Living in Nicaragua

Housing and supply

Those who are reasonably wealthy in Nicaragua live in their own house. Buildings with rental apartments are not so common and mostly have small apartments for the high needs of bachelors, business people, etc. Of course you can also rent houses and apartments. The rents are by no means cheap and depend heavily on the location and facilities. Often the houses or apartments on offer are located in a closed, guarded complex called a “condominio”.

Anyone looking for an apartment is best advised by friends and colleagues on site. You get the best offers (as everywhere) through hearsay and your own search. But you can also view offers over the Internet from Germany, for example from the private brokerage service ” encuentra24 “. The pitfalls of the housing market in Managua are occasionally a topic in the press.

The Yellow Pages of Nicaragua, one of countries in Central America according to thereligionfaqs, allow contact with businesses and services of all kinds.

As far as the supply of goods is concerned, Managua and the larger cities of Nicaragua have a large range of goods and hardly have to forego a convenience that one is used to at home. The infrastructure for everyday life and health care is in place, but it may be more difficult to reach it from remote locations.

Useful addresses and tips

The German Embassy is located on Calle Erasmus de Rotterdam (Carretera Masaya, km 5, one block away from Colegio Teresiano). She can be called at 2255-6920, -6921 or -6922. Under the cell phone no. 8882 3971 there is an emergency service outside of opening hours, which can also be reached by SMS.

In Managua there is a German school where parents can register their school-age children.

For tourist information and offers you can contact the Instituto Nicaraguense de Turismo. It has an office in the center of Managua (near the Hotel Crowne Plaza, formerly “Intercontinental”) and offices in all the major tourist destinations in the country.

The current weather in Managua and other cities can be viewed here.

A list of legal and religious holidays can be useful for visitors.

A phrase book dealing with the specifics of Nicaraguan Spanish and a useful map (with Honduras and El Salvador) can be obtained from this address.

The power supply is set to a mains voltage of 110 V and a frequency of 60 Hz. It is recommended to get a UPS (Uninterrupted Power Supply) for sensitive devices (notebooks, hi-fi systems etc.) so that voltage fluctuations can be balanced out and damage can be avoided. The sockets are aligned to the US standard (two flat contacts), and it is advisable to take adapters for German appliance plugs with you. Batteries and torches are useful in the event of a power cut.

Money and money transfer

The Nicaraguan currency is the Cordoba (NIO). It was introduced in 1912, over a hundred years ago. The current exchange rate is 34.77 NIO for one US $ (December 2020). That corresponds to 41.98 NIO for 1 Euro. The value of the euro depends on the exchange rate to the US $, because in any case the NIO is first converted into dollars and therefore fluctuates in value along with the dollar. The current dollar rate, which is continuously adjusted, can be obtained from the central bank. With a currency converter, all amounts and currencies can be easily converted.

If you want to take cash with you, it should be US dollars. The euro is officially approved for exchange, but it is still rarely used and the exchange rate is rather unfavorable for euro owners.

It is easy to withdraw from the bank with a credit card (Mastercard, Visa). However, there are often long waiting times in banks. You also have to make sure that bank branches are rare in the country and that you can therefore run into difficulties when withdrawing.

With the EC card and the PIN no. you can withdraw money from the nationwide network of ATMs ( e.g. Credomatic). When entering the PIN no. At the machine you should be careful (just like in Germany) and cover the keyboard. Traveller’s checks are no longer recommended because exchanging them is time-consuming and costs additional fees.

In certain public places you can exchange black money with the so-called “coyotes” (dollar cordoba). This is usually harmless and is much faster than in the bank. For a long time, informal currency exchange was no cheaper than in the bank. That could change again, however, because the fear of a devaluation of Cordoba is widespread.


Money changer in Nicaragua