I'm new and coming soon - from Philadelphia


Nov 10, 2008
Hello. My name is Maham, and I'm in the process of planning a trip to BA. I live and have grown up in Philadelphia. I hope to be coming in January and staying 3 months. I've done a lot of research over the past 6-7 months on where to stay, possible work or volunteering, and have been really disappointed in my findings. So, I thought I'd look for a forum in order to reach out to people who'd be willing to help.

I originally wanted to buy a one-way ticket and move to BA, but since I have been unable to find any kind of work, I cannot apply for a work-visa, and have to limit my stay to 3 months. I'm eager to be fluent in Spanish, and merge with Baires culture.

Now, I'm focusing on getting there by the end of January. What I hope to get out of baexpats is insight on the city, i.e. living expenses, as well as resources. I hope to touch base with people who have experienced this process and can offer me various directions to go in. Perhaps good friends will come out of this as well. :)

why don't you give us a little background information about yourself to help advise you. As for three month visas, you can take a ferry to Uruguay and return in the same day and you will automatically have a three month extension.
Just BEFORE the expiration of your 90 day "tourist visa" you can go to the office of migraciones on Antardida and get a 90 day extension from the prorrogas de permanencia ($100 pesos). It's automatic and they don't ask questions. After that you will need to leave the country (you can return the same day) to start over.
Thank you for the insight. I will certainly keep uruguay in mind. Now for background information; I am taking a break from schooling in order to pursue the things I actually wanted to do. So I do not have a completed degree, but do have a wide array of experience. My career interests center around international relations and media (film, radio, etc.). I currently live in a collective house with several other people, and am looking for something similar in BA. I prefer not to live alone for this particular trip. I'm considering looking for rigorous Spanish lessons to encourage my fluency, but I also want to occupy some of my time with volunteering. If there is basic work for a non-native, I would absolutely indulge in it - any sort of office work, or secretarial service. I work in the performing arts industry currently. I have saved just enough to live simply for 3 months. I believe that was a good chunk, and if not, feel free to ask me specific questions. Thanks, to both of you!
I have lived here in BA for over 5 years. Almost everyday has been another episode of a soap opera.

Today's BA experience.

I went to see a movie at the Patio Bullrich Shopping Center, the most elegant in BA. The movie was scheduled to start at 15.15; it started at 15:30. Can't complain, as they didn't show any commercials or trailors. The theater was about 85 degrees. After sitting in this hot house for an hour, the movie stopped short, never go again. Because, everyone demanded, we were given our money back. This was a pleasnt surprise,as refunds are rare and customer service hardly exists.

What is so ironic is that the last movie I saw or tried to see at this theater was Mama Mia. The same thing happened! That time I didn't get my refund, as there were so many people buying tickets, that it didn't pay to wait.

You don't think that this is a big deal? This is a city where nothing goes right. Everything is unbelievable. They can't do anything right.

Most of the expats are so PC, that the truth will rarely be told.

If you're so anxious to learn Spanish,why not move to South Beach? Certainly more trendy than this place and few speak english.

You have been warned.

I work for Idealist.org, which in case you don't know, is a nonprofit which aims to help people help. Sounds vague, I know. Basically, we strive to connect people with opportunities for action.

I was working in our NYC office, but got the great opportunity to come down here to BA. I've been here for about a year now, and have just started a project aiming to help better connect and support English-speakers looking to get involved locally.

Additionally, I have a a friend who works for Teatro Ciego, a theatre that works with blind and seeing actors here in BA. I've spoken to him before about them possibly needing help, and I can reach out to him again if you're interested.

Also, I know these arts orgs have worked with international volunteers in the past:


What type of volunteer work are you interested in specifically?

Please let me know if you have any questions.