The truth is if you want to visit and live in Ecuador, chances are you will not have to apply for a visa at all. Ecuador has a very lenient visa policy, and citizens from most countries can enter and stay without a visa but only up to 90 days.
A Resident Investor visa is available for a person who is investing a minimum of $10,000-$25,000 in Ecuador, depending on the exact circumstances. The funds must go either directly into the investment (business, real estate, etc) or be deposited in an Ecuadorian bank.
In the past, foreigners were able to immediately apply for a permanent residency visa, but that is no longer the case. Now everyone must first obtain a temporary residency visa that is valid for two years. This temporary visa may be renewed one time only. After holding your temporary visa for 21 months, you are eligible to apply for a permanent visa that does not have an expiration date. Some of the visas you could apply for in Ecuador include:
1. Professional visa: This applies to professionals of high technical levels as well as those of specialized fields.
2. Student visa: This applies to students (at all levels, regular school year) and family members accompanying the student can qualify for dependent visas.
3. Dependent visa: This applies to dependents of all primary visa holders.
4. Work visa: This visa is for foreigners who are hired to work in Ecuador or who is self-employed, but earning a monthly wage equivalent to the Ecuadorian minimum wage.
5. Rentista visa: You can qualify for this visa if you have monthly income from a stable source outside of Ecuador.
Click here for more information on Ecuadorian visas.