Digital Nomad Exchange
Free MembershipSign In
Medellin, Colombia

Digital Nomad Life in Medellin, Colombia

By Betsy Burlingame

Summary: Digital nomads and expats talk about what it is like to live in Medellin, Colombia. Get tips from others living in Medellin about where to live, how to find a place to live, pros and cons of living in Medellin and more.

What is life like in Medellin?

When we asked people living in Medellin what life is like and how people spend their time, they said:

"In general, in my opinion, this is a very fine, large Latin city of over four million. Being Latin, families are very strong, work is strong, socializing is very strong and the people of Medellin are some of the nicest you will find worldwide. They welcome expats. This is a very diverse city, thirteen universities, excellent medical facilities, clean, excellent food, water, air (seasonal concerns). Worldwide metropolitan city that is very difficult to beat. You will look long and hard to find a better worldwide city," said another member in Medellin.

Answer this Question

William Russell Health Insurance

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

Learn MoreGET A QUOTE

William Russell Health Insurance

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

Learn MoreGET A QUOTE

Where should I live in Medellin?

We asked digital nomads and expats how they chose their neighborhood and found a place to live. They answered:

"Found on fincaraiz.com. Friend checked it out, said it was good, negotiated with owner, came down two weeks before move, checked it out, signed papers," remarked another member in Medellin.

"Found Medellin from a friend - climate is perfect 75 days, 65 nights for sleeping(other cities climate can be much colder), good infrastucture equal to USA (drinkable water - no bottled water, low cost hydroelectric, same voltage - no convertor, natural gas in ground) and products / services (from USA, we are very accustomed to finding everything we want) and the people are very friendly / helpful Find a good English speaking real estate agent (Andrew - Apartments Medellin) because they will generally understand also more of your needs. The local agents tend to help their friends and do not show what you will want (no MLS services here). Look for US designed and constructed housing or you will miss all your conveniences (from experience)," explained one expat living in Medellin, Colombia.

Answer this Question

What do I need to know before moving to Medellin?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Medellin, they said:

"A person can develop a beautiful life here, however, it will take time and not happen magically .The assets of this city are well worth the investment. Be kind to yourself and patient. Don't believe all you hear. Everyone (expat, other) has their best visa person, you can loose a lot of money on that one. Just because someone has lived here two years, or in four Latin countries, does not mean they are experts, at all. Find the ones who have lived here fifteen years. Listen to what people say, put what they say through your own filter system, use your head, you can do this. You can do this! You will make mistakes, everyone does! It is part of moving abroad. You will have to put some effort into this and give yourself three years in the long term. One has to learn how to live here, the resources are excellent and again, Medellinguru.com is very helpful. It is worth the investment of your time and energy to learn how to do this," said another foreigner in Medellin.

Answer this Question

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance in Colombia

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
GET A QUOTE

What do people appreciate most about the culture in Medellin?

"Lots of really friendly people in Colombia, If you are lost you must not be surprised if someone escorts you for half an hour to take you where you wanted to go," remarked another member in Medellin.

"I find people here to be very warm and inclusive, when you meet a family you always become one of them right away and they are your friends from then on," explained one expat living in Medellin, Colombia.

Answer this Question

William Russell Health Insurance

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

Learn MoreGET A QUOTE

William Russell Health Insurance

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

Learn MoreGET A QUOTE

What do people find most challenging about the culture in Medellin?

"Finding a balanced social network can be difficult when you only hang with the Gringos," said another foreigner in Medellin.

"The language is a problem but of course it become less as I learn. One must be very careful as to where you go do to the problems of crime," remarked another member in Medellin.

Answer this Question

What residency documents or visas did I need if I will be in Medellin for a while?

"The only documents Colombia required were Apostilled Letters from Social Security and our passports. We received our 3-year Pensionado visas within 3 weeks, and our Cedulas a few weeks after that. The process was about a third the cost we paid in Panama, and that process took about 6 months and required two trips across country to Panama City," explained one person living in Medellin, Colombia.

"Obtaining a three year visa was simple, but consumed a lot of visits to various offices. Being married to a Colombian national makes it vastly simpler and having family living there ensures the process will be nearly flawless. Having an attorney to facilitate the process is recommended; mine only charged me $300.00 USD and accompanied me to each immigrations office visit," wrote one digital nomad living in Medellin, Colombia.

Answer this Question

Quickly and easily find trusted moving, insurance, relocation and other providers with Expat Exchange's Moving Planner. Select which of our trusted partners you would like to hear from and we'll do the rest.
Plan Your Move to Colombia

Quickly and easily find trusted moving, insurance, relocation and other providers with Expat Exchange's Moving Planner. Select which of our trusted partners you would like to hear from and we'll do the rest.
Get Started Now

What cultural blunders should I try to avoid making in Medellin?

We asked people in Medellin if they could share any humorous cultural blunders they commited. They wrote:

"Nothing really bad a few minor things. I decided that I should address my friends father as Don Perez but in my tounge tied Spanish I said Don Perro which would be "Sir Dog". Again I have a Colombian friend watching me and giving me tips," remarked another member in Medellin.

Answer this Question

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance in Colombia

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
GET A QUOTE

What are the pros and cons of living in Medellin?

"Like: The weather is awesome. Public transportation is excellent both locally and other cities. Domestic airfare is cheap as well. The Colombian people could be the nicest people anywhere. The city is really clean (coming from Boquete, Panama, that is so refreshing) and you can drink the water out of the tap. Utilities and wifi is modern and efficient. Appointments run on time, no "latin time" here but many businesses close 2 hours for lunch. The country itself is amazing from the Caribbean beaches to the Amazon in Leticia. The cost of living is very low. Even without insurance, doctor's and prescription medicine are very low cost. Don't Like: The pollution is bad. Sometimes it's worse than bad. There's pica-placa (cars can only be used in the city based on the last digit of your tag) but there's so much traffic, it has no effect. With all the great things Medellin has to offer, it's pollution that is causing us to move. ," explained one person living in Medellin, Colombia.

"Nearly everything about Medellin is favourable to expats EXCEPT the levels of corruption and extortion.," wrote one digital nomad living in Medellin, Colombia.

Answer Question & View More Answers

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance in Colombia

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
GET A QUOTE

About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is one of the founders of Digital Nomad Exchange and the Founder and President of Expat Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange and Digital Nomad Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance

Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
GET A QUOTE

William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance

Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
GET A QUOTE

Digital Nomads MedellinMedellin Guide

Digital nomads and expats talk about what it's like living in Medellin.

Digital Nomad Life Medellin Living in Medellin

More about what it's like living in Medellin.

Colombia Forum Colombia Forum
Talk with other digital nomads and expats in Colombia on our Colombia forum - meet people, get advice and help others.

Contribute to Colombia Network Contribute
Help others in Colombia by answering questions about the challenges and adventures of living in Colombia.

Expat Healthcare Advice in ColombiaHealthcare & Health Insurance in Colombia

Digital Nomads in Colombia offer advice about healthcare, hospital visits, emergency rooms visits, finding a doctor and buying health insurance in Colombia.

Medellin, Colombia

William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance

Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
GET A QUOTE

William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance

Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
GET A QUOTE

Contribute to Colombia Network Contribute
Help others in Colombia by answering questions about the challenges and adventures of living in Colombia.

Guides to Cities in Colombia
Bogota Cali Medellin Villavicencio
Country Resources
Health Insurance Shipping & Moving More Resources

Copyright 1997-2022 Burlingame Interactive, Inc.

Privacy Policy Legal