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Old 07-20-2008, 02:29 PM   #1
LozColbert
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Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

El Diablo asked me to create a new BsAs disussion thread to replace "Ask TheMetetron about living in or visiting Buenos Aires, Argentina," as that thread had gotten a bit unwieldy. [Longest thread in EDF history?]

Old thread link: https://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/79/edf/ask-themetetron-about-living-visiting-buenos-aires-argentina-724/

Basically, same deal as the old thread: questions about living here, moving here, what it's like here. And those of us who are already here will continue to use the thread for the occasional 2p2 meetup.

An important note from the old thread: this week we're going to T-BONE for dinner at 9pm on Tuesday. It's in Soho on Armenia, the first block off Santa Fe. Hopefully turnout will be as good as it was last week.

Last edited by El Diablo; 07-20-2008 at 07:32 PM.
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Old 07-20-2008, 04:34 PM   #2
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Three Months in Buenos Aires

I've been here three months, so I thought I'd write something about my first 3 months for those of you reading this thread who are thinking about moving.

I just skimmed through the thread, and it's fairly accurate. Getting a 90 day visa is simple (just show up), the city is pretty safe, the exchange rate makes stuff really cheap, and the girls are beautiful (and Argentines are very quick to tell you that the girls in Argentina are the most beautiful in the world)

Some other random observations:

This thread makes it sound like there's a huge 2p2 community here. Some of us hangout, but when I got here I was expecting a 2p2 community and that's not true. That could change with our Tuesday dining club


The more Spanish you know, the more you will enjoy it here. I didn't speak at all, and I'm still not very good, but it's getting better. Still, even when I'm with other Americans, I often let those with better Spanish skills order for me.


One odd thing is that many Portenos will tell you that they are all thieves. Um, ok. There've been plenty of situations where people could have overharged me, and while they may have in certain situations, it wasn't very much, if at all.

I've found that making friends with Portenos is fairly easy if you try, but I also had some friend of friend connections. I've found that girls here will be intrigued if you're an American, and I assume the same is true for Euros. Also, everyone here (at least in the neighborhoods suggested) is pretty educated. However, it can be challenging bc Argentine friends your age almost definitely don't have the same income you do.

There are alot of girls here with lip/nose/cheek piercings or tattoos. I find this very unsexy. Especially the weird cheek piercing, ugh. i think it's supposed to look like a beauty mark/mole. it's horrible.

Bars are different here than the US. You're usually looking at something very chill (almost like a coffee shop) or something crazy like a club. In the US, most bars are somewhere in the middle. You can find that here, but it's not the norm.

If you're a beer snob, this is a very, very bad city for you. On the other hand, wine is probably the single best value here.

Overall, I love the city (and the weak peso) and plan to be here another 2 years. That could change, especially given the general lack of stability in this country.
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Old 07-21-2008, 07:32 PM   #3
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

LC,

Thanks for keeping us up to date with info.

I was going to start looking at flights for end of August. I am coming for a minimum of a few months, but may make it semi permanent if I like it there.

Do you suggest getting a one way ticket? Or is it better to just guess when you might want to fly back and keep moving the date around?

Also I saw a few links to apartments. From reading the old thread I gathered you many do better finding an apartment once you get there, and just booking a place for a week or two before arriving. Are there some reasonable hotels that would serve this same purpose? Would you advise not booking from one of the internet sites for a long term option?

How do you deal with changing USD to pesos? How many pesos and USD should I arrive with. Do mahor credit cards generally work?

Thanks
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Old 07-21-2008, 08:30 PM   #4
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

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Originally Posted by M0n3y0nf$r3 View Post
I was going to start looking at flights for end of August. I am coming for a minimum of a few months, but may make it semi permanent if I like it there.

Do you suggest getting a one way ticket? Or is it better to just guess when you might want to fly back and keep moving the date around?
I don't know if I can help on this. If you're going to be here awhile, I'd just book a one-way ticket, but I don't really think I can figure that out for you.

Quote:
Also I saw a few links to apartments. From reading the old thread I gathered you many do better finding an apartment once you get there, and just booking a place for a week or two before arriving. Are there some reasonable hotels that would serve this same purpose? Would you advise not booking from one of the internet sites for a long term option?
Others might disagree, but I'd suggest booking through one of the internet sites like bytargentina for at least a month. That way you'll have time to look around, not be pressured, get to know different neighborhoods, etc. I did 2.5 months in my byt place. It turned out to be very fortuitous timing-wise.

I can't see any reason to stay in a hotel. An apartment is cheaper and better. You might want to consider a hostel if you don't have a lot of stuff and use a laptop. It'd be a great way to meet people and cheap.

I see nothing wrong with booking from one of the internet sites long-term, but you don't know until you get here whether there is construction next door to your apartment that will wake you up in the morning, whether you like the neighborhood, whether there are restaurants nearby, etc... Also, you can find cheaper places than at BYT if you are price sensitive.


Quote:
How do you deal with changing USD to pesos? How many pesos and USD should I arrive with. Do mahor credit cards generally work?
You can change USD to pesos at banks. Visa/AmEx/MC are close to universal if it's an established place. but this isn't the US, so you do need some cash for everyday use and some non-expensive restaurants.

An ATM card from a US bank will work fine for getting cash for every day needs.
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Old 07-21-2008, 11:18 PM   #5
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

How is speaking English over there? Is it like Europe? I'm worried my limited spanish won't be enough.
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Old 07-21-2008, 11:42 PM   #6
LozColbert
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

I think all Argentines take 4 years of English in high school. Or at least most of them do. And while they have their own TV programs, many channels are in English with Spanish subtitles. And much of the educated class speaks at least a little bit. That said, I took 4 years of German in high school and 1 in college and I basically can't speak a word of German. And people in stores/restaurants don't necessarily speak English.

Still, even with very very little Spanish I wasn't that bad off when I got here.
And if I hadn't tried to avoid showing that I obviously did not speak the language, I would've been even better off.
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Old 07-22-2008, 12:04 AM   #7
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

And how has your Spanish improved since you've been in BsAs?
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Old 07-22-2008, 03:07 AM   #8
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

I've taken 4 hours of class for 8 weeks, so yes. I hope so. I still don't use it enough in everyday conversation, because I don't really have any argentine friends that live near me who just come over and hang out. Also, I've actually been working alot this month.
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Old 07-22-2008, 03:39 AM   #9
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

What airlines are most common to fly in on?

again thanks for the info.
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Old 07-22-2008, 04:33 AM   #10
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

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Originally Posted by ArturiusX View Post
How is speaking English over there? Is it like Europe? I'm worried my limited spanish won't be enough.
I'm an American and was there for 5 weeks this winter (their summer). Most people speak no English and it was very difficult much of the time b/c of my limitations with speaking Spanish.
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Old 07-22-2008, 04:33 AM   #11
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

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What airlines are most common to fly in on?

again thanks for the info.
I flew American Airlines direct from Miami to BsAs. LAN is a popular South American airline that you might come across.
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Old 07-22-2008, 02:23 PM   #12
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

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What airlines are most common to fly in on?
American, Continental, United. You fly into EZE.

To find the cheapest fares, I recommend lessno.com (in my limited experience the best for BsAs), vayama, mobissimo, and orbitz.
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Old 07-22-2008, 03:13 PM   #13
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by LozColbert View Post
American, Continental, United. You fly into EZE.

To find the cheapest fares, I recommend lessno.com (in my limited experience the best for BsAs), vayama, mobissimo, and orbitz.
Aerolineas Argentinas as well. For flights within Argentina and Latin America I also recommend www.despegar.com
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Old 07-22-2008, 03:41 PM   #14
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

Hi everyone,

I've been following the old thread for a while and it has been most helpful. I'm leaving for Buenos Aires on the first of September and I'm staying for about a year. It looks like I'm staying in Recoleta. I'm also looking forward to possibly meeting some other 2+2ers since they are few and far between on the swedish countryside. One of the reasons I'm going back to BA is because of the affordable restaurants so I'm definitely interested in the tuesday dining club. I usually play 200NL-400NL on Stars so I recognize a couple of you.

I'm renting an apartment for 800$ a month. However, when I look at apartments they seem far from fully booked. Does anyone know if it is possible to bargain it down if you are staying for a longer period e.g. 1 year?

/Setcho

Last edited by Setcho; 07-22-2008 at 03:43 PM. Reason: nogoodatposting
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Old 07-22-2008, 04:00 PM   #15
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

Unless you know the city pretty well and know what type of area you like already, I think committing yourself to one year would be a big mistake. Yeah you could maybe get a discount for long term, but there are so many variables that you don't know about. ****ty landlord, construction across the street, loud street. I would just book a month somewhere and use that time to go to clarin.com classifieds and find a good value for long term. If you're getting in in September you will still have a lot of options before the peak season kicks in.
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Old 07-22-2008, 07:48 PM   #16
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

For those who went or are there.

Is there anything you wish you would of known before you took the trip? And what would you do differently the second time with that knowledge?
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:56 PM   #17
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

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For those who went or are there.

Is there anything you wish you would of known before you took the trip? And what would you do differently the second time with that knowledge?
I'd learn some spanish before I got there.

God reading this thread makes me want to go back so bad
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Old 07-25-2008, 01:14 AM   #18
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

We should probably talk about the ATM limits currently in place for Gringos?

The Govt/banks (each blame each other) have limited foreigners to a max of 320 pesos per withdrawal. It's a huge PITA, as it takes upto 6 days for me to withdraw my rent money each month. Also the repeated withdrawal fee rape I am suffering is making me feel all dirty and used.

My former house-mates were able to withdraw 1000s of pesos at a time via their US Citibank account from a Citibank ATM here right up until they left recently. So if you're thinking of spending any time here I'd definetely get yourself a Citibank account setup before you get here.

Or bring as much currency as you dare? All banks will change USD/Euros at decent rates (don't forget your passport when doing this, Ipod also recommended for the obligatory 30min wait in line). Only bank I know of that changes British pounds is 'Banco Piano'.
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Old 07-25-2008, 01:27 AM   #19
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

Oh yeah - Mercers annual global cost of living survey was published yesterday, Buenos Aires came in at 138th of 143 cities.

SHIPIT.
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Old 07-25-2008, 07:27 AM   #20
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

Would it be a good idea to bring a ton of US dollars instead of relying on ATM withdrawals?
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Old 07-25-2008, 10:38 AM   #21
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

Will HSBC ATm's allow HSBC customers to take out more than that?
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Old 07-25-2008, 12:55 PM   #22
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

I'm pretty sure HSBC acount holders have the same problem, though maybe someone else here who actually has a non-Argy HSBC account could confirm.

http://www.escapeartist.com/efam/200...ticle_atm.html for more on the whens and whys.

Bringing as much cash as you feel comfortable holding is definitely wise.
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Old 07-25-2008, 02:12 PM   #23
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

I have an ATM card from a small credit union in the US and I am able to withdraw a maximum of 1560 pesos every day. I have to do it in three transactions (600+600+360) and the limit is the same no matter what ATM I use.
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Old 07-25-2008, 03:25 PM   #24
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

why is it only citibank customers that get around it?
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Old 07-26-2008, 02:33 PM   #25
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Re: Moving to Buenos Aires discussion

Classes when I get to BA or Rosetta Stone now?
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