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Living in South America guide

Find out all you need to know to relocate and live in South America with the expat guide

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Generalities

General information
  • If you want to explore Latin America, Brazil is a country not to be missed. Find out more about its geography, demography, and economy.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Expats are drawn to Colombia's tropical climate and natural scenery, as well a the opportunities the developing economy has to offer.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Located in the West of South America, Peru is a Republic which is divided into 24 regions. Spanish, Quechua and Aymara are the languages spoken there.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Discover the different aspects that combine to make Ecuador a popular expat destination: its geographical situation, history, politics...

    Article written by expat.com

Formalities

Visas, passports and entry requirements
  • Getting married in Brazil can be exciting, but there are proper procedures and guidelines to follow whether you are marrying a Brazilian or a foreigner

    Article written by expat.com
  • For citizens of over 80 countries, a visa is not required to enter Colombia. You will need 6 months on your passport from date of entry.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Nationals of come countries need a visa to travel to Peru. In general, conditions vary according to the duration of stay in the country.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Is Ecuador's reputation as a retirement haven justified? Take a look at the reasons that attract retirees to Ecuador.

    Article written by expat.com
  • If you want to get married in Argentina, you must apply for a certificate of legal capacity to marry from your Embassy or Consulate in the country.

    Article written by expat.com

Visas

Work visas, work permits, working holiday visas and residence permits
  • Brazil regularly attracts many visitors and expatriates. Before your trip, find out about all the different types of visa requirements through expat.com

    Article written by expat.com
  • To work in Brazil, you must first obtain a work visa which can be challenging. However, if you are qualified, you may find a company to sponsor you.

    Article written by expat.com
  • For expats hoping to live in Colombia, there are a number of temporary visas. After 5 years in Colombia on a TP, you will be eligible for a resident visa.

    Article written by expat.com
  • To travel to Peru, you can choose between two main types of visas: the temporary visa and the resident visa, depending on the purpose of your stay.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Whether you are planning a first visit or intend to live there full-time, its best to know in advance what Ecuadors visa policies are.

    Article written by expat.com

Work

Labour market, how to find a job
  • Brazil is a huge country full of opportunities, but it is also bureaucratic and not very investor-friendly, so you'll need to do some research first

    Article written by expat.com
  • Working as an intern can be a great way to expand your CV. Brazil, the world's 8th largest economy, could be a great country in which to gain experience.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Salvador has a population of 3 million and it is Brazil's third-largest city. It has a diversified economy, but finding a job here will take some diligence

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  • Recife attracts more foreign investment each year, facilitating the creation of thousands of jobs particularly in this sector and many more.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Brasília is Brazil's federal capital and third-largest city with a population of 3 million, and represents one of the country's largest job markets.

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Accommodation

How to rent a house or an apartment, leases and rental agreements
  • Salvador de Bahia is a very popular tourist destination owing to its history, architecture, and preservation of African traditions.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Recife is a modern city with over 1.6 million people. A bustling city, Recife is a major regional business hub, offering many types of accommodation.

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  • Rio de Janeiro is a popular city, with more tourists than any other city in Brazil. Hence accommodation can be difficult to find and expensive.

    Article written by expat.com
  • São Paulo has a large housing market and offers many options, including apartments, residence flats, and shared apartments and houses

    Article written by expat.com
  • Real estate in Brasília, in Brazil's Federal District, is expensive by Brazilian standards. Still, there are reasonably-priced places that you may find.

    Article written by expat.com

Study

Student visa, University registration
  • Would you like to study in Brazil? This country has many high-calibre universities and can be a good choice for international students.

    Article written by expat.com
  • This article has helpful information on courses, admissions, and tuition if you want to study abroad in Colombia.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Peru hosts some 140 public and private universities. But to be eligible for enrollment, foreign students have to pass a selection examination.

    Article written by expat.com
  • To study in Argentina, you have to apply for a visa and a residence permit. The request has to be made at the Argentina Embassy or Consulate in your home country. The country has many prestigious universities from which you can choose.

    Article written by expat.com
  • A fun and very easy way to start learning the Spanish Language

    Article written by ecuadorgeorge

Health care

Public and private health systems
  • Before visiting Brazil, get a traveller's medical insurance and vaccinations done. If you plan to reside in Brazil, consider purchasing private insurance.

    Article written by expat.com
  • This article is an overview of types of health insurance as well as information about public and private medical care in Colombia.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Health care in Peru is provided both by the public and private sectors. You can find hospitals, clinics and health care centers everywhere.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Healthcare is a huge concern for expats. Ecuadors healthcare, however, may lay many of your fears to rest and incite you even more to move there.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Argentina has quite developed public and private health systems. However, the private health system is noted to be superior. You are advised to subscribe to a health insurance before moving.

    Article written by expat.com

Bank

Open and manage a bank account
  • To open a bank account in Brazil you first need a Brazilian residency card. The bank will help you to determine what documentation you will need afterwards

    Article written by expat.com
  • This article is an overview of how to open a bank account in Colombia as well as information on budgeting and the cost of living.

    Article written by expat.com
  • To be able to open a bank account in Peru, you will be required, in most cases, to produce your foreign resident card.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Opening a bank account in Ecuador is a necessity for most expats. Knowing what is required of you can make it quicker.

    Article written by expat.com
  • If you want to open a bank account in Argentina, visit any branch of your prefered bank with your identification documents, as well as proof of address. You can open a bank account both in dollars and in pesos.

    Article written by expat.com

Tax

Tax system, income tax
  • If you are living and working in Brazil, you will have to pay taxes. You'll also need to pay taxes on any capital gains.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Any foreigner working in Colombia is liable for taxes. This article has helpful information on the Colombian taxation system.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Three different types of taxes apply in Peru, namely income tax, value added tax (VAT) on consumer goods and services and corporate tax.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Ecuador makes many a provision to please potential expats but exempting them from taxes is not one of them.

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  • If you are a resident of Argentina, you will have to pay different types of taxes. Income tax is deducted at source on the net income. The maximum deduction rate is 35 %. Corporate tax on profits and property and value-added tax (VAT) also exist in the country.

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Transports

Train, bus, plane, car rental
  • There are many means of transport available in Brazil, and the cost to get around is affordable. However, you should allow plenty of time to travel around.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Expats in Colombia have many transportation options, from mass transit to affordable taxis. There are several international car rental companies available.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Lima has a rather uncommon transports network compared to the rest of the country. It includes buses, trains, tramway, taxis, etc.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Peru hosts a wide transport network which will allow you to travel anywhere across the country during your stay, at affordable rates.

    Article written by expat.com
  • How simple or complicated is it for an expat to cover the distance from point A to point B in Ecuador? See how to navigate the transport system.

    Article written by expat.com

Driver's licence

Driving requirements
  • Short-term expats can drive in Brazil with their driving licence. If you intend to settle in Brazil, you may wish to obtain a Brazilian one

    Article written by expat.com
  • Foreigners in Colombia may need a national driver license. This article has information about regulations for temporary drivers and residents in Colombia.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Many people find they can do just fine without a car once in Ecuador. But what kind of license do you need to drive in Ecuador?

    Article written by expat.com
  • During your stay in Peru, you are allowed to drive with your international driver's license for a maximum of three months.

    Article written by expat.com
  • If you intend to drive in Argentina, you have to apply for an international driver's licence. You will have to produce your identity card, your national driver's licence as well as two passport-sized photos.

    Article written by expat.com

Removal

moving, formalities and useful tips
  • Moving abroad is a big step, and when moving to Brazil, you'll encounter lots of bureaucracy. Familiarise yourself or seek the help of professionals

    Article written by expat.com
  • This article has practical advice on working with international shipping companies, transporting pets, and moving your belongings to Colombia.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Relocating to Peru requires appropriate planning. It is better to hire removal experts who will take care of all related formalities on your behalf.

    Article written by expat.com
  • If you are about to settle in Ecuador, you are advised to hire international removal experts. They will take care of related formalities on your behalf.

    Article written by expat.com
  • If you are moving to Argentina, you are advised to hire an international remover. The latter will handle all paperwork on your behalf.

    Article written by expat.com

Communications

Phone line, internet provider, post office
  • It's an easy matter to get yourself set up with a cell phone in Brazil. For long-term, you'd want a landline and an affordable way to stay in touch

    Article written by expat.com
  • Internet access is commonplace in Brazil. Although the connection speed and reliability vary, expats can stay connected while in Brazil.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Keeping in touch is important for anyone living abroad. This article has information on cell phones, the internet, and postal service in Colombia.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Peru's telecommunication market is undergoing continuous development, thus providing quality land lines, mobile networks and Internet.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Living in Ecuador does not exclude keeping connected with the world at large. What are the phone and internet options available in the country?

    Article written by expat.com

Leisure

Sports, leisure and cultural activities
  • Rio de Janeiro is the most-visited city in Brazil – and with good reason. The Marvelous City, as it is known, is culturally rich and beautiful.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Brazilians love a variety of sports, indoor and outdoor. However, football remains the king of them all.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Brazil may evoke images of white-sand beaches and festive Carnivals. While you'll find these here, Brazil is a diverse country which offers so much more.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Brazil is a wonderful country of warm, welcoming people, incredible natural beauty, and greater diversity than you may have realised. Here are some basics.

    Article written by expat.com
  • From rich culture to a diverse landscape and modern cities, expats in Colombia have a lot to choose from for leisure time activities.

    Article written by expat.com

Miscellaneous

  • Traveling to Brazil with your cat or dog is possible with proper planning. For other types of animals, you'll need to inquire and receive authorisation.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Visitors to Brazil are permitted to bring in items for their personal use free of duties, subject to limits. Here are some guidelines.

    Article written by expat.com
  • In Brazil, parents have a few choices, both public and private, for the care and education of their younger children.

    Article written by expat.com
  • In this article,I want to summarize some important facts about my personal experience of living in Santiago de Chile for 15 years.

    Article written by robert2010