Being cheap is not the reason that many are coming to Buenos aires


Jun 20, 2006
After hearing from a few members here that the reason that people are coming to Argentina only because it is cheap thats a very simplistic reason
In my case i visited buenos aires 7 times from 1982 to 2002 before I decided to move here . The main reasons that people are moving here are these argentina offers a haven for many people for the worlds problems being so far away and relatively free of the problems facing Europe and America regarding terrorism and other issues. Also with the stable government here that had attracted a lot of investment because people do feel confident in argentinas future.
Yes sure there are people moving here for a short time because its cheaper than America and Europe but the ones staying for the long haul in the main are here to create a better life and many love this country as much as any native born argentine.
I would say that some people come here because it is cheap, others come because it is one of the safest latin american countries - sad huh? - still and they can learn spanish and make new friends, others just want to leave their home countries because the money rush is ruining their lives, others are transferred here and have to deal with it. The exchange rate is just a matter of time and we all know that.
I read a book from the Lincoln Library here by a famous writer Malcom Cowley. he was among the expats who left usa after WWI to live in Europe and yes, they took advantage of the incredibly low prices there. Its interesting how he describes this group of early arrivals and then contrasts it to who comes in the middle of the decade and the contrast is sharp with who arrives at the end of the decade.
I can see a difference even now in who comes here and the reasons they come.
Heres the link for the M. Cowley book. again, you can find it at the lincoln library at ICANA language school.
Buenos aires is definetly not cheap compared to other latin american capitals. Maybe 4 years ago it was but restaurant hotel and clothing prices are quite expensive .
Its a very simplistic reason that argentines use for foreigners moving here very little based on fact
I was just thinking of the phrase ¨Hacerse la America¨ that means something similar to ¨Make money here and then return to the home country¨. This was one of the mottos for one of the biggest inmigration waves into this country, probably it is one of the reasons why argentinians are always looking towards Europe and always say that Buenos Aires is a european city, blah, blah. After ww1 many inmigrants came down here because they were literally starving, but they wanted to make a quick buck and then return to Europe. This says a lot if you can read inbetween lines. In my opinion is one of the main differences between Argentina and the US for instance. The people the migrated to the US, really wanted to get established there, unlike it happened down here. This is why americans are proud to be americans and have a stronger patriotic feeling and we don´t. Religion is another important factor, while protestants are to be judged for their work, for catholics is not a big deal in religious terms.
"Fishface" said:
Some things are cheaper like rent and food but not that much cheaper than London.
C'mon, mate: compare like with like. You can still get a one-bedroom flat in Recoleta for USD 600 a month (about 320 GBP) -- and these are short-term tourist rates. How much would a comparable flat in Knightsbridge or Sloane Square cost? Upwards of 2000 GBP. Ditto for Paris and NYC. Simply no comparison.
Clothes here are comparitvely expensive - the stuff they sell in the fancy boutiques in Plaza Serrano is the same crap they sell in Matalan or TJ Maxx in Cricklewood, London and its more expensive here! Cars are very, very expensive here - electronics are soo expensive - Disco Supermarket is expensive too. Wine is getting more pricey by the day.
That's probably because of a polarised society: rich and poor, and not much in-between. Plus lack of mass markets (not enough buying power), which drive prices down to more affordable levels. Plus government taxes and tariffs, which force prices up. So items we take for granted and consider indispensable in the developed world are luxuries in Argentina.
And there are plenty of daft nouveau restaurants charging euro prices for bland food - thanks god for honest Parillas.
Bloody tourists. Take them out and these restuarants would collapse.
best thing I have heard so far from an single argentine woman complaining about the value of the peso etc etc etc and she couldn't travel to europe/US etc etc and *she could only afford a maid three times a week* - I nearly choked/laughed.
And whats with - maids quarters in new built apartment blocks - what is this the 18th Century? Upstairs/Downstairs?
You hit the nail on the head: the Argie upper-class is living in the 18th century. I don't even think they've heard of the French Revolution: "let them eat cake" is their attitude towards the lower orders. Kind of reminiscent not only of "Upstairs, Downstairs'" but also "You rang, M'Lord?"
Why am I talking of polarisation in Argentine society? Is the USA any different? An interesting article in the New York Times:
Let’s define the terms first, or at least make some attempt to. The merely rich are those whose income puts them in the top 1 percent of the population. According to a recent study by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities in Washington, the average real income for the top 1 percent of American taxpaying households was $940,000 in 2004 — a difficult group to feel pity for. But to stand for a moment on its shores (let’s pretend) and look toward the rapidly growing ranks of the superrich is to stare across a vast chasm indeed.
The superrich might be the top tenth of 1 percent (average real household income for 2004: $4.5 million) or the top hundredth (the $20-million-a-year households). Income inequality is growing fastest the higher we go up the chart. While the percentage change in average real household income between 1990 and 2004 was an increase of 2 percent for the bottom 90 percent of American households, it was 57 percent for the top 1 percent; and shot up to 85 percent for the top 0.1 percent; and up to 112 percent for the top .01 percent. That is, the richest are getting richer almost twice as fast as the rich.
A point most people tell me if that is is very hard to find cheap long term rental here like you would in most societies. Why is it near impossible to find cheap share accomodation here which is very common elsewhere .
And about food it aint cheap unless you are a carnivore . Good quality cheeses nuts canned foods decent asian food are as dear as most countries .
Services are cheap of course and thats why everyone here has a maid!
"pericles" said:
And about food it aint cheap unless you are a carnivore . Good quality cheeses nuts canned foods decent asian food are as dear as most countries .
I think you are wrong, veggies and fruits are very cheap along with cereals...
I agree with bigbadwolf. Rents here are very low compared to those of major cities around the world. Of course they are higher for expats as they are short term and do not require guarantors (a requirement for Argentines). Food is also cheap if you stick to a local diet - pasta, chicken, beef etc. If you expect to eat as you would in the US or Europe, you will have to pay more. Restaurants are getting more expensive however compared with metropolitan centers in the US and Europe, they are still quite inexpensive. Clothes are less of a bargain, partly due to a smaller market. High end boutiques in Recoleta are predicatbly expensive.