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Why we didn't move

Hola,

My wife and I thought about moving overseas a few years ago , but decided to stay in the USA.

We did a lot of research on a lot of countries, but Ecuador was the most appealing.  This forum is a good source of information, because it gives equal time to opposing points of view.  I think the best information comes from expats who actually live in Ecuador, so read their blogs and get to know what day-to-day life is like for them.

Be careful.  Dreaming about a better life can blind you.  The same skunks who talk us into lousy car loans and worthless health insurance are selling over-priced condos in Cuenca and saying you can live like a king for $1,000 a month.  Greed knows no borders.

Learn to speak Spanish.  If you can't have a conversation with your neighbor or go to a grocery store without an interpreter, what kind of life do you have?           

I think it's possible to move to a foreign country and retire with dignity, but I don't think it's easy.  On the other hand, if you're prepared and realistic, it could be a hell of a challenge and adventure. 

For us, the hassle and uncertainty outweighed the benefits.

Try checking this for actual cost comparisons. The figures are provided and updated frequently by Expats who reside in those countries:
Country by Country and even Citywide Cost of Living comps.

As far as your comments about it being too much hassle to move ... I think you're still too young and life inexperienced to understand the harsh realities that the US confronts it's low income workers & Seniors with. My wife and I paid 500 bucks monthly for health insurance back in 2015, in the USA, just for the two of us. This was for a less than mid-grade, well researched plan, out of precious few available to us. At the age of 53, I went to the emergency room due to some heart pain (I'm actually very healthy) because it was "the prudent thing" to do. I kid you not, I spent 2 and a half hours there ... received a chest x-ray ... received two nitro pills ... was told to wait by a nurse (an hour and a half) who spent 10 minutes checking me in, including the use of a gurney, and finally got to see a doctor (not a cardiologist) more than 2 hours later who talked to me for about 5 minutes, followed by telling us to go home since everything was fine, just a minor scare.
Our then health insurance required a 450 USD deductible for the ER visit, 125 USD deductible for the room & gurney, plus a 60 USD deductible for the first consultation ... ALL OF WHICH WE HAD TO PAY ON THE SPOT ... at the hospital. But hey, you think that's bad treatment for someone with insurance? Hah, about 6 weeks later we get a bill in the mail for my hospital visit of 2 and a half hours. Another 1450 USD is what we were supposed to pay. Obviously we called them up with WTF is going on here ??? and were told that those were the amounts for procedures that the insurance refused to pay !!! My response ... WTF ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? What treatments? What procedures? I saw a person at the registration desk, a nurse for 10 minutes, got an x-ray, two pills, saw a doctor for 5 minutes, so WTF are you talking about "procedures" that the insurance won't pay?
"Oh, we can't answer that question specifically, but that's the amount that's still due, blah blah blah blah blah." Yeah, that's how good hard working Americans are treated anymore (in Florida), and I'm willing to bet millions of people have stories like that to tell.

BTW, in the US millions of people go bankrupt and/or lose their homes every single year, due to medical expenses. Google it !!!

If I went back to the USA today, I'd still be too young to qualify for medicaid, but too old to find a half-way decent job (I have university education). However, if I want health insurance, medium to upper medium tier right now in 2018, it would cost me a whopping 643 USD monthly ... JUST FOR MYSELF. Oh yeah, stay in the USA and pray to god that you or your wife or your kids never ever get seriously sick, or even just a little sick.

Wanna hear more? Oh, you're going to love this one! We have a Son who moved out of our house at the age of 17. According to FL law, as our Son he's automatically insured by the State as long as he's enrolled in School. Well, during his summer vacation he was visiting with some relatives overnight and ended up with extreme stomach pains for whatever reason. Instead of calling us for advice, he listened to the people where he was visiting, who suggested that he go to the ER immediately. Different area, different hospital. Our Son was there for about an hour and a half ... received zero treatment, zero pills, zero x-rays, or anything else for that matter ... spoke to a doctor for around 15 minutes who prodded and poked, diagnosing him with a kidney stone. Our son was told to go home, that although the pain is pretty acute, he'll be able to discard the kidney stone by peeing it our naturally in a few days.
Six weeks later a bill arrived in the mail for his hospital visit ....
Believe it or not, 6900 USD to pay for ... WHAT ??? Un-friggen-real !!!


Reason for the bill? During school vacations the kids aren't covered by health isurance. We were able to get the state involved and with many many phonecalls, tons of paperwork and driving around during the course of 2 months, were able to get the State to cover most of that bill.

I could tell you more and more stories from people in the USA whom we know. America has some of the worst and most expensive medical treatments on earth, because of corporate greed in many places nationwide. Even worse than in some third world countries. Oh, and since we're in the Ecuador forum ... most Ecuadorian doctors are trained in Houston & Dallas, Texas. Also, Ecuador has been rated as the #1 Country with most technical & medical advancements in the world during a 12 month period, for the year 2017. Ecuador is also rated wayyyyyyyyyyy lower on the crime scale than the US and homicides by gun are so rare that it's almost unheard of if you're not residing in one of Ecuadors worst neigborhoods within one of the 2 or 3 largest cities. None of these insane mass-shootings or school shootings by gun toting idiots in Ecuador. And best of all, the US Dollar is the standard Ecuadorian currency ... which means that most of the time you won't even have to worry so much about your spanish speaking skills.

Stores, Gas stations, Markets, Taxis, Busses, Restaurants ... everywhere you go, prices are posted with a currency that you're already familiar with. On top of that, Ecuador has one of the highest rated public transportation systems. Many many raves about the escellence of public transportation right here in the forum. It's not perfect everywhere of course ... just like the rest of the world isn't perfect.

Bad people, scammers, rip-off artists, and hard core criminals are everywhere on earth, but if you do some dilligent research you'll find out that the US is one of the worst places in the world for that. Drugs, Homicide, Scamming, Abuse, Overpriced almost everything, it's unbelievable how much America has changed during the past 30 to 40 years. Political corruption is at an all-time high, the lobbies are running the politicians and the politicians are running the Country into the ground. Greed is worse than it's ever been too. There's no capitalism in America anymore today. Today it's called ... SUPER CAPITALISM ... from which exclusively well to do or rich people can benefit.
Look at how we treat *ALL* poor people, our teachers, our law enforcement personell.
Look at the millions of college kids working in poverty jobs, paying their student loans off for the next 10 to 20 years. Open your eyes and look at what's really going on !!!

In 2016 my wife was diagnosed with breast cancer. She's over 60 and as American as American can be, lived over 50 years in America. Both of us are 100% convinced that if we had remained in the US with our then health insurance, my wife would more than likely be dead today. Her level of care was so unbelivably fantastic, that to this day we're still in sheer awe at the amount of extra care and extra professionalism that my wife received here. Until you get the stones to leave that sh_t_ole Country called the USA, you'll never be able to understand or relate to real healthcare with affordable prices by doctors who actually give a damn and doctors who aren't working in order to get rich.

We pay around 225 USD monthly (that's for both of us) for state mandated health insurance and get treated like Royalty (compared to the USA). Our prescriptions cost 5 bucks per pop, soetimes good for up to 90 days, and so far we've almost never had to pay anything extra for other things. Heck, during my wife's 50+ appointments for her cancer treatments, we were even re-imbursed travel expenses !!! We actually feel sorry for all of the people in America who simply have no clue how everyone there is being bled dry by greed.

In most civilized Countries Worldwide, an Education is a Right !!! In most Countries you only have to be intelligent, to qualify for a university education. In most Countries you pay for your books & study guides, that's about it ... And not between 60.000 and 250.000 USD for a degree that you shouldn't even need for many jobs.

Where we live now, almost everything food related is priced about the same or much less (bread, cheeses, pastries, veggies, other dairy, wine, beer, childrens clothing) than in the USA ... while the quality of the food would literally blow your socks off. Here, the cheapest food is comparable to the most expensive Gourmet items that you can buy in American grocery stores. We currently live in Germany, but plan to relocate full-time permanently to Ecuador in 2020.

I only responded to your post because my wife and I were literally shocked, that someone who's never lived outside of the US for any number of years could actually write what you wrote. Hopefully this rant will give you guys something to think about. *NOTHING* outweighs the benefit of leaving that rip-off Country behind, absolutely nothing !!!
Best decision that we ever made, no intentions of ever going back to live there.

I must applaud both posts.
They each have good points to consider.
Situation for each individual / couple, differs, thus, decisions to be taken will depend on their circumstances, knowing that only with time they will find out if their move was convenient or not.

MM

And statistics show that 1/4 of the expats here in Ecuador go back home within two years.  Some are due to circumstances beyond their ccontrol,  but many could have avoided the heartbreak by spending some more time researching their planned move like LeftCliqus did.

Freejack :

. Oh, and since we're in the Ecuador forum ... most Ecuadorian doctors are trained in Houston & Dallas, Texas. Also, Ecuador has been rated as the #1 Country with most technical & medical advancements in the world during a 12 month period, for the year 2017. Ecuador is also rated wayyyyyyyyyyy lower on the crime scale than the US and homicides by gun are so rare that it's almost unheard of if you're not residing in one of Ecuadors worst neigborhoods within one of the 2 or 3 largest cities. None of these insane mass-shootings or school shootings by gun toting idiots in Ecuador. And best of all, the US Dollar is the standard Ecuadorian currency ... which means that most of the time you won't even have to worry so much about your spanish speaking skills.

. On top of that, Ecuador has one of the highest rated public transportation systems. Many many raves about the escellence of public transportation right here in the forum. It's not perfect everywhere of course ... just like the rest of the world isn't perfect.

Oh, and since we're in the Ecuador forum ... most Ecuadorian doctors are trained in Houston & Dallas, Texas.

Can you provide a credible source to support such a claim. When I injured my leg and saw an Ecuadorian doctor who was educated in Chile, I asked him where most Ecuadorian doctors are educated and he replied Ecuador. He didn't speak English, and when I first arrived, and suffered altitude sickness and my oxygen levels dipped, I went to the emergency room, and not a single doctor in the ER room spoke English. The translation was by a nurse who was using her Samsung phone to help translate.

Ecuador is also rated wayyyyyyyyyyy lower on the crime scale than the US and homicides by gun are so rare that it's almost unheard of if you're not residing in one of Ecuadors worst neigborhoods within one of the 2 or 3 largest cities.

Again, do provide a credible source, because for homicide rate for 2016, Ecuador was higher than US murder rate.

On top of that, Ecuador has one of the highest rated public transportation systems. Many many raves about the escellence of public transportation right here in the forum

Ecuador public transport is very good but elderly folk need to be in good shape to ride on and get off some of the buses, IMO. People who actually ride the buses, at least in Quito, know what I mean. The Ecovia is not only packed but can be dangerous with turns that can throw a person on the floor.

Actually, I had the distinct impression that their research wasn't anywhere thorough enough. It's one thing to conduct research on a Country where you might want to move to, which I believe they did. But it's a whole different story when you look at what you have where you are, and compare that to where you want to live. My wife and I know numerous people here in Germany who are shocked at the regressions in the US during the past 30+ years. For older people (55 and above) who are not on medicaid or have good paying jobs of at least 40K to 50K per year, it's not even affordable to live in the US anymore ... at least not when healthcare issues arise. Moving to another Country for the rest of your life should include the quality of living there. In the USA, unless as stated you're making really good money, the cost of quality life has become prohibitively expensive.

Will respond to the rest later or tomorrow.

.

vsimple ... I don't know where or how you find your information, but my facts about the USA come from actually living there on 5 different ocassions, spanning a total of 28 years, last from 2010 until 2015. Your assertion that crime, most especially homicides might be higher in Ecuador would be downright absurd & laughable ... if the statistics weren't as sad as they actually are. So let's begin with this ...

New York Times, 2016 information:

And this link here, also based on 2016 ...

Actual info. from Ecuador

Now mind you, Washington DC is not the worst by a mile, but already twice as bad as Ecuador.

Enjoy reading through these links, not about Ecuador but about the USA, and then please do go ahead and find me the links which directly contradict those, with statistics about Ecuador. Yes, you get to do some of the work too ...

Drug Addiction in the USA.

BTW, when I lived in Detroit, there were over 160 crack houses in a 1 mile radius ... and that wasn't even the worst part of the city.

Strictly mass-murder-shootings, VS none in Ecuador.

More than 100 shot on *ONE* day in *ONE* city.

Beyond ridiculous, poverty wages and people living in cars, enother epidemic.

Hmmm, I wonder how this one stacks up to Ecuador?

Just the tip of the iceberg. Utterly out of control healthcare costs.

How about this one, very important for Women ... an average of 27 rapes per 100.000 people in the USA as opposed to only 10 rapes per 100.000 people in Ecuador. Do your own work, google it, no doubt you'll find it.

BTW, the intentional homicide/murder rate per 100.000 people when you compare the 2 Countries is over 4 times higher in the USA. Again, I have no idea where you get your facts from.

So many more comparisons to make where Ecuador wins hands down. No, not everything is perfect in Ecuador, not by a long shot, but when compared to the USA, it's really a no-brainer ... for anyone who's looked for work, lived with poverty wages, tried to enjoy entertainment, and paid for any kind of health services in the USA.

Ahhh yes, here's one, the robbery rates in Ecuador are almost triple of what they are in the US. But hey, guess what, robberies aren't a deterrant for my wife and I to live or not to live in Ecuador, especially when you consider that rovbberies in the USA are often with guns which add to the above homicide list. And secondly, those robbery rates are from 2006 ... sorry, best I could find at the moment ... and in the USA robbery as well as all other crimes have also increased during the past 10 plus years, primarily due to the massive increase in drug usage.

Oh, here's another really scary read for you:
Despite a downwad trend? OMG !!!

We already talked about quality of food ... And America has the worst food quality that you can possibly imagine. Why do you think there's a litreral nationwide epidemic with obese people? Everything is raised to be huge and fat and fake and colored and ... DISGUSTING. When the quality of food is truly superb, you find yourself paying triple to five times the price of the same quality for food in places like ... oh, should I go ahead and say it ... yeah, I will ... places like Ecuador !!!

You know, I don't really care, believe whatever you want to believe, but I'll guarantee that as far as retiring with piece of mind is concerned, there's no doubt in my mind that Ecuador is wayyyyyyy more pleasant of a lifestyle experience from A to Z, when compared to the USA. I'm not talking about selectively stabbing at one or two things that may be better here or there, but I'm talking about as a whole, when you compare all that a Country has to offer its citizens/residents.

vsimple ... I don't know where or how you find your information, but my facts about the USA come from actually living there on 5 different ocassions, spanning a total of 28 years, last from 2010 until 2015. Your assertion that crime, most especially homicides might be higher in Ecuador would be downright absurd & laughable ... if the statistics weren't as sad as they actually are. So let's begin with this ...

what's absurd is the this following comment by you:

most Ecuadorian doctors are trained in Houston & Dallas, Texas

:D

As for the murder rate, the sources I provided, Wikipedia, which in fact stated the murder rate in the USA for 2016 was 5.3 per 100,000, and an Ecuadorian Newspaper which in fact stated the murder rate in Ecuador for 2016 was 5.69 per 100,00 are a lot more credible than your ignorant comments.

Moderated by Bhavna 2 months ago
Reason : Flaming/disrespectful
We invite you to read the forum code of conduct

Freejack, I don't know if you realize this, but you come across as quite abrasive and know-it-all yourself, to say the least.  Somehow I don't think you'll be happy in Ecuador.  Or that the Ecuadorians will be happy with you.

Well, that was quite a reaction!  I'm not going to respond to the vitriol, but I will respond to some of the points that were raised.

I'm 65 years old, politically liberal and well aware of my country's shortcomings.  Two of my friends moved out of the US decades ago; one to Canada, one to Belize.  My wife speaks several languages, lived in the Netherlands ten years and has dual Dutch/US citizenship.  I got to know expats in Ecuador through their blogs and on this forum.  We thought about moving overseas for two years and carefully considered every source of information.  Our decision wasn't based on guesswork.

Once more, I want to emphasize the two things I heard over and over again.  First, be skeptical of real estate promoters like International Lying.  Second, either learn to speak the language or be prepared to live a lonely life.

Luck played a big part in our plans.  I'm a carpenter and we scrimped two years to build an apartment over our garage for extra income.  Then everything changed.  Our run-down, high-crime neighborhood one mile from downtown Nashville got HOT.   Instead of $700-$800 a month, we make $2500 a month through Airbnb.  If not for that, we'd probably be in Cuenca right now.

I have no axe to grind.  I just want folks to be careful.  Whatever your decision, good luck!

Yup, that's pretty much what I figured. From everything that I've been able to read for many years, not just on this forum, Expats consist primarily of two groups of people. Those who are younger, adventurous, ready for a change of lifestyle which they can always change their minds about at any given time ... and those who feel that they have no retirement to speak of when it comes to retiring in their own Country, generally older folks between 50 and 65 years old, who feel compelled to move "somewhere" in order to enjoy their "Golden Years" as older people who've worked for 30+ years feel that they deserve. Sure, there's people in between, but those are the two primary groups ...

Had you mentioned how everything was looking up for so phenomenally in your initial post, then I probably wouldn't even have bothered to respond. But my wife and I belong to that second group of people, with retirement income "to survive by" for several Countries, in a way which won't permit us to enjoy our own Golden Years. People like us have to make choices based more on intelligent, yet potentially foreign, possibilities.

I don't really particiapte on this forum anymore.*** Someone here actually believes that the homicide rate when compared between the US and Ecuador is the same or worse than in the US, even though I provided Ecuadorian information from Ecudorian sources, dated 2016 or 2017, which clearly proves this to be utter nonsense. America has the highest gun death rate in the World, and homicide rates that are 36x higher then where we live now, in Germany.
Compared to the USA, Ecudor violent crime is just a fraction of what you see in the US.
Sure, lots of robberies, mostly thefts of convenience, but those don't kill you ...

As far as Realtors and lying goes, my wife and I have dealt with Realtors dozens of times during the past 20 years, purchased and developed at least half a dozen lots, built two homes from the ground up, and remodeled about 6 other, 30+ year older homes in 3 different locales. Most of that in the USA. We've found that Realtors & Lying apparently go hand in hand, as we've only met 2 Realtors during all of that time who were completely honest.

*** We wish you the best for your retirement in Tennessee. We've stopped doing research on this forum because there are tons of resources which provide often better, more accurate information ... without having non-native Americans telling us how America stacks up statistically, to other places in the World.

***

Moderated by Bhavna last month
Reason : Irrelevant to Ecuador + if you have suggestions about the forum, please contact us.
We invite you to read the forum code of conduct

What an interesting read. We are considering relocating to Ecuador in the next few years to a decade. I find this exchange of ideas from passionate individuals very healthy. I have learned a lot from both side. Thank you for the debate!

Wesley & Trey

WesleyThompson :

What an interesting read. We are considering relocating to Ecuador...

I find this exchange of ideas from passionate individuals very healthy. I have learned a lot from both sides. Thank you for the debate!

Yes, Wesley, passion and debate are good.

However, some poster(s) need to review the forum rules, which preclude negative posts against other members .. and off-topic flaming (for instance, on the Ecuador forum, rants about USA gun issues).

Openly criticizing the moderators of this forum is objectionable, as they do a superb job .. and are dedicated to making all the forums of expat.com the best they can be.

Let's remember why we participate here:  to assist and educate fellow members about Expat life and opportunities .. and to learn about Expating .. in a peaceful and supportive way.

cccmedia
expat.com Experts Team

Freejack :

I don't really particiapte on this forum anymore.*** Someone here actually believes that the homicide rate when compared between the US and Ecuador is the same or worse than in the US, even though I provided Ecuadorian information from Ecudorian sources, dated 2016 or 2017, which clearly proves this to be utter nonsense.

Okay, I have yet other sources that state that the murder rate per 100,000 in 2016 in the States which was 5.3 was lower than the Ecuadorian murder rate for the same year which was 5.69.

The first source (drum-roll)......  :D

F.B.I  (There were 5.3 murders per 100,000 people in 2016. ). The same as Wikipedia.

The second source.....

The National Police of Ecuador which state the murder rate was 5.69 in 2016.

This isn't a personal blog, so when anyone posts nonsense such as “most Ecuadorian doctors are trained in Houston & Dallas, Texas”, or posts misinformation about the murder rate when the F.B.I and the National Police of Ecuador state otherwise, there is a likelihood that they will get called out.

WesleyThompson :

What an interesting read. We are considering relocating to Ecuador in the next few years to a decade. I find this exchange of ideas from passionate individuals very healthy. I have learned a lot from both side. Thank you for the debate!

Wesley & Trey

As previously mentioned, debate and passion are good things. But disrespectful behavior is not necessary when debating. It is IMO actually a testament to 1.)  weak argument, and 2.) weak character.

So for the sake of constructive debate, it's best to be civil, and to make rational arguments.

We did a similar analysis and found that the few dollars saved in Ecuador would not be worth the changes in lifestyle and the burden of learning a new language at age 65.  I was reminded of the changes while spending February in the Philippines not watching the Eagles win the Superbowl.  The entertainment available in the USA in general and the Lehigh Valley in PA in particular has no comparison to Ecuador or the Philippines or any other places considered. We also have plenty of family and friends in the USA, another consideration for many.

I speak fluent Spanish and the Latin culture has been part of my life for almost 60 years, since I lived in Ecuador as a child and being married to a colombiana now almost 18 years.  The Latin culture is vibrant and interesting, and in spite of the many challenges all the developing Latin countries face, can be attractive to those wanting to live with more perceived freedom and ability to enjoy opportunities they might not be able to afford in their developed countries.

Many people are enticed just by the prospects of living in a new and exotic place, and more cheaply.  Having lived and worked in a Latin country before, I know that can wear off quickly, and you begin to notice all the things that just don't work like they should, from government services and utilities, to in-country travel, to security, to almost anything you can think of.  The Latin people do have a more relaxed attitude towards life which is attractive, and if you live there for a while you can understand why - you could go crazy if you expect things to work like they should...

Each person or couple has to make the decision for themselves.  And there's nothing to stop you from a vacation, short or long, to enjoy it for just a while!  But for many it just does not make sense to uproot yourself as a permanent thing and burn your bridges, so to speak.

mugtech :

We did a similar analysis and found that the few dollars saved in Ecuador would not be worth the changes in lifestyle and the burden of learning a new language

Hey Mugs, I was about to fade back into the woodwork again when I saw your reply.  Hope you're doing well.  Not many of the same faces around now.  Neil moved on to another South American country, as did a nice couple in San Clemente I got to know.  Your practical take on finances and the probability of culture shock helped us keep our feet on the ground, and I think you've helped others as well.

The road less traveled is still tempting though, isn't it?

John

LeftClique :
mugtech :

We did a similar analysis and found that the few dollars saved in Ecuador would not be worth the changes in lifestyle and the burden of learning a new language

Hey Mugs, I was about to fade back into the woodwork again when I saw your reply.  Hope you're doing well.  Not many of the same faces around now.  Neil moved on to another South American country, as did a nice couple in San Clemente I got to know.  Your practical take on finances and the probability of culture shock helped us keep our feet on the ground, and I think you've helped others as well.

The road less traveled is still tempting though, isn't it?

John

We expect to make a cameo appearance in Ecuador in the coming years, strictly as tourists.  Currently we have an inherited house in the Philippines where we go every October, come back to the USA in April.  Hope to never shovel snow again.  Was glad to see the real estate market is helping you live the life you prefer, glad you don't have to be an economic refugee.  Being retired and living the simple life, not updating changes in tax laws, makes me quite relaxed.  Since my wife is a Filipina I don't deal with any culture shock, I knew the deal before we started the cycle.  Let us know if you ever get to Asia.

I can't find the original post with the training for doctors anymore, but here's another corroborative link for you: US & European Training for Ecuadorian Doctors. For obvious reasons, any good doctor with a vast volume of medical knowledge, would like to be trained in the US or in the EU, so it makes perfect sense that many doctors do indeed get their training there.

As far as your crime statistics are concerned, I already mentioned that Wikipedia is one of the worst resources out there since their information has many many times in the past proven to be from slightly inaccurate to completely false. And most people who live in the USA know that the FBI and other law enforcement agencies downplay the amount of murders & gun related homicides intentionally, due to the staggering numbers. All you have to do is google the murder statistics in cities such Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, Denver, Cleveland, and so on ... to realize how bogus the FBI information is. Oh, and that's the same statistic as Wikipedia? Rest my case ...

The people who truly know and understand what's going on in the US, are the ones who are living & working there, paying the bills, seeing the doctors, and buying the food. Anyone in the USA who's not retired and living off 36.000 USD per year or less would totally disagree with much if not most of what you have to say about America. I'm curious, when was the last time that you lived there, and for how long?

Here's some income information for you ... Average incomes based on Age Groups. Now compare that to what most people in the US are paying for renting an appartment or a home ... Average Rent from high to low in America. ... and you'll quickly understand that the majority of Americans are living at poverty level, commonly with room-mates, because after your taxes, rent & utilities are taken away, most of them can't even afford to buy decent food anymore, or even think about having car payments, paying for health insurance, car insurance, etc.

Those who do make between 40.000 and 80.000 Salary per year are the college graduates, most of whom have debts that range anywhere from 60.000 to 250.000 USD, depending on where you went to college and for how long. These are average debts at decent 1 to 4 year universities. And because there aren't enough jobs for the many college graduates, many of them wind up working poverty level jobs while still being expected to pay off their debts ... thereby being kept down indefinitely with little to no future in sight. Between fast food, Amazon, eBay, and other job entities, there are literally millions of college graduates working to pay off their college debts with their poverty wages ... working 2 - 3 jobs ... and having no quality of life whatsoever !!!

Now you can tell me all you want about murder rates and things like that, but that won't change the fact that murder is one of those things that most people, regardless where you live, don't have to be as afraid about as .... getting a common illness or something more serious, like cancer.  If you get sick in America and decide to see a doctor, that can be a decision which will follow you for years, break you financially, and even cause you to lose your home. Remember my first response to this post, the one with the two real life examples? Those examples happen to millions of people every year, in the USA.

It's (IMO) also totally irrelevant whether or not a doctor was trained in Texas, the EU, or wherever ??? Why ??? Because anyone with a qualified medical license, especially someone with many years or decades of medical practical experience, should be trustworthy of being able to do their job. And if you can't communicate because you don't have a smartphone with a translator or because you chose not to learn the language ... then that's on you and nobody else.
The ability, desire, and means to retire in Ecuador, has absolutely nothing to do with that.

Moving to, for the purpose of Retirement in Ecuador, is not about the fear of being murdered or specifically where a doctor received hir or her training. It's about the entire package which sadly, most people tend not to think about from A to Z. Retiring in Ecuador for older folks is about one of the most important issues there is (for them), the cost of healthcare, which is so much more affordable in Ecuador. Combine that with the climate, the beauty, the friendliness of most people (from what we've read in hundreds of posts), the ability to live without being in debt over your ears, then you have all the reasons that you need, in order to make that move, because most people who move due to basic needs, tend to be much happier with "encountered hardships" then those who move out of boredom, adventure, curiosity, or pleasure.

.

Freejack,

Please keep your posts in the Ecuador forum, to matters about Ecuador.

You are remarkably misinformed about life in the USA - and it appears you have some animus against the country.  In any case your uninformed ranting about how bad it is in the USA has no place in this forum about Ecuador.

My last comments were making some comparisons in response to what vsimple claims is going on in Ecuador, VS life in the USA. We lived in the USA for 28 years, most recently from 2010 to 2015, and our adult Son still lives in the USA today. I believe that I know exactly what I'm talking about.

I've lived in the US over twice as long as you have, in over a dozen states, plus I've traveled for business and pleasure to many more.  I've also lived in Germany, Puerto Rico and Ecuador, and visited the Dominican Republic, Panamá and Colombia.  I'm married to a colombiana and continue to learn more about that wonderful country with her help, her large family's help, and my own trips and experiences there.

I would venture to say your experience reflects your attitudes.  You're entitled to your own opinions, and we've certainly been exposed to them, at length.  If brevity is the soul of wit...

Applause for the Moderators!

Just wanted to say that:)

.... kept an important and information worthy thread on topic and clean.

(and that's not easy!)

Susan_in_Ecuador: "Applause for the Moderators!"

Once again, I've been been drawn back in!

Susan, I don't recall that we had any exchanges when I was active on this forum, but I certainly remember you as being always courteous, kind and helpful.

I agree with you about the moderators.  They don't have an easy job.  It's difficult to ride herd on ANY online forum, much less one that involves as much risk, money and uncertainty as this one.

@OsageArcher

All you did was to prove my point. If you spent twice as many years (56) as I have in the USA and if you've lived in all sorts of other places, then clearly, just like my parents, you've been retired for quite some time *** [Moderated - comment based on assumptions].

This post is about why people opted not to move to Ecuador. So obviously, people will respond with with comments that represent both sides of that discussion.

Actual statistics don't lie. Two thirds of Americans are living at or near poverty level. 1 out of 5 children goes hungry every day. 99% of everything is owned by the top 1% of people. Homelessness across the Countr is out of control. The amount of bankrupticies due to medical reasons are overwhelming.  36,000 People per year dead by gun violence (including suicides). Mass-School shootings on such a frequent basis, that no other Country in the World, including developing and 3rd World Countries, even comes close. The list goes on and on and on. So yeah, you bet, my wife and I harbor a bit of animosity for a Country that has done so much wrong in such a brief period (mostly the past 25+ years) of time. Regardless what you think of Bill Clinton, he left the office with the Countries finances intact and the majority of people (ourselves included) even received a check in the mail from the surplus. Now just look at what's going on today ...

My wife and I are retired too, but can't afford to live in our own Country. Sad ...  :(
(at least not if we plan on having decent medical care)

The reason why I'm mentioning this is because of my parents. You see, my Dad is retired military with 28 years of Service. Today my mom is in her 80s and my Dad is in his 70s. They've been retired for quite some time and they believe that America is the best Country on the planet. And that's fine, because my wife and I understand that they're completely out of touch with the harsh realities of today. My parents have pretty decent retirement income and never have to worry about paying bills. As a retired federal employee my Dad's health benefits are much much better than the benefits that retirees of today receive. Their home is bought & paid for ... life is great !!!

My last MRI scan in the US cost me $2200 ... I've had four MRI scans during the past 3 years here in Germany and didn't have to pay a penny!

After dozens upon dozens of treatments for my wife's cancer (she's cured now), we actually received a gasoline & mileage reimbursement from our healthcare provider. Wow, blew us away !!! Now that's how a "Socially mindful" Country cares for its own residents.

Sadly, my parents have no idea what's really going on in the USA any more. They only see & live their wonderful life, never read any news, hardly ever watch news on TV from numerous different news resources ... and are incredulous when we tell them about some of the ongoing statistics, the poverty, the crime, the rampant out of control drug usage, etc. etc. etc. They think that America can't possibly be that bad of a place, since there are still people trying to leave other Countries in order to get there ... not being able to understand that people who live in such conditions of dispair or persecution, that just about any place would be a better place ... even places like America.

Just like the person who started this thread initially, we've finally come to the conclusion that staying where we are right now is the best long-term option for us. At our age, we want to have our 100% relible & unbelievably cheap health care, the economic stability that Germany has to offer, with the ability to travel by car and have pets without a problem. For us, the lack of a vehicle is a deal breaker above everything else! We're just not willing to pay $30.000 for a $15.000 vehicle, that's just plain absurd. Other reasons too, but the vehicle is a biggie. The language would never be a barrier for us, and Germany is by no means our first choice for the rest of our days. However, when you're 55 and above, you really need to plan for the next 30 years or so, and with that in mind, we're at the best place with the most amount of benefits, that our current budget can afford ... for the long term.

This is my last response to this particular post. Clearly, quite a few people either have no clue as to what's really going on in *TODAYS* America, or they're not as compassionate & sensitive to the plight that others have to endure, as my wife and I are. Either way, there's nothing else for me to add here. I'm pretty sure that anyone who visits this post will receive a much greater understanding for the importance of proper, well researched dialogue, as well es the many life-options that need to be considered for making a move to Ecuador, moving somewhere else, or remaining in America.

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Freejack,  I've been retired for two years now.  There's your first incorrect assumption, in the very first sentence - but then, you are good at incorrect assumptions!

I'm not going to refute your ridiculous assertions that 2/3 of Americans are at or near poverty level, or that 1 in 5 children go to bed hungry at night - apparently your "research" consists of surfing the internet and believing the very worst things you can find said about America.  Pure rubbish.

I will say this - the basis for the "1 in 5 children hungry" which has been widely disseminated and distorted is from surveys conducted by the US Dept. of Agriculture in which heads of households were asked if at any time during a calendar year (my bolding) their children were a) unable to eat what they wanted; b) unable to eat in whatever quantity they wanted; c) forced to eat cheaper brands, or d) afraid their food supply might run out on any single day.  A "yes" answer to any of these, at any time during a calendar year, was counted as a "hungry child"...

By those measures I grew up hungry most days in each year in which I was a child - a and b especially!  And we also often ate cheaper brands - we did not pay any more for food than we had to!  But I was never a "hungry child" in the sense that I was in any danger of not getting enough to eat.

Many organizations distorted these survey results for their own purposes, mostly for their own benefit, for fundraising and just plain scaremongering.  And many people fall for it, still.  The lies were widely disseminated; the truth comes along much later and much more quietly and is often overlooked.

My Dad retired after 27 years in the military.  He's now 92.  I'd guess that he, and your parents, are much better informed than you are.

The last MRI I had, cost me $600.  You paid $2200??? You got taken.  Shame on you!  And that you think your MRIs in Germany are "free" because you paid nothing for them at the point of service, shows your lack of economic understanding.

Staying where you are is clearly the best option for you.  Ecuador is a wonderful place, your decision not to degrade it is a good one, I salute you!

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