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All you need to know about firearms in Ecuador

You CANNOT legally bring your weapons to Ecuador. Why did I put legally? I wouldn't know any illegal way to do it... Anyway, firearm imports are closed indefinitely by our "beloved" Correa, and import of any other type of weaponry is complicated and expensive. That means the following:
- You have to buy it here, which is not hard at all (considering you have at least a residency) only expensive. You will be asked for at least $2000 for a used Glock17, $1000 for a used CZ or Taurus, a used Mossberg short barrel pumper - $700, a used custom made STI with optics - approaching that of a nice used car. You probably won't be able to find nothing brand new, as imports have been banned for more than 2 years.
- It is not difficult at all to find a place to practice. You affiliate yourself with one of the shooting clubs (either police or military) and basically use the club grounds for free. Many Ecuadorians I know practice IPSC and Steel Challenge. Many are very good at it. Recently an Ecuadorian won a World Class IPSC match in Australia. There are Pichincha Open IPSC style matches in Quito on a monthly basis. This is all great. What you're not gonna like is ammunition prices. I buy second grade reloads (9mm para, FMJ 124gr) from Santa Barbara ammunition factory at $16.00 per 50. A box of brand new first grade will run you $25.00. A brand name - $35-$40. I don't know, when I was in US, I was buying Blazer non-reloads .40 FMJ for $9.00 a box...
- Shooting is definitely for the upper class here (kind of like golf clubs in the rest of the world), a lot of military and police as well, so the people you'll know and the connections you'll make will serve you in the future one way or another, as Ecuador is all about connections, nothing is done fairly here;
- Currently, there are no carry permits for carrying legally. You can have it in your house, locked and unloaded in the trunk of your car, or on the range. Damn... why I keep saying legally? (Maybe because when you walk your dog, I'd highly recommend you to carry one anyhow...).
- If you have a nice Gerber, Benchmade or Spyderco blade in US, try to find a way to bring it alone, because in Ecuador there is only cheap chinese sh...t, excuse my language.

This is sad news to me. I thought you COULD bring firearms into Equador?

My husband and I have an extensive collection of guns - some really old and collectable and some new for hunting or range use.

Hubby is a member of a "Cowboy shooting" club and loves this as a hobby.

Would this mean that we would have to put all of our collection into storage in the States? And not bring anything with us?

Finding ladies is from easy to very easy (depending on your personality) for anyone especially with caucasian looks. Even if you are short, bold and otherwise ugly - Latin America is your last chance!
I met my wife in a cafe in Mariscal area in Quito. I heard that other expats meet women at dance clubs, someone presents someone, through friends, even on the street.
However, the reason I mentioned sex tourism is the following. With all due respect to locals, the female crowd is NOT stunning in Ecuador. There are beautiful women, don't get me wrong, my wife is one of them... but, it is not like walking in Moscow, Kiev, Medellin or Caracas - real fashion show there... In Ecuador, you'll have to look a little harder. Besides of being attracted in general to the Latin type (I know some guys who just don't. Read also my cultural differences post to get some idea about Latinos in Latin America).
Sex tourism on the other hand is being served mostly by Colombians: much higher quality there.
Anyway, you won't need any guidance, I'm sure you'll sort things out when you get here.
Good luck.

Mappam. Yes, this is a sad thing but true.
I mean in a screwed up society like the one here anything is possible, but I imagine you'd need connections on the level of the army commander to try to do something, not even talking about the costs and legality... I know, guns enter the country because I see some military officers with new guns on the range all the time... But, get here first, get to know people, then see for yourself if the effort is worth it.
Good luck.

I noticed this post is from 2010. 
Has anything changed since this posting?
I would hope the laws are more lenient on
bringing in your own.  I sure hope the price
of buying there has come down some.

Anyone know anything more?

thank you.

Yeah, it's even harder.  Police and the military do a lot of stop and frisk to find illegal weapons....Plus you should know and understand the laws about self defense and escalating use of force.

JasmineinNM wrote:

I would hope the laws are more lenient on
bringing in your own.  I sure hope the price
of buying there has come down some.

Jasmine in New Mexico, USA:

Let me get this straight.  You would want to bring guns into Ecuador, and-or buy cheaper guns here....

quito0819 wrote:

Police and the military do a lot of stop and frisk to find illegal weapons....Plus you should know and understand the laws about self defense and escalating use of force.

I request this in all humility. 

What can you tell us about the self-defense law and escalating use of force....

Why on earth would you want to carry a gun with you while walking your dog in Ecuador? This isn't Detroit. Is there a chance you might get robbed? Sure. Is having a gun going to improve your outcome? No. What do you think is likely to happen to you if you feel threatened enough to shoot an Ecuadorian? You think the legal system is going to sympathize with your perspective? You'll end up rotting prison. However, if you want to obtain a gun illegally, the Ecuador\Columbia border is extremely porous around the mangrove swaps near San Lorenzo, but unless you're either a crazy narco or badass ex-military, I wouldn't recommend this route.

jessekimmerling wrote:

Why on earth would you want to carry a gun with you while walking your dog in Ecuador? This isn't Detroit. Is there a chance you might get robbed? Sure. Is having a gun going to improve your outcome? No. What do you think is likely to happen to you if you feel threatened enough to shoot an Ecuadorian? You think the legal system is going to sympathize with your perspective? You'll end up rotting in prison. However, if you want to obtain a gun illegally, the Ecuador\Columbia border is extremely porous around the mangrove swamps near San Lorenzo, but unless you're either a crazy narco or badass ex-military, I wouldn't recommend this route.

Your logic is impeccable on this, Jesse.

It's also the reason why I don't think we'll be hearing from Jasmine in New Mexico again on this thread.

JasmineinNM wrote:

I would hope the laws are more lenient on
bringing in your own.

Quito819 hasn't added to our knowledge, so I'm starting some research on my own.

Anyone who thinks the answer is importing guns to Ecuador might be better advised to educate yourself on avoiding crime, rather than confronting a criminal with gun violence anywhere south of the mangrove swamps of "la frontera."

Do yourself a favor and google "how to avoid being a victim of crime," and you'll be on your way to some knowledge that'll cost you a lot less than buying a gun and ammo in Ecuador.

cccmedia in Quito

JasmineinNM wrote:

I sure hope the price
of buying there has come down some.

From the Cuenca Residency website:

"Ecuador is overall a peaceful country.  The society is not aggressive so it is not surprising that gun laws are fairly strict....

"Carrying any type of weapon will probably put you on the wrong side of the law....

"If you are seeking residency...you do not want any marks on your record.  It does not take much to become 'persona non grata.' "

-- cuencaresidency.blogspot.com

My questions are, can you hunt for subsistence, and if so how hard would it be to bring a bow? I have a pair of old muzzleloaders that I would hate to get rid of, but I don't want and hope I never need a firearm for the safety of myself, wife, and dog according to a post on another site. Is there a reason I should be concerned for my dog's safety in Cuenca?

Cuencanwannabe wrote:

can you hunt for subsistence, and if so how hard would it be to bring a bow? I have a pair of old muzzleloaders that I would hate to get rid of, but I don't want and hope I never need a firearm for the safety of myself, wife, and dog according to a post on another site. Is there a reason I should be concerned for my dog's safety in Cuenca?

Nobody here wants newly-arrived Gringos roaming around with a bow or a "muzzleloader" trying to hunt animals for "subsistence."  You can subsist in Ecuador without shooting up the countryside.

What is the specific source of this information you found "on another site" that makes you fear  for your dog's safety and your own?

cccmedia in Quito

http://escapeamericanow.info/ecuador-is … stination/

I attempted to show you the link, says it under revue. Are we allowed to fish? And of do how difficult is the process to legally do so?

Cuencanwannabe wrote:

http://escapeamericanow.info/ecuador-is-not-a-good-expat-destination/

Thanks for providing the link, Wannabe.

I read this article by someone who spent less than a week in Ecuador, mostly Cuenca, and I saw nothing that would make one think his wife or family dog was in harm's way.

Author Corbin's main problem with Ecuador seems to be that he's convinced it's too "Marxist" and an Expat's real estate could supposedly be confiscated some day.

But physically dangerous?  He doesn't claim so.

cccmedia in Quito

Cuencanwannabe wrote:

Are we allowed to fish? And of do how difficult is the process to legally do so?

There is sport-fishing -- excellent and often overlooked -- although Cuenca is not the ideal location for such.  That's out in the Pacific Ocean where the fish are fair game.

The EC Pacific Coast is fabulously rich in marine life due to the Humboldt Current, which keeps the water full of plankton.

The Galápagos Islands and Manta on the coast are good sport-fishing-access locations.

The website www.yourescapetoecuador.com .. which was the source for this post .. lists contact information for sport-fishing companies including Ecuagringo Adventures.  Those companies might have information for you about fishing requirements .. and possibly a lead on Cuenca fishing.

Keep in mind that the final part of this year and early 2016 are in an El Niño period and so may not be ideal for sport-fishing in the Pacific Ocean.

cccmedia in Quito

Thank you sir. As a former police officer,military police officer, protective service agent, and combat soldier with 371 combat missions, I decided to stop making a living with a gun. People are dieing to keep their guns for "protection", and I just want to live a peaceful lifestyle. This is what I am looking for. My dog is my 2nd son and my PTSD service dog. I couldn't move anywhere that there might be a serious threat he would be taken from me.

Senor Cuencawannabe……..
Owning guns in Ecuador is possible but expensive and more than a few restrictions with a process to own them not so easy……..but you can own them…….at present, you can not carry a weapon for protection……..
Ammo is expensive and sometimes difficult to obtain……….
On the bright side, they have awesome shooting ranges here……..which are affordable to join…….and there are many nice people who belong to them…….the active shooting community here seems small to me, pretty much the same people from all over Ecuador go to the competitions held several times a year.
While you can obtain a gun for your home, if you wish to shoot it, you need to join a gun club (tiro practictco).
I have only been to 3 ranges around Guayaquil but have met and spoken to people from all over Ecuador who have shooting ranges and from what I am told, they are equally nice.
Note, you can NOT import guns nor ammo into Ecuador at present……and guns are expensive to buy here…….for example, a Glock will run around $2,500 with papers (registered) and only buy a gun which has papers (registered).
The police take gun violations very seriously here and it is best to follow their rules……

Vaya con Dios y viva Christo Rey
If you have other questions, feel free  ask here or to PM me.

Ahh no, just like trout or bass or catfish, I have never been sport fishing for salt water. I catch and release unless I catch trout, I like to eat trout.

Thank you so much. To be honest, I have no desire to own a gun accept for 2 muzzleloaders that I already own, simply because the company that made them, no longer does. It is my intent to one daybgive them to my son, and grand children. That being said, I don't have a problem giving them to my son before we move. It just changes my strategy a little as my son will be in college when we move, so his grandfather shall have to hold them until my son is ready.

One of the scams going good down now in the Manila airport is finding bullets in people's luggage or pockets and then telling them for x amount of dollars the customs will just look the other way.  Anyone ever hear of any such thing in Ecuador?

I agree with all, pursuing firearms in Ec. is not worth the expense or risk. If you are of the "Gun" culture, you are best to stay in a "Friendly" country.

Trust me one of the hardest things I had to do was part with my collection, prior to coming down. Especially my Barrett M107. Well that and my 4x4, and Harleys etc...  :sosad:

There are other ways to protect yourself without a firearm, and a "Gringo" caught up in a firearms incident "Right or Wrong" you will be in DEEP shite... Don't risk it.

Most folks have no concept of what "Daily Concealed Carry" really means. Sure it sounds cool, but you must learn to change many habits to do.

FYI.\,

People need to understand that owning a firearm, in ANY country is a serious matter.

During my 22 years of active duty service in the U.S. Military I worked with weapons, ammunition and explosives on a daily basis. I was responsible for .38 Cal pistol ammunition up to Tomahawk Land Attack missiles and everything in between.

For 20 of my 22 years I was a certified Range Master (Small Arms Instructor), CQB (Close Quarters Battle) Instructor, as well as various other field areas. I have also been licensed for Concealed Carry in the U.S. I was also a Small Arms Instructor after retirement, I will offer the same advice I gave to many people at that time.

Owning a firearm with the intent to use it for self defense is an awesome responsibility. Just having a weapon is the easy part. The hard part is the responsible employment of that weapon in a dynamic situation.

Why? let me explain. Firstly you must be 100% certain you can, when the time comes employ that weapon and cause serious bodily harm or death to another person. Afterwards you WILL have to answer for your actions, right or wrong perceived harm or not. Then there is a little thing called "Escalation of Force", this addresses whether or not you, used excessive force in your actions. I will tell you there are Police Officers in prison right now, for using excessive force.

So what IS excessive force? If you shoot a man who threatens you with empty hands, game over! The definition of "Deadly Force" is "That force which you know, or should know, will cause serious bodily harm or deaf to another". A Use of Force Continuum is used. This dictates that you should use ONLY that force which is equal to, or lesser than that force used against you. Get the idea?

So your next argument is going to be, "What about a woman"? Yes, women are considered weaker. However, when as a woman you shoot a man six times or more, you have used excessive force, period. For those who are not getting the connection thus far; hand to hand, ok. Knife to knife, ok. Gun to gun, ok. Knife to hand, bad. gun to hand, bad. etc. But, you can still over do it, did you really need to beat that person into unconsciousness? Did you need to stab that person 20 times? etc. You will answer for your actions.

So what does all this mean? In order to become PROFICIENT, with ANY weapon, especially a firearm you need training, and lots and lots of practice. In order for my Unit to maintain proficiency, we conducted live fire training and drills, minimum 3 times a week. So a trip to the range a couple times a month don;t cut it.

Why you ask? Simple, your body learns what is called muscle memory. This means after hours of practice on a regular basis you can perform the same movement with little concentration. This also is a small part of it all. You must also poses the right mental attitude, through hours of training in order to overcome the adrenaline and mentally function in a dynamic situation.

I can tell you from experience, that after that first shot goes off, many things happen in your mind and body and your perception of things is altered. Unless you have trained for it, know what is coming, and can react in control you will not survive.

This goes for not only firearms but any weapon one might carry. In a situation where you are armed and another is not, your weapon can be taken and used against you. Won't happen to you? Google it, and see how many others have thought the same thing. Police Officers have been disarmed, while pointing their weapon at a person. Ever heard the saying "Familiarity Breeds Contempt"? It comes from having a false sense of perceived security.

During all my years carrying a firearm all over the world, I have only pulled my weapon "One" time. Except while in combat of course. 

There are many other ways to protect yourself and your assets, I would recommend thinking long and hard about it, before you put yourself in a situation you may not return from. Once that round (Bullet) goes down range, it can't come back.

Late 2015 Update on Firearms in Ecuador.

If you shoot someone in self-defense in Ecuador, expect major repercussions such as jail time for yourself.

Here are the Top Ten Things I found in a just-published review of Ecuador's gun laws in the November issue of International Living magazine....

10.  It's illegal for private individuals to import firearms from the United States.

9.  Carrying a handgun in Ecuador is prohibited under most circumstances.  There are restrictions on other types of firearms.

8.  Only licensed persons may own a gun.

7.  To buy a gun in Ecuador, you must provide a reason -- such as hunting, protection or target practice -- in your application for a license.

6.  The licensing process includes extensive background investigation, including mental-health records.

5.  You must be a legal resident of Ecuador to own a gun here.

4.  Age minimum to own a gun is 18.

3.  If you obtain a license, you may own one gun for hunting and one for self-defense.

2. The license must be renewed annually to possess firearms and every two years to carry a gun.

And the #1 Thing About Guns in Ecuador....

1.  "You are liable to face jail time if you shoot someone, regardless of your motive -- self defense or otherwise.  In fact, you could end up facing jail time even before the case is heard in court." 

cccmedia in Quito

cccmedia,

I was just reading the same report.

AMDG told me he has recently joined a Gun Range/Club close to where he lives, that sounds like the safest way to go all things considered. An avid shooter could still get their "Cordite" fix and not have to worry about the serious potential liability, of owning, or transporting a weapon.

We are heading back to the States for the holiday, you can be sure I will be spending some time on the Combat Range.

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