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Jingthing

Expats in Thailand considering moving to Latin America prompted by Thai visa changes

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We've had a lot of intentionally scaremongering posts over the course of this thread about crime and violence in specific countries in Latin America. I've been careful to point out that people should calm down and DIFFERENTIATE between the crime problems that are likely to impact expats in the specific places that they may be living VS. other places where expats generally and correctly fear to tread. For example the Pacific coast of Colombia has extremely high crime and I've never even heard of a typical expat moving there.

 

HOWEVER, I have come across a news story that I am taking a lot more seriously. About cartel control in San Miguel de Allende of all places!

 

I've had the feeling there are some places in Mexico where it's not rational to be very afraid of cartels. I still think there are such places. But if San Miguel de Allende can be impacted this way, I now am wondering if anyplace in Mexico is really immune any more. 

 

Yes, even Queretaro City. 

 

https://cuencahighlife.com/drug-cartels-move-into-mexican-town-popular-with-u-s-and-canadian-expats/

 

Quote

Drug cartels move into Mexican town popular with U.S. and Canadian expats

 

 

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Good old Jerry, vlogger expat in Mexico, shares the recent results of yet another best places to retire abroad findings. Some interesting details:

 

The TOP 5 are all in Latin America!

Mexico is number one!

Nicaragua is in the top ten! (Has it improved recently?)

Thailand has declined to be OFF the top ten. (No surprise.)

 

 

 

1 - Mexico

2 - Panama

3 - Ecuador

4 - Costa Rica

5 - Colombia

6 - Malaysia

7 - Spain

8 - Nicaragua

12 - Thailand

Edited by Jingthing
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19 hours ago, Jingthing said:

Good old Jerry, vlogger expat in Mexico, shares the recent results of yet another best places to retire abroad findings. Some interesting details:

 

The TOP 5 are all in Latin America!

Mexico is number one!

Nicaragua is in the top ten! (Has it improved recently?)

Thailand has declined to be OFF the top ten. (No surprise.)

 

 

 

1 - Mexico

2 - Panama

3 - Ecuador

4 - Costa Rica

5 - Colombia

6 - Malaysia

7 - Spain

8 - Nicaragua

12 - Thailand

Matagalpa and Esteli in Nicaragua are worth investigating for cheap retirement...I visited both places 30 years ago and they had their charm, nicer than Leon and Grenada (high and mountainous and cooler) and both places since inhabited by gringo retirees...there ain't much to the locally prepared food (tacos 'al pastor' and black beans mostly) but there are markets everywhere for those that cook...

 

and that Flor de Cana white rum can't be beat anywhere...better than any caribbean rum that I've tasted...the beer ain't bad either...stay as far away from Managua as possible, never been in a more horrible place...and back in those days I thought that I was tough...

 

 

Edited by tutsiwarrior
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22 minutes ago, tutsiwarrior said:

Matagalpa and Esteli in Nicaragua are worth investigating for cheap retirement...I visited both places 30 years ago and they had their charm, nicer than Leon and Grenada (high and mountainous and cooler) and both places since inhabited by gringo retirees...there ain't much to the locally prepared food (tacos 'al pastor' and black beans mostly) but there are markets everywhere for those that cook...

 

and that Flor de Cana white rum can't be beat anywhere...better than any caribbean rum that I've tasted...the beer ain't bad either...stay as far away from Managua as possible, never been in a more horrible place...and back in those days I thought that I was tough...

 

 

I haven't followed whether the political situation has calmed down enough for it to be reasonable to consider Nicaragua or not. Obviously it didn't get nearly as bad as Venezuela but the last time I checked they have probably the lowest financial requirement for expat retirement status in the world. (But could be outdated info.) As far as Managua well I think that's where the decent hospital is and it's in striking distance of Grenada. Yeah I'm sure the food is pretty darned boring if it's anything like Costa Rican food. 

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On 12/8/2019 at 5:51 PM, Jingthing said:

Seems like a good, detailed, and importantly CURRENT guide to Mexican immigration. 

 

https://www.mexperience.com/wp-content/uploads/Mexico-Immigration-Guide-2019-Mexperience.pdf


 

 

Thanks

 

I read the 1st quarter yesterday and then skimmed through the rest earlier.

 

On the subject of the visitor s permit, a stand out there it is possible is arrive in Mexico without visa. Then provided being a national of one of  the many "no visa required " countries you get a permit allowing up to a 180 day stay. All sounds easy and hassle free.

 

In addition to some/many that may be considering relocation I am sure there is probably a near equal number of people looking at doing the "winter snowbird " stay. From say Canada, UK, northern Europe, Scandinavia etc.

 

So comparing to Thailand where most nationalities will only receive 30 days visa free, you can go to Mexico and get 180 days.

 

That is a big positive in my mind.

Various other LATAM countries also quite generous compared to Thailand with their visa free stay lengths.

 

On to their temporary residence scheme, that seems quite fair and not too onerous.

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28 minutes ago, seasia said:

Thanks

 

I read the 1st quarter yesterday and then skimmed through the rest earlier.

 

On the subject of the visitor s permit, a stand out there it is possible is arrive in Mexico without visa. Then provided being a national of one of  the many "no visa required " countries you get a permit allowing up to a 180 day stay. All sounds easy and hassle free.

 

In addition to some/many that may be considering relocation I am sure there is probably a near equal number of people looking at doing the "winter snowbird " stay. From say Canada, UK, northern Europe, Scandinavia etc.

 

So comparing to Thailand where most nationalities will only receive 30 days visa free, you can go to Mexico and get 180 days.

 

That is a big positive in my mind.

Various other LATAM countries also quite generous compared to Thailand with their visa free stay lengths.

 

On to their temporary residence scheme, that seems quite fair and not too onerous.

Indeed!

Yes getting 6 months tourist status on arrival is very generous. 

Colombia I recall is 3 months but you can extend another 3 months but no more than 6 months total stay on tourist status in each calendar year.

For Mexico if you want to apply for temporary or permanent residence, you apply outside of Mexico.

 

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Just a reminder -- one of the key original reasons I started this thread was to highlight / discuss the special issues that expats that have lived in Thailand may have if attempting to apply for residence in Latin America. That is largely about their apostille conventions and sometimes very rigid requirement to have police reports from where you were living before AND possibly your home country as well, FRESH, and in some cases for multiple applications over time. Just some paper and documents some might say, but could be a real roadblock even a deal breaker.

 

(No, not all the countries there require this, but most seem to.)

 

I mention this because I had a quick look for Nicaragua information and I happened upon quite a dated page, but I appreciated that it explicitly mentioned the very difficult problems people with unusual backgrounds have. Their example was about a woman married to an Eastern European that had been living in Bali for the past 10 years. The template for these visas seems to assume more typical backgrounds, like a Canadian expatriating for the first time.

 

Another point that was mentioned that might be more Nicaragua specific but probably not entirely was the need to have all the documents in hand gathered because offices tend to not even want to deal with mailing things to Nicaragua. I've heard of cases where people have gotten such documents to Ecuador and Mexico would seem more usual in the U.S. and Canada so that may be less of an issue depending on which country.

 

To add my current understanding is that both Mexico and Colombia will not be requiring these reports for retirement status applications. However, adding that (which are typical in Latin America) was on the list of proposed visa changes for Colombia.

Edited by Jingthing

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On top of a lot of general comments about international real estate, some more on topic discussion about the relative values of purchasing real estate in Colombia vs. Bangkok, Phnom Penh, and Kuala Lumpur. Shorter version -- Colombia is a bargain now. With the caveat that he's only interested in the great cities of different countries but the way I see it you can do like to like comparisons for different sorts of locations as well.

 

For those with lots of liquid cash, Colombia offers residency based on a level of real estate purchase.

 

 

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On 12/4/2019 at 10:13 AM, Jingthing said:

Perhaps regretfully this is not an appropriate platform for people to offer personal donations and such like. For generous people with money burning a hole in  their pockets may  I suggest sites like gofundme? 

Let us know when your gofundme is set up.

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On 12/4/2019 at 10:18 AM, Jingthing said:

I'm not surprised by that. But to sample a bit of the Caribbean culture on the mainland has an appeal to tourists. 

Jaco is on the Pacific coast mainland and has nothing to do with Caribbean culture?  Google maps is a great resource if you are unfamiliar with what you are writing about, as in this case.

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On 12/10/2019 at 9:23 AM, tutsiwarrior said:

Flor de Cana white rum can't be beat anywhere

Wrong.  The 7 year Flor de Cana is much better and excellent value.

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1 minute ago, grifbel said:

Jaco is on the Pacific coast mainland and has nothing to do with Caribbean culture?  Google maps is a great resource if you are unfamiliar with what you are writing about, as in this case.

Indeed on that point you are entirely correct. Thanks for that and I definitely should have known better as I've toured around Costa Rica. I might have been thinking about Bluefields, Nicaragua in a neighboring country on the mainland that does indeed have a Caribbean culture. 

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13 minutes ago, grifbel said:

Let us know when your gofundme is set up.

Don't hold your breath dear. 

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1 minute ago, grifbel said:

Wrong.  The 7 year Flor de Cana is much better and excellent value.

I was just talkin' about the Flor de cana available locally in small shops in Nica...never seen anything but the standard white rum and it was excellent value...sometimes cheaper than bottled water...

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