The first language is Spanish; however, most of the indigenous population speaks Quichua. There are 18 different languages among native communities.



Democratic.  The current president is Rafael Correa.



Voltage in Ecuador is the same as in the United States at 110V with 60 cycles AC. You will need a two flat prong adapter to use your three prong power chord for your computer.


Weights and Measures

Ecuador uses the metric system.  A meter is 1.1 yards, a kilogram is 2.2 pounds, a liter is 1.1 quarts and a kilometer is .6 miles.  Weather temperature is calculated in Celsius.  An easy way to convert C degrees is to approximate: F degrees is 2C + 30.



The American dollar.  The Ecuadorian government has also produced a series of local coins that have the same value as the US coins (which are also accepted).  In Quito and most other cities, ATMs are available to withdraw money from a US checking account.  Credit cards are widely used in Quito.


Weather and Climate

Ecuador has two seasons: generally speaking, the temperature is dictated by altitude. Quito and the Andes enjoy spring-like weather year-round, with highs of around 20-25° C (68-77°F) and lows of about 8-10°C (45-50°F). Weather in the Galapagos varies between misty and cool, and steamy and sunny. The Amazon region is generally either hot and humid, or hot and rainy.

The wet season, or invierno (winter), in the highlands is from October until April, and the dry season, verano (summer), lasts from June until September. However, no matter what season it is said to be, the weather is ultimately unpredictable. Warm sunny mornings can often lead to bone-chilling rainy afternoons so bring layers and comfortably take in the beauty of Quito.


Adjusting to Altitude:

During the first few days after arrival, adjustment to the altitude in Quito is sometimes difficult, so:

Drink lots of water!

Intense exercise and activities should be limited (give your body time to adjust).


Do’s and Don’ts:

    • Do wash your hands frequently with soap and water.

    • Do drink only bottled or boiled water or carbonated drinks.

    • Do eat only thoroughly cooked food, or fruits and vegetables that you have washed and peeled.

    • Do bring plenty of sunscreen – over 40 SPF is recommended.

Remember the sun is nearer and more dangerous at high altitudes.  Protect against sun exposure. Wear SUNSCREEN and EYE PROTECTION every day!


Visas and Parent/Guardian Permission Forms:


Please check exit requirements for your country of origin. If you are a minor traveling without parents, you will need to come prepared with a signed and notarized permission letter from your parents to travel with your GIN Advisor guardians. Every country is different, so please check this ahead of time before booking your travel to Ecuador.

With some notable exceptions, visitors from most countries do not require a visa to enter Ecuador (no visa required for up to 90 days). Please check Ecuador visa requirements before making travel plans. We strongly suggest you consult your host country’s Ecuador consulate or Embassy.