We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

Which Cuenca hotels are on sale?
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
See hotels
Coupeville...
Level Contributor
5 posts
53 reviews
Save Topic
Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

I wanted to find out what items I should ship. Are there items you wish you had brought? I will need queen & twin beds, 2 mattresses, sofa, loveseat or chair, coffee table, small desk, dining table & chairs. I want to know how much to budget for furniture. It doesn't have to be top of the line but I want to get good mattresses and a comfortable sofa. Is it worth looking for a furnished apartment (I've heard it limits your choices). Are there enough English-speaking TV channels to justify bringing or buying a TV? Is it easy or difficult to sell furniture if you want to upgrade to better quality? What about small kitchen appliances? Thanks for your input!

Quito, Ecuador
Level Contributor
1,483 posts
142 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

Your list sounds good.

All appliances in Ecuador have a 40% duty tax on top of final price. Most American brands are umbelievable expensive, a 2 meter tall Westinghouse fridge with ice maker reaches up to usd 2500. That's why most Ecuadorians have locally made cooks, washers, fridges and ovens which are 4 times less expensive in generall. My suggestiok would be to bring all of your favourite appliances with you.

Mattreses are good quality here, you can buy "Paraiso" or "Chaide y Chaide brands at Cuenca.

If you want to see worldwide channels on TV you van get Direct TV, TV Cable, Univisa or other cable/satellite providors, no worries.

Selling your furniture and devices could take a little bit of time. There are all kinds of furniture shops in there. However my favourite furniture is the one made by the "Don Bosco" carpenter shop in Sigchos-Cotopaxi. You can buy in Quito and order shipping to Cuenca.

Saludos cordiales,

Dennis Yepez

Tucson, Arizona
Destination Expert
for Quito, Ecuador
Level Contributor
9,676 posts
92 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

Indeed, have your furniture custom made to your specs. If you have pictures of what you like you can take it the carpenter shops and they will replicate it for you for a fraction of what you'd pay retail.

Since it sounds like you're settling in for a long stay, I suggest you consult one of the ex-pat forums on Yahoo for further advice.

Cuenca, Ecuador
Level Contributor
1 post
14 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

We sold everything we owned, as it totaled less than it would have cost us to ship. Shipping is VERY expensive. We rented a house and have totally furnished it here in EC. The only thing I did bring was sheets. We love our mattresses, our appliances big and small work just great, and we did not have to pay outrageous prices for them Most applicance places here will offer up a nice discount for cash, and also if you are buying more than one appliance from them.. then they deliver for free. I live in Cuenca, so this is all relative to where you live as well. If you are in a smaller town you might have even cheaper prices, or more expensive, due to your remoteness. Check on the Expats in Ecuador Forum on Yahoo, also if you are on Face Book, there is a Ecuador Expats group. Lots of info there, and very helpful people. Good Luck

Guayaquil, Ecuador
Level Contributor
53 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

Shipping is discussed a lot in all sorts of forums.My advice:don't.

You can almost buy everything here.Yes there is cable tv/direct tv with English programming.Budget $2500 for the furniture.Difficult to sell your used furniture!

…blogspot.com/search/label/shipping

Coupeville...
Level Contributor
5 posts
53 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

Thank you so much. It sounds like it's not worth it to bring anything except maybe ship a few boxes. It's very helpful to have that advice.

Tucson, Arizona
Destination Expert
for Quito, Ecuador
Level Contributor
9,676 posts
92 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

I'm surprised it's difficult to sell your furniture. Second-hand stores don't exist, and the Baños library's garage sale, which I've helped gather stuff for, is a huge hit. When colleagues, and recently I, planned to leave we would post the things we wanted to sell in the staff cafeteria, and stuff would just be snapped up by the local staff. Maybe the people trying to sell aren't marketing to the right people--e.g., market it to locals, not ex-pats.

Red Deer, Canada
Level Contributor
25 posts
47 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

If you haven't been convinced yet, let me chime in with "DON'T SHIP STUFF!" It's not worth the cost and the hassle.

Bring your electronic devices (laptops, etc) as they are expensive here and a bit behind the curve if you want the latest specs. Other than that, the only thing I really miss that I have not been able to find in Ecuador is Cheerios.

Coupeville...
Level Contributor
5 posts
53 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

What did you do with keepsakes that you can't/won't get rid of? I have things of my daughter's childhood (she's in college so she has nowhere to put them) and things that were passed down to me from my parents (no furniture, just items in boxes). If you were me, would you put them in storage?

Red Deer, Canada
Level Contributor
25 posts
47 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

For things like keepsakes, you might just want to consider packing them in your luggage and just pay the extra luggage fee. I took some with me and left some in storage back home.

Check out the gringos abroad blog for more info on this: gringosabroad.com/what-should-you-bring-when…

Coupeville...
Level Contributor
5 posts
53 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Shipping goods vs. buying in Cuenca

Thanks. I think my luggage will be full of other things so storage is probably the best bet. I appreciate your input.