Mexico

  Mexico  

Why Are One Million Americans Moving to Mexico?

 

In many ways, Mexico today is like the U.S. was 50 years ago…before big government, big business, and special interests whittled away the lifestyle our parents took for granted. It is full of overlooked retirement havens where you can retire in luxury without spending a fortune.

Mexico’s lower cost of living—and of just about everything else—means a comfortable, fulfilling life here will likely cost you a fraction of what you pay “back home.” From real estate to groceries, and from entertainment to healthcare, life in Mexico simply costs less. Here you can still find comfortable homes for under $150,000 and pay pennies on the dollar for fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats. As for healthcare…across the board, healthcare in Mexico costs a quarter to a half of what you’d pay in the U.S.—for treatment by well-trained medical professionals in first-class hospitals and clinics. (In fact, there are few places in Mexico where you’re more than a few hours from a good private hospital.)

Today’s Mexico is largely First-World, with excellent highways, sleek airports, and high-speed telecommunications, as well as first-run films (in English, with Spanish subtitles) and television shows. You’ll find shopping malls and supermarkets, all carrying many familiar products from home.

But you’ll also enjoy a slower, more relaxed pace of life here, where children still play in the streets and neighbors know each other. You’ll find a rich, strong local culture, too, with traditional markets; colorful, indigenous dress; ancient ruins of great civilizations; and regional music, dance, and customs. You’ll find plenty to do and see in Mexico—and the Mexican people, some of the friendliest folks around, will be happy to share it with you.

And thanks to Mexico’s large size and varied geography, you can find whatever climate and lifestyle you want. Like the beach? Mexico has nearly 6,000 miles of coastline, much of it white-sand beach. Choose a totally First-World beach resort like Puerto Vallarta, Cancún, or Los Cabos, where you can enjoy all amenities; small, local beach towns in places like the Yucatán Coast or parts of the Pacific coast; or get totally off the grid along the Costa Maya’s beautiful Caribbean waters.

Prefer mountain vistas and temperate weather? Mexico’s Colonial Highlands could be for you. Charming Spanish-colonial cities like San Miguel de Allende, Querétaro, and a host of others offer sophisticated living amidst centuries-old architecture. Or head south to colonial gems like Oaxaca, with its superb traditional cooking, and to San Cristóbal de las Casas, a temperate-weather city high above the jungles of Chiapas.

So whatever lifestyle you seek, you’ll likely find it in Mexico. No wonder more U.S. expats live in Mexico than in any other country in the world…

 

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Fast Facts About Mexico

Mexico---FF
  • Population: 116,220,947
  • Capital City: Mexico City
  • Climate: Varies from arid to tropical
  • Time Zone: GMT-8 to -6
  • Language: Language
  • Country Code: 52
  • Location: Mexico borders the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico, and the North Pacific Ocean

Archives

Isla-Mujeres

Dreaming of Tropical Islands in the Sun…

My wife, Suzan Haskins, and I do a lot of traveling. So we often find ourselves on the way to places. We find ourselves in airports. In taxis and shuttles. In planes and buses. In snow-bound cities and towns for holidays and family functions.

Puerto Vallarta

Moving to Mexico Allowed Me to Quit My Job and Retire Early

After nearly 10 years of marriage, my husband and I decided it was time for a change. We’d lived in a Minneapolis high-rise apartment with spectacular views of the Mississippi River and downtown for seven years, and while we loved our apartment, we didn’t love the weather (for six months of the year anyway). And I didn’t love my high-stress job or the fact that our cost of living seemed to be getting higher.

San-Miguel-Mexico

Exploring the Charms of San Miguel de Allende

I’ve never had a taxi driver refuse a fare before. But there we were, just arrived from Mexico City on the first-class bus (WiFi, reclining seats, air conditioning, etc. for $22) in the charming colonial town of San Miguel de Allende, in Mexico’s Colonial Highlands. And after telling the driver the address of the apartment my wife and I had rented, he shrugged his shoulders and said the roads were closed.

Panama

Top Four Countries in the World for Retiree Benefits

Panama, Ecuador, Mexico, and Belize earn top rankings as the countries with the best retiree benefits and discounts in the newly published 2016 Global Retirement Index from InternationalLiving.com.
The 2016 Global Retirement Index lists the top countries where retirees can live better for less around the world. But as well as offering a lower cost of living, some countries stand out in the category of significant retiree benefits and discounts, including savings on transportation, entertainment, social services, visa costs, and healthcare.

Page-4---Igloo---Credit-Gon

Mexico’s Creepy Cave, Japan’s Doll Village and Much More…

Whipping and flickering across the night sky, the Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, are on many travelers’ bucket lists. And northern Finland is one of the best places in the world to observe this stunning natural phenomenon.

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Cabo: A Unique Buying Moment on Mexico’s Baja Peninsula

Two years ago, I made my first recommendation on jet-set Cabo, at the tip of Baja California. Members of my Real Estate Trend Alert group could buy a luxury condo in a luxurious community for $336,516. Those who locked down one of these condos—including me—have done well. A comparable condo now retails at $428,301—a paper gain of $91,785.

cotacachi

The Key to a Safe Retirement Overseas

As exciting and adventurous as the idea of moving abroad can be, it sometimes packs a little zing of anxiety with it. It’s the anxiety you feel when you wonder how safe you’ll be in a foreign country. It’s a perfectly natural feeling. Safety— for ourselves and our loved ones—is one of our most basic needs. None of the other benefits of living abroad mean much to us if we don’t think we’ll be safe in our new home.

Cancun

Don’t Let Fear Hold You Back From Your Dream Retirement

A few years ago, my wife Diane and I packed our lives into six suitcases, Diane tucked our beloved Chihuahua, Carmine, under her arm and we set off to build a new life in a small coastal village on Ecuador’s northern coast, a country we had never visited.

Panama

The Top 4 Countries in the World for Retiree Benefits in 2016

Imagine a place where sunshine is ubiquitous, a high-quality lifestyle won’t cost the earth, and as a retiree, you’re treated like a VIP…you’ll get a red-carpet welcome and be rewarded for your age and experience. Places like this exist…and they have claimed the top spots in the “Benefits and Discounts” category in International Living’s 2016 Global Retirement Index. In many countries all over the world you can live better for less.

How Teaching English Opens Doors Overseas

How Teaching English Opens Doors Overseas

I am very fortunate to have the opportunity to travel severals time a year to places like Ecuador, Panama, Costa Rica, and Mexico. You might wonder how I became so lucky? Well, seven years ago, I came to Mexico to teach English as a second language. This allowed me to fulfill my dream of living abroad and immerse myself in another culture.

Mexico

Living Happily on $1,000 a Month in Colonial Mexico

I live a block away from a gorgeous, 200-year-old park in the colonial city of Querétaro in the colonial highlands of Mexico. My apartment is located in the city’s centro historico, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the site of some of the most beautiful Spanish colonial architecture to be found anywhere, including a recently restored aqueduct from the early 1700s, made of pink quarry stone. The street plan in the center is basically the same as it was 400 years ago.

Puerto-Vallerta

You Can Afford to Travel…With a Portable, Copywriting Income

There’s nothing quite like waking up in your own little paradise—and realizing it’s not a dream. That’s how my husband, Casey, and I felt in our first home abroad, Puerto Vallarta. It was just a small place, perched on the mountainside, high above the bustling palm-lined malecón. Just big enough for the two of us, our crazy dogs, and a flop-eared Siamese cat named Tomás Cruz.

best places to retire

The World’s Best Places to Retire in 2016

Retiring abroad is easier and more affordable than ever before. These days it really is possible to spend your days relaxing beneath palm fronds on a Caribbean beach, enjoying farm-fresh produce in a mountain haven with year-round spring weather, or wandering the storied streets of a historic and cultured European city…or all of the above. But with so many choices available, finding the right one can seem daunting.

Merida

Culture, Affordable Healthcare, and a Colonial Home in Mérida For $110,000

I’m enjoying a cappuccino at a sidewalk cafe. The tree providing shade is a century old, the church across the way much older. The neighborhood is historic, with restored buildings lining narrow streets for a dozen blocks in any direction. I’m in Merida, Mexico, the third-largest Spanish colonial district in the world, after Havana and Mexico City, surrounded by centuries-old colonial homes, churches, and grand buildings.

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Enrich Your Life Abroad Through Volunteering

How do you see yourself spending your ideal retirement? Does it involve strolling the cobbled streets of an historic city in Europe? Or maybe you’d rather lounge, cocktail in hand, on a lounge chair by a tropical beach. If you’re like me, you’d prefer the abundant clean air and farm-fresh produce in an Ecuadorian mountain town, relaxing in the local expat hangout when you’re not exploring awe-inspiring valleys and colorful local markets.

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The Islands of the Riviera Maya: Caribbean Oases with Every Amenity

The islands of Mexico’s famed Riviera Maya offer stunning, sugar-sand beaches and warm, clear waters teeming with brightly colored fish. The climate remains fairly constant in the low- to mid-80s F. And while there is sometimes heavy rain from May through October, for the most part, you’ll enjoy weather that pilots call “severe clear,” with blue skies, gentle breezes, and over 225 hours of sunshine each month on average.

Page-20---Playa-Carrillo-Co

The World’s Top Retirement Havens for 2016

Retiring abroad is easier and more affordable than ever before. These days it really is possible to spend your days relaxing beneath palm fronds on a Caribbean beach, enjoying farm-fresh produce in a mountain haven with year-round spring weather, or wandering the storied streets of a historic and cultured European city…or all of the above. But with so many choices available, finding the right one can seem daunting.

Page-28-29---India---Credit

Two Hot Emerging Markets for 2016—and How to Play Them

Traditionally, when the global economy slows down, foreign direct investment—a key driver for emerging-market growth—dries up. And while emerging markets are the center of world economic growth right now, the World Bank and the OECD have both cut GDP expectations for next year. That could mean that emerging markets will take a hit. This being the case, you might think now would be a bad time to invest in emerging markets. And you’d be wrong. There are several hot-spots that investors shouldn’t overlook just because they are emerging markets. I’ve picked out two well-established economies that are expected to outperform their peers in 2016 and give you a tidy profit in the process.

Jan-Global-Prop-Notes

Good-Value Buys in Our Top Retirement Countries

What makes for a great place to live? An ideal climate…modern services and conveniences like high-speed internet…high-quality but low-cost healthcare…a no-hassle visa or residence program…a lower cost of living. And good-value real estate. In many places around the world you can have all this, plus little luxuries like having someone else clean your house, your yard, and do your laundry.

Merida

Colonial Homes in Mexico from $110,000

Expats have taken the lead in the renovation and refurbishment of Merída’s colonial heritage, turning once-crumbling colonial structures into boutique hotels, restaurants…and private homes. But many buyers prefer to buy turnkey properties instead of dealing with construction.

gunajuato

Take Your Skills Online for a More Relaxed Lifestyle Overseas

Dr. Haywood Hall is on call. It’s a mild summer afternoon, and he’s sitting in the garden of his house in Guanajuato, Mexico. His laptop is open on the table in front of him, and his cellphone sits beside it. He checks the phone periodically for messages, tapping out quick replies as needed. He’s dressed in a T-shirt and shorts, and he’ll likely still be wearing these if he greets any patients this afternoon. That’s because Haywood works in the growing field of telemedicine, and his “meetings” with patients will be long-distance—a verbal consultation over his cellphone.

Ecuador

The Easy Way To Make Your Money Go Further

Imagine if you could snap your fingers and instantly cut your monthly expenses in half. You’d effectively double the value of the money you budget for monthly expenses. It would mean the cash you once used for monthly bills would be available for other uses. There are hundreds of beautiful retirement locations around the world where this is possible. For the past 15 years, my wife, Suzan Haskins, and I have lived in many of them.

Mexico

Gracious Living in Mexico’s Best-Known Colonial Town

One of the best-known places to enjoy colonial living is San Miguel de Allende, in Mexico’s Colonial Highlands. Even among colonial towns, San Miguel is famous. It’s been dubbed ”the most beautiful town in Mexico,” and it may just be. Colorful, well-preserved colonial buildings line its streets, and fountains tinkle in quiet squares. Brightly painted doorways open onto shops that overflow with colored textiles, hanging stars, and lamps of hammered tin, and pottery or sculptures. Walk down cool stone passageways to open-air patio restaurants or to upstairs terraces where the city opens out below you.

isla mujeres

How to Take Your U.S. Job to a Tropical Island

Isla Mujeres is small. At five miles long and a half-mile wide, Valerie Pasnau feels it provides the perfect lifestyle for her and her husband, John. It’s easy to understand why they would choose the picturesque Caribbean island just eight miles off the coast of Cancún, Mexico. “The island has everything we need and almost everything we want,” she says. “What we don’t find here, we can find in Cancún, just a short ferry ride away.”

Mexico

Colonial San Miguel de Allende

Set in Mexico’s Colonial Highlands, San Miguel de Allende is a long-time expat haven known for its vibrant arts scene, strong influences from indigenous culture, historic centro (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), and temperate climate. It’s a beautiful little town and there is never any shortage of things to do, from theatre to live music to restaurants of every cuisine. Here is a glimpse of what San Miguel has to offer.

Rosarito

Life by the Beach in Small-Town Mexico For $1,500 a Month

The sun glistens down the six-mile stretch of white-sand beach. This is the heart of my hometown of La Misión, on Mexico’s Baja California peninsula.Sitting just 90 minutes south of San Diego, La Misión is a beautiful and quaint village (it has a population of just under 1,000) that has yet to be discovered by the masses of tourists who visit the better-known destinations of Rosarito and Ensenada.

Tulum beach

First-World Comforts at Low Prices on This Tropical Island

While the notion of getting away from it all on a tropical island has near universal appeal, coconut phones and signal fires won’t cut it with today’s savvy expats. Let’s face it. You want to have your solitude, but also remain connected to the outside world through high-speed internet service and modern transportation options. Particularly […]

Page-10-11---Merida-Mexico-

Restore a Colonial Home in Mérida for Under $200,000 All In

You sit in your courtyard at a sturdy hardwood table, enjoying the first cup of coffee of the day. The sounds of the city waking up are muffled by thick stone walls, as the tinkling fountain next to you provides a soothing soundtrack. A small pool to the side is the perfect antidote to hot days. You’re surrounded by heliconia, ginger, and bougainvillea vines. As you head inside through a tall, arched doorway for a second cup, your eyes pass over the intricately patterned tile floors, the vaulted ceilings with heavy timber beams standing out against the bright-white ceiling, and the dark wood doorframes perfectly complementing the yellow walls.

tulum

The Huge Rewards of Taking the Leap

One moment that has stuck with me over the years is a dinner I had with a friend in New York. It was around the time that I put my apartment up for sale and was getting ready to move my life to Mexico. We met in the Meatpacking District, at a small Italian restaurant. It was a warm, late-summer night, perfect for lingering over our wine in a corner of Manhattan that felt like Europe, where we both had lived in the past.

cancun

Beach Life With Big-City Conveniences in Cancún

After living here in Cancún over a year, I’ve come to the conclusion that Cancún is not so much a traditional Mexican city as it is an international city with strong Mexican overtones. Though it retains its Mexican flavor, the influx of tourists and the city’s young age have seen it develop into a vibrant, modern, and sophisticated city with a lively nightlife.

Tulum

Total Relaxation on the Coast…With a Profitable Vacation Rental

“The weather is wonderful—very warm, can be hot, with a sprinkling of showers every once in a while. Coming from our cold temperatures in Canada we appreciate not having to bundle up for five months,” says Colleen Tannahill who along with her husband Blake owns a condo on the Caribbean coast of Mexico. “We are very happy with our rental occupancy and we’ve had a strong return so far. We have a rental manager who has our property posted online and we also spread the word ourselves.”

6-9-COVER-STORY-Nomads-1-(E

Performing Your Way to a Paycheck Overseas

Your voice could be your passport to an income overseas…and we’re not just talking about singing. Sure, if you can carry a tune, you can take that talent with you. Many expats make their money, or at least a supplementary income, from singing. Some even discover that carving out a singing career is easier overseas.

guanajuato

3 Festivals Not to Miss in Mexico

Mexico may be famous for its luxurious beaches with white sand and crystal blue waters, but if you prefer to recharge your batteries with urban buzz and a shot of culture, Mexico also has some great festivals that’ll do just that. These three festivals in particular are not to be missed and are packed with dance, music, theater, film, and local culture. To top it off, the host cities are things of beauty in their own right. All three are Spanish-colonial gems, with grand buildings, romantic streets and plazas, and plenty of outdoor cafés. It’s no wonder these cities are favorites with expats.

costa-rica

Banking and Social Security When You Move Overseas

“It’s easy to get your Social Security benefits abroad if you wish,” says IL Mexico Editor Glynna Prentice. “Arguably the easiest way to get them abroad is by electronic transfer to your local foreign bank account in the foreign country. However, “not all foreign banks will accept direct deposits of U.S. Social Security checks, so if you want your Social Security delivered to a local bank, make sure to choose one that does,” says Dan Prescher.

Social-Security-Infographic-test

More Retirees Than Ever Drawing Their Social Security Benefits Overseas

According to the latest figures from the U.S. Social Security Administration, U.S. retirees overseas received more than $3 billion in Social Security benefit payments in 2013—an increase of $160 million year-on-year, when compared to 2012. American retirees can receive Social Security benefit checks in almost every country in the world. Statistics reveal that Europe is home to the most U.S. retirees drawing their benefits abroad (154,238), followed by Canada and Mexico (95,767), and Asia (70,586).

Mexico

A Festive Patron Saint Celebration in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

Every year in the charming colonial city of San Miguel de Allende, in Mexico’s colonial highlands region, thousands of people arrive to celebrate the birthday of Saint Michael Archangel, its patron saint. The feast day is Sept. 29. But the biggest celebrations take place the following weekend.

Mexico

The Colonial Charms of Mérida, Mexico

Mérida is the colonial gem of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. It’s a city of 1 million with a thriving colonial district of historic buildings renovated as private homes, museums, shops, restaurants, boutiques, and more. The centro is safe, full of friendly people…and things to do. This cultural mecca offers a symphony orchestra, opera, cinema, and regular folkloric performances.

machu-picchu

Earn $1,000 for a Photo from Your Travels

“Do you need an assistant?” I get this question all the time, once people learn I am a travel photographer who regularly visits exotic locations and earns an income doing it. But why be an assistant when you can travel the world and take pictures yourself? Getting paid for your photos is easy if you know how.

guanajuato

Seize the Income Opportunities in Mexico

A while back I ran into an expat friend here in Mexico who was in a quandary. He’d just been offered a commercial space in a popular neighborhood to open a coffee shop, an extension of his original café. The thing is, my friend already had some other projects in the works, so he was feeling stretched a bit thin. But the offer was very appealing…not to mention flattering. After all, it was a vote of confidence from another business in the area.

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Mérida: The Yucatán’s Colonial Gem

I ’m enjoying a cappuccino at a sidewalk café. The tree providing shade is a century old, the church across the way much older. The neighborhood is historic, with restored buildings lining narrow streets for a dozen blocks in any direction. I’m in Mérida, Mexico, in the downtown centro of centuries-old colonial homes, churches, and grand buildings. It’s the third-largest Spanish colonial district in the world, after Havana and Mexico City.

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