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Old 11-24-2013, 05:00 PM
 
Location: NC
2,872 posts, read 4,961,464 times
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So my wife's job assigned her to Buenos Aires and I along with my 5 year old daughter will be going along for the adventure. I'm a little (okay, a LOT) nervous but also excited about it. We've traveled (before the kid though) to Asia and Europe quite extensively, so it's not just that, and my wife (and to some extent, my daughter) speaks fluent Spanish, so it's not that, I guess it's just that it's so far away, and for so long (our normal trips are maybe 2 weeks at the very most).

Can anyone give me tips, suggestions, etc? We plan to have fun on weekends of course, and even take an extra week or so to do something really fun (vacation!) in the area before my wife will be "tied down" by work and it's just me and my daughter. Literally anything, even one line (i.e. "taxis are untrustworthy" or "everyone is really friendly but avoid so and so area" is helpful. We will of course be reading all the web and paperback material we can get our hands on but since we have to leave so soon I would love to get some real-person feedback if anyone has anything to share.

As an aside, does anyone know of a half day immersion pre-school suitable for my daughter to go to for the few weeks we are there?
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Old 11-24-2013, 05:47 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
26,855 posts, read 57,874,473 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RDUBiker View Post
So my wife's job assigned her to Buenos Aires and I along with my 5 year old daughter will be going along
Can anyone give me tips, suggestions, etc?
Pack using grocery sacks... buy nice leather suitcases down there.
And coats, belts, boots, gloves, too.
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Old 11-24-2013, 05:49 PM
 
Location: NC
2,872 posts, read 4,961,464 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrRational View Post
Pack using grocery sacks... buy nice leather suitcases down there.
And coats, belts, boots, gloves, too.
First response is from my home state. Congrats
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Old 11-24-2013, 06:48 PM
 
Location: Mtns of Waynesville,NC & Nokomis, FL
4,116 posts, read 7,604,017 times
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Did a dozen plus week long biz trips to BA; granted, on the exp acct., had fluent Argentinian working for me, and semi-fluent local distributors as customers, but every trip was fun, enjoyable, safe, and BA is one of my fave cities on the planet.
Fairly clean, safe, much Italian/old world Spain influence. A vibrant city and easy to avoid the less desirable areas. Women esp, and biz men, still dress up every day, good biz place, great restaurants, etc.

The Recoleta and park area on a Sunday, with spouse and child, but any guide book will point that out. Taxis are decent, and safe.

Get used to later and beef filled dinners, lol! Lomo at 11:00 PM takes a little getting used to, digestion-wise. Hit a couple of Tango joints or a tango milongas for some great dancing, flavor, shows/a night out with your wife.

Take a day trip by ferry across the La Plata to Uruguay.

If you have a long weekend, and some dough, take a plane ride south to Ushuaia Fin del Mundo, Tierra del Fuego: like going to Alaska, but only a 3 1/2 hr plane ride.

Get out to the Pampas on a quick weekend trip: it is an enormous area, but even on the fringes, it is cool to see how the 'boys still do it/live.

If you are going in the next few weeks/months, it is their summer soon: can be hot/slightly humid in BA.

Do some reading, have fun, it will be a good family adventure.
GL, mD
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Old 11-25-2013, 10:20 AM
 
Location: NC
2,872 posts, read 4,961,464 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by motordavid View Post
Did a dozen plus week long biz trips to BA; granted, on the exp acct., had fluent Argentinian working for me, and semi-fluent local distributors as customers, but every trip was fun, enjoyable, safe, and BA is one of my fave cities on the planet.
Fairly clean, safe, much Italian/old world Spain influence. A vibrant city and easy to avoid the less desirable areas. Women esp, and biz men, still dress up every day, good biz place, great restaurants, etc.

The Recoleta and park area on a Sunday, with spouse and child, but any guide book will point that out. Taxis are decent, and safe.

Get used to later and beef filled dinners, lol! Lomo at 11:00 PM takes a little getting used to, digestion-wise. Hit a couple of Tango joints or a tango milongas for some great dancing, flavor, shows/a night out with your wife.

Take a day trip by ferry across the La Plata to Uruguay.

If you have a long weekend, and some dough, take a plane ride south to Ushuaia Fin del Mundo, Tierra del Fuego: like going to Alaska, but only a 3 1/2 hr plane ride.

Get out to the Pampas on a quick weekend trip: it is an enormous area, but even on the fringes, it is cool to see how the 'boys still do it/live.

If you are going in the next few weeks/months, it is their summer soon: can be hot/slightly humid in BA.

Do some reading, have fun, it will be a good family adventure.
GL, mD
Thank you, very helpful! When you say it's easy to avoid the bad areas, is this by sight/feel or by using a guidebook? Also, taxis being safe and reliable, I assume using the guidebook to learn which taxis are official is sufficient?

Need visas or other special docs to visit Uruguay or Chile? I know Brazil requires one but the others?

How do you find the cost of living? Seems like the exchange rate is awful and getting worse.
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Old 11-25-2013, 10:45 AM
 
Location: Miami/ Washington DC
4,835 posts, read 9,775,791 times
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98% sure you don't need a visa for Uruguay and 90% on Chile. Definitely visit Uruguay since it is so close.

Buy leather things there, its so cheap down there compared to the U.S. for those types of goods. There are also some luxary bran clothing down there which is half the price than it is in the States. I love the food in Argentina. I hope you like beef. It is IMO the best beef in the world. Be prepared for the craziest, most aggressive driving you will ever see.
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Old 11-25-2013, 11:45 AM
 
Location: NC
2,872 posts, read 4,961,464 times
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Good stuff so far, CityData, keep it coming!

(NOTE - we are originally from Miami, FlyMIA - small world!)
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Old 11-25-2013, 12:20 PM
 
Location: Mtns of Waynesville,NC & Nokomis, FL
4,116 posts, read 7,604,017 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RDUBiker View Post
Thank you, very helpful! When you say it's easy to avoid the bad areas, is this by sight/feel or by using a guidebook? Also, taxis being safe and reliable, I assume using the guidebook to learn which taxis are official is sufficient?
I use common sense, and having worked out of NYC for nearly 30 years, it is fairly fine tuned...Daytime, I have never had a problem. Even at night, most areas are so vibrant and populated, that it is comforting. Like walking around Times Square, before they made it only a ped area. I have taken all manner of cabs, from 'official' to unofficial, to 'gypsy' cabs. Never got ripped. Most 'official' taxis are obvious, have and use meters, most drivers have some basic English, etc.

Need visas or other special docs to visit Uruguay or Chile? I know Brazil requires one but the others?
No visa for Argentina or Uruguay, though the 'visitor fee' keeps going up nearly every year. It's $160 US a head, now:
ENTRY / EXIT REQUIREMENTS FOR U.S. CITIZENS: A valid passport is required for U.S. citizens to enter Argentina. U.S. citizens do not need a visa for visits of up to 90 days for tourism or business. As a result of a recent change in Argentine law, prior to arrival in Argentina at any entry point, U.S. citizen tourist and business travelers must pay a $160 reciprocity fee by credit card online at the Provincia Pagos website . Once paid, you must print out the receipt and present it to the Argentine immigration officer at the time of entry.The fee is valid for ten years from the date of payment and multiple entries.

BA to Colonia, Uruguay by ferry:
Buquebus Ferry between Argentina and Uruguay - Buenos Aires Colonia Montevideo
Colonia del Sacramento Day Trip | Buenos Aires Tours

How do you find the cost of living? Seems like the exchange rate is awful and getting worse.
I have always been there on biz, exp acct, etc., and sleeping in the nice Marriott by the park. Pricey? Yes, but it is a large cosmopolitan city in SA...no idea as to what 'living there' would cost for a month. Ask you wife to lean on her company for good housing expense and 'family per diem'.

Do some noodling on the Net: BA travel sites, Trip Advisor, et al. BA is not a trip to the moon: wonderful city, interesting people, great architecture and feel, great food, expensive, walkable, etc.
GL, mD
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Old 11-26-2013, 09:25 AM
 
Location: North Idaho
21,001 posts, read 25,765,271 times
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They prefer to be paid with American dollars, but won't accept old or crumpled bills. Load up on some freshly minted dollars. Often there are no coins available and you will receive small candies instead of coins. They will accept American change for purchases.

Best exchange rate is at the money changers. You can get a much better exchange rate than the official rate that you will get at the banks. But as I said, merchants prefer to be paid with dollars.

I am pretty sure that you will have to declare your cell phones and get a document that will allow you to hook up to local phone service. Without that document, you can't hook up (it's an import duty thing). Be sure to ask.

If they hand you any loose papers when you enter though customs, do not lose that slip of paper. You will need it to leave the country.
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Old 11-26-2013, 09:28 AM
 
Location: NC
2,872 posts, read 4,961,464 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oregonwoodsmoke View Post
They prefer to be paid with American dollars, but won't accept old or crumpled bills. Load up on some freshly minted dollars. Often there are no coins available and you will receive small candies instead of coins. They will accept American change for purchases.

Best exchange rate is at the money changers. You can get a much better exchange rate than the official rate that you will get at the banks. But as I said, merchants prefer to be paid with dollars.

I am pretty sure that you will have to declare your cell phones and get a document that will allow you to hook up to local phone service. Without that document, you can't hook up (it's an import duty thing). Be sure to ask.

If they hand you any loose papers when you enter though customs, do not lose that slip of paper. You will need it to leave the country.
GOOD stuff, thanks!
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