The “currency discount,” as we call it, on offer in Colombia for U.S. dollar holders right now translates to 55% more buying power.
It’s a huge reduction that applies to your grocery spend, property taxes, rent, HOA fees, and on and on.
The remarkable reality right now in Medellín, Colombia, specifically, is that you can live a luxury lifestyle—including theater, orchestra, fine dining, bistros, and cafés—on a Social Security budget.
This is why we’ve named this Euro-chic city as the number-one lifestyle choice in the Americas.
At today’s exchange rate, you can rent a comfortable two-bedroom apartment in a desirable part of Medellín for as little as US$300… or even less.
Your total monthly budget? Well, that could amount to US$1,000… or, again, even less.
But… wait a minute… you might be thinking to yourself…
Who would want to live in Medellín, Colombia?
Over the past dozen years that I’ve been spending time in this beautiful and sophisticated city of springtime and flowers, I’ve met loads of folks (folks just like you, I’d bet) who have decided to reinvent their lives in a city that, alas, continues to be seriously misunderstood…
Folks like Joe Grason.
Joe set out from Seattle, Washington, for an adventure…
Well, I’ll let Joe tell you his story himself…
Q: How did you choose Medellín?
Joe: I ended up in Medellín by accident. I was driving from Seattle to Buenos Aires, Argentina, and my van broke down three hours north of Medellín. It was impossible to locate parts for my vehicle here (VW van), and it took nearly three months to get it fixed.
By the time I had my van back, I was sold on Medellín.
The first week I was here, I played tourist and saw the sites. I was impressed from the first day with how modern the city and especially its transportation system are.
Having taken a six-month road trip through Mexico and all Central America, I can tell you that, for me, no city in that region compares. This is a notably cleaner city than cities in Central America, for example.
For me, the friendliness of the locals was another big selling point. The people of this city welcome newcomers with open arms and with lots of pride in their city and their country.
Q: What’s there to do in Medellín?
Joe: Medellín is a big city. Full of events. I have been very impressed by the sporting complexes, for example. There are modern and well-maintained stadiums, gyms, swimming pools, running tracks, etc. One section of the main road system is shut down every Sunday to encourage locals to walk and bike the city. Again, not what I had expected to find anywhere in Latin America.
Medellín is progressive in its thinking and its government. The library system is large and modern, and everyone involved with city planning here is big on green spaces and public parks.
Q: What are your favorite things about living in Medellín?
Joe: The climate for sure. Also no mosquitos.
On my driving trip down here, I contemplated living in many locations, including Mexico, Nicaragua, and Panama. The reality, I found, is that, once you get south of Baja, Mexico, the weather anywhere near the ocean is extremely hot. You just want to be in an air-conditioned vehicle or an air-conditioned building all the time. For a week’s vacation, a tropical location can be great. You spend your time lounging by the pool. But as a place to live and work, I find Medellín far more pleasant.
Q: What don’t you like about life in Medellín?
Joe: Traffic is becoming more of a problem. If you need to drive a lot in town, it can consume a lot of time. With the economy moving ahead, more and more people are owning vehicles.
Q: Can you comment on the availability, price, and quality of medical and dental care in the city?
Joe: My only experience in this department so far is having my teeth cleaned. The cost was approximately US$50. The office was as clean and sophisticated as I’ve ever been in. They even had a TV that they position over your head and a set of headphones so that you can watch TV or a movie during the procedure. The dentist spoke excellent English.
Fortunately, I haven’t had any need to seek medical care here yet, but I can tell you that Medellín is increasingly recognized as a top medical tourism destination. The quality of health care available here is as good as you’ll find anywhere in the United States… and costs maybe 70% less.
Q: Has language been a problem for you?
Joe: Language can be a hurdle, depending on the neighborhood you are in and what you are looking to accomplish. I would consider myself a beginner in Spanish, and I know I need to improve. I have recently enrolled at the local university for classes. The more “touristy” a neighborhood is (El Poblado, for example), the more English that is spoken. But, generally speaking, you can’t count on people speaking English.
Q: What would you say is the future of Medellín? Where is this city headed?
Joe: I would guess that Medellín is on the verge of a major growth spurt. The city will continue to modernize and to internationalize.
The government continues to invest heavily in transportation infrastructure and educational systems, with an emphasis on teaching English to the next generation. The locals are moving up the “class ladder,” and the middle and upper classes are expanding.
In just the time that I have been living here, I’m noticing more and more Americans, Europeans, and Australians settling here.
This place is less undiscovered all the time.
Founding Publisher, Overseas Opportunity Letter