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Paying bills in Ecuador

Hello everyone,

What bills do you pay? If you are renting, are bills included in the price of rent, and is this common practice in Ecuador?

How can you pay your bills (e.g. online, at provider's store, at the post office)? Which is the most convenient or reliable way?

With what frequency are different bills sent in Ecuador? Are there different deadlines for payment?

Thank you for sharing your experience.

Priscilla

What bills do you pay?

Internet
Electric (and includes garbage collection)
Water
Phone
Health Insurance
Mobile phone plan

If you are renting, are bills included in the price of rent, and is this common practice in Ecuador?

Previously I stayed in a few AirBnB apartments for about 2 months and everything was included in the rent and regardless of usage. This included internet, cable TV, electric, water, building fees and, and local phone usage.

In a fully furnished yearly apartment I paid all fees and some directly to the landlord along with the rent. The water and building fee (alicuota) was included with the rent.

Now in an unfurnished apartment I pay everything on my own as I detailed below.

How can you pay your bills (e.g. online, at provider's store, at the post office)? Which is the most convenient or reliable way?

Internet and health insurance are deducted directly from my bank account. You initiate this at the time of signing the contract by providing account details. This is by far the most convenient way.

Electric I pay a payment centers such as servipagos and I'm relegated to this method because the bill is not in my name. You simply present the bill and pay at the counter.

This was inconvenient before but now I know when to go when the lines are empty.

Water I pay direct to the landlord because I have a submeter, so I'm presented with an invoice and pay accordingly my share.

With what frequency are different bills sent in Ecuador? Are there different deadlines for payment?

Everything is monthly. The only deadline to be wary of is the electric bill as they have no qualms with shutting off service when payment is late.

I have asked the Home Office in the Mascarene Islands to re-post the following to the Ecuador forum's thread on the same topic of bill paying.  It was inadvertently posted here.  Some of the information may apply both to Ecuador and Colombia.

Bill paying is typically a breeze in Quito, Ecuador, once you set up the bill-pays at the bank.

To get a bank account, you typically need a cédula, which means you have obtained a visa.

When I arrived at my new condo in 2013, I didn't have a bank account right away so had to visit one of many tiendas and utility offices monthly to pay bills for electricity and potable water.  (DirecTV accepted Visa card payments automatically deducted monthly.)

The first bill from Quito's electric company was due within a week of service installation although I didn't know it.  So when I didn't rush out and pay it, the company sent a guy to my condo building .. who disconnected my electric service while I was sleeping at about 7:30 a.m.

Including an intervening weekend, it took me about four days living in the dark with no power before I got service restored after figuring out which main office of the company to go to seeking restored electricity.

So, get your bank account linked to your utilities ASAP.  And in the meantime, don't miss a payment at the many payment stations each month if you don't like spending a weekend in the dark.

cccmedia

I don't have many bills. My rent includes utilities. I pay rent by depositing the money in the owner's bank account. I pay my internet the same way. I receive no invoices for Internet; I know which day of the month it's due and pay within a few days of then. For both of them, when I get home from the bank I send them an email telling them the number of the bank receipt so they know it was from me.

I'm getting ready to go out of town with a friend and paid for our rooms via PayPal. I pay for everything else with cash.

We pay our bills in person each month.
Each at a different location.
We had a automatic with drawl for our internet when we lived in Cuenca, but it was very unreliable so we discontinued that service.

I pay only for Electricity bill. The invoice comes every month.
You can pay it in the city department of CNEL or in the shop of Tia, as well as in the pharmacy Cruz Azul or in Western Union. But if it's important for you to keep your receipt, it's better to pay in the department of CNEL, they issue a good receipt. In another place, you will have an ordinary receipti, the text of which disappears with time.

Claro phone plan we have automatic withdrawal from our Ecuadorian savings account, the same goes for directTV.  We pay our water, house phone and one of our internet at etapa..at the mall.  We walk to the bank during the mall visit and pay the electric.  Our other internet is on direct deposit from our American bank  account.  Gas we pay at the front gate per bottle..it seems hard at first, but has become an easy routine.

Howdy Priscilla,

I own my apartment but my friends who rent say they pay for their utilities separately, that nothing is included in their rent.

Internet, cellphone, house phone, cable TV I get as a package deal from Claro and they deduct it monthly directly from a bank account.

The electric company will do the same thing, or you can go pay it in person monthly (a hassle), or you can pay extra in advance and they'll just subtract the amount due (what I'm doing at this time.)

The only other bill is water, and that is paid along with the HOA fees by bank transfer.

Hope this helps.  It's a little tough getting started but totally worth it.

Cheers,
Michael

CNEL, here in Manta has been a challenge.  We’ve requested numerous times over 2 years to sign up and receive electronic bills, and also so we can pay online.  Every time they made us log our request on a paper log.  Since the earthquake in 2016, and the major damage and closure of the CNEL building, we still have not achieved this. We may or may not receive a monthly bill, as they just put it in our gate.  We have to watch the readings constantly as they are wrong and when we emailed our photo of the meter, they ended up refunding us over $50, which I figured would wash out in future bills, but so far has not.  This month, we did not receive a bill, but paid at our bank with our account number.  Saturday afternoon, I saw them on my street reading the electric meters, which makes no sense.  Why not just wait for the November billing?  We were finally able to print a bill online with our account number, which I will check for beginning and ending usage to make sure we are not billed by overlapping meter reading numbers.  We have tried numerous times to pay extra, and they will never accept it here.  Interesting to know they do allow you to pay extra on your bill.  I did notice on my printout this month a second subsidy charge that we have never had before.  It was almost $8.  I just figure it’s like a govt agreed upon charge that US electric companies get approved and charge.  Somehow, with no additional electric usage, my bill just keeps increasing every month, and that’s without running any AC during these cooler months.  Can’t wait to see my bill when the high temps kick in.

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