How I Decided to Move to Argentina

How I Decided to Move to Argentina

At the Philadelphia airport the day I moved to Argentina, May 2007

Someone recently asked me how I chose Argentina as a place to live. It’s always interesting to see how people make big decisions, so I thought I’d share this one with you.

The more woo-woo out there might say that I somehow knew my soul mate and husband-to-be was waiting for me in Argentina. Sometimes I do make decisions on a very instinctual level, but this one was really quite pragmatic!

My round-the-world trip was an amazing experience, but I had been on the move so much that when it was over, I was really eager to go back to spend more time in one country and have a deeper cultural experience. I didn’t know if that meant moving somewhere for six months, a year, or longer, but I knew it was something I wanted to do.

So why Argentina?

To decide where to go, I first identified what I was looking for: somewhere I could work on my Spanish, that I’d visited before (and liked!), and with a relatively low cost of living.

I pretty quickly thought of three of my favorite places in South America: Arequipa, Peru; Valparaiso, Chile; and Buenos Aires, Argentina.

After that, I decided that for my first time living abroad, I’d feel more comfortable in a place where I would physically blend in better with the locals. Since I’m tall and blonde, that crossed Arequipa off the list, where most of the locals are pretty short and have darker skin.

Because I was going by myself, I also wanted to go somewhere I’d feel safe, and I knew that Valparaiso had some dodgy areas so I might not feel able to explore on my own there.

So that’s how I ended up moving to Buenos Aires, Argentina!

I knew pretty early on that it was the right decision, and now, more than six years later, I can safely say that the move was a defining moment in my life, much more so than I anticipated at the time.

How do you make major decisions in your life? Share your experience in the comments! And, if you have any other questions you’d like me to answer, just let me know.

This post was part of a blog challenge I did in October where I published a post every single day for a month.

 

12 Comments

  1. Suzie Cheel October 11, 2013 at 9:13 pm - Reply

    I love your story and so happy to have found your blog. Sounds like following your intuition has given you such joy. I will be back to read more , thank you

    • Amy Scott October 11, 2013 at 9:16 pm - Reply

      Thanks, Suzie! Do come back again soon. 🙂

  2. Leanne Chesser October 11, 2013 at 9:20 pm - Reply

    I make major decisions primarily by listening to my gut, but there are other elements as well. Your post is so interesting to me because I also have a goal of traveling to many places around the world, experiencing the culture and spirituality, and teaching about it. I have a dream of then settling in one spot. So similar to what you shared!

    • Amy Scott October 11, 2013 at 9:27 pm - Reply

      That’s so cool, Leanne! Which places would you like to visit first?

  3. Ellen Shapiro October 11, 2013 at 10:41 pm - Reply

    Amy, thanks for telling us how the Argentina move came about. I have a feeling my soulmate is not in this country either….I too make decisions from a combination of heart, gut, spiritual calling and practicality. You are inspiring me and many others, I’m sure.

    • Amy Scott October 12, 2013 at 12:46 am - Reply

      Thanks, Ellen, and thanks for asking the question that inspired this post! I had no idea my soul mate was abroad, but I’m so thankful I found him. 🙂

  4. Adora @ Gingerbreadmum October 11, 2013 at 10:52 pm - Reply

    It’s so interesting how you mentioned that you wanted to fit in physically. I suppose I never quite thought about it but yeah, I stand out so much when we’re visiting my husband’s family – He’s Canadian, I’m Singaporean. We are from opposite ends! Whatever the reason, you are really brave to just pack up and go! Good on you 😉

    #gingerbreadmum (from UBC!) stopping by to say hi 😉

    • Amy Scott October 12, 2013 at 12:45 am - Reply

      Thanks for your comment, Adora! We’re now in Asia and we stand out no matter where we are or what we do. In some ways it’s liberating, knowing there’s no point trying to blend in, but I do miss the anonymity sometimes!

  5. Shawn Tuttle October 12, 2013 at 12:45 pm - Reply

    Wow, thanks for sharing, Amy. That’s really interesting–and thoughtful. As I’m on the early end of my travels, I haven’t thought much about where I’d like to end up. Still going by intuition. One of the ways I Listen is by hearing what pops out of my mouth spontaneously in conversation with friends or strangers. When I don’t have a preconceived idea, often it pops out, surprising me just as much as anyone! =)

    • Amy Scott October 12, 2013 at 3:02 pm - Reply

      Oh, I love that, Shawn! It’s true; we often “know” more than we think we do, and we just have to pay attention.

  6. Jake scott August 3, 2018 at 7:12 am - Reply

    What process did you follow to move there? I have a girlfriend in Argentina and somewhere down the line I want to move with her. The issue is I’m only 19 years of age ( nearly 20) and I’m not sure how To go about moving there.

    • Amy Scott August 5, 2018 at 3:34 pm - Reply

      Hey Jake! I just got on a plane, honestly. I didn’t have an easy way to get any kind of residency visa when I first moved there, so I was on a 90-day tourist visa and left the country every three months. Ten years ago, we didn’t get too much grief about going in and out all the time; I honestly don’t know if that’s still the case. You could also look for a job there and see if you can get a work visa via your employer. Or—the option I was going to take at one point—enroll in classes there and get a student visa!

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