An Expat Talks about Living in Praia de Pipa, Brazil
What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?
Praia de Pipa
Describe how you "dreamed" expat life would be before you moved overseas. Please provide as much detail as possible.
My wife and I lived in Sao Paulo, Brazil for 5 years before we decided to purchase a villa in Praia de Pipa in 2007. Our idea was to locate an ideal retirement location near the beach without the big city congestion. Somewhere where we could interact with the local population, improve our Portuguese and just kick back with more involvement in hobbies of photography and model quad-copter flying.
How has your expat experience met the expectations you dreamed about before you moved abroad?
With our prior experience in living in Thailand and Brazil some of our expectations were already known. And Yes, Praia de Pipa is beautiful and the locals are wonderful!
How has your expat experience NOT met the expectations you dreamed about before you moved abroad?
This is our 1st experience in moving ourselves, without the benefit of a corporation doing all the move details. What is new to us is the the wall of Brazilian Bureaucracy. Yes, Brazil is known for it -- and yes, we already have our Permanent Residence Visas. But, to get our household goods in the country is proving to be....challenging! Demands for proof of where I am living, how I got into the country, including the requirement that I furnish at least my airline boarding pass for the flight from Miami to Recife. Who keeps their boarding passes once you board? Having to go to the Cartario to Notarize the Boarding passes. Of course, all of this requires more money. More money for the 3rd party to facilitate the moving of the household goods once it arrives, more money for notarizing all paperwork. And, if you don't have the boarding pass, they want you to get a letter from the airline stating that you flew one of their planes into Brazil!!! Bringing a Pet is fairly easy but the cost of someone "catching" your pet in Sao Paulo can run a US $1,000 plus bribes to customs/vet to allow the pet into the country. I call this a bribe because there is no official cost to bring in your pet, but some how the government official at the airport most be paid.
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