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Relocating & Living
B Topics
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Information I have compiled and saved
on vacationing, living and
relocating to Argentina.

B Topics

 

  • Bagels
  • From: Anil and Juhi Manwani, June 13, 2003

i just found a place this afternoon that had some bagels. the place is called hogaza bakery. they have 2 branches, one on the street talcahuano between santa fe and arenales, and the other on pueyreddon between arenales and beruti. they had 3 flavours/varieties, onion, sesame and poppy. hope those who were missing find this a good substitute.

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  • Bakery
  • From: Frank E. Almeida, August 30, 2006

I have been in BA since 1999. I noticed that although there are some great foods in Argentina there were some tastes from home that I just could not find here and that I was sure would go over big if anyone made them correctly. My wife and I started Sugar & Spice in 2002 at around the same time our first daughter Tatiana was born. In honor of our first born being born a girl, and at the same time that we decided to start this project, we called it Sugar & Spice because "that's what little girls are made of."

Our goal is to be the premier cookie brand in Argentina. Not necessarily the biggest, but the best cookies you can find in the country.

Today we supply select gourmet stores, delicatessens, cheese and wine stores, duty free stores, 5 star  and boutique hotels, department stores, and some select cafe chains like McCafe and Aroma Cafe throughout the country.

We will be making a new website but we have that shelved until March of next year.

Saludos, / Frank E. Almeida

Sugar & Spice
Soler 5547 (entre Humboldt & Fitz-Roy en Palermo Hollywood)
4777-5423
www.sugarandspice.com.ar
Tentate & Disfruta

    From: Anil and Juhi Manwani, April 01, 2006

You can get really good cakes from Dos Escudos or Nucha's. Dos Escudos has 3 branches - one on Juncal 900 block between Suipacha and C. Pellegrini, on Montevideo almost corner of Quintana and Av. Las Heras y Billinghurst.  They have a delivcious choc cake with mousse and strawberries. Nucha's has various branches but I know of 2 - Vicente Lopez between Juncal and Montevideo (opp. Plaza Vicente Lopez) and Salguero y Cerviño. My favorite at Nucha's is a lemon and chocolate mousse cake ... feels like marshmallow.

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  • Bank Accounts / How to Open One
  • From: Katina Metzidakis, July 5, 2007

I suggest you open an account here in US Dollars (so that you don't deal with the exchange rate thing).  Be forewarned however.  If you don't have a DNI I wish you good luck.  Depending on the bank, the person, the moon, the wind etc. etc. (you get the idea) they may not let you open the account without the DNI.  

    From: Sean, July 5, 2007

3 banks that undisputingly allow you to open an account without DNI is Galicia, HSBC, and Banco Frances. Any of their branch offices that tell you otherwise are simply mis-informed and need to check with their headquarters. If the branch refuses to check with their own headquarters or still give you grief,  then check with the headquarters yourself and have them fix the “problem”

    From: Peter Lawrence, July 5, 2007

Regarding bank accounts, that was more difficult.  there were postings here saying HBSC and some other banks would open an account, but the ONLY bank I found after going to 5 banks, and their headqtrs was Banco Galica. All the others required a DNI, and a CDI.  Galicia "got it" and realizes we need to pay our bills and do it on the net if we can. They set up my saving acct. ( you can only have this without a DNI), set up online banking, and set up the auto debits for me to pay the gas and light bills. They were fantastic.

    From: carnivaljane, August 27, 2006

We just opened a savings account with Banco Galicia and I thought the following info might be of use:

When I called several branches I got the same answer each time: no way without a DNI  Then I asked Sean of this list for help (who has opened an account with Galicia before) and asked a friend who has an account with Galicia for her help and she asked a friend who actually works at Galicia.

The bottom line is you can as a foreigner open an account with a CDI and your passport. Most employees are not aware of this. My friends' friend didn't get to the true policy until she asked her boss--all of her colleagues had told her it was impossible. You must speak with the general manager of the branch, they are aware of the policy.

We did not have the account instantly as not having the DNI delays their paperwork--it took 24 hours. We have to return to the branch when the debit cards arrive in 10 or so

days.

Once they said they would do it it was a painless operation.

    From: elizarfati, August 15, 2006

There are no general guidelines for opening a bank account in Argentina. Every bank appears to have its own requirements for opening an account.   Opening a savings account (cuenta de ahorros) or current (US:  checking) account (cuenta corriente) also tends to make a difference as to what is required. The best advice is contact several different banks and ask them.   We spoke to several banks in Buenos Aires, and besides the necessity to show a valid passport and proof of domicile, requirements varied from minimum deposits of AR$ 1,000 to employment contracts ranging from 6 months to 1 year.   As an example, Banco La Nación has the following requirements for foreigners to open an account:   Bring your original Identification Document and a copy  Proof of domicile (gas bill, telephone bill, etc.)  Your CUIL (Código Único de Identificación Laboral)/ CUIT (Código  Único de Identificación Tributaria) / CDI (Carnet de Identidad)\  CUIL is a number given to every employee upon starting to work for  an employer. CUIT is a personal number you need to pay taxes. CDI is your Identification Card number.  Initial deposit. To open an account in pesos, this should be at least AR$10. For a dollar account, the initial deposit is US$ 500.  Annual maintenance costs of the account are AR$ 6 for a peso account, and US$ 2 for a dollar account. The costs include a Maestro debit card.  AccountsIn Argentina bank accounts can be opened in Argentina pesos  (AR$) and in US Dollars (US$). The costs of these accounts usually vary. Another distinction is opening a savings account and current  (US: checking) account. A current account is used for daily payments, whereas a savings account is used to save money.

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  • Banking / How to avoid international ATM withdrawal Fees
  • From: anjalbright, May 19, 2007

My wife and I finally got around to opening a Schwab Bank account and so far it's been fabuloso.

Here's the scoop: No minimum opening balance and you don't need any other investments with them. No ATM fees (domestic or int'l) No Forex fees (yesterday 5/18 we got an exch. at about 3.075 pesos to the dollar so even if it is a low rate, it amounts to less than 1%) Free online banking and billpay Free electronic transfer of funds from other accounts You can withdraw from any network but the dedicated network is Visa-Plus. With Visa-Plus we were each able to withdraw 1050 pesos each or 2100 pesos total.  On other networks it's a 300 peso limit per person.

We were able to sign-up over the phone, have the signature cards sent to us here in BA (we did pay to have these sent DHL) and mail them back (again we paid to send them back). You get the ATM cards a week later (yes, again we paid DHL). But it has been worth it.

Schwab Bank site: http://www.schwabbank.com/checking.do   or call 888-403-9000 The best bet seems to be the "Interest Checking Plus"

I believe Ashwini Kumar first posted this info last year, so let me be the first to say, "muchisimas gracias!" for the help.

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  • Banks / Checking Accounts / Can you Trust Them?
  • From: Sean, September 07, 2006

Re: Does anyone know about the banking industry or laws governing it? If so, please let me know. Otherwise, Does anyone think people would be interested in keeping mainly dollar accounts in a credit union style operation or bank that could loan out for Real Estate?

Unfortunately, my advice, taking into account warranted punishment for the nasty thing done every given decade or so, , that no significant funds be deposited in a bank in Argentina for now , maybe just enough to keep operational, but otherwise they have historically stolen or reduced the value of your deposits, so just keep it aboad and pay your up-to 1-1/2% “insurance” to get it in the country when needed. Too bad, but people forget less and less these days. On the other hand, I have seen no signs that real estate is in peril, except for the moves on Doug Tompkins’ big property in the north…but I don’t know the full details there yet..anybody else know?

    From: Alejandro Aru, September 03, 2006

Living in Los Angeles, when I came down to BA to visit family I always flew COPA Airlines. It stops in Panama City but the flight is 6 hours first 1/2 and 7 hours the second one, shortest I've experienced ever.

The planes are a little shitty, smaller leg room than AA and UA.

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  • Bariloche / Lake District
  • From: sanjuanbetty, January 10, 2008

Re: A friend will be visiting Bariloche and the lake district and wants to know good places to stay and good tours of lake district. any ideas?

I would certainly recommend a trip up to Refugio Frey, but it's a big hike up and not necessarily a tour of the tour bus sort. But it's a fantastic hike and the views from the refugio are spectacular.

Argentina's Travel Guide has some good information here's a link: http://argentinastravel.com/destinations/lake-district/

    From: Cindy Lesher, January 10, 2008

We were in Bariloche in October 2007 and stayed in a WONDERFUL cabana called www.rayentraybariloche.com  We had a fabulous view of the lake and were 10 minutes from downtown. It was easy to catch a bus to the city and a grocery store was as short walk from our cabana.

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  • Bed and Breakfast Places both in and outside Buenos Aires
  • From: EL M, July 2, 2006

There is a lovely B&B called "La Otra Orilla" (The Other Shore) near Palermo Viejo. Here is the web page: http://www.otraorilla.com.ar/

The prices range from $25.00 usd to $120.00 usd depending on the room, double or single etc.

    From: Peter J. Macay

Friends of ours Claudine and Juan run a wonderful B&B in Colegiales, a short distance from trendy Palermo Hollywood in Buenos Aires.

Hi, I've stayed in Claudine and Juan’s B&B too. Just blocks walking to the subway, close to the shops of Lacroze/Cabildo, and just one block from Belgrano R train station.  We found it to be very well located, in fact! :) Claudine and Juan are wonderful hosts. You'll love them!

    From BANewComers: Nati Che, July 13, 2005

Really cool B&B in Villa La Angostura

Actually I have to say it: it is my sister´s and I did test it before writing this!!! She actually did welcome me in 5 different languages before saying "HEY SIS!" (English, French, Italian, Portuguese, German and then, finally, the Spanish "HOLA"!)

I wouldn´t recommend it if it wasn´t good...

Here is their website: http://www.patagoniabed.com/

So if you want to either enjoy a snowy winter in front of a chimney or taking long magical walks; or spring with thousand of flowers and birds around you, the magical golden fall or the beach & fishing summer with the locals and plus go to the Indio reservoir there... this is the right place!!

    From: BANewComers, Daniela Melton July 13, 2005

Check out Malabia House in Palermo Viejo. A friend of mine stayed there and loved it!

www.malabiahouse.com.ar  4832-3345

    From BANewComers: Dan Perlman August 18, 2005

I'll add in one - my friend who I was trying to find a B&B for in the Barrio Norte area ended up staying at the Juncal Palace Hotel (Juncal between Azcuenaga and Larrea) www.juncalpalacehotel.com.ar 

The rooms are small, not much more than the bed and a bathroom, but they are clean, well-maintained, and the place is one of those charming sorts. Free coffee in the mornings. And really inexpensive for a hotel - 60 pesos a night for a single bed, and I think it is 70 or 75 for a "matrimonio". They have an online reservation system in both spanish and english too, and responded back to her the same day she made the request.

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  • Bicycling / Adventure Club
  • From: gingerharkey, August 15, 2006

A new group is being formed of men and women who share an interest in adventure bicycling and who wish to join together in a non-commercial endeavor to support each other. Any interested person is invited to attend a first meeting at 8:00, August 29, 2006 at the home of John Harkey in Recoleta : Arenales 1259, piso 1 (between Talcahuano and Libertad ). Following is a FAQ-style list. 

What is adventure bicycling? It means leaving the city behind for multi-day bike touring in scenic areas on paved and unpaved roads.  

Where would these trips be? Anywhere in South America, principally Argentina. Itineraries will be designed by any sub-group of members according to their shared interests.  

How demanding might these trips be? That depends on the terrain – from rolling hills to high Andean passes; from sixty to one hundred and sixty kilometer days. Multi-day trips could be made from inn to inn or camping with a support vehicle. Fully loaded, self-contained touring is not a primary goal.   Who qualifies for the group? Cyclists with esprit de corps and good physical stamina.   What is expected of members? That each person will contribute from their experience and skill sets in designing and carrying out trips. We will need people with imagination, mechanic skills, transportation management ability, first aid knowledge, e-communications skills,  interest in route researcher, etc.  Are any trips currently planned? Yes, in Salta, September +/- 4-8. If you are interested in this trip, email me right away.   "I hope to come to the meeting." Great. Please email me so that I can notify you if the meeting must be cancelled or the location changed.   "Interested, but can't make the meeting." Let me know you who you are. Email me and briefly describe your experience and goals in adventure biking. I'll be in touch.   Who is the meeting convener? John Harkey: self-employed US citizen, 3 years residence in AR and widely traveled here, sport biking enthusiast with15 years solo and group biking in US and Spain.  

Contact: John at adventurebikear@aol.com

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  • Big and Tall Men's Stores
  • From: chegringo57, January 12, 2008

There's several Big and Tall stores in Buenos Aires. Called exactly that.I know there is one in the centro on Reconquista 675 There are locations as well. Here is their website: http://www.bigandtall.com.ar/  Prepare for high prices though.

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  • Bocce Ball / Petanque / French version of Bocce Ball / Bochas in Argentina
  • From: holtjj, July 2, 2007

Re: Does anyone know of any Bocce Ball or Petanque (French version of Bocce  Ball) courts or clubs in Buenos Aires or suburbs?  I have found that Petanque and drinking Malbec (either Argentine or French) go well together.

There's one or more bochas (as its called here in Argentina) courts in Palermo, in the park  next to the Botanico at the corner of Sante Fe and Republica Arabe Siria. Apparently the  headquarters of the Argentine bochas association is on Scalabrini Ortiz near Charcas, just a  few blocks from the aforementioned courts.

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  • Book Sharing
  • From: Michael Adam Jablecki, July 6, 2007

I belong to a recycling group on yahoo for BA, and although I don't use it much, I found a little gem by being a member.  http://www.bookcrossing.com  - They allow you to catalog books, look for near ones to trade and offer your old ones to a great community.  Honestly, I have only had time to use it a little, so I don't know how easy it is to find something actually good to read (or even in English for that matter) but my "collectors" genes already tell me to stick with this site.  It allows you to record books which you don't wish to trade and mark them in your "permanent collection."   One last kind of hippy-fun feature of the site is that you can mark a book free to the "wild" and leave it somewhere with a note explicitly stating it is for free.  Every book you register is given a unique bookcrossing ID, so if somone else decides to register it later (based on a note you can inscribe telling them to) you can track it.  

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  • Books in English / Libraries with English Books
  • From: Justin Martindale, July 8, 2007

Re: where I can get English language travel books (Lonely Planet or similar) in BA? 

I found some in a bookstore on Avenida Las Heras 2225 in Recoleta. Also I saw some at the libreria in Recoleta Center (the movie theater). Also saw some at a bookstore Santa Fé near Callao. Forget El Ateneo.  I didn't find anything there that I wanted.

    From: Karina Ertasaq, April 19, 2007

KEL is a good place to buy english books . Its address : B.Norte :Marcelo T Alvear 1369 -48143788 Belgrano Conde 1990-4555-4005

    From: Victoria Anda, January 1, 2007

Hi, there´s a list of bookstores with books in english at: http://www.indextar.com/ba/buenos-aires-shopping-bookstores-c329

    From: Maria Candelaria Cicardo, January 12, 2007

There are 2 English bookshops where they have many books and the can bring the book you're looking for: one is Kel www.kel-ediciones.com and the other is Scholastics http://www.scholastic.com/aboutscholastic/worldwide/argentina.htm

    From: Frances Perry, August 30, 2006

Here is information on ICANA.   They have a number of events pertaining to North America and Argentina and a library with books in English

icana

Instituto Cultural Argentino Nortemaericano– www.icana.org.ar
Sede Centro Maipú 672, Teléfono: 5382-1500

Biblioteca Centro Lincoln - www.bcl.edu.ar
Maipú 672 Teléfono: 5382-1536

    From: tom frost, August 16, 2006

Have bought a few books here but have been surprised at the high prices.  We have purchased at Kel's and at a used bookstore in Belgrano.  Average prices for books have been around US$10-15.  The difference in price between new and used is marginal.  Are there other places that people can recommend for used books at more reasonable prices?
 
Also, is there a lending library with English books?

    From: Kate Bell, August 16, 2006

The place that Laura mentioned a while ago, Walrus books which is on estados in san telmo unidos (cross street peru I think) had a really good selection of used books. there's also loads of bookshops on calle corrientes and some of them have second hand books in english but you have to search... (assume you are talking about books in english- its very easy to find cheap books in spanish on corrientes...)

    From: Sean, August 16, 2006

It seems the area around Sarmiento and Lavalle heading roughly west towards Tribunales has a 3 of 4 English-language book sellers that sell at US list price (on the book) plus aprox 10% , and one of these is a major importer-distributor with a pretty complete show room stashed away on the second floor near there – when I find the card I will post it

    From: Frances Perry, August 17, 2006

ICANA, Maipu 672, has an English Language lending library on Florida near Plaza San Martin.

    From: Monica Arzadun, August 17, 2006

Libroshop at Av. Santa Fe 2530 (corner Av. Pueyrredon) also has second hand books in english, spanish and other languages.

    From the BANewComers list:

A friend of mine loaned me the AB FAB "House of Spirits" by Isabel Allende.  Great book!  On the inside front jacket there is a sticker for this place.  I have not been to any of these outlets, just FYI for those looking for English books.

Books in English
KEL
M.T. de Alvear 1369 - Capital
Av. La Plata 63 - Caballito
Conde 1990 - Belgrano R.
Emilio Frers 2228 - Martínez
Italia 172 - Lomas de Zamora

    From the BANewComers list:

The BABS (British and American Benevolent Society) thrift shop and bookstore buys and sells, try phoning 4798 4652 or 4723 6446.   They are on Av. Santa Fe 512 in Acassuso.

There is a second hand english book shop in the galleria on the corner of Santa Fe and Puerrydon (corner nearest the Centre and Once respectively).

    From: BANewcomers Christian Rodriguez May 20, 2005

Theres also a bookstore INSIDE the "galeria" (how do you say this in English? I mean a collection of shops built INSIDE the block square that doesnt really qualify as a shopping mall) at Pueyrredon and Santa Fe. I mean the one next to the Mc Donalds (theres also a theater inside the galeria). The store is called "English books". I saw tons of used books (including Capote, Fitzgerald, etc). The prices were reasonable.

    From: Diana Glass, June 13, 2006

I wanted to let all book lovers know that my all-time favorite, Walrus Books, has moved to a new location.  They are now located in San Telmo at Estados Unidos 617 and Perú.  The shop is open Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 am until 8:00pm.  Geoffry, the knowledgeable and bi-lingual owner, makes sure his shop always has a large and diverse selection of books.

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  • Books - Ordering online "Amazon Style Searches and Purchases" of published books here in Argentina
  • From: bakerlibros, April 13, 2007

We sell Books on-line. You can visit  www.bakerlibros.blogspot.com  You can order by e-mail  bakerlibros@hotmail.com 

or just phone and ask, whatever book you're willing. From bakelibros site you can visit and buy books in other links. We send in only few days to your adress and it's cheap.

    From BANewComers: Christian Rodriguez August 21, 2005

http://www.lsf.com.ar/
http://www.tematika.com/

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  • Boots
  • From: Roxanne Piper Davis, June 11, 2003

I have extremely large calves and it is difficult (impossible, really) to find off-the-shelf boots that fit me.   Last month I visited a store called Fortín, liked what I saw, and ordered one pair of riding boots and two pairs of dress (street) boots.  The staff — a young man named Horacio and a young blonde woman whose name I do not recall — were excellent.  They took measurements of every part of my leg/foot — the circumference of my calves, the length of each foot, the distance between several different points of my feet, and the circumferences of various parts of my feet; they even made an outline of my feet to record the exact shape. 

They have several styles of both dress boots and riding boots on display and you can mix and match the styles — I want this color boot, with/without the capped toe, with a shorter/taller/wider/narrower heel, with/without a buckle, etc.  The both pairs of dress boots fit perfectly when I picked them up and they look and feel terrific; I think this is the first time since I moved to Argentina that something has been made correctly the FIRST time!!  The riding boots always require at least one fitting because they are a bit more complicated.  I’ve had the first fitting and will have another one this coming Monday. So far, though, they look great. 

You can find Fortín at Santa Fé 1245 (between Libertad and Talcuano (spelling?)  Their phone number is 4812-2731. 

Just FYI, the custom made dress boots are ~Arg$295 and the riding boots are ~Arg$480.  In comparison to the shoddy off-the-shelf boots in the U.S, they’re a real bargain.

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  • Brazil / More to visit then just Rio and Sao Paulo
  • From: ricrico, April 24, 2007

Brasil is way more than Rio and Sao Paulo, thankfully. Go to Ouro  Preto, the beautiful colonial city in the mountains of the state of  Minas Gerais. Ouro Preto features an artistic culture, tranquillity,  eternal spring, 22 spectacular Baroque cathedrals in a town of less  than 50,000. I don't remember seeing a bar on a window there. For the  beach, Santa Catarina Island (Florianopolis) is wonderful and  advertises the lowest crime rate in the country. Beaches of every type  within 30 minutes every dirction from a well planned, interesting and  completd downtown. The island features dunes to pines and is a world  surfing destination. No bars on the windows there either; and we saw  women hitch hiking in January (high season). They really seemed more  like hippies than streetwalkers. You can get to Florianopolis by bus  from BA for about U$150 roundtrip. LanChile had a special a couple of  months ago to Sao Paulo, a roundtrip flight was about $80 dollars per  person. Normal fare should be about $350 roundtrip. Bus to Belo  Horizonte from Sao Paulo (then to Ouro Preto) should cost under $100  dollars and take less than 10 hours in a two legged trip. As for Rio  and SP, I have stayed away from Rio due to the scary stories, thinking  I would wait until I have a Brasilian to go with (which helps but  doesn't guarantee anything). I have been to Sao Paulo many times and  have never been bothered although I know it could happen since every  one I know there ''has a story'' (as everybody I have talked to here  also has a story of a robbery, kidnap etc.). But then so does  everybody I know in California. Oh, and one thing that I have heard  helps (and try hard to follow) is to not display anything that looks  valuable. So far, that's worked everywhere for many years. 

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  • Brazilian Visa required for USA citizens to go to Brazil / Iguazu Falls
  • From: Daniela Buira, July 19, 2010

Re: is there an official link in English mapping out all the requirements?

Hi Patricia,
 
Here is the link in English:
 
http://www.conbrasil.org.ar/CONSBRASIL/visas_otros01engl.asp#1

Good luck !
 
Daniela

conbrasil

    From: Peter J. Macay, November 10, 2009

The Brazilian embassy is at Cerrito 1350 (C1010ABB). Buenos Aires, Argentina | Tel.: (5411) 4515-2400 http://www.brasil.org.ar/

However, where you apply for a temporary tourist visa is across the street at Carlos Pellegrini 1363, 5th Floor.  4515-6500 http://www.conbrasil.org.ar/  

From their website as of July 20, 2010 - TOURIST VISA

THE VISA IS NOT A RIGHT, BUT A CONCESSION FROM THE COUNTRY THAT IS GRANTING IT.

To apply for the visa, it is necessary to make an appointment calling to the following telephone number: (5411) 4508-6953 (from Monday to Friday, from 09am to 2pm and from 3pm to 5pm).

Documents required in order to apply for a tourist visa in the General Consulate of Brazil in Buenos Aires:

PASSPORT, valid for six months at least

01 PASSPORT SIZE PHOTO (UPDATED AND WHITE BACKGROUND)

A ROUNDTRIP TICKET TO BRAZIL

PROOF OF HOTEL RESERVATION

A BANK STATEMENT identifying the account holder (CHECKING AND/OR SAVINGS ACCOUNT) - CURRENT and PREVIOUS MONTH, as well as the presentation of CREDIT CARDS and a printed copy of them. You may also have to present a WORK PROOF (employment contract or letter from employer) and EARNING STATEMENT (PAY CHECK);

If STUDENT, original and copy of STUDENT CARD;

Payment of a PROCESSING FEE. Click on "Tabela de Emolumentos" (www.conbrasil.org.ar) to check updated prices.
 

Visa for minors under 18 years old: Please contact the Consulate at the following e-mail: visaturista@conbrasil.org.ar

Please note that the requirements above are not all-inclusive. The Consulate may request additional information and/or documentation deemed necessary.

For additional information please send an e-mail to: visaturista@conbrasil.org.ar

    From: Kamani Yanez, May 7, 2007

Hi Gregg - Very easy...just went to Brazil last month. I went to the  Brazilian Consulate for a Visa with the following as directed by  their website:

1. US Passport 2. Plane Itinerary 3. 1 Passport Photo 4. 330 Pesos($100US) per person 5. Complete Applications 6. Current Bank Statement 7. Birth Certificates/Immunizations for my kids

Note:

1. They only accept applications Mon-Fri, 10am to 1pm. 2. Even though the application is on their website at  www.conbrasil.org.ar , they don't accept them. You have to use the  computers in the Consulate office to fill out an application  electronically. 3. She took my passport and questioned us about being under our 90  day Argentina tourist visa. In other words, if we were beyond our  tourist visa and therefore in Argentina illegally, she could not  issue a Brazilian Visa. Fortunately, we were leaving the day it  expired. 4. Never looked at our Bank Statement, Birth Certificate or  Immunizations. 5. Because we were staying at a 5-star hotel, she asked that we fax  her our hotel itinerary so you will not only need to know where you  will be staying in Brazil, but if it's a 4-star hotel or higher, you  will need your hotel reservations.

She gave us a slip to take with us to deposit our money a few blocks  away in Banco Itau. We had to keep the receipt to come back in 3  business days between 4pm and 5pm to pick our Passports with the  Visas issued. But she was specific in noting that although ours will  be ready in 3 days, that next time to come at least 15 business days  before. We were issued a Visa for the day before we flew in to the  day after we flew out.

So that's what happened in our case but I suppose yours might be  different. Sorry for all the details, but I appreciate when someone  answers my questions in this way.

    From BANewComers Jvanka August 19, 2005

Check with the Consulate in Argentina.  We were required to get a visa to cross for a day trip.  To get the visa in Buenos Aires took 3 business days.  Depending how much time your visitors have in BA it may be worth it to do it in BsAs Brazil Consulate since is closer to you.

This is what you will need:

PASSPORT, valid for six months at least
01 PASSPORT SIZE PHOTO
A ROUNDTRIP TICKET TO BRAZIL
A VISA APPLICATION FORM filled out and signed by the applicant;
Payment of a PROCESSING FEE.

Brasil Consulate web site:
http://www.conbrasil.org.ar/

Visa services online (all countries):
http://www.visahq.com/

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  • Buses / How to figure out how to get from Point A to Point B with Buses, Subway and Trains

Buses are cheap, fast, clean and safe.  When you get on the bus you tell the driver the end destination that you will get off on and he determines the fare, most fares are either 1.10 peso or 1.20 peso.  If you feel nervous speaking Spanish to explain your destination, just get on and say, “Buen dia!  Un peso veinte por favor”  You then put coins in the coin machine behind the driver, it will dispense a paper ticket that is your receipt and proof of a ticket if a police officer asks you for it (this is rare).  The machine will make change, but doesn’t accept paper bills.  The driver does not make change, you have to have coins when you get on the bus.

There are Colectivo “Guias” or bus schedule guides at any kiosk.  If you will be visiting here for 2 weeks, it would probably be worth picking up a guia.

    From: jpompano33062, December 21, 2009

If you're looking to get around Buenos Aires check out this website http://www.comoviajo.com/website3/Monitor/Inicio.aspx

comoviajo

After you close the advertisement for SMS, click on the tab "En Colectivo, Tren o Subte" in upper left part of the window.  Fill in Calle (street) and Altura (address number) or Esquina (cross street), click on Provincia pull down tab and choose "Capital Federal", then click on "Siguiente Paso".  Put in ending calle (street) and Altura (address number) or Esquina (cross street), click on Provincia pull down tab and choose "Capital Federal", then click on "Siguiente Paso".   It displays with how close you want to get, the default is 8 cuadras (blocks), click on Obtener Resultado.

You are then presented with the options of what buses or trains you can use.  It also gives you an estimate of how long it should take to get to your location.  Website is free.

    From: Julio Cesar Losua, December 17, 2009

To help to put your confusion at ease I leave this like to http://www.loscolectivos.com.ar where you can find the route of many bus lines in Buenos Aires.
Saludos,
Julio

The bus website http://www.loscolectivos.com.ar  is ONLY for certain lines that belong to that company / association

loscolectivos

http://www.xcolectivo.com.ar is far more complete and includes trains subtes etc as well.

xcolectivo

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  • Buses / Long Distance Service
  • From: Antoinette in Argentina, Nov 4, 2009

omnilineas

Hi Dan - there's a very good little business run by a young German guy called Bastian. OmniLineas. He works with most of the bus companies, has a website in English with prices, departure times and trip duration listed and loads of info about service quality etc. I've bought tickets through him to travel to Chubut and to Salta and he's very helpful and prices are good.

http://www.omnilineas.com/

Happy travels
Antoinette

http://www.xcolectivo.com.ar is far more complete and includes trains subtes etc as well.

xcolectivo

    From: RUCA NATIVA - Claudio, December 02, 2007

Re: I need to catch a bus from BsAs to Mar Del Plata

Check www.nuevachevallier.com.ar 

nuevachevallier

Chevallier is a safety reliable bus service and the ticket should cost around $ 50 per way. Try to catch an overnight direct

service from Retiro (BA Station) to Mar del Plata. Phone is 4016-7000 I think they have English speaking operators.

    From: Peter J. Macay, December 03, 2007

In case you are not aware, the long distance bus terminal is right next to the train station in Retiro. There are literally 100s of companies. Sorry, I don't have any websites for you to check out but I just googled "bus terminal in Buenos Aires" and got a listing for http://www.busstation.net/main/busarg.htm  which seems to have a lot of good links.

If you visit the terminal, all the businesses are on the 2nd floor, you can just walk down the isle and look at the locations the company services (the businesses are usually grouped together by places they service).

Ask to see a brochure of the quality of the buses as they can vary a lot (then walk out on the platform and actually check out the companies buses before buying a ticket). We tried "Argentina Rapido" once and the bus we got was 25 years old and the toilet was disgusting. There are also designations like "semi cama" and "full cama" which describes how well the seats recline. Some lines even have a "first class" service, Maureen and Jeff (who used to live here) took the "first class" service from Bs.As. to Mendoza and they RAVED about it, being served champagne when they first got on the bus, and a full service dinner.

Usually they show movies on the bus, and give you a little snack, but it's wise to pack your own lunch or sandwich as the snack is usually just an alfajores and some crackers and cheese. We recently took the 7 am bus to Mar del Plata and it arrived there about 12:30pm. Overnight options are good for longer distances like Cordoba.

The buses in general are very comfortable with large comfortable seats and inexpensive. We don't have a car and have used the buses many times to go to Pinamar / Mar del Plata, etc.

    From: chegringo57, December 03, 2007

Actually, many of the major bus lines sell tickets online.

http://www.plusmar.com.ar/

plusmar

http://www.condorestrella.com.ar/ 

condorestrella

There's just 2, many companies can be found here:

http://www.xcolectivo.com.ar/omnibus/empresas.html

Google search for their web address. However, most require a DNI number for online purchases, perhaps a passport number would work, I've never tried. You can always call and purchase and pick up your ticket at the terminal when you arrive to travel. However, I imagine if you are asking such a basic question here, you likely don't speak Spanish efficiently enough to accomplish this. Best to just go to the Omnibus Terminal in Retiro, walk up to one of the vendors and ask in your best spanish for a ticket to Mar del Plata. If they don't sell them, they'll send you to those that do. There is also the Liniers terminal, but it is smaller, here are both the addresses:

http://www.xcolectivo.com.ar/omnibus/terminales.html

I would not choose to walk outside the either terminal with baggage in hand. Buses to Mar de Plata leave every day, nearly all day. Plusmar alone has a 24 departures a day to Mar del Plata from Retiro (all arrive in M.d.P. an hour apart; i.e. different buses can take longer depending if they make stops). If the bus line you ask says to wait for a long time, just walk to another vendor. Doing it this way also runs the risk of booked up buses, especially as travel season approaches. Usually, the higher the ticket, the nicer the ride. Every bus line has a different name for "coche cama", so just ask how the seats are as you purchase. It can be a long ride, depending on the route. Best to splurge and ride in style then to regret it later.

Good luck, and be careful around the bus stations. Watch your important possessions at all times and let no one distract you.

    From: Michelle Alison, December 03, 2007

I always use a company called Tony Tur (based in Mar del Plata).  According to their leaflet you can reserve seats on the phone.   Their number is 011 4315 4897 or 011 4315 8086 e-mail tonytursa@speedy.com.ar . I'm not whether they speak English though.

The only problem with the movies on the buses, is that the sound is normally turned off.  It is quite frustrating reading the subtitles if your Spanish is not too good. Tony Tur buses are all brand new and very clean and comfortable.  I have used some of the other companies during the winter and froze to death.

    From: marc lafalce, December 04, 2007

i think Empresa Argentina is a very nice company, service is very good, confortable and  clean too.  I SUGGEST  IS  TRY TO TAKE A BUS WITH OUT STOP IN BA  SUBURBS. When you buy the ticket ask for that.

    From: chegringo57, December 06, 2007

Here are the websites of the Liniers and Retiro bus station. Simply indicate where you want to go, and both will give you all the companies that operate to there. Surprised nobody posted this.....including me.

Retiro: http://www.tebasa.com.ar

tebasa

Liniers: http://www.paradaliniers.com

paradaliniers

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  • Buying an Apartment - Things to Know

We have a realtor friend who I highly recommend, . Olga is fantastic and I think well worth her commission, we've known her over 4 years, make sure you tell her "Ron and Pete" sent you.

Compared to the USA where only the seller pays, here, it is common for both the buyer and the seller to pay a 3% commission. However, if you buy an apartment on your own through the newspaper or through an open house listing, you shouldn't pay a commission as no one is representing you, the other realtor representing the seller will try and tell you that he/she is representing you both, but that is not true if you walk in off the street on your own.

However, I would still have Olga represent you and pay her a 3% commission.  On both our 2 year rental she got for us in 2000 and purchasing a place in 2002, it was money well spent and I think she saved us thousands of dollars.

They have something here called an escribano or escribana, this is a lawyer who verifies the ownership of the property, makes sure all the bills and taxes have been paid and up to date, and rewrites the ownership papers of the house. Kind of like doing a title search in the USA. It is usually the right of the buyer to specify the escribano. The fees vary and it's usually a lot, like 1%, to do everything, so shop around before you decide on an escribano.

As anywhere in the world location is everything. We live in a neighborhood called “Recoleta” which is very expensive but central to everything, we walk to the Colón opera house to see shows, 15 blocks towards the Congresso area and the apartments are 75% cheaper then here. 15 blocks towards Palermo and the apartments are 35% cheaper then here. What you need to figure out is what area you want and then just go to every open house there is to get an idea of value and neighborhood.

I would canvas the area I wanted and copy down the names of the realtors and address from the signs hanging off buildings. Then give this list to Olga, she would then call, ask about the apartment size, cost, garage, monthly maintenance fees, etc and setup an appointment to see it. As a foreigner, I think this gives you credibility with the owners. Argentines are suspicious for security reasons and if you call with a bad Spanish accent they might just say it's sold or raise the price.

Prices are going up, no doubt about that. However, this country is still far from a full recovery, like anywhere bargains can be found. We looked at over 60 apartments before finding the perfect place in the prefect neighborhood with the perfect view. The reason it hadn't sold? It was in horrible condition and anyone who would have bought it would have had to spend another 25,000 - 50,000 to remodel it. We had the time and the money and after 6 months have a model perfect apartment.

By the way, we have 2 architects who are awesome if you need any remodeling.

    From BANewComers Peter J. Macay August 15, 2005

CDI required from an AFIP office to purchase property if you don't have a DNI

When we purchased our apartment almost 3 years ago, you did not need a DNI to purchase an apartment.  A CDI (Clave de Identification) is required if you don't have a DNI and it's very quick and easy to get and it's almost free, 10 pesos or something.  A CDI is just another way for the government to track you in order to pay your home owners yearly taxes (the taxes are cheap by USA home taxes standards as a percentage of the home value). 
 
You get a CDI from the AFIP Administracion Federal de Ingresos Publicos office.  You have to go to the AFIP branch based on where the property you are buying is located, just walk into any AFIP office (check the telephone book for your closest office) and they will tell you which AFIP branch you need to go to.  You supply the AFIP with a copy of your current rental contract, then you come back in 2 hours (go have lunch) and it's ready.
 
I have heard that there are some new requirements to show where you got the money from to purchase an apartment.  I guess this is for international money laundering laws, but this wasn't the case when we purchased.  I also heard that there is a new law where you have to have a "guarantor" or someone who will vouch for you to be sure the home yearly taxes are paid.  Please let the list know if these "rumors" are true as you go through the process.

    From BANewComers: Sean August 15, 2005

Hi Dan, you can use a CDI number to buy property - you can get this CDI number on the spot, for free,  at any local AFIP office that corresponds for your address:

http://www.afip.gov.ar/

afip

Take your passport and they will want to know what you current address is. A CDI number is a Tax Identification Number.

    From: Sean, April 7, 2006

Anybody care to comment on this? I wonder if the boys and girs at the Herald have got this wrong

BA HERALD – april 6

Foreigners will need local rep to buy real estate

Foreigners will have to appoint an Argentine representative in order to purchase property in the country, according to real estate sources. Following the devaluation of the peso, the depreciation of real estate in dollar terms favoured the purchase of property by foreigners. In order to carry out the purchase, foreigners must now have their passport in order and will also need to obtain an indentification code (CDI) from the Federal Tax Revenue Agency (AFIP), according to a sector report. As part of the CDI application process, foreigners will have to name an Argentine resident as representative for tax purposes.

    From: Laura Zurro, April 12, 2006

well it seems that indeed you do need to have a "representative" here before you can get your cdi. It has to be notarized and then you need to take the official notarized power of attorney paper to the AFIP office along with the domicilio certification and  from the local commissaria and passport. Just so much fun waiting around there a second time :-(

    From: Sean, April 12, 2006

Well AFIP offices are not being consistent (surprise) about this issue. In fact other feedback I have recived on this topic suggests that this is a pending rule but not formalized yet.. http://www.afip.gov.ar/

I know a ton of people who have gotten CDI’s with out a local sucker to take the heat when AFIP starts breathing down necks

    From: Belliappa Pattada, April 12, 2006

Re: "Foreigners will need local rep to buy real estate"

in mid-december, i got my CDI in 24 Hrs without any requirements like a local or escribano to represent me!!!.. i just went to the local police station and asked em for the certificado domicilio, the next morning they came by to my hotel and gave it to me and by evening i had my CDI from the AFIP office for my area.

i guess they changed the rules after that, or maybe it was ur bad luck that the AFIP employee decided to ask for it.

    From: Concepción Domínguez April 15, 2006

I am living in Congreso neighbourhood since 1971. I moved to my own apartment twice, I also looked for apartments for my parents and lately I bought another one-bedroom apartment. All the times I did it for myself so I know pretty well how to look for an apartment that fit what I need. So I think I can do a good job for you.

My phone is 4954-3454 and my mobil is 15-6186-7131.

Kind regards / Concepción Domínguez / conceds@yahoo.com

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