What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?
Why did you choose to retire abroad?
Economic reasons, weather, the people.
Are you retired abroad all year or part of the year?
Why did you choose the country you retired to?
I could drive here from Canada, cheap housing prices, tropical climate, on the ocean and stable political situation.
Did you ever live abroad before you retired abroad?
How long have you lived abroad since you retired abroad?
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How many countries (other than your home country) have you lived in as a retiree?
4, I never lived in my home country Canada as a retiree
What have been the most challenging aspects of being retired abroad?
Learning the language, applying for residency, getting married.
What have been the most rewarding aspects of being retired abroad?
Cheap living, palm trees, beach, house with pool, living near the beach 1/2 hr from the airport and the capital city San Salvador.
What would you do differently if you were just starting the retire abroad process?
Have all the Canadian documents for residency before leaving Canada.
What is life like for a retiree in your city and its surroundings? (Is there an active expat community? Cultural Attractions? Recreation? Nightlife?)
There is only 1 expat couple living in my community year round. The rest is what you make it within the local community.
What residency documents or visas did you need to obtain to retire in your host country? How difficult was this process? (Please describe)
Passport, birth certificate, criminal record from home country and El Salvador Proof of guaranteed pension income,
local bank account, medical from local doctor, local address, all documents notarized and translated into Spanish, process is simple but a Salvadorañ Immigration lawyer simplifies the process.
Did you buy a home or apartment, or rent one? Is this a difficult process? (Please describe)
Bought a house, same process as in Canada, have a lawyer make sure everything is done properly.
Financially, has living abroad in your host country met your expectations? Exceeded them?
It has met them, I did my homework before the move.
What are the most important financial considerations for retiring to your host country?
Open a US bank account to have pension direct deposited, Canadian money is useless in SV.
How much can a retiree live on comfortably in your host country?
Without an inordinate amount of partying US $650 will keep up the house-pool, pay utilities, food, car expenses, maid & caretaker.
Do you have access to quality medical care? (Please describe - is it close? Expensive?)
A better doctor than I had for the past 30 yrs in Canada runs the FREE clinic in town 10 minutes away. Ambulance in our community 3 minutes away. Good hospitals in San Salvador 1 hour at a fraction of Canadian prices.
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Is there a lot of crime where you live? (Please describe)
Other than some petty theft, if you're not vigilant, next to none.
I personally have never had any problems and I ride the chicken buses locally and into the city quite often.
Describe available transportation where you live. Do you need a car? Is there access to safe public transportation?
A car is completely unnecessary! There is a direct bus to San Salvador every morning at 05:20 for 60 cents. Local bus service to La Libertad 06:00 - 18:00 every 1/2 hr for 25 cents. Regular bus service La Libertad - San Salvador 06:00 - 21:00 every 20 minutes for 60 cents. Buses to eastern beaches every 1/2 hr for a quarter. In town micro bus service every 10 min for a quarter. Tica Bus coaches run a couple times daily to the other CA capitals. I have actually travelled from Playa San Diego (my community) to Peterborough ON, Canada by bus.
Is there high-speed internet access where you live?
Unfortunately not here on the beach but there is in town.
Do you have any other thoughts you would like to share about retiring abroad?
Do your homework, rent for a year before buying and GO FOR IT!