3 Things You Cant Live Without and the Economics of BABuenos Aires, Spring 2010

Three things you absoluetly need for BA: bandaids, bugspray, and a MAP!  First, I carry bandaids with me every where, because you think you have comfortable shoes, until you are walking hours a day in them.  Second, the bugs here have no mercy.  Even while wearing leggings, I got bit through them.  It is especially necessary if you venture outside of BA.  Lastly, but most important, is a good map.  Buy a pocket map before you leave for BA (I found one that I love that comes with the book:  Top 10 Buenos Aires by Eyewitness Travel. Plus, it is a good book).  Look at the map before you come.  I live in NYC so i was able to use and read the map easily, but students here that are coming from area where they drive a lot are very uncomfortable with using maps and public transportation.  Get farmiliar early on, and you won´t have as many problems or fear in walking around here. As for money, the first two weeks of your stay will certainly be the most expensive.  First, you pay for your entrance into the country (approx 130 dollars), the cab ride, plus a phone (more info on phones later), and lunch everyday.  I have spent quite a bit of money in this week and a half.  However, starting next week I am starting a budget of $100 USD per week, which is about $380 pesos.  Most of that will be used on weekends for entrance fees, taxis, and drinks.  During the week I plan to buy groceries and just make sandwiches.  I will keep you updated on how this budget works out for me. Cell Phones:       If you want to bring your own cell phone and just buy a sim card here, you MUST unlock your cell phone at home.  It is not only a pain to do it here, but in most cases you have to pay for it.  My friend had a blackberry and she would have had to pay $200 pesos to unlock it, which was the same price as just buying a phone and sim card.  If you can unlock your phone, it is definitely worth the hassle in the US because a sim card is about $15 dollars here, if not less.  Also, it is probably a better phone than a cheapy one you can buy here. I had to purchase my phone here.  I used Claro, which, as far as I found, is one of the cheaper places to get your phone.  I got mine for $190 pesos, sim card and phone.  Then paid extra for credit (credit is used toward your minutes and text messages).  Do not call on the phone if you can avoid it, as it costs way more than just a text message. Stay tuned for more important information!!!!
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