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Malacatos, Ecuador

By Joshua Wood, LPC

Last updated on Jul 11, 2023

Summary: Expats, digital nomads and retirees discuss what it is like to live in Malacatos, Ecuador: Cost of living, Finding a home, Meeting People and more.

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What do I need to know about living in Malacatos?

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

"Expats considering retirement in Malacatos should be aware that the official language is Spanish, so learning the language or having a basic understanding would be beneficial. The cost of living is relatively low compared to North America and Europe, making it an attractive option for retirees. The climate in Malacatos is mild and pleasant throughout the year, with temperatures rarely exceeding 24 degrees Celsius. The healthcare system in Ecuador is quite good, with many doctors and hospitals available, but it's advisable to have a comprehensive health insurance plan. Ecuador uses the US dollar as its official currency, which can make financial transitions easier for American retirees. The country has a relaxed pace of life, which can be a significant change for those used to a fast-paced lifestyle. Public transportation is widely available and affordable, but it may not always be reliable or punctual. The food in Ecuador is fresh and locally sourced, but it may take some time for expats to adjust to the local cuisine. Safety can be a concern in some areas, so it's important to research and choose your neighborhood carefully. It's also important to note that while Ecuadorians are generally friendly and welcoming, there can be a cultural gap, and it may take time to integrate into the local community. Lastly, it's crucial to understand the visa and residency requirements before moving, as Ecuador has specific rules for retirees. Legal advice should be sought to ensure all paperwork is correctly completed," said one expat who made the move to Malacatos.

"I started in Vilcabamba yet very quickly moved over the hill to a beautiful little town called Malacatos. It's much cheaper, safer and very peaceful and tranquil here. I drive 35 minutes twice a month to Loja for a big shop and if I need anything specifically Americanized then I can drive 17 minutes to Vilcabamba. I've never loved the cities and really enjoy mountain living so am very grateful that I chose to move here. I spent the past few years struggling to survive in the US in an expensive, tiny apartment and here in Malacatos I live in a big, beautiful home with land. I feel like a millionaire here," explained one expat living in Malacatos, Ecuador.

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What do I need to know before moving to Malacatos?

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About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

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