Spotify Discount – Just For Being in Argentina

Spotify Discount for ArgentinaI’ve been a loyal Spotify Premium member ever since they launched in the US back in June 2011. I love the fact that I have millions of songs at my fingertips, can set up offline sync on my mobile devices and have the same playlists everywhere. Plus, their product has just gotten better and better over time – even if I can no longer get my Taylor Swift fix from them.

Having Spotify has also meant that all my music has been 99.9% legal. I’ll admit… I was an early user of Napster, Limewire and all the others. Now? No more torrents or illegal downloads at all. In fact, I rarely even open iTunes anymore. (The last time I used it was just to check out that horrible U2 album Apple gave everyone.)

My loyalty has been costing me U$S 9.99/month, which, after a quick calculation, means I’ve paid Spotify about $460! While I think it’s worth it, that’s a number that certainly adds up.

So, clever me has now figured out that if I switch my billing from the US to Argentina my monthly fee goes from U$S 9.99/month to ARS $49/month (with the 35% AFIP fee). That’s just about U$S 3.90 at the blue rate and only U$S 5.46 at the official rate. This translates into more than U$S 70 in savings per year!

Of course, I could have done this back in September 2013 when Spotify first launched in Argentina, but I kept forgetting to turn off my annual billing. (Better late than never right?) I was also worried that I would lose my extensive playlists and have to start over, but that is not the case. Switching to the Argentine version of Spotify is incredibly simple.

First, you’ll need an Argentine credit card to make this work. Next, login to your Spotify Premium account. Go to Subscription and payments overview. Click UPDATE DETAILS, and then click on select another payment method. Once you do that, click Change Country and pick Argentina. Now, enter your Argentine credit card information.

Once you do that, your next bill will be charged to your Argentine credit card at the substantially lower rate.

To get even more savings, you might be able to get Spotify through your Internet provider. Arnet offers Spotify for $39,90 which is cheaper than paying the 35% AFIP charge. Yet, like many things in Argentina, their simple signup process does not seem to work. I tried to add it twice online and it never appeared in my account. I haven’t had the energy yet to call them, so I’ll probably just stick with paying on my credit card. Another day in Argentina…

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Maple Syrup in Buenos Aires

I could have sworn I wrote about this before, but after searching my blog I did not turn up any posts about finding maple syrup in Buenos Aires. I guess it’s only been in the back of my mind, and now finally time to give you the scoop…

Maple Syrup in Buenos AiresMaple Syrup is one of those more difficult to find items here. There have been various reports of Aunt Jemima appearing in supermarkets from time to time, but that’s not real maple syrup. Trips to Barrio Chino have turned up empty too.

For the only guaranteed place to find maple syrup in Buenos Aires, you have to head to Reale Gourmet on Av. Pueyrreedón. They have maple syrup, but beware… it’s expensive. At the moment they only have 50ml bottles and it’s $290 pesos each!

Still, when you have a craving, you have a craving.

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April Fools’ Post-Mortem

Argentina Amnesty Program JokeYesterday I posted an April Fools’ blog post announcing an “Argentina Expat Amnesty Program,” and even with quite a few giveaways in the post, it seems that I managed to trick a good number of people.

It turned out to be one of the more read posts we’ve have in awhile, so I thought a quick post-mortem of the post was in order. (Plus, if you were fooled, you can see that you were not alone!)

Number of views: 927

Number of Facebook likes: 94

Number of Facebook shares: 188

Number of clicks to the Argentine immigration site from the link at the bottom: 114

Number of clicks to Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” after I changed the immigration link realizing that too many people were going to the immigration site and searching for ‘amnesty': 32

Number of email messages asking if it was real: 4

Number of angry comments: 1.5
(one angry one, one telling me it was not funny)

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Money Transfer Services to Require a CUIL

Let me start by saying, this is not an April Fool’s joke unfortunately…

Argentina Money Transfer Services Require CUILAs of April 1, 2015, any foreign national residing in Argentina for more than 90 days will be required to present a CUIL or CUIT in order to pick up money from any of the money transfer services (Xoom, Azimo, Ria, etc.). This does not apply if your last date of entry into Argentina is less than 90 days ago.

As many expats live here illegally by overstaying their tourist visa and simply pay the $600 peso overstay fee when they leave, this will have an immediate effect on their ability to get money into the country through these services. That 90 day trip to Colonia for a new visa stamp might make a lot more sense now, even if it does expose you to additional scrutiny at the border.

To get a CUIL (Código Único de Identificación Laboral) or CUIT (Clave Única de Identificación Tributaria), you have to have a DNI (Documento Nacional de Identidad). And, to get a DNI, you have to be a legal resident.

UPDATE: Some people are reporting that as of April 20, 2015, Xoom is not asking anyone to provide a CUIL.

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