Living in Belize

Everything you ever wanted to know about living in Belize from immigration procedures, taxes, utilities, banking, retirement programs, politics and holidays.

When you are living or planning to live in Belize it is handy to know which costs and taxes you can expect. Also it is handy to know how to get electricity, internet access and so on. We have a lot of articles on this topics and other related topics which are interesting or important when you are living in Belize or are planning to live or retire in Belize. 
 
If you are planning to move to Belize you can have a look at our articles about retiring in Belize and how to move to Belize: 
  • Retiring in Belize: If you are considering Retiring in Belize, then this article is for you. We have written a number of articles on information on Belize that you may be interested in. We have articles on moving to Belize. There are articles on immigration, prices, etc. And, because we know you won’t be retiring in Belize until you have visited, you could be interested in our thoughts on “trying before retiring in Belize” aswell.
  • Moving to Belize: Are you considering moving to Belize? As with any international move, each country has its own unique characteristics and processes that you need to take notice of. We have collected a number of articles we have written on this website that will help you when moving to Belize. We will add more articles regularly, so check back often. Also, please send us information you have that you would like to share with others considering moving to Belize, so that we may add it to this website.


Information about utilities as electricity, telephony and internet and facilities as transportation, banking and real estate agents in Belize: 

  • Electricity in Belize: For electricity in Belize you have actually in general two choices. You can choose to connect to the electricity grid of Belize Electricity Limited or you can choose for an offline solar system.
  • Telephony in Belize: For telephony in Belize you have the possibility to connect to the local network or to use a mobile phone. Also other not so common options such as internet telephony and satellite telephony are available.
  • Internet Access in Belize: Internet Access in Belize is very expensive, at least compared to European or United States standards. High speed Internet Access is available, though, and you have three main options to access the Internet in Belize: DSL, Wireless or Satellite.
  • Transportation in Belize: There are a lot of ways of transportation in Belize with a difference in comfort, luxury and prices. Depending on your wishes it is possible to select one of more of the transportation options which Belize has to offer.
  • Banking in Belize: Banks in Belize are of two different types, domestic and international banks. Domestic banks are to service the residents of Belize with bank services. The international banks are meant to service non-residents of Belize with offshore bank accounts and bank services. The domestic banks offer as part of their service ATMs for residents and tourists. Domestic and international banks both offer options for online banking.
  • Real Estate Agents in Belize: There are a lot of real estate agents in Belize, which are focusing on different client groups and different segments or locations in Belize. We have made an overview of the real estate agents in Belize.
Information about the political conditions in Belize, the public holidays, immigration, customs and the costs of taxes: 
  • Political Conditions: In national elections on February 7, 2008, the United Democratic Party (UDP) prevailed over the incumbent People’s United Party (PUP). The UDP won 25 of the 31 seats in the House of Representatives, while the PUP won the other six seats. UDP leader Dean Barrow replaced PUP leader Said Musa as Prime Minister. The PUP governed Belize from 1998-2008; the UDP from 1993-98; the PUP from 1989-1993; and the UDP from 1984-89. Before 1984, the PUP had dominated the electoral scene for more than 30 years and was the party in power when Belize became independent in 1981. Third-party alternatives to the two-party system have arisen in the recent years, but these parties garnered less than 2% of the vote in the February 2008 elections.
  • Belize Holidays: The national or public holidays in Belize are listed for every month.
  • Belize Immigration: There are four options to spend some time in Belize. Depending on your wishes and needs there are different options, including a Belize Tourist Card for a shorter stay, a Belize Work Permit to be able to work in Belize, the Belize Qualified Retired Persons Program for retirees and official Belize Permanent Residency to be able to stay for a longer time. For some nationalities a visum is obligatory before entering Belize.
  • Customs in Belize: Not all goods can be imported into Belize freely. There can be restrictions on what may be imported, you may have to pay taxes and import duties, or there can be a requirement for a quarantine inspection.
  • Taxes in Belize: Belize has some taxes as most of the countries have. The most common tax in Belize is the General Sales Tax (GST), also called Sales Tax or VAT (Value Added Tax). On every consumer product this tax is added. For Belize residents who are working in Belize for a Belizean employer also the income tax is important.