Ecuador Overview

Ecuador Overview

Southern America


Official name of the state

Republic of Ecuador.




As a country located in South America according to dentistrymyth, Ecuador, the smallest of the Andean states, lies on the Pacific Ocean and borders Colombia to the north and Peru to the east and south. The Andes cross the country from north to south. The Chimborazo (6310 m) is the highest mountain. The highlands (sierra) are characterized by two high mountain ranges made up of 30 volcanoes running in north-south direction: the western cordillera (Cordillera Real) and the east cordillera (Cordillera Oriental). To the west of the Andes lies the fertile lowlands, to the east of the Andes the rainforest (Selva, Oriente, Amazonia) of the Amazon basin. The coast (Costa), criss-crossed by low ridges, takes up about a quarter of the national territory. The upper Amazon basin in the east consists of dense tropical jungle, which is crossed by numerous river branches. The Amazon region occupies 36% of the country’s area, however only 3% of the population live here. The Galápagos Islands are about 1000 km east of the Ecuadorian mainland. Due to their remote location, they are home to an extraordinary and unique biodiversity.


Presidential republic since 1978. Constitution of 2008. The 100 members of the National Congress (Congreso Nacional) are elected for 4 years. Direct election every 4 years. Independent since 1822 (separation from Greater Colombia; Spanish colony until 1809).

Head of state

Lenin Moreno, since April 2017.

Head of government

Rafael Correa, since April 2009.


110/120 V, 60 Hz. Adapter and transformer required.




1 US dollar = 100 cents. Currency abbreviation: US $, USD (ISO code). Banknotes are available in denominations of 100, 50, 20, 10, 5, 2 and 1 US $. The $ 2 banknote is so rare that it cannot be issued by ATMs. It is a popular collector’s item that many have never held in their hands because of its rarity. Coins are available in denominations of US $ 1 as well as 50, 25, 10, 5 and 1 cent. In addition to the dollar coins, the centavo coins are also in circulation; these are given out as change and are equivalent in value to the dollar cents.

In 2000, the US dollar was declared the official currency of Ecuador and replaced the sucre.

Attention : 50 and 100 US $ banknotes are currently not accepted in banks and shops because there are many counterfeit banknotes in circulation.

Credit cards

MasterCard, Visa and Diners Club are usually accepted in large shops, restaurants and hotels. However, there are currently difficulties when paying with German credit cards. Details from the issuer of the credit card in question.


ec / Maestro card / Sparcard
cards with the Cirrus or Maestro symbol are accepted throughout Europe and worldwide. Further information from banks and credit institutes.

Attention: Cash withdrawals with German debit cards currently do not work in Ecuador. ATMs should only be used during business hours.

Attention: Travelers who pay with their bank card abroad and want to withdraw money should find out about the possibilities of using their card from their bank before starting their journey.

Bank opening times

  1. General Mon-Fri 9 am-4pm / 6pm, e.g. T. Sa in the morning

Foreign exchange regulations

No restrictions on common travel needs.

Currency Exchange

US dollars are recommended. Money can be changed at banks and exchange offices (casas de cambio). Changing money outside of the cities can be difficult. The exchange fee varies between 1% and 4%, you should inquire before exchanging. “Western Union” with a dense network of sales outlets and partners (100 partners in Quito) is available for money transfers.



Catholics (95%); Protestant, Jewish and Baha’i minorities; native american religions.

Social rules of conduct

General: Ecuadorians are very sociable, helpful and hospitable. Football is a very popular topic and often a good starting point for interesting conversation. The natives of Ecuador are called Indígenas (singular: Indígena). The term Indio has a discriminatory character.

Manners: The usual forms of courtesy should be observed. A small gift is appropriate for invitations to private houses, but excessive gifts or even monetary donations should be avoided. Criticism and negative remarks should be reserved; in case of doubt, a more reserved appearance is appropriate. Patience and composure help in most cases. Corruption is widespread, but you shouldn’t offer to solve a situation by paying a sum of money.

Clothing: Casual, leisurewear is appropriate almost everywhere, except for business meetings. Evening wear is often expected in hotel restaurants and exclusive restaurants. Swimwear belongs on the beach.

Photography: Military installations and airports are not allowed to be photographed, the same applies to the police. People should be asked before they are photographed, and permission can often be obtained for a small tip.

Smoking: Many restaurants already have smoking and non-smoking areas, so most hotels offer smoking and non-smoking rooms. Smoking bans should be observed, otherwise fines may be imposed.


Area code +593 Area (square km) 283 561 Population 15 868 306 Population density (per square km) 56 Population in 2015 Member of the EU No main emergency number 911

Ecuador Overview