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Moving to Montevideo

Looking forward to moving to Montevideo? Experience a melting pot life influenced by the Italian and Brazilian cultures, great barbeques and nice mild weather. You can get expat advice on the climate, visas for Uruguay and more in this article!

About the City

The capital and largest city in Uruguay, Montevideo is situated in 194 km² of land on the southern coast of the country, on the northeastern bank of the Río de la Plata. It is known as one of the best cities to live in South America.

As an international, business-oriented city, its population of 1.7 million in 2014 was made up of a diverse array of different cultures, nationalities and ethnicities. Whilst the main bulk of the population is Uruguayan, there are also large communities of Polish, Lebanese, American, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian citizens that have moved to Montevideo.

The official language is Uruguayan Spanish, which is a curious mix of accents of Spanish and Italian, but Portuguese and Portuñol (a mix of Spanish and Portuguese) is also commonly spoken. The number of English speakers in the city is rising, and many business meetings and transactions now take place in Uruguayan Spanish and English.

The Climate in Montevideo

Expatriates moving to Montevideo will need to adjust to the mild humid subtropical climate. The city's weather is characterized by cool, wet winter months from June to September, scorching hot, humid summers from December to March, and wet, volatile springs throughout October and November.

Summers are generally very hot, with temperatures reaching 28.4°C, however, due to Montevideo's location on the coast, the summer is a few degrees cooler than nearby Buenos Aires, which is just across the Rio de La Plata.

Spring brings extreme weather to the city, with cyclones, thunderstorms and lots of rainfall; winter is generally cooler, with temperatures of around 14.0°C, and sleet is not uncommon.

Visas for Uruguay

Uruguay is a very welcoming country, and has no restrictions on the amount of expatriates entering each year. In fact, citizens of most large countries can enter Uruguay without a visa, but if you are unsure as to whether this applies to you, you can check with your embassy or consulate.

You can apply for a long term residency permit in one of two ways, either before you move to Montevideo, or whilst you are already in the city on your tourist visa, which can be converted to a residency permit providing you haven't overstayed the 90-day validity period.

You can apply for either a permanent residency permit or a temporary residency permit, both of which will allow you to work in the country. Whilst they are a welcoming country, it can still take a number of weeks to obtain your visa for Montevideo, so keep this in mind when applying.

Giovanni Gallo

"I have lived in many countries before, and now I like sharing my experience as an expat with members of the Quito Community."

Kristina Serou

"It's all about finding more expats in Uruguay and beyond to build a network -- InterNations makes it happen. "

Global Expat Guide