Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Can You Get Peruvian Citizenship and a Passport Just By Investing Money?

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Although some countries have investment options to getting citizenship, i.e. you can basically buy citizenship to that country, Peru is not one of them. You cannot simply invest money, never live in Peru, and get a passport. They don't have a quick and easy investment option for people who don't spend time in Peru. There are ways to invest money and after fulfilling certain requirements, then you can apply for citizenship. Once granted, you can get a passport.

How to Get Residency by Investing Money in Peru
You can, however, get residency via an investment. There are two options to do this. One is an investment / entrepreneur visa and the other is forming a company in which you are the main shareholder. You can find out more about both of this options in this post.

Getting residency is one thing, keeping it is another. Some people think that they can simply get residency, leave for three years, and then apply for citizenship. That's probably not going to work either. If you want to keep residency, you'll have to come to Peru every six months. If you spend more than 6 months outside of Peru and want to keep your residency, you will have to get permission from immigration. Here is what you will have to do if you want to leave for more than 183 days. You can read more info about this in Chris' blog. More first hand experience can be read in this thread.

Getting Peruvian Citizenship and a Passport 
After you've had your CE for three years and paid the yearly tax, then you can apply for Peruvian citizenship. You can find out how to do this in this post.

NB: I'll be taking a break from blogging at The Ultimate Peru List in January and February. While I'm gone you can take a look at my other blogs. New posts will be published starting in March.


Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Trujillo - City of Culture and Contrasts

Trujillo, known as Peru's city of culture, is a lesser known city of Peru. After the capital - Lima - and Cusco, the jumping off point for Machu Picchu, there is usually a more vague notion of the other populated parts of Peru.

Lauded by the Lonely Planet, as "glamorously colonial", Trujillo is a delicious (quite literally) melting pot of culture, tradition, young,  and old.

Trujillo's Plaza de Armas is well-described, with brightly painted old colonial buildings surrounding a pristine main square, an impressive Cathedral, and palm trees swaying in the oceanic breeze.

To give a balanced account, I would have to mention the constant stream of taxis in and around the city.  There is a good and a bad side to this - when waiting more than 30 seconds for a taxi here, I find myself wondering if something is wrong...but they also contribute to the noise pollution in the city centre and many of the surrounding areas.

Since moving to Trujillo in March of this year with my family, I have often visited the centre to get a taste of 'old' Peru, as Trujillo is a fast developing city - the surrounding districts changing on an almost weekly basis as new businesses open and renovations are made.  

Most visitors to Trujillo only stop here for a few days on their way from or to Huanchaco, the fishing and surfing town about 20 minutes drive away. For these people, the historic centre of Trujillo has enough to keep them going, including a four star hotel (and plenty of hostels for backpackers).

Having lived here for 9 months now, I am still assimilating all that Trujillo has to offer. There is obviously more to the place than the centuries old buildings and the tours to the ancient ruins that tourists may add to their itinerary.

In the past ten years, so I am told, the city has expanded and developed at an incredibly fast pace - still, right now, there are apartment buildings going up all over the city.

There is a distinct culture here (one that I admittedly am still quite ignorant of) from Lima and the other cities further south - and I must do the best I can (with three children to raise) to learn about and assimilate into this culture, if my family and I are going to make Trujillo our long-term home.

The city has different personalities morning, noon, and night - completely different at night when more restaurants are open, music is blaring, and the market is bustling, compared to the morning, when it is possible to get to the centre and back in a taxi in twenty minutes. 

There are several universities in Trujillo - it is known as a university city, the buzz and energy of the young people adding to the character of the place.

Traffic here is nowhere near as bad as in Lima, but there are some spots around the city that snarl up in the early evenings.  It is around these times that the (very often) female police officers are marshalled to keep things moving, at work with a facial expression that only a woman could have.

My third son was born here in this city and his birth was registered in the Victor Larco Herrera municipal office, just metres away from the South Pacific Ocean.  

Locals are intrigued to see a very tiny Trujillano/Peruano when we are out walking locally with his Scottish and Canadian older brothers. We have been lucky to experience only very friendly and welcoming locals everywhere, who want to know why we are here and where we have come from.

Just a single glance at the local newspaper will tell you that there are the same problems here in Trujillo as there are in other cities, all over the world.

For now, I have seen just the surface of what this place is all about. There is a gravitation towards a North American culture, with two big malls of chain stores, a Starbucks in each. There seems to be a melding of cultures happening, and at the same time, something very distinct. 

Religious influences are still very strong, but subtle at the same time. Many homes display a rosary or a religious picture, while on Catholic holidays, the parks are still full and the streets busy.

From what I have seen so far, Peru is a child-loving place, and as well as open air religious festivals, children's events are everywhere, usually related to schools or nurseries, of which there are several all over the city.

And of course the weather (which is probably the factor I have overlooked the most since I got here) means so much is happening outside, all the time, every day. Just walking outside of my front door, there is a different view every day.

Alison is currently guest blogging for The Ultimate Peru List. She’s a freelance editor, writer, and craniosacral therapist. She lives in Trujillo, Peru with her husband and three sons.


Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Guest Blogger on Location

Dear Readers,

During Sharon's break, I will be writing some posts on 'The Ultimate Peru List'. I'm Alison and I am on location in Trujillo, Peru.

I moved here with my family in March of this year. It has been an eventful year and we are still getting used to the wonders of Peru.

My husband and I and our two young sons are currently learning Spanish and we have been through the residency application process..(not without a border run to Ecuador)..and come out the other side!

There is a survey on the home page asking readers to suggest topics that you would like to read about, or specific questions that you would like answered.

Go ahead and suggest a topic, or comment on this post if there is anything burning you would like to know about Peru - especially how to survive as a new expat in Peru, as this is recent and firsthand experience that I have that may be useful to you.

Apart from that, I will be back soon with some posts about living in Trujillo and my experience so far.



Tuesday, November 15, 2016

2016 Peru Inspired Gift Guide

If you're looking for Peru inspired gifts, you've come to the right place! Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Food and Drink
Peruvian grains are becoming famous around the world. A great healthy gift is maca. There's a reason this super food is getting tons of attention. It's much better than rice and packed with nutrition.

If you want to buy a unique non-alcoholic drink for someone, try Inca Kola. It's what Coca Cola is to the USA and what Irn Bru is to Scotland. Chicha morada is a drink made from purple corn. Although it sounds weird, it's really good and unique to Peru.

Know someone who loves cooking? Peruvian cookbooks have tons of great recipes like ceviche, lomo saltado, aji de gallina, papa rellena, and much more.

Wool socks are a game changer. Once you try them out you won't go back to cotton socks. Wool socks can last for years, they're much better for your feet than cotton since they're anti-fungal, and many of them can be tossed in the dryer. Alpaca is superior than wool since it is softer, warmer, and has no lanolin which means it's hypoallergenic. If you haven't tried alpaca socks, you definitely need to!

Traditional Peruvian hats, such as the chullo, will keep you warm through the cold winter months. Don't forget a warm shawl or even a poncho that you can wrap around you to protect you from windy days. Alpaca can be used for more than clothing. It also makes great blankets and throws. You can cozy up on your couch and drink hot cocoa from a Peruvian mug.

Christmas Ornaments
Ornaments make great gifts. There are a number of Peruvian ornaments out there, such as Machu Picchu, nativity scenes, llamas, and the Peruvian flag.

Tumi  is a Peru inspired company that makes quality bags, backpacks, and luggage that are made to last.

More Gifts
If you're looking for more ideas, here are other Peru inspired gift guides I've written.


Saturday, November 12, 2016

Why Are There So Many Indians and Bangladeshis Interested in Moving to Peru?

When I started this blog back in 2008, most of the emails and comments I got were from Westerners (Europeans, Canadians, and Americans). Nowadays, the majority of the questions I get come from Indians.

If you're Indian or Bangladeshi, I'd love to hear from you and what made you decide to move to Peru. Please take the poll below. If you can't view the poll, you can vote here as well.


Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Can My Child, Sibling, Parent, or In-Laws Get Me a Visa to Live in Peru?

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***Be sure you ask at immigrations about your visa as rules and fees seem to change often. You now need an appointment in order to go to immigration. Make the "derecho de tramite" payment in order to schedule your appointment right away.***

I've been asked a handful of times about the family visa option. Since this is a family visa, someone in your family can sponsor you. Who they consider family might vary from immigration officer to immigration officer and you might need to get a lawyer to help you with complicated cases. Below you can find out who can get this visa and who might be able to get this visa. If you think you qualify, you can find out what documents you need in this post or by contacting migraciones.

You can get this visa if you are . . .

  • An under-aged child of a Peruvian citizen (if the child isn't Peruvian) or immigrant
  • Married to a Peruvian or immigrant
You might also be able to get the visa if you are . . . 
  • A parent of a Peruvian child (whether they are a minor or of age) or immigrant
  • A parent of a Peruvian child and the child has special needs
  • A sibling of a Peruvian citizen or immigrant
  • In-laws of a Peruvian citizen or immigrant
  • An adult child of a Peruvian citizen or immigrant
Family might be your children, your siblings, your parents, or your in-laws. The issue is that they should be able to support you. Since children born in Peru can get citizenship via jus soli (meaning that anyone born on Peruvian soil can become Peruvians), children might be able to sponsor their parents. However, this doesn't mean that your infant can sponsor you. In most cases, the person must be financially stable (an example of an exception would be a child with special needs). If your child is a minor who earns money, for example, an actor than that would be a different story. A child who is of age and had a job should also be able to sponsor their parents. When in doubt, contact a lawyer or migraciones.


Monday, September 12, 2016

Getting Married in Peru After a Divorce

Some people have emailed me and asked how to get married in Peru after a divorce, whether it be a divorce in Peru or a foreign divorce. First things first, make sure your divorce is final.
While second marriages are becoming more common there are 3 reasons why Peruvians prefer not to get married. If you decide that marriage might be right for you, there are some things you should think carefully about before marrying a Peruvian.

Waiting Periods and Pregnancy Tests
With all that being said getting married in Peru after a divorce is fairly simple. Some people have asked about waiting periods and the answer is that it depends on the municipality that you get married in. Some have waiting periods and some don't, so ask around. If you're a woman, foreign or Peruvian, you will have to undergo a pregnancy test if you get re-married within a year of your divorce. If found to be pregnant a DNA test will probably be requested to find out who the father is.

Paperwork Needed
All the information about getting married in Peru can be found here. There is a section that talks specifically about how to get married if you're divorced. You'll find information about how long it takes, what documents you need, name changes, spousal visas, CEs, and more on that blog post. Paperwork can be daunting, but once you're done you can register your Peruvian marriage back home. Congrats! Be sure to enjoy your time together and tell each other how much you love and appreciate each other every day.


Sunday, June 12, 2016

Important Passport Information for Dual Citizen Americans

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If you're like most people, you go straight to filling out the forms and don't both reading the directions. If you're applying for an American passport (Form DS-11) and are a dual citizen, not reading the directions could cause you serious problems. When you sign, you declare that all the information is correct under penalty of perjury.

What many people may not know is that on the 4th page there is a section called Acts Or Conditions.  The second paragraph talks various topics and one of them is about people who have acquired another citizenship after becoming an American citizen. If you have become a naturalised Peruvian citizen, then this pertains to you.

Completing the form by hand
If you're filling out the form by hand all you need to do is print the Acts Or Conditions section and cross out the information that pertains to you. So if you have become a citizen you would have to cross out the section that says, "been naturalized as a citizen of a foreign state". If you also took an oath of allegiance, then you would also cross out the section that states, " taken an oath or made an affirmation or other formal declaration of allegiance to a foreign state".

After doing that, you will have to write an explanation. So if you acquired Peruvian citizenship, explain where and when you did it. You might also want to state that you have no intention of ever renouncing American citizenship.

If your name has changed, you will also have to write that information down as well. It doesn't matter why you changed your name: marriage, divorce, adoption, court orders, or naturalisation. They don't have much room for different names, so you might have to attach another piece of paper.

Completing the form online
If you're filling out the form online, you will have to do the same as if you were completing it by hand: print and cross out the information that doesn't pertain to you and then write an explanation.

If your name has changed, you will also have to write that information down as well. It doesn't matter why you changed your name: marriage, divorce, adoption, court orders, or naturalisation. There is only room for two different name changes on the online application. Although you can enter more than two, when you go to print, only two will show up. If you have more than two simply attach another piece of paper.

NB: I'll be taking a break from blogging at The Ultimate Peru List in July and August. While I'm gone you can take a look at my other blogs. New posts will be published starting in September. 


Thursday, May 12, 2016

The Real Price of Gold

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It's strange how our society values things that are relatively worthless and convinces people that not only do they need them, but they should pay a lot for them. I've heard of blood diamonds and decided way before I got married not to get a diamond wedding ring. Precious metals also have a dark side to them.

I recently came across this article published by National Geographic in January 2009 about the real price of gold. While 7 years old it still holds true today. It has loads of interesting subjects, such as Incas, coca, pisco, an ancient lottery system that is still used today, Quechua, shantytowns, and the impracticality of gold which makes it an interesting read. Gold is Peru's biggest export and Peru is the fifth largest exporter of gold in the world. All this comes at a price though. 

At 13 pages it is a bit of a long article, but it's thought-provoking and makes me think how first world countries take advantage of third world countries. Other countries such as Indonesia, India, China, and the US are mentioned as the history of gold is discussed. There are a number of good books about Peruvian history, such as the New York Times Best Seller: Turn Right at Machu Picchu and The Last Day of the Incas if you're interested n learning more.

Some people believe that the bubble has burst and that gold will no longer be as highly valued as it is today.Gold Bubble: Profiting From Gold's Impending Collapse discusses the history of gold and talks about what the future brings.


Tuesday, April 12, 2016

How to Give Up / Renounce Peruvian Citizenship

Some foreigners decide to become naturalised Peruvian citizens. They move to Peru and Peru becomes their home. Sometimes Peruvians decide to leave Peru and sever all ties. One way to do that is by renouncing (or giving up) Peruvian citizenship. If you do this you will no longer be a Peruvian citizen and will have to hand your DNI and passport over to the embassy.

Usually to do this you will need to have another citizenship since being stateless is not something you should become unless there are dire circumstances. If that's the case, then what you usually need to do is go to another country and declare yourself as a refugee. Rules vary country to country.

Assuming that you already have another citizenship the process to renounce Peruvian citizenship is pretty straightforward. You have two choices: you can either do it at a Peruvian embassy/consulate abroad or in Lima at the Superintendencia Nacional de Migraciones aka migraciones. The information below was taken from the Chicago consulate's website:
The time varies depending on whether you do it in Lima or abroad. If you're doing it abroad it varies on the embassy/consulate due to holidays and such, so be sure to ask. Keep in mind that just to get a DNI abroad it takes 2-3 months. So don't expect this to be instantanous. In addition, if you're giving up Peruvian citizenship in order to try to avoid being prosecuted for breaking the law, don't expect your request to be granted.

The information above it only for those over the age of 18. You're not allowed to renounce citizenship on behalf of a minor. If you aren't sure if you want to renounce Peruvian citizenship or if you're hoping your minor children will do it in the future, here are somethings you can do.
  • First,change your DNI to show an address abroad so you won't be fined for not voting
  • Secondly, cut ties with Peru: close bank accounts, sell property, don't visit, etc.
  • Third, even though it might be tempting to destroy documents such as birth, marriage, or death certificates, or your DNI or passport: don't do it. Just keep them since destroying them could cause you legal problems. 
  • Lastly, don't renew your DNI or passport. Simply let them expire. For all intents and purposes Peru won't be able to keep tabs on you and you can just disappear.
That's about it. It's a bit step to take, so make sure you're ready before you sign any papers.


Friday, February 12, 2016

New Tourist Visa Regulations for Peru and Border Hopping

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Updated 5 April 2017

People love Peru so much that they don't want to leave! Unfortunately, some of them overstay their visa.

The Rumours
There were rumors that the $1 a day fine was going to increase to $5 a day. Here's info about the proposal.

"If passed, the new law will allow you up to 183 days in a 365 day period and the fine for overstaying is $5 a day. You can read all 18 pages of the law at El Peruano."

What Happened
The good news is that the law did NOT go into effect, but it did increase a bit. On Expatriates in Peru, Craig Ess asked about the fine on 16 September 2016.  It's $1.25 (yes, that's US dollars that they use since the sol historically isn't stable). Not only that, but there are no other penalties for overstaying, and you can pay, leave, and then come back 10 minutes later.

Visa changes happened in 2008. As a tourist, you are allowed up to 183 days at a time and then you can either border hop or pay the $1.25 a day fine once you leave. Some people have been known to bargain especially those who overstay their visa by years. Yes, years. I've known people to overstay by 1, 2 and even 7 years. While it's not ideal, it's still done.

If you're going to stay in Peru for years and year, make sure you see all the sites worth seeing!

NB: I'll be taking a break from blogging at The Ultimate Peru List in March. While I'm gone you can take a look at my other blogs. New posts will be published starting in April.


Friday, January 22, 2016

14 Faux Pas to Avoid in Peru

Here are some things to be aware of when in Peru. Don't make these faux pas while there.

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Don't expect a large personal space bubble: Peruvians like to get close, real close. So close that it can border on being uncomfortable. Although you may be tempted to step back and get back into your personal space bubble: don't bother, they'll just step closer. It's funny to watch this "dance" between foreigners with a large personal space bubble and Peruvians.

Do not criticize the food: Peruvians are very, very proud of their cuisine, especially ceviche. Many will tell you that it's the best in the world. Others will rave about Gaston Acurio, a famous Peruvian chef (never heard of him? Do some research before you go). Don't compare Peruvian food to other foods and always make compliments about how good things are.

Don't tip: Having spent so many years outside of countries that tip I totally agree with not tipping. It's kind of an insult in Peru. Sure you may give the taxi driver your change, but you'd probably never tip. It's like saying the business owner doesn't pay their staff enough money, or it could be seen as a bribe. When in doubt, do what others do.

Be careful about gestures: The ok sign can mean OK, fuck off, money, or even gay depending on the situation and where you hold your hand. The pursed hands, which in Italy would mean delicious, means pfft, really? in Peru. The thumbs up and the peace sign (when done with your palm facing you) can mean fuck off. There are a lot of interesting videos on Youtube about gestures around the world that are worth taking a look at.

Forget about being on time: Peruvians are very laid-back and time is no exception. Don't show up on time. If someone invites you to dinner at 7pm, they probably won't even start cooking until 7pm. Half an hour late is the norm. It can be frustrating when you're supposed to meet someone. If someone is ten minutes late they're on time, so take that into consideration.

Don't be aloof and unhappy: Peruvians really enjoy life. They always seem to be happy and smiling even when times are tough. Follow their lead and focus on the positive, rather than the negative.

Don't disagree when Peruvians say they are Americans: I tend to break this rule. Some Peruvians will insist that they're are Americans because they live on the American continent. The word for American in Spanish is norteamericano/a.

Don't be afraid to touch people: Peruvians usually give an air kiss when they meet friends and men will embrace and pat each other on the back. Touching goes along with a small personal space bubble. 

Don't say Pisco is Chilean: I pity the fool who says this. Pisco is Peru's national drink and they're extremely proud of the fact; even those who drink Chilean wine.

Be careful about what you say about Spaniards: They conquered the Incas in the 16th century. According to Peruvians, the Incas were smart and strong warriors. Many Peruvians are still bitter about the Spaniards being the cause of the end of the Incan Empire.

Don't Stereotype: Yes, there is running water and electricity in Peru. Not everyone looks like the Peruvians you'll find in National Geographics. There are blond hair, blue eyed Peruvians and there are filthy rich Peruvians. Open your eyes and ears and shut your mouth. You may just learn something if you stop stereotyping.

Don't be ignorant: Do a bit of research about the history, culture, and geography of Peru before you go. There's no excuse for not knowing a bit of the basics. There are a number of good books about Peruvian history, such as the New York Times Best Seller: Turn Right at Machu Picchu and The Last Day of the Incas.  

Not adapting: When in Rome do as the Romans do. Adapting to the local culture and customs will go a long way.

Don't act superior: Your country might be different but that doesn't necessarily mean it's better. You can learn something from everyone.


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

3 Famous Companies with Peruvian Roots

Peru is famous for many things such as Pisco, asparagus, pima cotton, alpacas, the Incas, and Machu Picchu. Some companies are looking to Peru for inspiration and below you can find the results.

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Started in 2012, by a man who was backpacking through Latin America, this company wanted make quality shoes using  authentic materials made by local people. They use traditional Peruvian designs in their footwear. They believe in fair trade and give back through the OneShoeOneTree project as well as TreesForTheFuture.

They're trying to provide quality shoes while helping people and the environment in developing countries. You can read more about their story and see the shoes they have. You can buy their products directly from their website or Amazon.

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Created in 1976 by a mother and daughter team who was inspired by anthropology research on women in the Andean marketplaces. You can read more about the sweater that started it all.

They mainly have clothing made from alpaca, vicuna, and pima cotton. They also have jewelry, accessories, and things for the home. Unlike Inkkas which uses traditional designs, Peruvian connection uses modern designs not related to Peru. You can buy their products directly from their website.

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Founded in 1975, by a former Peace Corp volunteer, the word tumi means a ceremonial knife. Traditionally it was used to perform sacrifices in ancient Peru. However, nowadays, it is often hung in people's home for good luck.

Their quality black-on-black bags launched the company into fame in the 80s. While most of their products are bags and luggage, they also sell accessories. They take pride in their products' quality and each item goes through vigorous testing before it can be sold. You can buy their products directly from their website or from Amazon.


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