Being over 65 in Ecuador has big perks even if you’re a foreign expatriate who has decided to retire abroad. Expats are eligible to participate in Ecuador’s Social Security medical program, providing access to top-rated medical facilities, but that is only the beginnings. Senior citizens are also entitled to 50% off of a host of products and services, including public transportation, airfare, event tickets and water/utility bills. Add a beautiful year-round climate, numerous tax incentives, free landline phone service and being able to go to the head of line at the bank or utility office, and you’ve got the makings for an amazing place to retire. For more on this continue reading the following article from International Living.
Not only does Ecuador have one of the world’s best climates…lowest costs of living…and top-notch medical care at up to one-tenth the cost of the U.S… But it also has a little-known retirement program that could save you thousands of dollars a year.
Ecuador’s senior-citizen discount program is intended to help its own citizens. But the country’s constitution guarantees foreign residents the same rights as citizens—so as a retiree, you’ll enjoy the same benefits.
- 50% off public and private transportation within the country (including the Galápagos)
- 50% off tickets for all cultural and sporting events, including movies
- 50% off electric and water bills (below certain usage levels)
- Free domestic landline phone service (does not include long distance and other services)
- You’ll also get 50% off international airfares on Taca, Copa, or AeroGal for round-trip flights originating in Ecuador
Best of all, you never have to stand in line. If you’re a senior citizen, when you make a bank deposit or pay your utility bill, it’s the law that you go directly to the front of the line.
When you’re over 65, you pay lower income tax. And you get any money spent on VAT (value-added tax) refunded each month—up to about $250.
The Ecuadorian government also guarantees senior citizens access to free health care and medication, and exemption from notary and registration fees.
“All expats are able to participate in the Ecuador Social Security medical program,” explains Jack Moss who, with his wife Debbie, retired to Cotacachi two years ago.
“There are no exams necessary for those under age 60. Over 60 there are a series of medical tests, but a pre-existing condition is not a reason to be denied coverage. The premium is about $57 a month, and there is no co-pay or deductible for physician visits, hospitalization, medications, or dental visits.”
This article was republished with permission from International Living.