Over the last 20 years that I have been associated with Chile and bringing things down here from the United States and Europe, several “little” items pop up as necessities that simply are not available in the country. Therefore, I suggest that whether you are bringing a container, pallet or many suitcases that you slips some or all of these things in.
1. Wax paper
2. Casters for rolling high-back leather or other desk chairs
3. Three hole punch and corresponding file folders
4. Manila file folders
5. Pie pans, disposable and otherwise
6. Blue cheese dressing (sometimes can be found here but it is not very good)
7. BBQ sauce
8. Power strips and extension cords with 110V plugs (USA)
9. Parallel and standard leather-covered Spanish Bibles.
11. Murphy bed kits, if you are in to space-saving
12. Bedding for USA size beds you bring, if applicable
13. Spanish grammar books and dictionaries, as many as you can find!
14. High quality paint, which is very expensive in Chile with poor selection (Behr is here)
15. Interesting kitchen cabinet insert racks
16. Door knockers and handles, available here but with limited selection
17. 9V extension cord adapters/power strip for car cigarette lighter plug
18. Toner for your laser printer, depending on your chip might not be available here
19. Cordless landline phones, available here but expensive and in more limited supply
20. Most electronic devices that can be plugged into 9V or 200V, except alarm clocks: GPS, radar detector, windows-based notebook PCs, tablets, etc. since they are more expensive here.
21. Plastic bed peg/wheel risers and plastic storage boxes to slide under the bed
22. Car parts, in case you happen to know what kind of car you will have here
23. Red and black licorice ropes
24. Skiing, camping, kayaking and fishing equipment
25. Used, good condition furniture: lazy-boy chairs are a great idea, hardwood coffee table, couches,
maybe a dining room set, and also chairs and coffee tables. Quality used furniture can be sold at a profit.
26. Replacement electric razor heads/foil
27. Big bottles of vitamins
28. 3 x 5 note cards
29. Christmas cards to send out, basically not available here
30. baking powder
31. lamp shades
32. tape measures in inches, better variety up there than here
33. 10,000 pellets in case you expect pests where you will live
34. Size 13 shoes and other shoes that are quality in general, better variety up there than here
35. Power transformer, 3000 watts, available here but mroe expensive
36. Shelf liner
37. Spanish version of Kiersey temperament analysis book, Por Favor Compréndeme
38. Books published in Argentina or Chile on grammar, also dictionaries, lexicons, verb guides, picture books, Spanish-English dictionaries (very valuable!).
39. Books on Chilean historyand geography (in English), especially Out of the Ashes by James Whelan.
40. Maps of Chile
41. Nice chess sets
42. Nice hardhats, if you plan to be in work areas
43. Comforters for beds
44. High thread count sheets
I might come back and add to this list so be sure to check back!
Dr. Cobin’s book, Life in Chile: A Former American’s Guide for Newcomers, is the most comprehensive treatise on Chilean life ever written, designed to help newcomers get settled in Chile. He covers almost every topic imaginable for immigrants. This knowledge is applied in his valet consulting service–Chile Consulting–where he guides expatriates through the process of finding a place to live and settle in Chile, helping them glide over the speed bumps that they
would otherwise face in getting their visas, setting up businesses, buying real estate, investing in Chilean stocks or gold coins, etc. The cost is $149.
Dr. Cobin’s sequel book, Expatriates to Chile: Topics for Living, adds even further depth on important topics to expatriates who either live in Chile already or who have Chile on the short list of countries where they hope to immigrate. The book deals with crucial issues pertaining to urban and rural real estate transactions, natural disasters, issues pertaining to emigration and its urgency, money and the quality of life, medical care and insurance, business opportunities, social manifestations (including welfare state and divorce policy concerns), Chile in the freedom indices, social maladies (lying, cheating, stealing and murder), as well as discussion of a few places worth visiting and some further comments about Santiago.
Dr. Cobin’s next sequel, Living in Chile: Key Details of History, Culture, Politics and Places for the Serious Immigrant, goes into detail that mainly those people living in Chile already or serious immigrants will be interested in. It is also of special importance to libertarians that want to know something about the political and ideological undercurrents, past highlights (like having a free port much like Hong Kong or free banking), and people that want practical information and where they can retire on their budget. The travel section compliments the other books in the series so that those that read all three books can be sure to have covered the key places of the country from top to bottom.
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For a brief introduction consider Dr. Cobin’s abridged book (56 pages): Chile: A Primer for Expats ($19), offering highlights found in the two larger books.
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