Longstanding images and stereotypes of Mexico fall hard and are also often perpetuated by today’s vacationers. Many lack a point of reference (other international travel experiences), jumping to some incredible conclusions. Basically, they are about why Mexico is the way it is.
It’s hard sometimes for Americans/Canadians to grasp why anyone would want to live in Mexico. Which is an “undeveloped” country and also known for “corrupt politicians, graft-greedy police, panhandling, and rip-off artists around every corner”! Indeed there’s the whole language issue, public security shortcomings, narco-violence, and on and on…
In fact, about 1 million Americans and Canadians live full or part-time in Mexico. People choose Mexico for a host of reasons, that is may or may not resonate with your expectations:
Why Choose Mexico?
1. Firstly, Climate (sun year-round) for healthier outdoor activity:
spend 12 months enjoying the outdoors, with opportunities to move from coastal to highland (cooler) climates with ease.
2. After that, Reasonable cost of living including healthcare:
while Mexico is not “cheap”, everyday living expenses can be often dramatically lower than what you’re used to. Health care for doctor’s visits, prescriptions, labs, and tests are a fraction of US costs.
3. Proximity to return to the U.S. for visits:
most U.S. cities are within a 2–4-hour flight home and Mexico has an outstanding network of “autopistas” for quick, safe driving over long distances.
4. Mexicans welcome Americans and Canadians
our culture is based on similar values. Despite some disgraceful “Mexican-bashing” in the U.S. media, Mexicans treat ALL foreigners with respect – especially Americans and Canadians with whom they share similar aspirations and beliefs.
5. In Mexico living there are a variety of activities in a culturally diverse country: Name a hobby, and there are likely Mexican neighbors with a similar interest. Move around the country and you’ll enjoy striking cultural differences: languages, crafts, cuisine, festivals, and more.
6. The relaxed pace of life, lower stress, less consumer-centric fast lane: while urban traffic and government bureaucracy can be nagging, most ex-pat residents enjoy the relaxed tempo of everyday life and a focus on family and friends.
7. Economic/political stability built upon existing infrastructure: Many parts of Mexico are strikingly modern and familiar to North Americans. Modern roads, airports, and marinas abound. The economy enjoys low inflation and a stable exchange rate. Politically, Mexico is Latin America’s most stable democracy.
8. Quality of services in Mexico living: wide availability of products: Mexico’s retail world is infused with familiar American stores and products. Your favorite brands are often available, sometimes at a nearby Costco, Sam’s Club, Home Depot, or Starbucks.
9. Bilingual English/Spanish speakers throughout the country: not only is Spanish a relatively easy language to learn, in Mexico, you’ll find English speakers just about everywhere these days. Many have lived in the States and have vast cross-cultural backgrounds.
10. Opportunities to volunteer, localized philanthropy that makes a real difference: many North Americans may write a donation check but never interact with actual beneficiaries. In Mexico, opportunities abound for rewarding volunteer experiences.