Thursday, November 17, 2005

Moving to Belize guide, part 1

People often ask Andy and me for advice on moving to Belize. It seems that many are planning to leave the rat race and are hoping for a more peaceful and fulfilling life. Sadly, not many people succeed in building this idyllic lifestyle for themselves once they get here. The whole country shows the signs of these failed dreams, usually in the shape of deserted hotels, restaurants and lodges, build with all the best intentions, but often over-ambitious and not thought through enough.

So how does one succeed in a country like this? I’m sure that there are many different opinions on this, but my personal advice is the following:

  1. Get to know the country
  2. Be humble
  3. Plan cautiously & take your time
  4. Don’t rely on others too much (beware of starting businesses with friends, etc.)
  5. Think ahead of time! (Make sure you do your marketing early & be aware of what lifestyle you actually are building for yourself)

Many people fail to ask themselves some basic questions, like: Does running a 20-room resort really provide me with the relaxed lifestyle that I crave? And can I really live in a place without theatres, cafes, shopping streets, cinemas, certain social scenes, family, etc.

There is so much to say on the subject that I will break it down into a series of postings.
Starting tomorrow with point number one: Getting to know the country