How do I get there?
You will be flying into Quito, Ecuador arriving Saturday. Cheryl will meet you at the airport. In our experience, flights from U.S. and Canada vary from $800 to $1,200 based on where you originate. On-line travel sites give great prices if you have the patience to check several times over a week or two. You can trust the South American Airlines such as Copa and Taca. They are safe, efficient and still include FULL meals on each flight with a glass of wine included! Once you have your flight arrangements, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do I need a Visa to enter Ecuador?
American Citizens do not need a Visa prior to arriving in Ecuador. Your passport will be stamped with a 90 day Tourism Visa on arrival at the airport. Citizens arriving from other countries should check on-line for your Visa requirements.
Do I need any vaccines before coming?
You will not be in a malaria region, but check with your physician or on-line if you have any doubts. You may want to pack anti-diarrhea medicine just in case, because intestinal issues can always be a problem when traveling to a new country. Bottled water will always be on hand.
What are the room arrangements?
You will have your own room with private and shared bath.
What is NOT included in the price?
Your retreat fee covers everything from the moment you land in Ecuador, except; airfare to and from Quito, Ecuador, alcoholic beverages, gifts, or other personal expenses. You are also encouraged to purchase your own trip insurance at www.insuremytrip.com.
What clothing should I bring?
The weather will vary. Quito and Otavalo have temps that are cooler at night and can get down into the 50’s because of the higher altitude ((8,500 to 9,200 feet). During the day it is in the 70’s. Dress in layers. Dress casual. Bring a rain jacket and hiking shoes or boots. If you are choosing the second retreat in Los Bancos, you will experience temps of 80 during the day and 65 at night. Galapagos Islands will be hot, humid with afternoon showers possible.
What else should I bring?
SUNSCREEN! You will be on the equator and the sun is very intense. A hat and a light long sleeve shirt would also be good protection. A camera!! Ecuador has amazing views around every corner that you won’t want to miss. Extra money for gifts and other personal needs. Bring cash. Small bills are preferable because for some odd reason, Ecuadorians never have change. Make sure the that bills are in good condition because bills that are torn, stained or written on may not be accepted. Credit cards are frequently not accepted, especially in smaller establishments. Travelers checks are not accepted at most places.
While we are doing everything in our power to make this a very special and wonderful experience for all attendees, these are a few things you might want to consider before you sign up.
- As wonderful as we think Ecuador is, it is important to remember that this is a 3rd world country. This means things don’t always go smoothly or as planned. If you find the unexpected upsetting or unacceptable this is not the Event for you. If, on the other hand, you see such things as part of the adventure, you’ll fit right in.
- This is a Spanish speaking country. If your reaction to this is “Well, duh!” you’ll fit right in. But we’ve heard enough North Americans complain about this to include it. BTW, you don’t have to speak any Spanish. The Chautauqua will be conducted in English and when we roam around, we’ll have bilingual folks to smooth the way. If you do speak a bit a Spanish that’s great. You’ll find a warm response from the local people when you try.
- Refunds. You will be asked to pay for your trip in three installments, beginning with $500 non-refundable deposit due with your registration. We are a small company and the success of this Chautauqua depends on people being seriously committed when they sign up. That said, should events beyond your control force you to cancel, we will refund half your registration if cancelled one month prior to the event. If we are able to fill your space, we will refund the entire balance of the registration.