If you're tired of renting in a rough part of town or paying sky high mortgages for downtown living, or maybe you're just looking for a change of pace that will expose you to a different culture, different landscape, and a different way of life altogether, it may be time to make a move to Peru. Not everyone will find happiness living in Peru, however, as the transition can be quite a shock for Canadians and Americans alike. This article will help you learn what to expect if you move to Peru.
Most people assume that living in Peru will be much cheaper than taking out a mortgage in Canada because it's not a world economic leader, but that's only true in certain cases. In the Peruvian countryside, for example, things are much cheaper than you'd be used to as a North American, however, there are few jobs in rural areas. Instead, you're much more likely to end up living in Lima, which is the fourth most expensive city in all of South America. Lima will seem expensive to you if you're from a small town but cheap if you're from a big North American city.
In terms of accommodations, you will find that you can actually get quite a nice place anywhere in Peru. Even in Lima a two bedroom apartment in an upscale area seems like a steal to a Torontonian at only about $1500 per month. Budget accommodations can be had for only a few hundred dollars, but the drawback here is that utilities such as hot water, television service, and especially internet access, tends to be spotty at best in these areas.
Once you have somewhere to live you can start making new Peruvian friends. You will find that most people you meet are very friendly - perhaps too friendly. The amount of personal space you're used to is much larger than the average Peruvian is used to, so be ready for close talkers. You'll also have to get used to everyone being late for everything and dressing a little more formally than the pajama pants you used to slump around town in if you want to fit in. If you're in business, you'll find that it takes a lot longer to get things done in Peru, so be patient.
If your kids will be joining you for the move, you will also need to find a local school for them. Peruvian public schools are not up to North American standards, so private school is the way to go. Don't worry, though, some schools have very cheap tuition in exchange for you buying some supplies for the school. Others can cost several hundred dollars per month and cater only to expats. Select one based on the cultural experience you want your child to have. You can take a look at How To Buy a Property In Peru for more information.