The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Gripes and complaints about Chile. What does not kill you, only makes you stronger. Help make Chile a better place, and help other gringos avoid problems and mistakes.
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bdahunter
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The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by bdahunter » Sun Jan 23, 2011 12:01 am

I'm new to this forum and new to Chile but I am not new to being an Expat. My wife and I are Canadian and have just finished a 6 year stint in Bermuda and we have taken a year off to travel the world with the idea of seeing the sights and finding a new home for the next 5 years or so - 5 years seems to be our average stay in a new place. We've been on the road now for 2 months and have seen Rio de Janiero, Antarctica, Montevideo, Buenos Aires and the last 2 weeks have been spent in Chile.
Of all the places we have travelled to Chile is the toughest place we have had deal with, the people are cool and standoffish, they do not go out of their way to assist and they seem to take great pleasure in correcting you when your Spanish is not up to Chilean standards, the rest of the time they seem to focus their energies on skinning you alive. The bright side to this is the Expats we have met in the course of our journey through Chile, they have gone out of their way to make us feel welcome, they have helped us with information and sound advice and they have been gracious in everyway. They remind me a bit of the expats in Bermuda, helping each other out whenever possible but helping out a stranger (and a tourist at that) is just over the top.
So while we will be crossing Chile off our list of possible countries to settle in, we do want to thank the Expats of Chile who have been so kind to us in Santiago and La Serena. It has made a world of difference in our travels through a country that is actually more frustrating than Bermuda.

Many Thanks,

BDA

PenquistaDeCorazon
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Re: The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by PenquistaDeCorazon » Sun Jan 23, 2011 12:57 am

bdahunter wrote:I'm new to this forum and new to Chile but I am not new to being an Expat. My wife and I are Canadian and have just finished a 6 year stint in Bermuda and we have taken a year off to travel the world with the idea of seeing the sights and finding a new home for the next 5 years or so - 5 years seems to be our average stay in a new place. We've been on the road now for 2 months and have seen Rio de Janiero, Antarctica, Montevideo, Buenos Aires and the last 2 weeks have been spent in Chile.
Of all the places we have travelled to Chile is the toughest place we have had deal with, the people are cool and standoffish, they do not go out of their way to assist and they seem to take great pleasure in correcting you when your Spanish is not up to Chilean standards, the rest of the time they seem to focus their energies on skinning you alive. The bright side to this is the Expats we have met in the course of our journey through Chile, they have gone out of their way to make us feel welcome, they have helped us with information and sound advice and they have been gracious in everyway. They remind me a bit of the expats in Bermuda, helping each other out whenever possible but helping out a stranger (and a tourist at that) is just over the top.
So while we will be crossing Chile off our list of possible countries to settle in, we do want to thank the Expats of Chile who have been so kind to us in Santiago and La Serena. It has made a world of difference in our travels through a country that is actually more frustrating than Bermuda.

Many Thanks,

BDA
Glad that you gave Bermuda 5 years to impress you yet made earthshaking conclusions about Chile in two weeks. And trust me. There are jerks in every country. Canada included. I live here. The very same thing that you say about Chileans, I hear Canucks say about Quebequers all the time. I am in SK btw. "They won't speak to you if you do not speak French. They hate Anglos. Blah blah blah"...... But yes Chile is frustrating. It is not set up for tourism like say Mexico or the Dominican Republic where people work like animals for tips to cater to every whim that a tourist may have.

If you decide on where to live in Latin America based on experience as a tourist for two weeks you will be making foolhardy choices. DO not believe me but listen to others about the crime stats in Brazil as opposed to Chile. Or any of a ton of other factors. Mexico? Great place to sit by a beach in an all inclusive resort with security at the gate. Ditto for the Dominican. Better places to live? You would have better luck selling me a bridge you know where.

As for your comment about expats? Point taken. I have no doubt that they are great cause they too can relate to your situation. But what if they are in their own hoime country and the roles are reversed? I mean my family are expats in Canada if you will. We can relate to the immigrant experience here. It si for that reason that I volunteer in settling new immigrants to Canada. Do Canucks? Not unless they are getting paid to do it.

PenquistaDeCorazon
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Re: The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by PenquistaDeCorazon » Sun Jan 23, 2011 1:40 am

Sorry not trying to be a jerk but even the title of the thread is kind of you know..... a generalization.... There are actually some warm people in Chile. Sometimes we even hug amd laugh like first world people. And I am also speaking as someone who has had multiple family members from Chile visit Canada and family members of friends as well. And let me tell you, speaking broken English in Canada is a recipe for getting laughed at by some people. Nobody went out of their way to give them an out of this world experience nor was it expected. But if you must know, I will say that 'no one tried to skin them alive'.

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hammondmc97
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Re: The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by hammondmc97 » Sun Jan 23, 2011 2:16 am

I guess Chile is not for everyone... but they are great people.
I hope you guys find a good place to spend the next 5 years, it is fantastic that you guys can do that.
You can't be sensitive to live in Chile though, you need a good sense of humor. :mrgreen:

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MikieO
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Re: The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by MikieO » Sun Jan 23, 2011 4:49 am

You can't be sensitive to live in Chile though, you need a good sense of humor. :mrgreen:
I recall a few years ago over a few beers having El P say the very same thing to me.
Now that am a little more immersed, I think you need a long memory too, everyone else does! :roll:
“Now, a lifetime of experience has left me bitter and cynical.” ~ Calvin & Hobbes

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maxine
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Re: The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by maxine » Sun Jan 23, 2011 8:35 am

It's probably because expats are always looking to meet new people so will be friendlier. As Penquista says, would they be the same back home? Overall, I have found Chileans to be just the opposite from how you describe them; they are very helpful and friendly and I've yet to come across anyone who objects to my painful attempts to speak Spanish. There have been some rude people, usually shoppers and drivers (!), but I've learned to just accept it now, and once you accept it, it stops bothering you so much. It's a shame your experience here has not been a good one, but it does surprise me that you have found the people here to be as rude and unhelpful as you say they are. We've been here for over 2yrs now and have been very happy. Chile rocks! :D (I mean that in a good way, not a butt pain terremoto way :mrgreen: )

bdahunter
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Re: The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by bdahunter » Sun Jan 23, 2011 10:05 am

In the cold light of day and with hindsight being 20/20 I have admit that my post came down pretty hard on Chileans when it was really meant to be a thank you to expats. I can only judge from my own limited experience of Chile thus far but to date the only people who have gone out of their way to make our time in Chile enjoyable have been Expats.
In my opinion so far, Chileans are very reserved, very uninterested in things non-Chilean and not concerned with being the good hosts that makes a country tourist friendly. I'm not talking about bowing and scraping to the Gringoes, just going a little out of one's way to assist a traveller who doesn't speak the local dialect or know the local customs. I think Canadians do a pretty good job of that and it may have something to do with Canada being a multi-cultural society. (I'm an Anglophone and my wife is a Francophone but we try to be helpful in whatever language a visitor to Canada is speaking)
I actually expected a much better experience from Chile so perhaps I set my sights too high for the country. I do apologize if I have made the mistake of kicking someone else's dog, that wasn't my intention.
The Expats in Chile are still some of the nicest people I have met in quite some time and definitely the nicest people I have met in Chile - so far.

Kind Regards,

Gloria
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Re: The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by Gloria » Sun Jan 23, 2011 10:25 am

bdahunter wrote: So while we will be crossing Chile off our list of possible countries to settle in
BDA
WHEW!! That's a relief!! If you thought for a second that chileans were going to bow to your feet because you are canadian so you can throw them a couple of coins, the reality is..it will never happen! You are putting expats on a very tall pedestal until one of them scams you for every penny you own and the bragging will stop forever. Stay in your comfort zone, believe me, as I see it, you are not material for Latinamerica.
I'm from the generation of common sense, wisdom and unfiltered answers. I sayeth as I seeth.

Gloria
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Re: The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by Gloria » Sun Jan 23, 2011 10:39 am

bdahunter wrote: In my opinion so far, Chileans are very reserved, very uninterested in things non-Chilean
Kind Regards,
I don't think that you understand that Chileans are also able to travel, see and experience for themselves " the non Chilean things" . I really wonder how many of you Canadians run to the streets when a Chilean arrives to your land to welcome them...or any immigrant for that matter!
Geeezzz! ignorance is a terrible thing!
I'm from the generation of common sense, wisdom and unfiltered answers. I sayeth as I seeth.

Gloria
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Re: The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by Gloria » Sun Jan 23, 2011 11:08 am

bdahunter wrote: the rest of the time they seem to focus their energies on skinning you alive.

BDA
And the reason for that is because they eat Canadian gringos for lunch, onces and dinner!
You really make me laugh... a talent you didn't know you had! The Comedy Channel is expecting you!
I'm from the generation of common sense, wisdom and unfiltered answers. I sayeth as I seeth.

Ventisquero
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Re: The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by Ventisquero » Sun Jan 23, 2011 11:12 am

bdahunter wrote:the people are cool and standoffish,
More so than in Canada?? :shock: You make me laugh.
Glad you had a good experience with expats, though. At least something good to remember.

Ventisquero
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Re: The warmest people in Chile are Expats

Post by Ventisquero » Sun Jan 23, 2011 11:13 am

I didn't see your post. Gloria, but apparently the OP really has a talent. :D

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