Expat loves his life in Cuenca Ecuador, $400 Rent, $3 lunches

Posted on September 1, 2015 • Filed under: Ecuador

Bill Riordan/International Living wrote… I love my life in Cuenca, Ecuador. I start the morning with a coffee on my terrace, watching the hummingbirds flit around the feeders that I put up and just enjoying the view. A walk to el centro takes me to the little tienda (store) that sells a pound of Loja coffee (really delicious) for only $3.50, then lunch with friends, and maybe a walk along the Rio Tomebamba or an ice cream cone in the picturesque Parque Calderon.

As my retirement was approaching, I began to think about the best way to spend it. I was working as executive director of a substance abuse counseling agency in Hartford, Connecticut and as it came to an end, I realized that I wouldn’t be able to afford the same quality of life in retirement. So I began looking at the option of living overseas.

I had made several trips to Costa Rica and then a friend suggested I check out Ecuador. My first trip, five years ago, took me to Quito and surrounding towns of Otavalo and Cotacachi, then to Banos Ambato and Puyo, and finally to Cuenca. I can honestly say that I had not heard of Cuenca before I started researching my trip…and it was love at first sight.

The cost of living was a major consideration in my decision to move to Cuenca. I have a three-bedroom apartment with a small terrace and spectacular views of the city that I pay under $400 a month for. Most of my food is purchased at the mercados. I can buy a bag full of fruits and vegetables for under $10. A pound of beautiful big strawberries costs $1. My “regular lady” always waves me over when she sees me, and puts a little something extra in my bag…maybe an avocado or a couple of peaches. Read Article


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