Capital: Buenos Aires
Area: 2,766,890 km ²
Climate: mostly temperate; arid in the southeast, subantarctic in the southwest
Population: 40,913,584 (est. July 2009)
Languages: Spanish (official), Italian, English, German, Fren
Government Type: RepublicIndependence: May 25, 1810GDP: $575.6 billion (est. 2008)GDP – per capita (PPP): $ 14,200 (est. 2008)
Information for Foreign Students in Argentina
Book your tickets a few months in advance so that you can find an affordable ticket. It is best to buy a two-way ticket even if you don't know the exact date of your return; simply leave the return option open.
Obtaining the Visa
For a list of the necessary documents needed to obtain a student visa valid for one year, go to the Argentine consulate in your home country. Although expensive (more than 300 €), this visa does not require you to leave the country every 3 months to renew it like most European countries. Be warned that recent modifications and security measures have complicated the process, so be sure to have all of the required documents deeded for the visa before going to the Embassy. In addition, for an extra cost of 40 € you can have your visa expedited and receive it within a few hours.
Rent for a student room is generally about 200 € a month, with about 50 € in extra charges. It is relatively simple to find accommodation in Buenos Aires. Upon your arrival, it is easy to stay at a youth hostel for about 7€ per night until you get your bearings.
It is useless to try opening an Argentine bank account, so check with your home back to see what the best way to incur as few fees as possible for your withdrawals. An example would be if your bank had a partnership with an Argentine bank. You can also buy Travelers Checks, which can be used to pay several rental months in advance or if you need a large sum of money that your card does not allow you to withdraw from an ATM.
Cost of Living
Inflation is a large factor because it is much more apparent and relevant than in other countries, causing prices to fluctuate rapidly and without notice. Costs for an average meal at a university restaurant is about 3€, an average coffee is 1.90€, a movie is 6.30€, a bus ticket is 0.50€, a 10 minute taxi is about 7€ and a restaurant meal as much as 20€.
The easiest thing would be to buy an international phone card (Hable mas card, 60 minutes for 10 pesos).
Be sure to stay up to date on your vaccines and bring your health record with you. If you wish to travel to countries such as Bolivia or Paraguay, do the necessary vaccines as they are compulsory. For your health coverage, the student social security covers your expenditures. Check with your private insurance company if you want good health coverage abroad.
In Buenos Aires, the bus (el colectivo) is, along with the taxi, the best means of transportation. With 792 lines colectivo, you should be able to get to most of the places in Buenos Aires for 0.80 cents! Taxis are also abundant and convenient; however, "false taxis" do exist so it is better to have an idea of the route to your location before leaving. There is also a subway, but it is not very developed and is seldom used.