Escape to Medellin
Found this useful? Please share...

Adjusting to Life in Medellin Can Be Difficult if You Don’t Do This!

So … we’ve been living as locals in Medellin Colombia for nearly 5 months now. And already, I’m missing friends back home.

One of the mistakes we made when we first got here was making friends with other gringos and expats passing through. The thing about those expats passing through is that you will make a great connection with some, and before long, they’re leaving. Not good for you if you’re trying to establish more permanent roots.

All of the transients leaving will make your life more miserable because you start missing everybody and you start to get even more homesick.

I made a video about this previously, but one of our YouTube subscribers (naxis5000) made a great comment and offered the following advice:

“Having lived in a number of countries and locations, this is what you need to do:

  1. Avoid temporary people like the plague. This is a big subject on its own.
  2. Avoid making friends with other expats…at least until you are certain they are there long term. Even then, limit the time you spend with them.
  3. Join clubs/societies that locals go to. You will get the best of where ever you live if you have local friends giving you knowledge etc. This could be a martial art, hiking clubs, yoga, whatever. Do something you enjoy but with local people.
    I did this with salsa dancing when I did not speak a word of the language and now have really great and reliable friends from doing that 10 years ago. You know your there when you start being invited to weddings and christenings.
  4. Bury yourself in the language (TV, reading all in the local language). You can work in whatever language you need to. At some point things will begin to click.
  5. Take lessons in the language, but not in groups or you will end up with only English speaking expats (see 2) around you.
  6. Avoid having quests too often until you have a great life with local friends and can speak enough of the language to get by socially.

Do this and you will be happier at the end of your first 6 months. Otherwise, people tend to reach a peak of unhappiness at about 5-8 months where either they change or they need to leave.”

After being here for nearly 5-months, I’m just starting to realize the importance of all the points made above. If you’re looking to stay here permanently, the advice above will help you.

Many people leave within 6-12 months because they can’t adapt. You gotta make local friends and setup a routine as you did back at home. Otherwise, you’ll go crazy after the fun and excitement wears off.

Please share your thoughts or experiences below...

Live the Good Life for Less in Medellin!

Discover how families, entrepreneurs, retirees and investors are reinventing their lives in Medellin, Colombia.

Get FREE insider tips about security, safe neighbourhoods to live in, things to do, places to go and how to get around in Medellin like a local.

Leave a Comment:

Anita McCorvey says

How stable is internet? I transcribe telephone conversations that come through my laptop to make money. $3-4,000. Plus I can work with a reporting firm like Planet depos to make a ton. How stable? I also want to be able to visit La Ciebas Honduras Usha Village a few times a years. Interested in hot springs. Where are they?

    Cartess Ross says

    Don’t know much about hot springs but the Internet is VERY stable and reliable. All of the videos I post are uploaded from this very Internet. I work from home and can run my biz without issue. Since I’ve been here over the last 5 months, the Internet has not gone out on me one time. Where I lived in Florida, it would go out on me regularly each week, and especially at night. NOT once since I’ve been here. Speeds we have is 20 Megs and it’s fine. We watch NetFlix on one TV while one or two of the other kids are watching their shows on Netflix or Amazon.

Add Your Reply