Before the trip to Ecuador
Passports and visas
Nordic citizens can stay in the country for 90 days without a visa. Check that your passport is valid for at least 6 months after returning home and that it contains two unstamped pages. The passport must not be broken or missing any sides. On board the flight, you will receive an entry / exit card that must be filled in and handed in to the immigration authority upon arrival.
Leave jewelery at home, keep an eye on your belongings and do not display valuables such as cameras, mobile phones, etc. Avoid putting valuables in the luggage to be checked in and always have good supervision of your luggage at the airports. Keep passports, important documents and money in the hotel’s safe or in a pocket or bag to hide under your clothes. Ecuador has strict customs rules for archeological and historical objects that may not be taken out of the country. The same applies to many animal products, especially objects made from endangered animals. If you are unsure, do not buy.
Transport and communications
Road safety in Ecuador is deficient and if you are going to travel longer distances domestically, you should choose flights over buses. If you are going to take a taxi, you should agree on the price in advance or ask the driver to turn on the taximeter. In the evening, taximeters are not used, but instead a price is agreed with the driver in advance. Ask the guide or hotel staff how much a particular route usually costs. Use only reputable taxi companies and ask the hotel or restaurant to order a taxi for you.
Vaccinations and health
We recommend that you review your basic protection and contact the nearest vaccination center or health center for advice well in advance of departure. If you are going to visit the Amazon jungle, you should be vaccinated against yellow fever. Bring your vaccination certificate or other certificate that shows which vaccinations you have taken. If you have heart problems or high blood pressure, you should contact your doctor as there are large height differences within the country. Feel free to bring sunscreen, sun hat, sunglasses and a small set of “first aid”. Do not forget to bring prescription medicine and a certificate from your doctor to pack in your hand luggage. Do not drink tap water and avoid ice in chilled beverages. Feel free to check with the Swedish Social Insurance Agency and / or private insurance companies that your health insurance cover applies in Ecuador and what it covers in that case. Home transport in the event of a more serious accident / illness can be very expensive. Bring a certificate of current travel / health insurance. Please note that walking excursions in landscapes with height differences along hiking trails with sometimes uneven steps require that you do not have too much trouble getting there on foot.
Currency and exchange rate The
currency in Ecuador is USD. You can usually withdraw cash at ATMs by credit card, but note that credit cards are not used to the same extent outside the major cities. Many banks charge a transaction fee when you pay with your debit / credit card in the country (6–12%). Always exchange your money at an exchange office or bank. Make sure you get smaller banknotes and not just large denominations because taxi drivers and small shops can have difficulty exchanging, for example, twenty-dollar banknotes.
Weather and climate
Ecuador has four geographical zones: the Amazon, the highlands, the coast and the Galapagos. The average temperature in the Amazon is between 23-36 ° C, in the highlands 13-18 ° C, on the coast 25-34 ° C and in the Galapagos 22-32 ° C. When the rainy season falls varies between the different zones. In the Amazon and the highlands, the weather can change rapidly.
Climate table for Quito:
|Max ° C||24||23||24||24||24||23||22||23||23||24||24||24|
|Min ° C||18||17||18||18||18||17||16||17||17||18||18||18|
Climate table for the Galapagos Islands:
|Max ° C||30||30||31||31||26||26||26||26||26||26||28||29|
|Min ° C||22||24||24||24||22||21||19||19||19||20||21||22|
Popular items are, for example, coffee, chocolate, handicrafts, leatherwork, Panama hats and sweaters, hats, shawls, alpaca or llama wool blankets.
Food & beverage
There is a rich selection of different restaurants in the country, but feel free to try some domestic specialties such as the corn dishes humitas and tamales or the potato buns llapingachos. Other dishes are shrimp ceviche and Locro which is a kind of potato and cheese soup topped with avocado.
Local time: Ecuador is 6 hours after Swedish winter time (7 hours after Swedish summer time). In the Galapagos Islands, the time difference is 7 hours in winter and 8 hours in summer.
Electricity: 110 volts. You need an adapter.
Baggage: It sometimes happens that checked baggage gets lost. Therefore, pack important medicines with a certificate from your doctor in your hand luggage. Label all your luggage carefully with the luggage tags you receive with the tickets. This is important as these notes are our identification at the airport and at our hotels. It is good to have a proper, lockable suitcase because luggage is not always handled carefully.
Language: Spanish is the official language, but the Kichwa Native American language is also common. Many speak English at the major tourist destinations.
Attire: Bring light woolen clothes and a rain jacket if you are going to visit the highlands and also a warm jacket if you are going to visit the mountain areas. Bring comfortable hiking shoes. For visits to the Amazon, thinner clothing and long-sleeved food due to mosquitoes are recommended. Bring several changes when the temperature and humidity are high and because you also easily get dirty during the jungle adventure.
Tips: In restaurants, you usually put 5-10% in tips. Local guides about $ 3-5 a day, drivers about $ 2-3 a day and cleaning ladies $ 1 a day. In the Galapagos Islands, more tips are given.