This is a guest post by LATAM Capitalist
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The decision to quit your job, leave your friends and family behind, and start a new journey in a new country is not one to take lightly. That’s why it’s important to consider the benefits of your potential new home. I’ve now been living in Mexico for 9 months and I truly believe it’s one of the best options to start your Plan B.
From the friendly culture to the low cost of living, it’s hard to beat, but those aren’t the only reasons to choose Mexico.
Let’s face it, cost of living is generally the most important factor for aspiring entrepreneurs and digital nomads. And that’s for a good reason, lower cost of living equals a longer runway for them to get their new business off the ground.
Mexico’s not the cheapest country in the world, but it’s “bang for the buck” is hard to beat. Depending on which part of the country you choose to live in, you could live as cheaply as $1000/month in some of the smaller cities. Increase your budget to $1500-2000/month and you can live pretty comfortably in the metropolis that is Mexico City.
With those budgets, you can live a comfortable “first-world style” life in Mexico. If your budget is larger, you can definitely spend more for more comfort and luxury (which is not always possible in other more “third-world” countries).
If you’re interested in living in Mexico, you can essentially pick what size city you want to live in. From small beach towns to one of the biggest cities in the world, Mexico has them. However, I think many people put too much weight on population, and I want to caution you in making the same error. To put this into perspective, let’s take two popular digital nomad hotspots.
Most digital nomads in Mexico City never leave the two neighborhoods of Condesa and Roma. These two neighborhoods have a combined estimated population of 80,000. These people don’t live in a city of 20 million, they live in a city of 80,000. Of course, there are other benefits to living in Mexico City that come from it being the country’s primate city, but you get the point. Don’t let arbitrary numbers cross a great city off your list of options.
One of the real benefits of Mexico City is its central location and large airport. However, less than an hour away from Playa Del Carmen is Cancun which is one of the best connected airports in Latin America.
Like population, you can pick which climate you want in Mexico as well (unless you want year round skiing that is). In the middle of the country is the “altiplano” or high plain which has year round spring-like weather. On the coast you have world famous beaches, but these can get pretty hot and humid.
I prefer a healthy mix, and Mexico makes it very easy. You can live somewhere like Mexico City and enjoy spring-like temperatures and then take a quick 1 hour flight to the beaches as desired. Tickets can be found for $50 round trip to the beach.
One great advantage of Mexico is its proximity to the States. Flights from most US Cities to Mexico City and Cancun can be found for as low as $200, but expect about $300-400 normally.
On top of that, US cities such as Houston, Miami, and LA have direct flights to just about every Mexican city with an international airport.
This makes it very easy to go back and visit friends and family, and for friends and family to visit to you.
You can have a very high standard of living in Mexico. The lives of the upper class in Mexico are not very different than their counterparts in the US. They go to Starbucks, shop at Costco, and eat at PF Chang’s. Those are just a few examples, but the point is that you will find many familiar brands, stores, and restaurants that you know from back home.
Obviously, Mexico has a world class cuisine and it’s own culture, which should not be missed, however you will find the comforts from home when needed. This makes the transition easy, especially if Mexico is your first destination in your journey abroad.
Now that we’ve covered some of the more objective factors, it’s time to talk about the Mexican culture. Overall, most Mexicans are very friendly to foreigners, especially to Americans, contrary to what you may think from watching TV back home. It’s part of their culture to welcome people in and make them feel as though they are family.
However, it’s important that you show an interest in their culture. Mexico may tick all of your boxes, but if you don’t have an interest in Mexican culture, then you should probably pick somewhere else.
Also remember, that certain things here may not work the same as back home. Generally that means, things take longer, however that’s the case in most other countries outside of the western world.
Again, choosing a new country to call home is not a decision to take lightly. However, don’t let those words scare you. If you have the desire, take the leap and go for it. Once you land in a new country, no one is forcing you to stay there. You can always try a different place if your first choice isn’t working for you, but don’t let decision paralysis prevent you from leaving home.
That being said, you want to make an educated guess to try and find the right fit early on in your journey. I sincerely believe that for many people, Mexico can be that perfect fit, and I hope today’s article has helped you with your decision to move abroad.
Make sure you also check out LATAM’s starter guide to Mexico, which is available here.