A Good Place to Live ?
The Dominican Republic - tips for future residents
Have you ever visited to The Dominican Republic as a tourist or on business ?
We hope you are among the 86% of our approx. 2 million visitors a year who keep coming
back as they liked their first stay !
Perhaps you liked it so much that you have thought to stay forever,perhaps you are planning
your retirement and are considering this country as an option, perhaps you want to start a
business over here, because it seems a better place to live and work than were you are now . . .
Anyway, whatever your intention are, this section of our site shall serve you as the starting point
to help you make that important decision.
Please also check out Facts from A to Z
and our Inbox for more tips and information-- updated every Friday !
Please bear in mind, that the information posted here is the essence of the experiences and
opinions expressed by many foreign residents we have
interviewed during the past two month (Jan.&Feb. 1997); although all information has been
crosschecked, we cannot be held responsible for the
outcome of any of your actions or decisions based or influenced by the lecture of the following pages.
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The Basics -- you may call this nonsense or trivial -- but it shall open your eyes
- The Dominican Republic is an underdeveloped country with all its (sometimes negative)consequences
- A two week vacation in a four or five star resort does not reflect the reality of living there for a longer
period -- outside the tourist hotels.
- If you think to get rich fast all you have to do is to get there, you arrived 15 years too late.
- If you do not bring enough money you will have to work as hard as everywhere else to make a living.
- The (relative) cost of living is not lower, if not higher than where you came from.
So why shall I live there then ?
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- The Climate: we mean the weather and the political situation.
- Breathtaking Beauty: from the whitest sandy beaches to the greenest forests on to the
more than 100 rivers and the central mountain range with the highest peaks in the Caribbean.
Columbus was right when he wrote in his logbook: "..this is by far the most beautiful... human eyes
have ever seen ..."
- The People: easygoing,openminded and heartwarming hospitality (among some crooks you
find everywelse in this world).
- The Opportunity to: be yourself, be your own boss, find inner peace, satisfy your soul.
Immigration & Residence: Be patient and complete you paperwork in time -- you need to:
- check out the latest requirements directly in Santo Domingo
as the information given to you by Dominican tourist offices and embassies/consulates in your country is not always
up to date, especially since the new government has implemented (positive) changes in the procedures.
- basically produce the following documents:
- valid passport
- original birth certificate & legalized copies in Spanish.
- original clean police/criminal record & legalized copies in Spanish.
- substantial proof of income, like a Dominican work contract, investment proposal with
financial guarantees, proof of receiving a pension from another country etc.
- legalized declaration from a Dominican citizen soliciting & guaranteeing your residence
(or marriage certificate with a Dominican citizen).
- legalized declaration of three more Dominicans who state to know you & you are ok
- recent photographs
- basically you need to:
- have an Aids test done in an Dominican hospital authorized by the Immigrations Department.
- have a general health check done in an Dominican hospital authorized by the Immigrations Department.
- have a lot of patience.
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And finally some more things:
- You will always have to deposit your documents and have your health checks done directly in Santo Domingo
- The first residence issued is only provisional and valid for one year.
- Then you will have to apply for a permanent residence and go thruogh the whole procedures all over again
( of course you will pay all the fees and taxes again as well ).
- It is not obligatory to use a lawyer to apply for and process your residence -- even if you are told so !
- There is an army of "Immigration attorneys" trying to charge you as much as they can get from you;
some people have reported to have paid between US$ 2,000.00 and US$ 10,000.00 for such a service.
- If you do not speak fluent Spanish and/or are in a hurry to get the resident status you may as well rely
on the contacts of those attorneys, but "shop" around first before you comit yourself.
- Doing it on your own will cost you your precious time and about US$ 800.00.
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Updated: June 11, 1997 firstname.lastname@example.org