Living in Ecuador guide for expats

All the information you need to relocate and live in Ecuador.

Our selection of articles for expatriation in Ecuador

The Working Holiday Visa for Ecuador

Ecuador is truly a paradise for adventure and nature lovers, and thanks to the Working Holiday Visa program, they will be able to ...

Opening a bank account in Ecuador

A few years back, an expat would just breeze into an Ecuadorian bank, flash their passport and a bank account would be opened for ...

Healthcare in Ecuador

Ecuador, as a fast-developing nation, has laws that are constantly evolving, but one thing is certain: the ongoing changes are ...

Work in Ecuador

Ecuador is famous as a retirement haven. But you might not want to wait until retirement age to move there and enjoy the ...

Ecuadorian lifestyle:

Life in Ecuador, of course, is something that is best experienced in person and on the spot. However, this article endeavours to ...

Safety in Ecuador

The passport, especially a European or American passport, is one of the most sought-after documents in Ecuador. A stolen and then ...

Food in Ecuador

What kind of food will you find in restaurants, cafes, and private homes in Ecuador? Many restaurants in Ecuador offer various ...

Family and children in Ecuador

Family is everything to an Ecuadorian. The extended family unit is the most important aspect of life in Ecuador, and all ...

Moving to Ecuador with your pet

Like most countries, Ecuador has certain rules and regulations regarding traveling with pets. It is better to be aware of them in ...

Moving to Ecuador

Moving to Ecuador and bringing all your worldly goods requires appropriate planning. Here are some guidelines that will help you ...

Transports in Ecuador

Phones and Internet in Ecuador

Leisure activities in Ecuador

You have made it to Ecuador, now what is there to do in your free time? A lifetime in Ecuador isn't enough time to take it all ...

Driving in Ecuador

While public transport is prevalent country-wide and has a great reputation in Ecuador, you may choose to drive around the ...

Taxes in Ecuador

The Servicio de Rentas Internas or Internal Revenue Service is the authority in charge of taxes in Ecuador. If you are earning an ...

About Ecuador

Picture Ecuador

Ecuador is located in northwestern South America, situated between coastal neighbors Colombia to the north and Peru to the south. The Andes mountain range runs north/south through Ecuador and bisects the coastal areas that open out onto the Pacific Ocean, the Amazon basin rainforest, and jungle areas that lie to the east of the Andes. The equator runs across the middle of the country, giving Ecuador its name. The Galápagos Islands, granted world heritage status by UNESCO for their unique fauna and flora, are also part of Ecuador and lie about 600 miles off the Pacific coast.

Past history

First populated by various indigenous tribes, much of Ecuador's land was absorbed by the Inca Empire in 1463, and was considered a summer home by some of the Incan rulers. While a few indigenous tribes were never conquered by the Incas and retained their independence from them, the start of the 16th century saw Ecuador's discovery and subsequent conquest by the Spanish colonial empire. Ecuador was briefly part of what was originally known as Gran Colombia, including land now in Colombia. In 1830, Ecuador gained its own independence and has since been ruled by a succession of military and political groups.

Present politics

Previously, instability, fueled by economic, ethnic, and regional factors, were a longtime reality in Ecuador. While it is a representative democracy, no less than seven presidents came and went between 1996 and 2006. However, recent political and economic changes have generated stronger and more stable economics and quality of life for citizens and residents. In February 2013, leftist Rafael Correa was re-elected as president for a third time and by a wide margin. Correa's administrative terms brought huge gains to social programs for the poor and elderly, and also in infrastructures including healthcare, education, and roads.

¡Hola Ecuadorians!

Over time, pre-Hispanic indigenous populations such as the many indigenous peoples and the sub-Saharan Africans who arrived as slave labour, mingled with European peoples to form new ethnic groups. Mestizos, melded from European and Amerindian ancestry, are the largest grouping (71.9% of the population). While the main language in Ecuador is Spanish, the indigenous language, Quechua (or Kichwa) is generating new popularity. The dominant religion is Roman Catholicism but Jehovah's Witnesses and Mormons are gaining many followers. Life is centred around the family, and Ecuadorians uphold a warm and friendly reputation towards foreign visitors and residents.


Dollarization to US currency in 2000 stabilized the economy after a monetary inflation crisis in 1999. Since that time, the currency is tied to the US dollar, and inflation has since been consistently low. While manufacturing is targeted mainly around the domestic market, exports of oil, shrimp, bananas, cacao & especially roses, have vastly increased in recent years and have fueled Ecuador's development. While the cost of living is indeed relatively low, certain imported items (such as cars and alcohol) can be expensive. While standards of living have improved greatly since 2000, around one quarter of the population still lives below the poverty line.

Useful link:

Ecuador Ministry of Foreign Affairs ' Welcome to Ecuador

Quick Information

Capital : Quito
Official Languages : Spanish; Castilian
Currency : Dollar
Area : 283560 Km2
Population : 14790608
Calling Code : +593

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