WOW what a journey it was to get to Ecuador. My husband and I are finally here and can’t be more happy about it. The journey sure was a journey.
We began planning the trip months before the date. Selling our Florida home and certifying our dog to travel to another country. That in itself was trying. They must be certified by a USDA Veterinary and then be sent to be verified by the USDA ( United States Department of Agriculture) to then be sent off to Ecuador to be verified. First Ava did not have a vaccine that was mandatory here in Ecuador but not back home in Canada. So she did not have the vaccine. We had to have these papers all done 10 days prior to arrival. But here’s the catch: She had to have had this vaccine 21 days prior. This then caused a huge issue that we had to cancel flights, hotel bookings and a driver that was picking us up in Ecuador to take us to the house that we would be living in. So we had to rebook another flight date and then have her certified. This time it worked.
We were off to the races.
We were so excited we had ten days to pack everything and be on our way to Miami which was a five hour drive for us from our place in Florida.
The Day had finally come, we headed over to the rental car place and picked up our rental car. To load up and make our way south to Miami.
Picking up the car was easy with no troubles…..until I checked my visa card. They had secured a $600.00 Deposit for a $160.00 rental. I was furious, as not one person told us that. I called to check things out to be told we can’t do anything about it. And that they were so sorry that the person never told us.
The reason for the upset was we had to pay for a hotel and pay for our luggage bags that we were taking on the plane with us. We had four. They pretty much maxed out our visa, as we only had a thousand dollar limit and I like to keep it that way.
We scrambled and had to do some fancy footwork to fix this situation.
We got back to the home, loaded up the car and started to head south. The drive was good with no traffic and then we arrived at the hotel.
We were told that they would shuttle us over when we booked the hotel, to be told no we don’t do that anymore due to Covid 19. We had planned on taking the car back that night and taking a shuttle to the airport the next day to fly out.
This whole day was also clouded over by the fact that my aunt had passed away that morning when I was on the way to pick up the rental car. This was a very long and emotional day.
The day to fly had FINALLY ARRIVED, and we woke with a new outlook and a fresh sleep. I myself felt so much better.
We packed up the rental car and drove over to the airport to drop myself and the dog and bags off at the airport while my husband dropped the car off. To my surprise I received a call from the rental car company to tell me that they refunded me the money. What a blessing that was.
We had to go to the airport early to be able to drop the car off and we refused to pay for a later checkout which we were told would be almost as much as another night stay.
We were just happy to be on our way. Even though we did not fly out until the evening.
We waited around the airport entrance so that we could take the dog out and do the things that she needed to do. We finally decided to check our bags and head threw security and customs. This was a very easy process.
We may have been really early but we had more choices to choose from to eat and drink. The dog was able to walk and they also had a doggie area for her to do her business.
The day went by a pretty good speed. It was about an hour out from take off and there was a loud announcement that stated the flight had been delayed until 7:00 am the next morning. OMG
They offered us food vouchers. That was fine and I was not mad at the fact that we would not be flying until morning. I was upset that now I had to sleep or try to, in the airport with a dog. UGH. The thing was the flight had been scheduled to fly in the am but then they changed it to evening flight about a week prior to the date. So we had to then rearrange to stay in the major city as the driver did not feel comfortable driving in the dark which we totally respect. So he was going to pick us up the next day at the hotel. So needless to say we lost that hotel as well and now we’re flying the next day and he could now pick us up at the airport.
It all ended up working out in the end as we liked the idea of arriving in Ecuador in the morning and driving straight to the house. So the flight delay was not the issue. We just wanted to get there after the day that we had yesterday.
When we arrived in Ecuador getting through Customs was a breeze. We showed that we had our negative Covid 19 test, the dog had her papers but like I mentioned above the USDA had already sent the papers and all I had to do was sign a paper. I worried for absolutely nothing. I have travelled in the past to many places and entering Ecuador was the fastest I’ve ever seen. Once we landed, going through customs and baggage was not more than half an hour.
We have been in Ecuador now for a little over two weeks and we absolutely love it.
What I have learned from all of this is this always happens for a reason and sometimes we need to take a step back, take a breath and realize that it’s all part of our journey and that we need to embrace the journey that we are on.