Setting and Weather conditions
Quito, located on the Ecuadorian Andes at 2800 meters in elevation, is blessed with a spring-like climate most of the year. September is usually sunny, but afternoon thunderstorms can happen. Daytime temperatures of 20-25ºC, and 10-20ºC during the night are expected. Participant should be aware with the high altitude of the Quito. Travellers to the Amazon basin or the Pacific coastal area are might be surprised by the warm, but not hot daytime temperatures (25-35ºC), thanks to the frequent cloud cover. It is recommended that everyone bring a rain/wind breaker for daily use, especially for those thinking to attend the fieldtrips.
The local currency in Ecuador is the US dollar. Many exchange houses exist in Quito and credit cards are accepted in ATM.
Transportation from the Airport
Participants with reservations at the proposed hotel (Hotel Mercure Alameda Quito) will benefit of free transportation from the airport (September 22th and 23th). Otherwise, there are numerous taxis available at the airport. Quito facilities and most hotels sit roughly 45 minutes away from the airport (one way main rate of 25-30 USD).
All medical attention in Ecuador is on a cash basis. You are encouraged to come to Ecuador with adequate insurance coverage. Participants who will be attending certain field trips should be aware of the high elevations that might be reached, and should take the necessary precautions.