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Moving to Colombia | Expat Exchange
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Cali, Colombia

Moving to Colombia

By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Oct 15, 2023

Summary: Many expats and digital nomads move to Colombia for its low cost of living, warm climate, and friendly people. The most popular cities for expats and digital nomads in Colombia are Bogotá, Medellín, and Cartagena. People looking for a place to live in Colombia can search online for rental listings, contact real estate agents, or look for postings on expat forums. Additionally, many expats and digital nomads find housing through word of mouth from other expats and digital nomads already living in Colombia.

Colombian Visa Services
Colombian Visa Services
Colombian Visa Services
Colombian Visa Services

What do I need to know before moving to Colombia?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Colombia, they said:

"Stay in the area for a while before making a desision and try and get some inside information ..someone from your own country who has lived in this place a while," remarked one expat in Guatape, Colombia.

"Expatriates should research the culture, climate and language before moving to Colombia. It is important to have a basic understanding of Spanish, as many people in the country are not fluent in English. It is recommended to arrange accommodation in advance and obtain an official Colombian visa before arriving, as the process can take several months. Furthermore, it is important to familiarise oneself with the laws, both national and local, as processes such as establishing residence, setting up a business, and signing contracts can be quite complicated. Additionally, due to Colombia's geographical location, it is advisable to take precautions such as mosquito nets and insect repellent, as the country is home to several pest-carrying diseases such as Dengue Fever and Malaria. Finally, expats should remember to take out health insurance that covers all medical expenses and a reliable cellular plan in order to stay connected," said one expat in Colombia.

"Go for it. Keep your money invested in the USA and take what you need monthly. Rent initially. Great buys for cash. $2000 usa will allow you to live like a king. Body massages $7 for an hour Nails done over one hour $15 dollars Papayas -- $0.40 per pound Mangoes --$0.15 per pound Sirloin steak -- $2 per pound beer -- $0.50 per can Rent - ok place $75/month Rent - nice $150 per month Rent -- very, very nice $250 per month Rent -- Country club type -- swiming pool, everything, view, fantastic- $700-$800," remarked one expat who made the move to Cartago.

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About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

Cali, Colombia

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