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Moving to Puerto Plata, Dominican Rep | Expat Exchange
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Moving to Puerto Plata, the Dominican Republic

By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Sep 06, 2023

Summary: Moving to Puerto Plata, Dominican Rep? Expats talk about what you need to know before moving to Puerto Plata.

Abreu & Associates Immigration Services
Abreu & Associates Immigration Services
Abreu & Associates Immigration Services
Abreu & Associates Immigration Services

What do I need to know before moving to Puerto Plata?

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

"Before moving to Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic, expats should know that Spanish is the official language, so learning some basic Spanish phrases would be beneficial. The cost of living is generally lower than in many Western countries, but imported goods can be expensive. The local currency is the Dominican Peso, and while US dollars are widely accepted, it's advisable to use the local currency for everyday transactions. The climate is tropical, with high temperatures and humidity throughout the year, and a hurricane season that runs from June to November. Healthcare facilities in Puerto Plata are adequate for routine issues, but serious medical conditions may require evacuation to a larger city or back to your home country. Therefore, comprehensive health insurance is recommended. The Dominican Republic has a high crime rate, but most crimes are opportunistic rather than violent. Expats should take precautions such as avoiding displaying wealth and not walking alone at night. The legal system is different from those in Western countries, and can be slow and bureaucratic. It's important to respect local laws and customs to avoid problems. Public transportation is available but can be unreliable and crowded. Many expats choose to drive, but should be aware that driving standards are different and traffic accidents are common. The food and water safety standards are not as high as in Western countries, so expats should be cautious about what they eat and drink. The Dominican Republic is predominantly Catholic, and religion plays a significant role in daily life. Expats should respect local customs and traditions. The pace of life is slower than in many Western countries, and 'island time' is a common concept. This can be frustrating for expats used to a faster pace, but adapting to the local rhythm of life can make the transition easier. Finally, it's important to note that while the Dominican Republic is a beautiful country with friendly people, it also has its challenges. Expats should do thorough research and possibly visit Puerto Plata before deciding to move there," remarked one expat in Puerto Plata, the Dominican Republic.

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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.

SJB Global
SJB Global

SJB Global is a top-rated financial advisory firm specializing in expat financial advice worldwide, offering retirement planning & tax-efficient solutions with a regressive fee model.
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SJB GlobalSJB Global

SJB Global is a top-rated financial advisory firm specializing in expat financial advice worldwide, offering retirement planning & tax-efficient solutions with a regressive fee model.
Learn More

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