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An Expat Talks about Retiring in Cuenca, Ecuador


Cuenca, Ecuador

A retiree in Cuenca, Ecuador talks about why he chose Cuenca as his retirement destination. He enjoys the low cost of living in Ecuador, beautiful scenery, Cuenca's affordable restaurants, quality medical care and more.

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Cuenca

Why did you choose to retire abroad?

Affordable quality lifestyle

Are you retired abroad all year or part of the year?

Retired all year

Why did you choose the country you retired to?

After researching several countries Ecuador turned out to be the most affordable for me with great medical and quality of living!

Did you ever live abroad before you retired abroad?

Yes I lived in mexico for ten years but could not afford to retire there.

How long have you lived abroad since you retired abroad?

Three years

How many countries (other than your home country) have you lived in as a retiree?

One

What have been the most challenging aspects of being retired abroad?

Learning Spanish

What have been the most rewarding aspects of being retired abroad?

Making friends with Ecuadorians and the great choice of year around fresh vegetables and fruits.

What would you do differently if you were just starting the retire abroad process?

I think I did all the research I needed and am still happy with my decision to move to Cuenca.

What is life like for a retiree in your city and its surroundings? (Is there an active expat community? Cultural Attractions? Recreation? Nightlife?)

Many expat activities in Cuenca and great affordable restaurants. Beautiful scenery and lots of great places to visit in the Andes and the beaches.

What residency documents or visas did you need to obtain to retire in your host country? How difficult was this process? (Please describe)

Proof of at least $800 a month income, FBI and local police report, birth certificate and if applies divorce papers or marriage certificate. All need to be notarized and apostle stamped. You can hire a lawyer or do it yourself at the local Immigration office here takes about 3 months to receive your residency card good for ten years. I have a blog about the process: AAA Living in Cuenca gas2335.blogspot.com or book available on amazon: Why Ecuador for me.

Did you buy a home or apartment, or rent one? Is this a difficult process? (Please describe)

I rent a two bedroom, two bathroom condo on the 11th floor on the Rio Tomebamba. 24-hour security guards, underground parking I pay $300 a month for rent, gas $8, water $10, cable $52, internet $34 and security is $50.

Financially, has living abroad in your host country met your expectations? Exceeded them?

I live on about $1000 a month as a single guy. Of course what you spend will depend on your lifestyle.

What are the most important financial considerations for retiring to your host country?

Choosing the lifestyle that is affordable to you, I have friends that live on $5000 a month but they have higher cost accommodations and travel a lot, eat our often etc.

How much can a retiree live on comfortably in your host country?

One thousand a month for a single and $1500 for a couple.

Do you have access to quality medical care? (Please describe - is it close? Expensive?)

Your choice of the free hospital or higher cost facilities. Also qualify for the Social Security hospital here 100% coverage for $72 a month.

Moving to Ecuador? Get a health insurance quote from our partner GeoBlue. To speak with GeoBlue's Sales Team, call 1-855-216-9486 (US) or e-mail .

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Moving to Ecuador? Get a health insurance quote from our partner GeoBlue. With access to over 1.7M medical providers in 190 countries around the world, GeoBlue provides members with solutions and industry-leading digital services - ensuring top-quality coverage to people who live, work, study and travel internationally. To speak with GeoBlue's Sales Team, call 1-855-216-9486 (US) or e-mail .

Is there a lot of crime where you live? (Please describe)

Not a lot of crime in Cuenca but people need to us common since living here as they would in any city.

Describe available transportation where you live. Do you need a car? Is there access to safe public transportation?

Buses are 25c, taxi's around the city around $3 I just purchased a car which is costly here but gas is just $1.46 a gallon. Great bus and van services around the country a reasonable costs.

Is there high-speed internet access where you live?

We have internet not to speedy but will improve very soon.

Do you have any other thoughts you would like to share about retiring abroad?

It is not for everyone, if you have not traveled outside your country you should check it out before moving. Many expats move here and after 6 months to a year many go back to the US! Many might miss family or just can't adjust to a non- English speaking country. My blog offers a good idea of live here: google: AAA Living in Cuenca or my book Why Ecuador for me is available on kindle through amazon.com

GeoBlue International Health InsuranceExpatriate Health Insurance

Get a quote for expat health insurance in Ecuador from our partner, GeoBlue.
Get a Quote

Get a quote for expat health insurance in Ecuador from our partner, GeoBlue.
Get a Quote Call  

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Join our Ecuador Expat Forum

Visit our Ecuador Forum and talk with other expats who can offer you insight and tips about living in Cuenca, Ecuador.

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Comments about this Report

guest
Mar 23, 2015 10:30

You forgot to mention for a single man there are 'chongos' where a woman can be had for $10 for a quickie, which is nice because the normal Ecuadorian women are difficult to know.

1Milkman62
Apr 7, 2015 23:21

thank for the insight on Ecuador a friend and I are considering a move to Ecuadro thank you steve

1Milkman62
Apr 7, 2015 23:24

what is the weather like hot and humid or mild don't care for high humidity

Johannamu
Sep 7, 2015 00:43

what advice would u give a single woman, moving to Ecuador? 2nd do many people there speak English? Thank you Johanna

stevegema
Oct 26, 2015 10:13

Read his book: good primer and an easy read; $5 on Kindle. May need updating as Ecuador changes laws frequently. Weather in Cuenca could be an issue for some.

GeoBlue International Health InsuranceExpatriate Health Insurance

Get a quote for expat health insurance in Ecuador from our partner, GeoBlue.
Get a Quote

Get a quote for expat health insurance in Ecuador from our partner, GeoBlue.
Get a Quote Call  

Guide to Living in CuencaGuide to Living in Cuenca

Cuenca is Ecuador's third largest city, but still has a small-city feeling. Expats share 11 things they wish they had known before moving to Cuenca from packing sunscreen to being aware of gringo gouging.

Healthcare in EcuadorHealthcare in Ecuador

Expats in Ecuador share their experiences with healthcare and overseas medical insurance in Ecuador.

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Have you eaten at A Pedir de Boca in Cuenca? Learn about this and other restaurants in Cuenca in our new Cuenca Restaurant Guide.

Moving to Cuenca

An American woman talks about the ups and downs of moving to Cuenca. She had limited Spanish when she arrived, but a local woman helped her in the apartment search and she found the perfect place in a lovely Spanish-speaking neighborhood. Her apartment is 3-4 times less expensive than in the US.

Moving to Cuenca

An expat in Cuenca, Ecuador advises others to take an exploratory trip before committing to making the move. Then, if you do move to Cuenca, leave your furniture at home since it's very expensive to ship and furniture is very reasonably priced in Ecuador.

Expat Health Insurance and HealthcareExpat Health Insurance and Healthcare in Cuenca

An expat in Cuenca describes healthcare throughout Ecuador and advises expat retirees to carefully consider proximity to quality emergency healthcare when choosing where to live in Ecuador. He cautions that many cities in Ecuador don't have good quality emergency care.

Living in Cuenca

An expat offers an immensely helpful view of what it's like living in Cuenca, Ecuador - from expat clubs to job opportunities.

Living in Cuenca

An expat in Cuenca, Ecuador appreciates the beautiful environment and people. He advises newcomers to get learn Spanish and meet locals instead of socializing with other expats.

Retirement in Cuenca

A retired couple who landed in Cuenca, Ecuador with plans to rent a while and move from place to place is very happy with the decision to move to Ecuador. They appreciate the low cost of living in Cuenca, access to quality healthcare, clubs and activities. The one challenge has been the ever changing residency rules.

Culture Shock in Cuenca

An American expat and his Ecuadorian wife, who initially lived with family in Quito, moved to Cuenca and enjoy life there. The expat husband advises anyone considering a move to Ecuador to learn Spanish, realize that you'll have to travel home see your family (most won't visit you) and know that homesickness happens in random moments that sneak up on you.

Culture Shock in Cuenca

A semi-retired woman who relocated to Cuenca, Ecuador once her children were grown is enjoying life there with her husband. He has longed to return to Central America, since living there as a child.

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