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Thread: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

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    TRN Member Gypsytoes's Avatar
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    Default Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Thank God we have our cedulas now. Neighbors of ours have lived on Ometepe Island for 6 years. They do the visa run every 90 days. A few days ago at the border, they were told that they won't be able to get their passports stamped next time unless they show proof that they are trying to get residency. Sounds like they are cracking down at the border. Several other expats reported hassles trying to enter Costa Rica without a return ticket to Nicaragua and they were made to buy a $35 TICA bus ticket.

    Do you think Nicaragua is starting to enforce the law of 180 days in Nicaragua and no more unless you're a resident? Anyone else experience hassles at the CR/Nica border?

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    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    As much as Nicaragua hates being called the "next Costa Rica", they closely mimic them. This started a year or so ago with Costa Rica cracking down on "perpetual tourists" seems to have died down some since them.

    I tell people all the time, no rhyme or reason about what happens at the border, I have made the trip many times and it is never the same 2 times in a row.

    Should they follow the example CR set than it will get worse before better.
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    Viejo del Foro el duende grande's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    What amazes me is why anyone would expect Nic. not to enforce their 180 rule. I used to truly enjoy my quarterly week trips to San Jose before I got my residency, but if somebody is truly going to live here AND they are qualified for residency is is silly to play the CR game and expect Nic to never notice. Nic. is backwards in many things, but they are not deaf, dumb, and blind.

    I guess the real rub comes when people are not qualified for legal residency, but there is no long-term solution for this except maybe to go back to their home country and earn enough money to get residency by buying a finca or business.

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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    I remember a local in Costa Rica talking about the people that stay down there illegally as people that are wanted in their own country (by the law) and unwanted in Costa Rica.
    Survivor

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    The Bard of Jinotega MizBrown's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by Gypsytoes View Post
    Thank God we have our cedulas now. Neighbors of ours have lived on Ometepe Island for 6 years. They do the visa run every 90 days. A few days ago at the border, they were told that they won't be able to get their passports stamped next time unless they show proof that they are trying to get residency. Sounds like they are cracking down at the border. Several other expats reported hassles trying to enter Costa Rica without a return ticket to Nicaragua and they were made to buy a $35 TICA bus ticket.

    Do you think Nicaragua is starting to enforce the law of 180 days in Nicaragua and no more unless you're a resident? Anyone else experience hassles at the CR/Nica border?

    Get the residency -- it's four months or five months of mild hassles and extreme waiting. Everyone I know who applied for residency got it. Two worked with Paul Tiffer and most didn't. Some of the people getting their residencies came in prepared (I did and I applied about two weeks after arriving); others had been doing perpetual tourism for years and all pretty much had the same experience and the same time from delivering papers to Intur to standing in front of the cameras at Migracion.

    What is also happening is if your foreign driver's license expires, at least in Jinotega, you can't get a Nicaraguan drivers license without a cedula, so it's either perpetual trips back to the US to renew or just get residency already.

    Stuff is on computers now so the border customs guys and gals know who's a real tourist and who's an undocumented resident.

    For the last six months or so, there have been hints that Nicaragua is going to crack down on this. Just do it. We don't pay income taxes here; we generally have pleasanter lives than we'd be leading in the US, so that the country taxes us every five years doesn't really seem like that big a deal to me.

    If you actually live here, you should have a cedula. It's simply not that big a deal (guy here had the US embassy verify his document and a Canadian got his documents verified by the Canadian consulate).

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    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Truth is experience may vary, especially depending on the size of you check book. Mizz Brown is required to pump a whopping $600 a month into the economy, she is doing it the legal way. i know people that do that many times over every month, employ people and some of them are not criminals, they have no desire to become citizens here.

    You need to walk in a man (or woman's) shoes before you pull out your paint brush.
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by el duende grande View Post
    What amazes me is why anyone would expect Nic. not to enforce their 180 rule. I used to truly enjoy my quarterly week trips to San Jose before I got my residency, but if somebody is truly going to live here AND they are qualified for residency is is silly to play the CR game and expect Nic to never notice. Nic. is backwards in many things, but they are not deaf, dumb, and blind.

    I guess the real rub comes when people are not qualified for legal residency, but there is no long-term solution for this except maybe to go back to their home country and earn enough money to get residency by buying a finca or business.
    other reasons may come into play depending on your country of origin and their exsisting rules for living abroad. health care and pensions are 2 that prolonged me getting mine as long as possible. i was about to forego 25% for a with holding tax and losing my health care completely. so at that point it was a no brainer.

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    The Bard of Jinotega MizBrown's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by el duende grande View Post


    I guess the real rub comes when people are not qualified for legal residency, but there is no long-term solution for this except maybe to go back to their home country and earn enough money to get residency by buying a finca or business.
    What's really silly is when people who do qualify as pensionados or rentistas refused to get residency. All it takes to qualify is $600 or more a month for people getting Social Security and $800 a month from other pensions or investment income (and if you're under 45 but have a medical condition, apparently disability works though I don't know the details on that).

    If you're not qualified for legal residency, you can't work here anyway. The rub may be that current earnings, even done remotely, don't count toward the $800, but then become a recognized long term paramour of a Nicaraguan citizen and you're in like sin (I think that residency is year by year but I did know someone who got it and the conditions are very amusing -- you and the Nicaraguan have to swear that you're in a long term relationship right now, but the statement is not legally binding and either party is free to split without giving the other party any notice).

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    The Bard of Jinotega MizBrown's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by cookshow View Post
    Truth is experience may vary, especially depending on the size of you check book. Mizz Brown is required to pump a whopping $600 a month into the economy, she is doing it the legal way. i know people that do that many times over every month, employ people and some of them are not criminals, they have no desire to become citizens here.

    You need to walk in a man (or woman's) shoes before you pull out your paint brush.
    Residency is not citizenship. If people can invested over $30K in a business, they qualify for residency as investors. The people I know here who don't go through the process tend to believe that they can buy anything Nicaraguan and while none of them I know are out and out criminals, some of them think Nicaraguan law is there to be bent.

    One person I know did year to year residency for a number of years, earning money locally and remotely, until Migracion began giving her five year residency. She's not a pensionado. I don't know whether she invested the legal minimum here or not.

    Whole lot of ways to regularize one's residency here -- for pensionados, investors, and rentistas, the ways are fairly straight-forward. For others, talk to Migracion. The guy who got in as the long term paramour of a Nicaraguan citizen had no idea when he went to talk to Migracion that such a category exists (this is a country where common-law mistress -- not just common-law wife -- is a legal term, so it's possible that being the secondary honorable consort of someone would also work).

    Ask Nicaraguan friends how easy it is now to get a travel visa to visit the US.

    The kicker is knowing people who are irregularly in Nicaragua who bitch about illegal immigrants in the US. You support and identify with them, or you wouldn't be doing that to this country. If you think it's a shame there, regularize your life here. Don't be a hypocrite and complain about illegal immigrants in the US and technically be one here.

    Either every country gets to set the rules for who and how many people from other countries they let live in them, or everyone should be able to live anywhere they want. Wanting the US to be hard on illegals while wanting to be able to live in any country you want to is wrong. I remember some USAno complaining on an India forum that he could not legally retire to India as apparently was his right in his eyes as a US citizen.

    Citizenship is not the same thing as residency. I'm a Nicaraguan resident and a US citizen, carry a Nica cedula and a US passport. Nobody has looked at my passport in a while; but I have to put my cedula number on charge slips.

    I tend to think some of the resistance to getting residency here is the belief that the US or the UK owns the world. When it's apparent that that's the motivating factor, I think the people are being extremely rude. We're guest here. If you're a long term guest, you behave differently than a short term guest. You buy groceries, do dishes, help with the pets. If I had a long term guest who wasn't pulling more weight than a short term guest, I'd kick the person out, too.

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    TRN Science officer bill_bly_ca's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    What sours me is (If I have read correctly) you have to apply for, and pay a fee, to return home when you are a resident.

    Now our circumstances will be different in 8 yrs and a bit.. 90 days before xmass and 90days after new year..

    At 62, 63ish (16 yrs from now) we may stretch it a bit more..
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    The Bard of Jinotega MizBrown's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by bill_bly_ca View Post
    What sours me is (If I have read correctly) you have to apply for, and pay a fee, to return home when you are a resident.

    Now our circumstances will be different in 8 yrs and a bit.. 90 days before xmass and 90days after new year..

    At 62, 63ish (16 yrs from now) we may stretch it a bit more..
    Again, you're getting all the Nicaraguan infrastructure without paying anything other than IVA (and a lot of us don't really pay that much IVA). The fee for leaving the country is something like $10 and you can get a multiple exit permits good for a year at Migracion.

    This is my home. I have family in the US, but no abode there.

    I have no kick with people who support the rights of Nicaraguans to move to Canada and do the same thing, but it's very much harder for people to get entry into Canada from Nicaraguan than from Canada to Nicaragua. In all fairness, the difficulties should be the same, but they're not.

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    TRN Science officer bill_bly_ca's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by MizBrown View Post
    Again, you're getting all the Nicaraguan infrastructure without paying anything
    This made me smile....

    Quote Originally Posted by MizBrown View Post
    This is my home. I have family in the US, but no abode there.
    I guess that is the difference, Chilo does not consider Nica home but only a destination. Even when her mother passed in 2004 and I asked if she (Rosa) ever spoke of final arrangements of her to return "Home" Chilo said that she considered Canada home already...



    P.S. With the amount of remittance from us up here sent down there in the past 20+ yrs I doubt the words "with out paying anything" mean as much to you as they do to me..
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    TRN Member Gypsytoes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by MizBrown View Post

    What is also happening is if your foreign driver's license expires, at least in Jinotega, you can't get a Nicaraguan drivers license without a cedula, so it's either perpetual trips back to the US to renew or just get residency already.
    Question: Now that we have our cedulas, can we still use our foreign driver's license or are we required to get a Nicaraguan driver's license? Someone just told me today that if we get stopped by the police and we show our cedula, then they will require a Nicaraguan driver's license. True?

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    TRN Member Gypsytoes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by MizBrown View Post
    Again, you're getting all the Nicaraguan infrastructure without paying anything other than IVA (and a lot of us don't really pay that much IVA). The fee for leaving the country is something like $10 and you can get a multiple exit permits good for a year at Migracion.
    With our cedulas, we pay about $10 to leave the country. We can get our visa at the airport...no hassles. Then, when we return to Nicaragua, we don't have to pay the $10 entrance fee. So, it all evens out. If we cross the border into Costa Rica with our cedulas, can we buy a visa at the border? How much does it cost? So, we're planning a trip to Panama by TICA bus. At the CR border, we'll need to show our cedulas. But, at the Panama border, do we show our US passports? Then, if we continue by boat into Colombia, do we just show our US passports again? I'm thinking that we need our cedulas only at the border to cross into CR and back to Nicaragua. Correct?

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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by Gypsytoes View Post
    Question: Now that we have our cedulas, can we still use our foreign driver's license or are we required to get a Nicaraguan driver's license? Someone just told me today that if we get stopped by the police and we show our cedula, then they will require a Nicaraguan driver's license. True?
    I believe Cedulas are like Super ID's, you can use them for anything.... And You guys think that applying for residency in Nicaragua is hard??? You should've seen what I went through to become a U.S. Resident, I even had to sleep ont he floor with newspapers as a blanket; That is one of many things I had to endure to get my residency in The Good Ole USA.. And even with all those mountains that I had to climb to become legal, I still Love the USA, It is my second Patria(country)...
    Dios es Amor!

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    The Bard of Jinotega MizBrown's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by Gypsytoes View Post
    Question: Now that we have our cedulas, can we still use our foreign driver's license or are we required to get a Nicaraguan driver's license? Someone just told me today that if we get stopped by the police and we show our cedula, then they will require a Nicaraguan driver's license. True?
    I can ask a friend who went through this recently how difficult it was or wasn't to get a Nicaraguan drivers license.

    I would also ask the traffic cops in your area or a lawyer what the law is. A lot of people make stuff up or mis-hear stuff. I'm not driving here, so I don't know for sure. My impression is that holding back a Nicaraguan driver's license is a way of getting you to get the cedula, not getting the cedula being used to force you to get a Nicaraguan driver's license, but I'm neither traffic cop or lawyer.

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    The Bard of Jinotega MizBrown's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by Gypsytoes View Post
    With our cedulas, we pay about $10 to leave the country. We can get our visa at the airport...no hassles. Then, when we return to Nicaragua, we don't have to pay the $10 entrance fee. So, it all evens out. If we cross the border into Costa Rica with our cedulas, can we buy a visa at the border? How much does it cost? So, we're planning a trip to Panama by TICA bus. At the CR border, we'll need to show our cedulas. But, at the Panama border, do we show our US passports? Then, if we continue by boat into Colombia, do we just show our US passports again? I'm thinking that we need our cedulas only at the border to cross into CR and back to Nicaragua. Correct?
    You're a resident, not a national, and you're still traveling on a US passport. Costa Rica actually requires visas for Nicaraguan citizens, I believe, and isn't part of the group of nations that honors each other's nationality cedulas for purposes of travel within the region (Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Nicaragua, I believe). Show the US passports at both the CR and Panamanian borders. Check with the CR consulate for details, but I think they're more impressed with US passports than Nicaraguan cedulas.

    I'd probably get the exit visa at Migracion if the bus was leaving from Managua going either direction. Use the US passport would be my guess, even traveling into the C-4 countries. If you plan to travel a lot, you can get a multiple exit pass at Migracion in Managua, same place you got the cedula. The rules appear to be that you can't spend more than six months out of the country without putting your residency status at risk unless you have urgent business to tend to (dealing with a US rental property).

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    The Bard of Jinotega MizBrown's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by El Greco View Post
    I believe Cedulas are like Super ID's, you can use them for anything.... And You guys think that applying for residency in Nicaragua is hard??? You should've seen what I went through to become a U.S. Resident, I even had to sleep ont he floor with newspapers as a blanket; That is one of many things I had to endure to get my residency in The Good Ole USA.. And even with all those mountains that I had to climb to become legal, I still Love the USA, It is my second Patria(country)...
    Just don't say, "I want to live in Nicaragua to have sex with young people, smoke dope, and smuggle in seeds."

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    Viejo del Foro El Greco's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by MizBrown View Post
    Just don't say, "I want to live in Nicaragua to have sex with young people, smoke dope, and smuggle in seeds."
    Why would I say that???
    Dios es Amor!

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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by Gypsytoes View Post
    Thank God we have our cedulas now. Neighbors of ours have lived on Ometepe Island for 6 years. They do the visa run every 90 days. A few days ago at the border, they were told that they won't be able to get their passports stamped next time unless they show proof that they are trying to get residency. Sounds like they are cracking down at the border. Several other expats reported hassles trying to enter Costa Rica without a return ticket to Nicaragua and they were made to buy a $35 TICA bus ticket.

    Do you think Nicaragua is starting to enforce the law of 180 days in Nicaragua and no more unless you're a resident? Anyone else experience hassles at the CR/Nica border?
    Yes, CR is now requiring people entering from Nicaragua to show proof of a ticket out of the country, such as a $35 TICA bus ticket back to Nicargua.

    Yes, it`s clear that Nicaragua is starting to enforce the law of 180 days in Nicaragua. The law is the law.

    Will Nicaragua change the law that allows tourists to return after they have spent 72 hours out of the country ... I have seen no evidence that the government is considering doing so ... nor any reason why it would.

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    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by MizBrown View Post
    Residency is not citizenship. If people can invested over $30K in a business, they qualify for residency as investors. The people I know here who don't go through the process tend to believe that they can buy anything Nicaraguan and while none of them I know are out and out criminals, some of them think Nicaraguan law is there to be bent.

    One person I know did year to year residency for a number of years, earning money locally and remotely, until Migracion began giving her five year residency. She's not a pensionado. I don't know whether she invested the legal minimum here or not.

    Whole lot of ways to regularize one's residency here -- for pensionados, investors, and rentistas, the ways are fairly straight-forward. For others, talk to Migracion. The guy who got in as the long term paramour of a Nicaraguan citizen had no idea when he went to talk to Migracion that such a category exists (this is a country where common-law mistress -- not just common-law wife -- is a legal term, so it's possible that being the secondary honorable consort of someone would also work).

    Ask Nicaraguan friends how easy it is now to get a travel visa to visit the US.

    The kicker is knowing people who are irregularly in Nicaragua who bitch about illegal immigrants in the US. You support and identify with them, or you wouldn't be doing that to this country. If you think it's a shame there, regularize your life here. Don't be a hypocrite and complain about illegal immigrants in the US and technically be one here.

    Either every country gets to set the rules for who and how many people from other countries they let live in them, or everyone should be able to live anywhere they want. Wanting the US to be hard on illegals while wanting to be able to live in any country you want to is wrong. I remember some USAno complaining on an India forum that he could not legally retire to India as apparently was his right in his eyes as a US citizen.

    Citizenship is not the same thing as residency. I'm a Nicaraguan resident and a US citizen, carry a Nica cedula and a US passport. Nobody has looked at my passport in a while; but I have to put my cedula number on charge slips.

    I tend to think some of the resistance to getting residency here is the belief that the US or the UK owns the world. When it's apparent that that's the motivating factor, I think the people are being extremely rude. We're guest here. If you're a long term guest, you behave differently than a short term guest. You buy groceries, do dishes, help with the pets. If I had a long term guest who wasn't pulling more weight than a short term guest, I'd kick the person out, too.
    No residency is not citizenship, again, put up your paint brush, their are gringos here with citizenship. You are absolutely correct most will never be brave enough give away that home country passport, just like the perpetual tourist they are visitors here.

    Lot's of Dual citizens here too. Citizens not residents.
    Last edited by cookshow; 08-03-2012 at 05:26 AM.
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    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by Mikeh View Post
    Yes, CR is now requiring people entering from Nicaragua to show proof of a ticket out of the country, such as a $35 TICA bus ticket back to Nicargua.

    Yes, it`s clear that Nicaragua is starting to enforce the law of 180 days in Nicaragua. The law is the law.

    Will Nicaragua change the law that allows tourists to return after they have spent 72 hours out of the country ... I have seen no evidence that the government is considering doing so ... nor any reason why it would.
    I am knocking on wood while writing this, i have never been asked about a return ticket on the cr side. seen people next to me, in front of me get asked, never me. Being beautiful is a good thing. Long hair, tatoos, dirty or stinking, bet you are going to get asked, that i have seen.

    There about 20 people right outside the immigration line selling tickets for $10. The tickets are good for a year. Might even really get you a bus ride, I got one i can give someone if they want to try.

    Again experience may vary, some of the people on the Nicaragua side are not very happy to be there, some are delightful. The CR side I always end up in the same line, the guys brother lives in Oklahoma, always end up holding the line up while we talk shite.

    All kidding aside it is NEVER the same twice, I made it through both sides in less than 30 minutes the other day, there have been times I was 3 or more hours.
    ‎"You know what you say when people tell you you can't do something? Fool, shut your mouth up!"
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    TRN Member Gypsytoes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by cookshow View Post
    I am knocking on wood while writing this, i have never been asked about a return ticket on the cr side. seen people next to me, in front of me get asked, never me. Being beautiful is a good thing. Long hair, tatoos, dirty or stinking, bet you are going to get asked, that i have seen.
    Haha! I'm beautiful and I have always been asked to show my return ticket. So, what I did was to make a fake copy of an old airline ticket..change the dates and show them the fake ticket....it always worked. But, I'm still glad I'm a legal pensionado visa resident now...less hassles. :-)

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    Viejo del Foro el duende grande's Avatar
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    Default Re: Visa run getting more difficult with more hassles

    Compared to all the other costs of living here, paying 10 bucks to leave the country once a year is nothing. A slight annoyance when I first heard of it, but small potatoes. Not paying the tourist card is nice, as is bringing in 2 suitcases of personal stuff without hassles or duties is great.

    Nicaraguan law on drivers licenses is crystal clear, i read it myself: yes you need one and no you don`t. If you want to chat to the nice officer by the side of the road about the fine points of Nic law, go for it! If not, get with the program and get your Nic. license. Someone did a post on NL on the details; all I remember is standing in a bunch of lines and dribbling away small amounts of my hard-earned money. Standard operating procedure.

    In my original post, I mentioned people who were legally qualified to get residency. Ergo, if you are not legally qualified, or required to live in your home country for income or medical insurance, then you have hard decisions to make. Maybe snowbirding it will be your only real option in the long run.

    I made a mistake in getting my residency by going to Migracion first. I am not saying this will not work, just that Migracion has a different mindset than Intur. If you don`t really know what you are doing, go to Intur. They are an advocacy outfit who will try to help and you need help or you would just go to Migracion and do all the paperwork right the first time and get it over with. Intur seems to be the source of financial bennies, too, such as bring down household goods duty free.

    When I went thru Intur they did not quite have it all figured out a but by now they seem to have it down pat. i also made an error in thinking that my Nic. relatives could help with the paperwork. Well, Nicas typically don`t know anymore about migracion than you do. By the time I figured out WHICH relative had the right skills I was almost at the end of the process, and then she up and moved to the States! Intur got me over the hard parts and finished it up.

    To go to CR as a us citizen and a nic resident I need my US passport and pay no visa fee. To go north to the C4 countries, I`m not sure. The last time I went north I used my passport and paid no fees, but got tabbed by Honduras coming back for a couple bucks. Next time I will try to use my cedula, but I will have my passport with me just in case. Also, I don`t happen to know if I need an exit visa from Nic to go to C4, so i`ll have a 200 cord note with me, too. Also, somehow there seems to be a difference if you go on an international express bus rather than walk across the border. Go figure. What some foreigners think a pink cedula should mean does not dictate Nic law, much less Nic. actual practice at the border. My Nica stepdaughter maintains my pink cedula means I am gay.

  25. #25

    Default Lavender Cedula

    with iconic rainbow issued to gay immigrants. Pink goes to polygamists. Perhaps you didn't understand one of the questions?

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