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Ecuador is one of the most fascinating destinations in South America with its array of vibrant cultures, historical colonial architecture, volcanic landscapes, and dense rain forest – all in a nation no bigger than Nevada! Ecuador’s traditional arts, textiles, and ceramics are based in a culture that dates from around 3200 B.C. The country is comprised of four distinct regions – the highlands, coastal areas, rain forest, and the famous Galapagos Islands – all making Ecuador an exciting country for you to discover.

By living with a host family and attending a local school in Ecuador you’ll have the opportunity to really get to know this vibrant, exciting culture. You’ll be able to skyrocket your Spanish and make tons of new friends. Ecuadorian society values family and friendship, so your host family will welcome your participation in daily activities. Hanging out with friends and family is also a great way to further perfect your Spanish language skills. You’ll meet other AFS participants at orientations, and possibly take part in an optional trip to the Galápagos Islands at an additional cost. Throughout the year, you’ll also have the opportunity to visit amazing cultural sites like the Galapagos Islands and the Amazon jungle. You won’t just be studying abroad, you’ll be immersed in a completely different environment. It’s like a whole new reality!

Eligibility Requirements

*Age on Departure: 15.6 – 18.6*
*Graduates accepted*

We will automatically accept all vegetarian students whose applications are sent to us, provided that they are not strict vegetarians and show flexibility to consume at least dairy products and/or eggs. A typical Ecuadorian diet calls for some kind of meat twice a day, at lunch and dinner; meat portions are not necessarily large, and are always accompanied by rice and some cooked vegetable or salad. Vegetables, on the other hand, are not that popular, and will mostly come in cooked form, rather than in fresh salads. In any case, vegetables are never at the center of a meal.

For ovo-lacto vegetarians all this means that, while they definitely have to assume responsibility over their dietary needs, they will have limitations, and most of the time, they will have to eat everything else in the meal but the meat. Particularly for those who do not eat any kind of meat at all (and not just red meat), a balanced diet may be impossible, unless they provide for themselves food products that may compensate a lack of proteins from a diet of mostly starch. On the other hand, and given the particular challenges placed by their very strict diets and sometimes life style, we will NOT consider for placement in Ecuador any vegan candidates.

What's included in your experience

  • Airfare
  • Airport Pick-up
  • Host Family Placement
  • Housing
  • Meals
  • School Placement
  • Individual Contact Person
  • Medical Insurance
  • 24/7 Emergency Support
  • Domestic Transport
  • Assistance with Application Process
  • Visa Application Assistance
  • Pre-Departure Orientation
  • Orientations during your time abroad
  • Access to Alumni Network
  • Continuous Support
  • Worldwide Presence
  • 70 Years Experience

What you are responsible for

  • Vaccinations
  • Visa and Passport Fees
  • School Uniform