Hello everyone. I am sorry we have been so slow in getting things out here on our blog but I will try to get it out there since it is new and totally critical for your visa.
1st as most off you know, appointments are mandatory for all Visa transactions which include new visa, transfer of visa from old passport to new passport and renewing your cd. The problem now in Azogues is the large amount of people coming from Venezuela, Colombia and Peru in addition to the continuing large amounts of North Americans and people coming from other countries to apply for their visa. There is a shortage of appointments so to go to Azogues appointments are out into November and this is the beginning of September so this requires planning ahead.
Visa Angels can assist with these processes in Machala and Azogues as well. We can provide transportation and our assistance. The good and bad is going away from Cuenca means you must go back to the location you first filed at. This is extremely important because with the CD visa it can only be renewed in the city you first applied. You cannot transfer it back here to Cuenca. The good is if you have a short time to get these processes done we can get appointments.. keep in mind it will become more difficult to get appointments in Machala and Guayaquil if everyone from Azogues goes to these other cities.
VERY IMPORTANTE as the rumors continue the facts are in. If you have applied for visa processes with Visa Angels you have been required to submit proof of insurance at the time. Now it is the law of Ecuador all foreigners MUST have health insurance and will be required to provide that proof to the Ministerio. There will be no more self insuring. If you do not provide the proof of insurance your visa will be cancelled. If you got your visa 20 years ago or yesterday you must provide proof of insurance. If you were enrolled in IESS you will be paying a new premium based on income. For retirees the amount of income provided when you filed for your visa will be used. The calculation is 17.6% of that income, for all things IESS you must speak with them in El Centro. Diana Calle is the contact person and she speaks English and Spanish. DO NOT LISTEN TO WELL MEANING PEOPLE, your coverage is at stake. An interesting point the 17.6% OF INCOME HAS BEEN ON THE LAW BOOKS SINCE 2001. THERE was no law to enforce it now there is.
The insurance validation will not begin in Azogues until November, the process is not set up yet so do not go out there until they are ready to validate into the computer system. This is an Ecuadorian law and not an Azogues law, each office works under their directors instructions and Azogues is usually first to put these procedures into place but all of Ecuador will do the same thing sooner or later.
Regardless of your visa type going forward everyone will be required to provide income. If you are getting a new visa, renewing a passport and transferring the visa from the old passport to the new, renewing a cd you must provide proof of income/savings that you are able to live here and support yourself in Ecuador. It will be in the form of printed bank statements. Again NO exceptions, no proof of income or insurance the Ministerio will not accept your request.
Now you can see why it has taken so long. Lots of new information to understand and apply to the visa process. There is still more to come but for now, this is the must know part of your visa process.
We have gotten a few visas issued among all these changes and are waiting for lots more.