Cost of living in Cuenca Ecuador

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I found myself haggling with a taxi driver to lower his fee to take me home from $2 to $1.50, not because 50 cents is a lot if money but because my guide book said so. Yes Cuenca is International Living’s number one retirement destination for the low cost of living, tranquility and culture.

These are things I’ve found:
-My furnished room with private bath and shared kitchen in the middle of the historic center – $250/month
-My friend’s furnished room with a private bath and no kitchen – $80/month
– A lunch of fried whole fish, rice, chicken soup and tomatillo juice -$2
-a bowl of fish ceviche -$2
-quinoa soup, fried eggplant, salad, and juice at a vegetarian restaurant (yes they exist here too) $2.50
-Dinner of grilled chicken schwarma, salad and yoghurt plate at a nice restaurant $5
-Pieces of whole fresh coconut from a street vendor- 50c
-Monthly gym membership-$22
-Bus ride -25c
-private Spanish lessons -$7/hr
-entry to a trance/house discotec-$5
-wash and fold drop off laundry service $3.50
-entrance to the Olympic swimming pool-$1.50
-entrance to a hot springs spa-$10
-not cheap/same price as US:clothing, imported stuff, electronics, personal care ie shampoo.

Why so cheap? No idea, but bottom line come visit.

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