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Curacao - how's the air pollution for living, etc?

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Contemplating moving to Curacao with our family including 2 toddlers. Would love honest input. Am concerned about the possible air pollution. Also would love info on any online forums for moving/living there. Thanks much!

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    First - have you looked into the immigration laws on Curaçao. If not, you should make sure you investigate them fully because if you are not a Dutch Citizen you cannot just show up one day and take up residence. Before you can live on the island you must apply for residency. Also, obtaining residency does not give you the ability to work. For that you need a Work Permit which is often difficult to obtain. For starters check out this websites:

    http://www.rsonac.org/caribbean-visa/2.-long-stay-mvv

    http://curinvest.com/curacao/living-in-curacao/

    http://www.escapeartist.com/curacao/2014/05/31/immigration-requirements-daily-life-curacao/

    http://www.curacao.name/netherlands-antilles/economy-and-government/curacao-residence-permit/


    Second - you might find the following websites helpful.

    http://www.liveincuracao.com/index.php?cat=816

    http://karenattiah.com/2012/10/06/on-being-an-outsider-in-curacao/

    http://www.nomoretax.eu/living/relocation-to-curacao/

    Third - go to the Virgin Island Relocation website - www.vimovingcenter.com - it's a website dedicated to living/working in the US VI's but much of what you'll find there (and there's tons of information) is applicable to living on any island in the Caribbean. Start at the top left of the Home Page and work your way across clicking on the various dropdown menus - there so much info there it will take weeks of reading. Then browse through the Forum where you'll find 10,000's of threads covering every conceivable aspect of living/working in the Caribbean. You'll find answer to just about every question you have and hundreds more you haven't even thought of yet.

    Fourth, the internet is your friend - do a google search using such topics as "Relocating to Curacao", "Living and Working in Curacao", Pollution in Curacao" and you'll find loads of helpful information.

    Fifth - Since you have children keep in mind that local public schools may not be up to the same standards you have where you now live. You should spend time during your PMV checking out the various education options on the island. You may find that many families living there send their children to private schools or to boarding schools in the US or Europe. these can be costly so factor that into your budget & planning.

    Lastly, BEFORE making your move you'd be wise to make what is known as a Pre-Move Visit (PMV) - go for a few weeks (the longer the better) and DO NOT stay in a resort but rather rent a condo, small house or housekeeping unit (not on the beach unless you have very deep pockets and will be able to afford to live in a beachfront unit if you make the move) and try to "live like a local". This should be a fact finding trip NOT A VACATION. Do ordinary everyday chores like grocery shopping, banking, paying utility bills, doing laundry, cleaning house, keeping up the yard,driving in rush hour traffic (yes there is a rush hour), look at housing options, get an idea of how costly things are, etc. - after all those are the same things you'll be doing if you take up residency. Now without knowing your financial situation, this may sound harsh but if you can't afford to make the PMV you'll probably find it very difficult financially to live in the Caribbean. You will find that on average living expenses are going to be anywhere from 25% to 35% higher than where you now live and (if you need to work) wages will be significantly (say 20% to 40%) lower then for comparable positions "back home". That's the Catch-22 of living in the Caribbean

    Hope this helps and good luck following your dream.

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