“What are the criteria for selecting your destination?” is another great question. It’s really interesting how different our criteria are now that we have kids as opposed to when we were young and single and traveling around Latin America. All of a sudden, access to good health care and political stability are much higher on the list.
It’s also a mixed blessing that we have so few constraints on selecting a place or the fact that one of us isn’t being transferred. There are countless wonderful communities all over Latin America, and any number of them would be a great destination for us! So where to begin? We knew we had to narrow it down, so here are our criteria (so far):
1) Latin America; same time zone for Dan’s work and Spanish for the kids
2) Reliable high speed internet for Dan’s work (that eliminates a lot of regions and countries where rolling blackouts are quite common)
3) A second, third, or fourth city in a country. A manageable size, less pollution, and more of a chance to get to know a community than in a capital city. At the same time, probably not a rural town which might have limited resources in terms of schools and healthcare.
4) Politically stable
5) Not touristy. Not too many gringos.
6) Coastal. I’ve finally decided if I’m to leave land-locked Minnesota for a year, I’d like to be able to view the ocean on a regular basis (sorry Bolivia).
That’s our short criteria list – which of course is ever-evolving.