatExchange since 2002, posted over 500 times, been thanked maybe 20 times at most, some of the forums getting downright weird. Here is my document https://www.facebook.com/notes/discover-the-undiscovered-central-america/the-beaches-of-el-salvador/461578573898510 If you have no transportation I am able to arrange with native guide at the Hostel in San Salvador who has SUV, owner is from USA, my best friend. Can introduce you to one and all living their dreams and you can decide, also have a Nicaraguan American friend who has a Beach house in remote Beach south of Managua, he is able to provide transportation, we all speak Spanish if you don't. My E mail is elsalvadorinfo@gmail.com and our ever developing website is http://www.wtf-elsalvador.com/ Many on the forums are looking for insider info, short cuts or have some kind of agenda. In FB you can see my photo and read a profile. Contact me if interested have been an Ex Pat in Central America since 1985. Saludos.

Guatemala: Overlanding suggestions:

If you are still in US, Canada or UK, etc. Purchase an up to date guidebook, Guatemala specific, such as LP, Moon's, Rough Guide or Footprint, also find a map of Guatemala in book store, on Amazon dot com or online, note that TIKAL and the jungle beyond is NORTH of Flores, Peten, Coban in Baja Verapaz State is due Southwest!!! There are buses from flores to Coban, a very nice and beautiful area! Do yopur homework online as well.

El Salvador: Beachfront Property:

Would not recommend San Diego for you then, you need to come to El Salvador, learn some Spanish, formal and street slang, chill out, smile and keep smiling, I know an excellent bilingual native driver-guide who speaks English, manages a Hostal for US Citizen owner https://www.facebook.com/Hostal.Cumbres.del.Volcan call and ask for Malcolm or Walter, they will take you slowly from Beach to Beach, there are many properties for sale direct from Owners in the Classifed Print Sections of the 2 large San Salvador Daily Papers, no need for a Realtor.

El Salvador: Very unimpressed with El Salvador:

Hope he does not get robbed in Costa Rica!

Guatemala: Call center jobs?:

Yes there are many Call Center Jobs, these jobs are full time, trabajo fijo con prestaciones de ley, which means "legal job" with Medical, for Guatemalan Citizens and those with permission, usually Work Permit or Residency, to work in Guatemala, same in rest of Central America and the World, a tourist stamp and a ---- eating grin will not land you a full time job in Guatemala, one Call Center in Costa Rica that was hiring non resident gringos was busted last year, if you are hired to teach English in Guatemala on Tourist Stamp then expect long staggered hours, no benefits, if you have the money and know how you can open your own small business, but law says you must hire Guatemalan employees, if you need workers, labor laws quite strict here. Buena suerte. And no, no Call Center will get you a Work Permit unless you can perform functions no Guatemalan citizen is able to do. Punto.

 

Date Joined:

2/22/2002

Total Posts:

754

Posts/Day:

0.13

 
 
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