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Ecuador
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hollys825



Joined: 27 Jun 2010
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Wed Jun 30, 2010 4:44 pm    Post subject: Ecuador Reply with quote

Hi,

I heard that most people teaching in Ecuador are working on a tourist visa, and the visa can be extended for $2. Is this still true?
Also, how many times can this be done? Can one also do a visa run to a nearby country?

I would really like to settle somewhere for one to two years. Is it possible to get a job and then become legal? I'd be willing to return to the States for a spell if that would help.

What country in South America is it easiest to get legal work in once one is there?

Thanks for your help in advance,
Holly
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just_a_mirage



Joined: 11 Nov 2008
Posts: 169
Location: ecuador

PostPosted: Thu Jul 01, 2010 4:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, and no. There are some people working on tourist visas, but most reputable schools will not hire anyone on a tourist visa, as that is illegal. If you work on one, you will not be paid fairly and you have no recourse if they decide not to pay you at all.
You CANNOT do border runs, and with few exceptions, Ecuador will not extend a tourist visa. You can get the 12-IX visa which will let you work legally, but is only good for six months and cannot be renewed.
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hollys825



Joined: 27 Jun 2010
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Thu Jul 01, 2010 5:24 pm    Post subject: So... Reply with quote

That's interesting because I read:

"The Visa. You will probably be told at the Ecuadorian embassy that a work visa is required for teaching English and this can only be obtained with a work contract sent to you from Ecuador before leaving. I tried this in vain for three months before giving up. I have not met any foreigner who has a work visa, and I have not been asked about it by any potential employer in the many schools Iíve visited. The 90-day visitorís visa is more than adequate and itís free. A three-month extension costs $2."

http://www.transitionsabroad.com/listings/work/articles/worksep1.shtml

So are you telling me no one (no American teacher) works in Ecuador more than 6 months?!

Thanks for your quick reply,
Holly
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just_a_mirage



Joined: 11 Nov 2008
Posts: 169
Location: ecuador

PostPosted: Thu Jul 01, 2010 6:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm saying that no foreign teacher works for more than 6 months on a TOURIST visa. You must have a WORK visa to work long term. This involves obtaining a work contract from an employer and several other documents. The info that you have about the two dollar renewal is obsolete and is no longer available except to citizens of just a few countries, not the US, Canada, the UK etc. The rules change here constantly so check with the Ecuadorian Consulate nearest you for the most up to date rules and regs.
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bexarwithme



Joined: 29 May 2010
Posts: 13

PostPosted: Thu Jul 01, 2010 7:43 pm    Post subject: Try Peru Reply with quote

Ecudaor is a lot of work if you want to stay more than 6 months. Check out Peru right next door. There is much more flexibility there with staying and working long term as a tourist. You can border hop every six months and keep a tourist visa or you can stay as long as you want and pay a $1 per day overstay fine when you leave. It seems to be the norm there that most people work on a tourist visa and the employers don't want to be bothered with getting a more appropriate visa. I wonder how many people opt for Peru over Ecuador because of the 6 month limit in Ec? Too bad, Quito is one of my most favorite places on earth.
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hollys825



Joined: 27 Jun 2010
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Thu Jul 01, 2010 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mirage, thank you. But can you clarify? You said: "You can get the 12-IX visa which will let you work legally, but is only good for six months and cannot be renewed." So how can anyone stay long-term?

So my question: how / where can I work longterm in South America?

Bexar, thanks, I'll think about Peru. Can you get legal once you're there?

Thanks so much for your input.
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bexarwithme



Joined: 29 May 2010
Posts: 13

PostPosted: Thu Jul 01, 2010 8:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Holly, Being on a tourist visa is legal wherever you are. There are some things that might not be technically allowed on a tourist visa but are done in a widespread manner. Check out the Peru forum. I suspect most people that go down there and work and live, do so on a tourist visa and are at no great risk for adverse consequences. Peru seems to be the easiest place to go and make a living on a tourist visa. Mexico seems to be the easiest place to go and make a living and get a legal, working visa. All of the other markets are very small or have difficult visa laws.
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hollys825



Joined: 27 Jun 2010
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Fri Jul 02, 2010 8:36 am    Post subject: Peru Reply with quote

Thanks, Bexar. So how long can you keep hopping the border to extend the tourist visa? I'm looking to stay somewhere for 2 or more years.
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just_a_mirage



Joined: 11 Nov 2008
Posts: 169
Location: ecuador

PostPosted: Fri Jul 02, 2010 3:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Holly. What most people do is come down on a 12_IX Visa which lets you work legally during the six months that it is valid. Then after you find work, you ask your employer to give you a contract which you then use to change to a work visa. The good thing about the 12-IX is that you can change it to another visa while you are in Ecuador. With the 90 day tourist visa, you cannot change it while in the country. You must either go to a consulate in Peru or Colombia and change it, but sometimes they wont do it and you have to return to your home country.
Once you have a work visa, or the 12_IX, you must go to SRI which is the Ecuadorian version of the IRS. You show copies of your passport, your visa, the rental contract for the place you live (this must be notorized and registered with the government), and a utility bill. You must present copies of all of these at SRI. You then get a RUC number which is similar to a Social Security number. With the forms you receive at SRI, you then go to a government authorized printer, and have them make you a receipt book or facturas as they call them with your name, and RUC number, and your line of work. For teachers it will specify which level you teach...from primary to superior, which is university. Then you bill your employer, usually once a month, using these invoices. No reputable employer will hire you without you having a RUC number, because to balance their books and file their taxes they must be able to show that each paycheck they have written has been given to someone with a valid RUC.
Some shady operators will pay you in cash, or by check for a few months, but it is illegal for them to do this, and they will pay a hefty fine if they are caught. Thats why its not a good idea to work for someone paying you cash. If you dont have a RUC, you cannot work legally, and if you do, you can face being deported (although that doesnt seem to happen often). Or, the employer can come up with any number of excuses, and not pay you at all, or pay you an amount lower than you agreed on. If you are working illegally, without a RUC you have absolutely no recourse, and believe me, there are schools here that do that. They hire people, dont pay them, then when the person complains, boot them out the door. In the meantime, theyve had free labor for however long youve stayed working there. Thats why it is not a good idea to work on a tourist visa other than the 12-IX at least in Ecuador. You can also pm IDIGGS. He can relate his experience to you.
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latif



Joined: 25 Apr 2010
Posts: 31
Location: Oakland, California

PostPosted: Sat Jul 03, 2010 5:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I might be wrong, but it was my understanding that it is possible to get the 12 IX visa while in Ecuador, if you apply for it before the tourist visa time runs out?

It appears that each consulate has their own requirements for the 12 IX visa:

from the D.C. consulate:

"Doctor's certificate and HIV test, indicating that the person does not have any communicable diseases.

Police certificate indicating that there is no record"

The San Francisco consulate, however, does not list the above two requirements, but includes the following:

2.2 Letter from the company, business or entrepreneur sponsoring the trip

Also the forms are different for the two consulates:

San Francisco includes the following two questions:

ENTIDAD AUSPICIANTE Y RESPONSABLE / Sponsoring Organization and Name of legal representative

ACTIVIDAD A DESARROLLAR / Activity to be developed

The D.C. consulate form is much more straight forward ... and does not include the above two questions.

Since I live near San Francisco, I'll be applying at that consulate. If I could get some advice on how to answer the two questions? I obviously have no sponsoring organization - and "activity to be developed" - I was going to put down "teacher training" and tourism ?

I'll be giving the consulate (s) a call next week, and see if I can get some clarification.

Although, I'm also trying to come up with a back up plan, in case the 12 IX visa process gets too complicated ...
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idiggs



Joined: 04 Feb 2010
Posts: 47
Location: Ecuador La Costa

PostPosted: Wed Jul 07, 2010 1:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

just_a_mirage wrote:

Some shady operators will pay you in cash, or by check for a few months, but it is illegal for them to do this, and they will pay a hefty fine if they are caught. Thats why its not a good idea to work for someone paying you cash. If you dont have a RUC, you cannot work legally, and if you do, you can face being deported (although that doesnt seem to happen often). Or, the employer can come up with any number of excuses, and not pay you at all, or pay you an amount lower than you agreed on. If you are working illegally, without a RUC you have absolutely no recourse, and believe me, there are schools here that do that. They hire people, dont pay them, then when the person complains, boot them out the door. In the meantime, theyve had free labor for however long youve stayed working there. Thats why it is not a good idea to work on a tourist visa other than the 12-IX at least in Ecuador. You can also pm IDIGGS. He can relate his experience to you.


J_A_M is right....usually people think it is better to get paid in cash because they don't have to worry about taxes and they end up having more money. Well, think again...it will hurt you 100x more...I am speaking from experience. Employers will absolutely take advantage of you. After all, they will have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Get your 12-IX from your home country...I just got it yesterday and the process was quite simple.

If you are from the United States, despite what the website says...all you need is:

1. your passport
2. two passport size photos
3. a copy of your roundtrip ticket
4. visa application (you can print this form from the US embassy website)
5. visa certificate (you can print this form from the US embassy website)
6. a bank statement or a job offer letter

Employers that are willing to hire you on a tourist visa are CHEAP, DISHONEST, and/or SELFISH.

CHEAP: they are too cheap to do things the legal way

DISHONEST: they may pay you less than the original agreement

SELFISH: the employer cares about their business and their paycheck....and does not really care if you stay or not....because they can just find another foreigner...and do the same thing with them
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naturegirl321



Joined: 04 May 2003
Posts: 9041
Location: home sweet home

PostPosted: Thu Jul 08, 2010 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hollys825 wrote:
Mirage, thank you. But can you clarify? You said: "You can get the 12-IX visa which will let you work legally, but is only good for six months and cannot be renewed." So how can anyone stay long-term?

So my question: how / where can I work longterm in South America?

Bexar, thanks, I'll think about Peru. Can you get legal once you're there?

Thanks so much for your input.


I can tell you about Peru. Unless you have a teaching license and can get into an intl school, forget about visas. Institutes don't give them. no worries though! People border hop or pay the dollar a day fine. Also, you get 183 days upon entry. Down side: no visa, no flight, no housing.
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latif



Joined: 25 Apr 2010
Posts: 31
Location: Oakland, California

PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2010 5:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

idiggs wrote:


Get your 12-IX from your home country...I just got it yesterday and the process was quite simple.

If you are from the United States, despite what the website says...all you need is:

1. your passport
2. two passport size photos
3. a copy of your roundtrip ticket
4. visa application (you can print this form from the US embassy website)
5. visa certificate (you can print this form from the US embassy website)
6. a bank statement or a job offer letter



I contacted the Ecuador consulate a few days ago, they said that you also need a health statement from your physician stating that the applicant has no communicable desease and also a police clearance. I have the California DOJ print out/report, that I'm going to also get apostilled. I'll also go to the local police department and get their report.

The consulate also said that the visa period begins as of the date the visa is granted (i.e. the six month clock starts ticking the date the visa is stamped at the consulate). I've been told three different versions of when the clock starts ticking - 1) above 2) the date of arrival in Ecuador, and 3) the date the visa is registered in Ecuador. These dates were important for me 'cause I was going to travel before going to Ecuador, but I now think it'll be easier to just go straight to Ecuador, and travel in South America later ...
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idiggs



Joined: 04 Feb 2010
Posts: 47
Location: Ecuador La Costa

PostPosted: Thu Jul 15, 2010 2:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

latif wrote:


I contacted the Ecuador consulate a few days ago, they said that you also need a health statement from your physician stating that the applicant has no communicable desease and also a police clearance. I have the California DOJ print out/report, that I'm going to also get apostilled. I'll also go to the local police department and get their report.

The consulate also said that the visa period begins as of the date the visa is granted (i.e. the six month clock starts ticking the date the visa is stamped at the consulate). I've been told three different versions of when the clock starts ticking - 1) above 2) the date of arrival in Ecuador, and 3) the date the visa is registered in Ecuador. These dates were important for me 'cause I was going to travel before going to Ecuador, but I now think it'll be easier to just go straight to Ecuador, and travel in South America later ...


Well...I guess that I might have been lucky then....

In regards to the clock ticking....you have 30 days as soon as you arrive in Ecuador to get the visa registered (it says that on the form). However, once the visa is registered, I don't know if they start counting the 6 months from when the day that the visa was originally issued or from the day that the visa registered in Ecuador.
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latif



Joined: 25 Apr 2010
Posts: 31
Location: Oakland, California

PostPosted: Thu Jul 15, 2010 4:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

idiggs wrote:

Well...I guess that I might have been lucky then....

In regards to the clock ticking....you have 30 days as soon as you arrive in Ecuador to get the visa registered (it says that on the form). However, once the visa is registered, I don't know if they start counting the 6 months from when the day that the visa was originally issued or from the day that the visa registered in Ecuador.


I also contacted the D.C. consulate, they said that the clock starts ticking on arrival in Ecuador ...
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