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Guides & Articles to Help You Live Abroad

Living abroad is the adventure of a lifetime! And it’s the second pillar of The Unconventional Life! Living in another country can help you achieve a much higher quality of life and, most likely, a much lower cost of living. In this section, you’ll find all sorts of information about Country Comparisons, Cost of Living, Healthcare, and more.

Best Countries for Expat Newbies

Best Countries for Expats Who Speak English

When you’re planning your move abroad, learning a new language may be too much hassle on top of everything else you need to do before you leave home. You might feel a lot more comfortable if you can just speak English.

In this article, we discuss the top 10 popular expat destinations where you can speak English. You’ll learn about the pros and cons of each, and the visa requirements for these destinations.

Ajijic Mexico Rental Homes

Amazing Rental Homes (Lake Chapala Mexico)

Lake Chapala Mexico is one of the most popular areas to live and retire for expats from the United States and Canada. And Ajijic Mexico is by far the most popular town for expats in the Lake Chapala area.

Thailand

Top 10 Cheapest Countries for Expats

There are many countries to settle in as an expat. We live in Ecuador and love it here. However, we know there are other great places for the perfect expat life, and yes, they are cheap. We have done our research and will highlight a few countries where couples can live for less than $2000/month.

All of these countries have a variety of visas, including tourist visas, 1-2-year temporary visas, and permanent visas, so you should qualify for at least one.

Here are the top 10 cheap countries to live in as an expat.

Lake Chapala Mexico Homes For Sale

Shocking Homes For Sale on Lake Chapala Mexico

Lake Chapala and Ajijic Mexico is one of the most popular areas to live and retire for expats from the United States and Canada.

The weather is about as close to paradise as you can get, and there are lots of activities to keep you busy. It’s also about 30 minutes from the Guadalajara International Airport so you can easily fly back home or anywhere else in the world.

Ecuador Healthcare Experience

Our Ecuador Healthcare Experience

Before our recent hospital visit, we did not have in-depth personal experience with the Ecuador healthcare system. We know Ecuador has one of the best healthcare services globally, so we expected something nice. Pleasantly, our expectations were exceeded. The quality was so great that their affordable cost was almost shocking.

Ajijic Mexico Mural

Ajijic Mexico was NOT what we Expected!

After a few days in what we think will be Mexico’s NEXT expat hotspot, we ventured out of the city to visit what may be Mexico’s most popular place for expats from the United States and Canada: Ajijic Mexico.

Why Expats Leave Ecuador

Why Expats Leave Ecuador (and never come back!)

We know at least a thousand expats who live in Ecuador, but only a handful who have left. However, the reasons expats leave Ecuador are relevant to anyone considering a move here.

The better prepared you are for the challenges of living abroad in a new country, the better your chance of enjoying it and staying.

Popular Expat Restaurants in Cuenca Ecuador

Popular Expat Restaurants in Cuenca Ecuador

We’re often asked for a review of popular restaurants in Cuenca Ecuador where expats like to eat.

During our two and a half years of living in Cuenca, and our recent visits, we had the opportunity to eat at a lot of restaurants. While we can’t possibly cover all of them in one video, we did share our experiences with over 3 dozen!

How We Save $1,200 per Month

How We Save $1,200/Month by Ditching a Common Expense

We SLASHED more than $1200 from our monthly budget by moving abroad and ditching this common expense you can’t live without in the USA.

Vilcabamba Ecuador Pros & Cons

Vilcabamba Ecuador Pros & Cons

Vilcabamba Ecuador has been popular with expats for a long time. It’s a quaint mountain town that sits in a valley surrounded by beautiful panoramic views.

It was originally considered for inclusion in the list of Blue Zones, which are areas around the world where people live exceptionally long.

However, it didn’t make the final cut because the birth records for the oldest people couldn’t be verified.

Loja Ecuador First Impressions

Loja Ecuador First Impressions

After nearly 5 years in Ecuador, we FINALLY visited Loja! You have been asking us to film there for years, and now the wait is over!

We spent a full week in Loja and logged nearly 20 walking miles, so we got a pretty good feel for the city and what it has to offer. We were surprised by a lot of what we saw. Overall, it was not what we expected.

The Toucans & Waterfalls of Mindo Ecuador

The Toucans & Waterfalls of Mindo Ecuador

In our last video we showed you a FLOCK of hummingbirds, but in this video, you’ll see a variety of colorful toucans and tanigers who live in Mindo Ecuador!

Plus, we’ll take you along on a hike through the jungle that looked like it was straight out of Romancing the Stone!

How To Escape Inflation

How To Escape Inflation (by leaving the USA)

If you’re on a tight budget and feeling the pressure of inflation compounding an already high cost of living, you have an escape hatch at your disposal if you’re willing to do something a little unconventional.

There are several places outside the continental United States that have BOTH a lower inflation rate AND a lower cost of living. They also offer extended tourist visas and residency visas to Americans.

Shipping a Car to Ecuador

Shipping a Car to Ecuador

It seems like we get this question daily: Can I ship my car to Ecuador? Unfortunately, the answer is NO, you cannot bring a vehicle to Ecuador unless you are a returning Ecuadorian citizen.

In fact, you cannot bring a car, truck, motorcycle, golf cart, or anything with a combustion engine that’s used for transportation. You are allowed to bring electric bikes and scooters with your household items, but not electric cars or golf carts.

Why Expats LOVE Cuenca Ecuador

Cuenca Ecuador Pros & Cons for Expats

Cuenca Ecuador has been near the top of the “best expat cities” list for over a decade and a lot of expats live in Cuenca because of its international renown. 

This UNESCO World Heritage Site offers a modern city with old world charm, affordable living, and a variety of amenities. However, like any place, it also has its drawbacks.

In this article, we’ll explore the pros and cons of living in Cuenca Ecuador to help you decide if it’s the right expat city for you.

FOOD FOR A DAY in CUENCA ECUADOR

Cost of Food in Cuenca Ecuador

This video shows a typical travel day for us. We usually eat breakfast and dinner at our Airbnb, and we eat lunch out at a restaurant. You can find traditional Ecuadorian lunch called “almuerzos” for $1.50 to $4.

When we’re at home, we only eat out once or twice per week (sometimes not at all) so our average food bill runs about $7 to $9 per day per person.

Shipping Household Goods to Ecuador

Shipping Household Goods to Ecuador

Learn about logistics, process, import regulations, timeframes and cost to ship your household goods to Ecuador.

3 FAMOUS VILLAGES IN 1 DAY

3 Famous Villages Near Cuenca Ecuador (San Bartolomé, Chordeleg, Gualaceo)

This video shows one of the most popular day trips from Cuenca Ecuador. We visited San Bartolomé, Chordeleg and Gualaceo. Each town has a unique trade that makes them famous throughout Ecuador and South America.

YOU WON'T FIND THESE IN THE USA! (Ilaló Ecuador)

Avocado Tasting in Ilaló Ecuador

One reason we love exploring Ecuador is because we never know what to expect and we’re always surprised by what we find!

In this video, we share several things that make the area and communities around the base of the Ilaló Volcano near Quito Ecuador so unique and unusual.

Ilalo is located about 20 minutes from the center of Quito and 10 minutes from Tumbaco Ecuador. The Quito International Airport is about 30 minutes away.

The FIRST, BIGGEST & BEST of ECUADOR! A Quito Adventure...

Touring Quito Ecuador w/ a Local

We had one day to spend in Quito Ecuador and it was memorable! We asked Xavier to show us a couple places the tourists don’t go, and we wanted to get some aerial shots with Mini before the weather derailed our plans.

The elevation and high winds led to a drone-tastrophy! And Amelia’s herbal beatdown led to a very unexpected and shocking end to our day!

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