Puerto Rico is an Archipelago, a group, or a chain of Islands. It is among the Greater Antilles (a large group of islands in the Caribbean Sea.) It is also an unincorporated territory of the United States that lies in the Northeastern Caribbean Sea, tucked between the Caribbean Sea and North Atlantic Ocean.

Living in Puerto Rico
Photo by Zixi Zhou on Unsplash

The capital city of Puerto Rico is SanJuan city. The country’s total population is 3.2 million, with a population density of 988 density per sq. mi/382 person per sq. km (2015). The official language of the country is English and Spanish. The nationality of people living in Puerto Rico is known as “Puerto Rican.” It is also a multi-ethnic country having a group of Amerindian, Asian, Africans, and Europeans. The main religion there is Catholic.

History

Before the arrival of the Spanish in Puerto Rico, hunters and gatherers were inhabiting the island. They had reached the island more than 1000 years ago. Later, Taino Indians inhabited there and developed the territory. They used to call the island as the land of the lords. Taino Indians were involved in agriculture and started to grow crops like pineapples, sweet potatoes, etc.

On November 19, 1943, Christopher Columbus, on his second voyage to the Indies, left Spain with an expedition of 17 ships and 1500 men. Then, Columbus was able to discover the island of Puerto Rico. People started to call the island San Juan which is now the capital city of Puerto Rico.

On December 10, 1898, the treaty of Paris signed concluding the Spanish-American War. Similarly, on March 2, 1917, the United States finally granted Puerto Ricans U.S statutory citizenship.

In the period 1948-1968, the country experienced an economic change. Starting from an agricultural-based economy, people got inclined to an economy based on industrial production. People began to get involved in corporate farming and labour-intensive.

The government also invested in transportations and privately owned factories with tax breaks, also the government-supported startup costs of people. These factories with low wages on the island of Puerto Rico encouraged the U.S and other European companies to start and open factories there. In this way, the country’s economy started developing gradually.

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Pros of Living in Puerto Rico

1) Tropical Islands

Puerto Rico generally has a warm climate condition. The average temperature reaches 29 degrees Celsius at a lower elevation and 21 degrees Celsius in the central mountains of the main island. The place offers beaches for more than 300 miles. The feel of the warm breeze of the sea is always there. If you are a summer-loving person, then this place would be great for living.

2) Many Festivals

People in Puerto Rico celebrate lots of festivals every year. People gather around to celebrate and enjoy together. Attending these festivals allows you to be more social and meet lots of people from different ethnic groups. Life is always fun when you meet new people around.

3) Friendly and Helpful People

People in Puerto Rico are warm and welcoming to new people or ex-pats. You will never feel lonely or left alone from a group of people. They are always friendly and kind to everyone. They will make your living experience in Puerto Rico worthy.

4) Opportunities for New Businesses

Agriculture and related business in Puerto Rico seems extremely promising. For 100 years, people in Puerto Rico were into the agriculture-based economy. Similarly, the economy of the country is dynamic and competitive in Latin America. The economy also relies on the federal aid provided by the United States’ government.

5) Cost of Living

The cost of living in Puerto Rico is not as expensive as compared to other countries. The cost of rent in Puerto Rico is 54.42% lower than the rental expense of the U.S or other countries. Thus, the low rental price will help you to save your money and invest or spend elsewhere.

6) Health care facilities

Since the country is a part of the United States, you can easily use the Medicare card for health-related problems. If you are planning to retire in Puerto Rico, then private health insurance would also be great. The healthcare facility in Puerto Rico is slightly cheaper than the other stateside. However, you will be able to have the same facilities at a lower cost.

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There are almost 90 hospitals ad pharmacies in Puerto Rico. Healthcare facilities are conveniently available in rural areas as well.

7) Lower Taxes

Residents are exempt from paying taxes dividends, capital gains, and interests. They also don’t have to pay tax on income that comes from within Puerto Rico. To become a resident of Puerto Rico and to enjoy all the tax benefits, you have to spend 183 days in a year. Lower tax rates will reduce your living expense in Puerto Rico.

8) Education

Education service in Puerto Rico is affordable. Almost 90% of people in Puerto Rico are literate. Based on the American Model education system, schools in Puerto Rico teaches both English and Spanish languages.

Cons of Living in Puerto Rico

1) Poor Sanitation

Compared to other countries, Puerto Rico has low sanitation, especially after Hurricane Maria. Beaches in Puerto Rico seems to be untidy and unmanaged. Swimming and drinking dirty water may lead to severe parasitic infections. Tap water is not as safe as other countries, filtering and boiling water is a must before drinking. These water problems will make your living in Puerto Rico more than worst.

2) Unwelcoming Hurricanes

After the arrival of Hurricane in 2017, the environment of Puerto Rico has changed. Always being protective and cautious about hurricanes and storms might bother you living in Puerto Rico. You should make sure you are preparing yourself for the risks.

3) Disease Spreading Animals

Since Puerto Rico is a country of beaches, some unwelcoming predators reside on the beach where you enjoy and have fun. It is home for mosquitoes, sand fleas, scorpions, crabs, mongooses, and other harmful creatures that can bite and spread infectious diseases to you.

Conclusion

Living in Puerto Rico has its own pros and cons which you should weigh with your preference of living. However, it depends upon your choice and circumstances that you are on. Being an island, Puerto Rico has lots of advantages and benefits. Living there would be a great chance to explore and grab those opportunities. You have almost all the facilities available to the people in the States with a touch of a tropical twist.

Reference

(Last Updated On: September 5, 2020)
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