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moving from texas to luanda, angola

by betourne Online Now Dec 4, 2003 at 11:34 AM

I need major tips on relocating and information about luanda. i have searched, but come up with limited info.

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  • delcity's Profile Photo

    Re: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by delcity Online Now Dec 6, 2003 at 1:58 PM

    have you looked here for a link ( www.towd.com )

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  • pym256's Profile Photo

    Re: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by pym256 Online Now Dec 23, 2003 at 1:53 AM

    Hello! I currently live in Luanda and would be glad to help answer any questions you have. I will try to sum up some basics for new folks (I have been here 5 months into a 2 year stint.) First off, the situation will look very disheartening when you land. The airport was on generator power when I arrived, and the city is very dirty and crowded. I would have to say that for the first two months I was wondering what the heck I was doing being here, but now I really enjoy it. So right off, don't be discouraged, as I suspect you are coming here with an oil company and not by real choice. Your best bet is the expat community, which I'm sure you'll find right off. The US Embassy has some events, the oil companies in town have socials, there is a Darts League at a local hotel, etc. There is more to do now than, say, a year ago. It's a good community of very interesting people. Tips right off... if you are going through J'burg, expect to lose your luggage, at least for a while. If you are taking the "Houston Express", you're lucky. ;) Be sure to pack a few days worth of clothing in your carry on, expecting to lose luggage. I took British Airways in and they lost all of my stuff for two weeks, coming right from London, so. Also, be sure to have an expeditor at the airport from your company, it makes things easier, especially if you don't know Portuguese. Be cautious, don't agree to anything you're not sure of, there are a lot of scams. Be mindful of your belongings and pockets, petty and greater crime is very common. Bring bug spray, as malaria is a big concern. Get all your shots, especially for yellow fever (as it is REQUIRED, but I'm sure they told you that.) Please feel free to email me or post here with any specific concerns or things you want to know before you arrive. If you're already here and read this, email and let me know! Ann

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  • Re: Re: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by JudynDave Online Now Feb 23, 2004 at 8:45 AM

    Dear Ann, You have been very informative. I was wondering if you could also give me ideas as to where to live, i.e. which part of town? I had an advice of not even using the tap water even when brushing teeth. What is your experience on this. Lastly, you mention BUG SPRAY. Is this a big problem there? Appreciate to hear your input. Thank you. judyndave

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    Re: Re: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by pym256 Online Now Mar 3, 2004 at 10:07 AM

    Hi All! Sorry for the late reply. Email is best (I don't know if this does email but if you need Luanda info promptly, msg me here with your email and I will reply email, might be faster.) Tap water: Yes, it is unsafe to drink the tap water. Most people have a cistern, which grows things, as the water trucks get the water from the Kwanza River, which is not too good. My shower water usually smells like sewage or bad standing water, and sometimes runs brown out of the tap. It depends. It's not a matter of the usual 'traveler stomach' here, where you get sick from the local water because you're not used to it: the water here has amoebic things in it and other stuff. Bottled by the case is the way to go. Bug spray... this would be for the mosquitos. Take it seriously. I know the stats about when the malaria mosquito bites and how soon after biting someone infected it would have to bite you,e tc, but the fact is that one out of five kids in Angola dies before the age of 5, from malaria. You would probably have better health care than they do, but the infection rates are high. DEET in high concentration and some sort of malaria prophyactic (sp?). If you don't want to take the drugs (side effects on the liver, mental well-being, etc) then just wear long sleeves and long pants at dawn and dusk and use bug spray. They're about in swarms. Anyway, I have noticed that the War Against Trash in Luanda is working, and there is less trash in plain view, so that is good. Improvement! Ann

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  • pym256's Profile Photo

    Re: Re: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by pym256 Online Now Mar 3, 2004 at 10:10 AM

    Oh, also, for those who know what I'm talking about, the charter flight from Luanda to Houston has been severely limited. You may not be allowed to use it; check if you were thinking of it. New FAA regulations. Ann

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  • Re: Re: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by JudynDave Online Now Mar 11, 2004 at 7:19 AM

    Hi Ann, Thank you, your email is very informative. Can you please let me know your email address? judyndave

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  • Re: Re: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by Jodiferous Online Now Mar 29, 2004 at 11:20 PM

    Hi! So did you make it to Luanda yet? We are in a similar position and would love to know the answers to the same questions you had: where to live, what schools, are there doctors, is the bottled water for sale there, are there really landmines out where children could step on them (like in parks or such)? I am completely clueless as to what to expect if we undertake this project of relocating to Luanda for two years with three kids (ages 14, 10 and 2+). Also, do the people love/hate Americans, etc. I have some limited experience with life in a third-world country, but do not speak Portuguese, so I would like to be able to integrate a bit and get to know the country too...so many questions!!! Ann, were you and the querent ever able to hook up? Grateful for any immediate information that's forthcoming, Jody

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    Re: Re: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by pym256 Online Now Apr 7, 2004 at 11:56 PM

    (Back from a month vacation, catching up.) Where to Live: Luanda is fine, and there are some houses and apartments, though I have heard they are amazingly expensive with dubious utilities (electricity, water, trash service.) A lot of people who come in with companies live on compounds, which are much better. Schools: There is a good International School. I can put you in touch with someone with more details on this; will priv mail you, Jody, with my email address. Landmines: Not a concern unless you travel outside the city. Luanda itself is just fine, and the roads along the coast to the south are clear. Unless you're going out to the provinces, you're perfectly fine, as are your kids. Note on Kids: There are no facilities for them to go out and do things. Your best bet would be to make sure where you live has a nice yard, or you live on a compound. Crime is very high here, and the city is pretty much a consistant slum. Americans and Locals: People are friendly, but they will try to scam you in many creative ways. Americans (and I think any expats) are seen as having money, so expect to pay 5 times what something is worth, especially if something is your fault, such as a car accident. Language: Advisable to learn at least a little Portuguese, as not a whole lot of the people speak English. Even grocery stores, etc. Hope this helps. There are plans with another expat here to make an actual Expat Angola webpage with all this info, since I told him there was so much interest, and honestly, we see people come in with companies and they have NO idea what to expect, do, bring, etc. I will definitely let folks know when the site is up. Ann

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  • Re: Re: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by JudithRae Online Now Apr 13, 2004 at 6:19 AM

    Hello from Lafayette Louisiana, I too am considering the choice of joining my oil field husband in Luanda. The information I am getting here is the best out there so far and am hoping that the plan to increase the info comes to reality. This month is the first time my husband has worked on land and not on the rig so he ought to have some more information to share when he gets back next month that I will pass on to you. My hope is that I can connect to someone who lives on the compound there who is willing to rent a room for a few weeks so I can "test the water" so to speak and make an informed decision before making the big move. The thought of staying in a hotel alone during the day while my husband works doesn't sound like the best plan I could come up with. Are the Texas folks still planning a move or visit? What are the best plane fares you have found? Anyone out there interested in renting a room on the "compound"? Thanks for the sharing. Judith in Lafayette

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    Re: Re: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by pym256 Online Now Apr 14, 2004 at 10:54 AM

    Heya! The rental idea sounds great if you can do that. The hotels in Luanda aren't the best; nice places (the Tropico is especially nice), but the 'nice' ends at the door. Ann

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  • Moving from USA to Luanda

    by expatoil Online Now Sep 10, 2004 at 3:02 PM

    Q: Did you guys get a web page or other information avenue set up? That would be a big help. Particular questions: - Is there an internet map available showing the location of the oil company compounds and the International School? - Does the Luanda School have a web page? - Do you drive, or do you typically get a driver as is done in many other Third World countries? - What is the medical situation like? I assume you can't even get the basics. Do the oil companies, etc. have their own doctors?

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  • Re: Re: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by jodygo Online Now Sep 15, 2004 at 2:58 PM

    Wow, Ann, I missed reading your kind and thorough reply to my original query (computer was offline, as was I for a while). The Luanda thing has come up again with my husband's employer, so here I am again, hoping for more info. Right now, doing the math on what little info I've been able to glean from all the different websites, I'm figuring that cost of living is AT LEAST 5 times that of typical Houston suburb. But, that consideration aside, how's the medical care? And, how cool that you know all this and are willing to share the info! What do you do? Best regards, Jody

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  • RE: RE: moving from texas to luanda, angola

    by CareersInAfrica Online Now Sep 20, 2006 at 1:24 PM

    Hi, Im an Angolan but Ive ben away for like 15 years.. USA, Spain and now London!!!

    Luanda is a typical big city. I guess you could compare it to mexico city in a way. Very crowded, dirty (although less than before) an yes, there is some petty theft.

    Places to go:
    Palos - Night Club
    Mussulo - Nice island off the coast of Luanda
    Barra do Kwanza - Kwanza river area... full of little restaurants an resorts
    Ilha e Luanda - The island of Luanda. Full of little shops and restaurants, lounge bars an night clubs.

    Do expect to pay more for stuff in Angola. I mean, everytime I go back I freak out at how exensive everything is. When buying at local markets for art or souvenirs you must NEVER pay the price they are asking for!!! Make an offer for 50% and then go from there.

    I had a job offer to move to Angola wih my wife and family to work for an oil company but my wife said no... not yet! The country is undergoing a massive rconstructive process an things are just not up and running yet, like the water thing mentione earlier. No movie theaters, no bowling, no wall mart with people bagging your groceries.. you will miss the little things, but if the mony is good, I guess its worth it.

    There are a couple of good schools. I personally atten the Portuguese private school but there is an International school (http://www.lisluanda.com/), a french private school an I think there may be others.

    Travelling is best when done through he Houston Express, which by the way is run by my mom.

    Anyway, I only go to Angola fo Xmas time.. will Iver go back?!?... who knows!!! But good luck to all!

    (This keyboard is not working properly... excuse any misellings)

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  • Moving from Italy to Luanda with a 6 month baby

    by marielopez Online Now Oct 2, 2006 at 3:07 AM

    Dear friends,
    I'm planning to move with my small family to Luanda for work (a couple of months) , I have small baby of 6 month. how can I best prepare?? what vaccine can I make for my baby that wont harm her before the trip.
    house: any tips? where can I start to look?

    thank you for the valuable information
    Marie C.

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