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Moving to Cusco! Questions!

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Joined: 02 Jan 2010
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 3:30 am    Post subject: Moving to Cusco! Questions! Reply with quote

I ill be living in Cusco from Mid March through late September. I have lots of questions!

-Where can I find an English teaching job that is one on one? or just a couple of students at a time?

-Anyone have input on where i can find a cheap flight?

-I am still very confused about the whole visa, and how that works. How long does it take to get a VISA in the US to go to Peru?

-Anyone know of any reputable volunteer opportunities in Cusco? Anyone familiar with the Bruce Organization? I am considering volunteering for the first month while i get situated and look for an English teaching job, apt, etc.

Thanks for your help!
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Joined: 13 Feb 2009
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 4:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello there. I just finished teaching for 10 months in Cusco, so I think I can answer some of your questions.

First of all, if you only want to teach private classes (clases particulares) then you definitely are not going to be able to work for a school or institution. I think that Maximo Nivel may give private lessons for international exams, but those opportunities are rare, and I would imagine go to the teachers who have been there longer. Your best bet is to teach out of your home. In this case, you'll not only want to network, but also place an ad in a copy of Rueda de Negocios, their local classifieds which you can grab at any news stand in town. I taught all of my private classes through networking, and after living there for a few months, had more people asking me to teach private classes than time to teach them. A cigarette vendor in the plaza de armas asked for my phone number to teach his kid. A woman at a convenience store wanted classes for her kid and herself. A taxi driver wanted private classes. Also, many of my students from my regular classes approached me about private classes for advanced english or international exams. However, while the opportunities may appear abundant, be warned that you should not rely on them for a stable income! There are a lot of flakes out there! And most of my students showed up late to every class and wasted my time, as they run on what they call Peruvian time (la hora peruana). Lastly, you should never charge less than 15 soles per hour if you are a native speaker. Some are willing to pay more than 20 if it's for international exam preparation.

As far as the tourist VISA goes, you don't get it in the states, you get it in Peru, so it all depends on what happens when you hit immigration in the Lima airport. Unless you specify, they will give you a 90 day tourist VISA. So MAKE SURE that you tell them you want 183 days (which I was too sleep deprived to remember when I first arrived in Lima.) Feel free to lie and tell them you have a Peruvian significant other, which worked every time for me, or think of another excuse for being in Peru for 6 months (volunteer work, extensive travel itinerary, learning Quechua, etc.). Don't sweat it, though ... they often give you 183 days, no questions asked if you request it. After that, you will have 6 months in the country and any work you get will be illegal, although I don't see them cracking down on that any time soon. After your 183 days is up you will be charged $1 per day you overstay, which you will have to pay at immigration when you leave the country. I overstayed 15 days, payed 15 dollars ... no problem. Just try to keep it to less than a month or you may have problems. Thus, if you're staying from mid-march to late september, you won't have to renew your VISA if you get 183 days, but you may have to pay a few bucks depending on how many days you overstay. If you wish to stay longer, you'll have to leave the country for 24 hours (Chile if you're American, Bolivia if you're from elsewhere) in order to renew your VISA.

I can't exactly speak to cheap plane tickets or volunteer organizations, but I hope this info helps. Good luck and have fun in Cusco!
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Joined: 02 Jan 2010
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

thanks! that's really helpful info!
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Joined: 04 May 2003
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2010 3:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can-t tell you about Cusco, per se, but I know a lot about Peru. is good for fligths.

Visas, you probably don-t need one, you just get a tourist visa for UP to 183 days. Then either border hop or pay the dollar a day fine. There-s no limit on border hopping. I went to Ecuador, stayed an hour, went back. I know people who have paid 250 bucks. They don-t care much, you-re paying them.

If you teach privates, get them to pay in advance, and don-t negotiate your price much. I did at first, Bad idea. The next year, I raised prices from 30 to 45 and my students didn-t bat an eye. Then I went up to 60 soles. If you-re a good teacher, they-ll pay.

Pay in advance is key. I had one student text me and say he couldn-t continue. Luckily he paid in advance.
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