More and more people who visit Guatemala are deciding they would like to extend their stays, and some are even making the big move. It's easy to see why: Guatemala entices travelers with natural beauty, colonial charm, and a low cost of living. Who wouldn't want to stay for awhile?
Antigua is the most popular place for ex-patriots to move. There is a budding expat community here, as well as plenty of Spanish schools and cheap housing. You can live rather luxuriously here for relatively cheap: a room with private bath can be rented for around $120 a month, or a private, one bedroom apartment with all the best amenities will cost around $200 a month. Food is cheap, tooâ€”meals average between $2 and $5, and you could live on much less if you shop in markets and cook at home.
If you do plan on relocating to Guatemala, whether for a short or long period of time, you should be aware of the visa requirements. Tourist visas are only valid for a period of up to 90 days, but there is a loophole: you can leave to Mexico or Belize for a period of 72 hours and then renew your visa for another three months. Work, student and volunteer visas can also be issued, usually for a period of six months. Check the requirements put in place by your local consulate for more information.
Here are some related tips to help plan your trip to Guatemala: Tour Operator Summary, When to Go, Study Spanish, Accommodation overview, Safety, Tour Operators Overview, Studying Maya, Safety, Health and Travel Insurance In Guatemala.