Being new to the Lima Peru and wanting to share my experiences so far, I wanted to give a little advice to people wanting to move here from the states.
* Money issue - You may be thinking about bringing money and/or transfering money. When you get money, first check to see how much cash you are allowing to bring with you...there are limits. Then go to your nearest bank and get fresh bills...NO TEARS or RIPS. If you have otherwise, you will have a hard time getting anyone to take it. While your at the bank, let them know you will want to transfer money. I did not know this but they require a signed document on file for you to do this. It has to be the original document so faxing is not an option...that is why its better to get it done while you are there. Please note that you will be charged to use your US credit card or debit card. Charges can range from 4-7 dollars to just take out money (Peru banks charge plus US bank charge). Using your credit card could be a charge of 3% of the total charge. Now ever bank is different, so consult your bank for specifics.
* Technology issue - Buy yourself a new laptop before coming down. The prices are so much cheaper in the states and a laptop is not considered bagage on the plane (only one laptop per person thought). Also invest in a magic jack http://www.magicjack.com/7/index.asp
and set it up on your new laptop while you are in the states. It gives you a local number for your area and gives you the ability to call family and friends from peru at next to nothing. Additionally, its nice to have that local number when you are calling businesses in the states to finalize things such as paying final bills or consulting banks on issues you may have. The quality of the magic jack is not the best but it sure does serve the purpose.
* Merchandise/goods - pay for an extra luggage at the airport (ours was a $100) and fill it with stuff that you need or really want. We came here with the idea that we would just buy a replacement, but were surprised on how much everything cost. If you need to buy, its just like the states...you just need to shop around for the best price.
* Language/culture - study up every minute you have. The more you know and the better you speak the language...the faster you will become comfortable in your new environment. If you come here with limited spanish, please note that you will surfer a period of alienation while you learn...which can be rough. Not to mention that you will be ripped off or taken advantaged off when purchasing goods or services.
* Finally...bring some lipbalm for all the kissing/greetings you have to do in your new culture.
Hope this helps someone out there,