Academia Latinoamericana de Español
Sucre - Bolivia
Greetings and a warm welcome to our Academia.
Academia Latinoamericana de Español, founded in 1989, is one of the pioneers of modern language teaching to foreign students in South America. We have a long tradition of providing top-quality Spanish language instruction.
With its four locations: Sucre in Bolivia, Cusco in Peru, Quito and the Cloud Forest in Ecuador, the Academia offers one of the finest programs of Spanish language study in Latin America, specially designed to quickly develop a working proficiency in Spanish.
Our students participate in cultural seminars, field trips, and grammar and conversation classes. Our professors are native speakers, with university degrees in teaching Spanish as a foreign language.
Most of our students receive credit directly with their matriculating university. Or, students can apply for credit for Spanish courses through Alma College or the University of Southern Mississippi.
The Academia has unique opportunities to combine Spanish language study with volunteer work in one of the many beautiful national parks or reserves, social service organizations, educational institutions, health care projects and more.
To provide the highest quality in Spanish teaching, as a Second Language, in order to help our students to get not only a meaningful learning but also a wonderful experience.
To establish us as the most prestigious Spanish Teaching School not only in Bolivia but also in Latin America.
Arriving in Sucre
There are times when Sucre airport is closed due to weather conditions. When this occurs, the plane will land in La Paz or Santa Cruz. The airline will put you up in a hotel (if necessary) and will transfer you to Sucre. See "Arriving After Hours". In case a hotel is needed in La Paz or Santa Cruz:
Arriving After Hours: If you arrive after hours on a weekend, on a weekday, your flight has been canceled or delayed, or for some reason you miss your arrival transfer at the airport, here is what we recommend you do:
1. Call 00591-(0)4- 6439 613 or 00591-72877114 (cell phone), the emergency numbers in Sucre and speak with Karina Medinaceli.
If unable to make contact:
2. Go to one of the hotels suggested and attempt to call the school or the Director the next day. The school will not reimburse hotel costs. We also suggest that you bring an international phone card in order to make international calls from your host family's home. If you do not have an international phone card, any international calls must be made at the school.
Departure Taxes: Be prepared to pay approximately $25 for flights out of the country. Check with your airline for the exact amount of taxes.
School office hours: 8:15 a.m.-12:10 p.m. and 2:30-6:30 p.m. (Monday through Friday).
Weather: About 55-85ºF / 12-25ºC year round. Rainy season October-March. Dry season May-August (April and September now and then have some rain). Seasonal temperatures: Spring: September, October, November 58-75ºF / 15-24ºC) Summer: December, January, February 58-83ºF / 15-28ºC) Fall: March, April, May 50-58ºF / 10-15ºC) Winter: June, July, August (40-58ºF / 5-15ºC).
Passports, VISAS and important documents
When traveling anywhere in Latin America you should carry your passport or a copy of it with you at all times. It is also a good idea to bring photocopies of other essential documents (airline tickets, important prescriptions, credit card company number etc.) stored in a separate location.
US citizens need a Tourist Visa to enter Bolivia, which has to be obtained at the Bolivian Embassy in the USA. We will help you obtain the visa once you sign up for a course at the Academia Latinoamericana. Citizens of Canada, Australia, New Zealand and most Western European countries are allowed to stay in Bolivia for up to 30 or 90 days with a valid passport without a visa. However, these requirements change frequently. Therefore please check with the Bolivian Embassy in your home country before you start your travels.
Embajada de Bolivia en los Estados Unidos.
Phone: (+1) 202 483 4410
Consulate phone: (+1) 202 232 4827
Embajada de Bolivia en Canadá.
Phone: (+1) 613 236 5730
Embajada de Bolivia en Australia.
Phone: (+61) 2 6290 2968
New Zealand (Consulate):
Phone: (+64) 9 5205 071
Phone: (+44) 20 7235 4248
Minimum age to participate in group program: 14. 18 if traveling without a parent, teacher or legal guardian. Children's programs: one to one classes at the same cost as adults. The children's program uses more Spanish TV programs, audiocassettes, children's Spanish books and games to keep the learning process "fun". Child care: Possible upon special request. Homestay discount for small children: Half price if under 5 years (when staying in the same room as parents, unless host family happens to have extra space).
Student nationalities: 50% Europeans and 50% North Americans. Age Group: The majority are independent travelers, professionals and college students, as well as some retirees. Capacity: 40 students
Electricity: 220 volts, same plugs as the US, both 220 and 110 in La Paz.
Time: During the European winter Time: 5 hours behind Western European and 4 hours behind GMT-time.
During the European daylight saving time: 6 hours behind Western European and 5 hours behind GMT-time.
Religion: Mainly Roman Catholic. The Indigenous cultures often blend Catholicism with their traditional beliefs. People / Population: Bolivia has the highest number of Indigenous people in South America, about 70% of the population. Many people still speak Quecha or Aymara. The literacy rate is 75%.
Mail: The mail service is reliable but slow, 7 to 10 days from the US or Europe. Use the school's address. When sending parcels, mark them "muestra sin valor" and state the value as zero. Parcels up to 2 kilos do not pass through Customs if they are so marked. Parcels which do pass through Customs may be taxed beyond their actual value.
Telephone: Local, national and international calls can be received and made at school. Calls may be received at the host family. We prefer that you do not make international calls from your homestay to avoid any possible billing errors. Collect calls can be made to the US and some European countries at the Entel Offices. You can buy tokens and phone cards for international and long distance calls at the Entel Offices. Most public phone boxes are for local calls only; tokens can be bought from street kiosks and stores. Faxes can be sent from the school and major Entel Offices.
Restaurants: Not required, but most people round up the bill or leave 2 to 5 Bolivianos extra.
Baggage porters: In air and bus terminals,they receive 2 to 5 Bolivianos.
Hotel maids: Not required, but appreciated.
Taxi drivers: Not required.
Money and finances: In more expensive establishments, sometimes prices are quoted in dollars. Travelers checks can be changed into Bolivianos or US dollars at exchange offices only in major cities. You can also change US dollars into Bolivianos at banks and casas de cambio (exchange houses). It is suggested to use casas de cambio and not street vendors. It is common that people refuse to accept dollar bills that look old or are torn. Even banks! Credit cards - Visa (most common) and Master Card - are accepted in major cities. Cash can be withdrawn from your credit card at some banks without extra commission, in Bolivianos and dollars, as well as from most ATMs.
Shops: 9am - 12:00pm and 2:00 - 7:00pm. Small stores are open 6am to 10pm.
Banks: 9:00 am - 16:00 pm. Saturday 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Business offices: 9 am - 12 pm and 2 - 7pm.
Government offices: 9am - 12pm, 2 - 5pm.
Central Post office: 8am - 17pm, Saturday 9am - 12pm.
ENTEL (phone, fax, telex and telegrams): 8:30 am - 12 pm and 14:30pm - 18:30pm.
Toilet paper: The toilets in Bolivia do not accept toilet paper. There is a receptacle provided. In the host family you will be provided with toilet paper.