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Ecuador in May (Guayaquil)

I'm moving to Ecuador in May Protected content . I will be arriving in Guayaquil, will get a hotel or motel room and stay for a few days. Then my plan is to go on to Loja, where I plan on finding a rental. A few questions I have are: is there someone who could meet me at the airport or should I take a taxi to the hotel? I am thinking about staying there long enough to go ahead snd apply for my 9-I visa. What hotel would you suggest that would be near where I have to go to get this done? I'm not looking for luxury, but for comfort and cleanliness at a low cost. Once I get the process started, I hope to travel to Loja and get a room while I possibly look for a long term furnished rental. What would be the best means of travel from Guayaquil to Loja? Any idea how long it would take by bus, and would my luggage be safe on the bus? And last but not least, are there any medicinal hot springs in or near Loja?