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Planning on moving to Ecuador next year. (Quito)

Hi everyone, my partner and I are looking at moving to Ecuador next year and we are just trying to find out some information from ex-pats living already there so any input from any of you would be greatly appreciated!

To give you a bit of background of us...we are a British couple in our 40s, currently living in Western Australia. We are both massage therapist and would like to have our own therapy business in Ecuador.

We are thinking of leaving Australia as the cost of living is extremely high and, to be honest, we miss the culture, history,etc. that we have enjoyed in Europe. We are also looking for a simpler life with less stress and less importance placed on material stuff!

We worked in Spain for a few years and both have a fairly ok command of the language...although we would be looking to improve this!

Our main concerns are:

How easy is it to get a visa to be resident in Ecuador?
What is the process to set up a small business e.g. a massage therapy clinic?
Is there a market for massage therapy amongst the local and ex-pat community? Are there many massage therapists working in your town/ city? We are clinical/ remedial massage therapists to specialise in helping people with acute and chronic pain. Can you give me an idea of what you would pay for a massage treatment there?
We have a dog and 2 cats that we would be bringing with us. Any advice on bringing pets into the country? How do you find the veterinary care, availability of pet food, etc.?
We are a same-sex couple (2 females) and would be interested to know if Ecuador, in general, is gay friendly? We aren't looking for a big gay scene, we just want to know that we will be accepted!
And really just a general curiosity to know what you feel are the good and bad things about living in Ecuador as an ex-pat.
Thanks guys, any advice and input from anyone on the forum would be much appreciated!
Have a great day.


Quito Forum