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How Do I Live in Mexico if my income doesn't add up to 12K monthly?

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MzRed
8/11/2019 16:25 EST

Me again -
I may not make enough money to get a Visa. I get $650 / monthly from Social Security & have 0 savings.
I guess my question is, how long can I stay with just a passport? And will property owners rent to someone with just a passport for the long-term?
So many questions...
Thanks in advance.

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inky313
8/12/2019 02:12 EST

Your only legal option would be a 180 day tourist visa but unless you lived close to a border the cost of traveling back and forth every 6 months would eat up a lot of cash. Additionally it is not absolutely certain that you would get a renewal everytime you want to return after a day or two outside the country.
I also would think it would be very rough to live here on less than 1000 USD a month, maybe if you are fluent in Spanish and avoid areas that have a lot of of other expats or were fully established somewhere but it would be real tough.

Another problem would be that your budget would be very sensitive to changes in the valuation of the peso. The dollar is strong now but things could change quickly. For example right now $1000 would get you about 19,000 pesos, if the value dropped to 2013 levels you would get about 13,000.

One more concern is healthcare, you would not be able to get into the goverment run plans in Mexico while on a tourist visa.

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RVGRINGO
8/12/2019 10:52 EST

With less than the amounts required for a visa, I would not attempt to live in Mexico. There is a good reason the Mexican government sets those limits. There are no "safety nets" for you in Mexico.

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MzRed
8/12/2019 14:08 EST

Thank you. It would be me and 1-2 other people sharing costs, but still our income would only add up to about 1800-2K total.
So, it looks like I'm stuck, darn it.

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MzRed
8/12/2019 14:09 EST

Thank you.
I posted a reply to all of this below? above? :-D

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longtimelurker
8/12/2019 16:58 EST

I say go for it. You can't live in the USA on that. Well maybe the streets of Los Angeles.

I know a lot of Mexican families living on 10,000 pesos a month. You won't get a resident visa but you can do the border runs. After a couple of trips you will learn the ropes of the tourist shuffle.

You and your roommates will have no problem living on 40,000 pesos a month if you live outside gringolandia.

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bigrio
8/12/2019 23:00 EST

LTL makes a valid point; $1800-2000 goes a lot further in Mexico than NOB. There are many localized "off the radar" communities to give it ago & determine if your plan is feasible.

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MrsJaneSimmondsPhD
8/13/2019 08:02 EST

Question my and my spouse monthy income we were told in Toronto where we are from was great to retire in Pureto Vallarta Mexico.
Both of us are retire her over 67 and i over 59 and we are under $110,K Canadian a year. You need $12,000 a month that is $144,000 a year what is the $ you need to retire

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MrsJaneSimmondsPhD
8/13/2019 08:12 EST

You do know $110,K Canadian is $1,627,949 Mexican Peso and if you are doing $144,K US that is $2,827,247 Mexican Peso a year so why do you need to make over two million peso a year for ?

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MzRed
8/14/2019 16:19 EST

@longtimelurker - thank you.
I live in Las Vegas NV w/2 other roommates & I am okay on what I make from SS.
We have a nice condo, too. So it isn't like I'm starving or living in a box or under a bridge.
My fear is that the current prez will be re-elected, and if that happens, I can't live here. I just can't deal with his stuff.
I have time to sort things out. I also have a cat - so the 90 days at a time thing could be an issue with him.
I learned long ago that if it's meant to be, it will be. I just have to do the footwork.

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MzRed
8/14/2019 16:20 EST

" so the 90 days at a time..."
Whoops! I meant 180 days.

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MzRed
8/14/2019 16:24 EST

I was under the impression that the mandatory income of $1200.00 monthly was in US Dollars. Is that not right?
Because if it's $1200.00 pesos, I fall right in that area.
650 United States Dollars equals
12,802.14 Mexican Pesos.

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NA
8/14/2019 22:38 EST

It is USD. You can’t do much with $1,200 pesos a month.

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MrsJaneSimmondsPhD
8/15/2019 00:08 EST

I do think it is $3,000 US a month for a couple $2,000 a month for Singal person

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mattoleriver
8/15/2019 00:14 EST

$1200US/month is an old figure the current requirement for a temporary resident visa is closer to $1600US/month. The current figure for a permanent resident visa is around $2700US/month.

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MzRed
8/15/2019 01:58 EST

oh. great.

Thanks, everyone for all of the info - even if I'm not fond of most of it. ;-)

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hrlee7804
8/16/2019 08:56 EST

mattoleriver. I don't think your numbers for RP are correct...or even close. I did not go thru the RT process but I see no need for the income to be much if any difference. RT allows you to live in Mexico for 4 years before leaving or converting to RP. You need the same amount to live with either. I have NEVER heard of a difference but my consulate did bring it up. I only showed them part of my income ($2000) and it was no problem for RP and that was 8 mo. ago.

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RVGRINGO
8/16/2019 11:02 EST

There has always been a difference in the qualification amounts for Residente Temporal or Residente Permanente visas. Check with a Mexican consulate, or their website, for the current amounts, as they will change with time, and with the exchange rates.

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mattoleriver
8/16/2019 11:37 EST

hrlee7804,
the visa requirements are based on multiples of the current minimum wage. The minimum wage for 2019 is 102.68 pesos/day. A Temporary Resident visa has a monthly requirement of at least 300 days worth of minimum wage income. A Permanent Resident visa has a monthly requirement of at least 500 days worth of minimum wage income. Due to constantly changing currency values the dollar value of a minimum wage based on pesos is not a fixed amount. At today's exchange rate the numbers that I posted are pretty close.
Of course, that is just the official method for determining the financial requirements. The individual consulates seem to act very independently and often are not in agreement on what each will accept.

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lindaceleste
8/16/2019 12:11 EST

Isn't there also the option of 12 month savings account balances (rather than just monthly income) when being considered for for residency visas?
This may not be an option for the OP but others following this thread qualify accordingly.

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mattoleriver
8/16/2019 13:44 EST

lindaceleste,
that is correct. The savings balance requirement for a TR visa is the equivalent of 5,000 days worth of minimum wages and for the PR visa it is 20,000 days worth of minimum wages. These requirements are an alternate to the monthly income requirement they are not in addition to the monthly requirement.

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MzRed
8/16/2019 16:53 EST

@mattoleriver
"The minimum wage for 2019 is 102.68 pesos/day. "
That's $5.22 per day USD or $156.00 +/- per month.
at $650.+/ per month, I am well above that.
I am still very confused about this. Where does the $1200 come into play?

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cedelune
8/16/2019 17:17 EST

I'm lousy at math. How about you go to some of the Mexican Consulate web pages close to you (and in Laredo and New Orleans) and compare their income requirements--they are all different. You may be able to go to one with lower requirements and get approved there.

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giershift43
8/16/2019 17:19 EST

You say 12k. That would be 12 thousand a month. That’s not what you mean is it?

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MzRed
8/16/2019 20:07 EST

No. Sorry. I think it's 1200 - 12 hundred.
I'm so frazzled with it all now.

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MrsJaneSimmondsPhD
8/16/2019 21:55 EST

My spouse just did the Perminent Residentcy from Toronto Canada we see the income requiment is $3,722 Canadian in the past six months for each person if they are single that is $2,803 US a month Unless some of the people are coming down are married all of you have to make that and if you want i can email the page where it say all that from the Mexican Consulate that you have to make the same amount of $3,722 Canadian a month of 6 month or the life saving of $148,886 Canadian or $112,151 US and you have to show bank records of this income. The Fee for my wife and I to get Permient Residentcy was $386 US each my wife and I hrlee7804
My wife and i make over $10,K a month. That is over $7,K US and when i worked in the US i have cash in my 401K Roth IRA and we sold everything we own in Toronto ON as in our house car and furniture and move down to PV MX

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mattoleriver
8/16/2019 22:07 EST

MzRed,
the TR monthly requirement is equivalent to 300 days of minimum wages it is not equivalent to 30 days of minimum wages. The PR monthly requirement is equivalent to 500 days of minimum wages.

(300 days) X ($5.22US/day) = $1560US

(500 days) X ($5.22US/day) = $2610US

I have no idea where the $1200 figure comes from, somebody else brought that into the conversation. I don't know if it is $US, $MEX or $CDN. I don't even know if it is $1200 or $12,000. A few years ago the TR visa requirement worked out to about $1200US but that is no longer the case.

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MrsJaneSimmondsPhD
8/16/2019 22:17 EST

Just google the mexican consulat on the requmint on Perminant Residency for a single person unless you are married.
Because i just went through it in early July before i move down to Puerto Vallarta MX were i now have a 3 bedroom 3 bath 2 car garage 260 sq meter gated townhouse condo.
And have a Mexican Bank account also down here.
So don't my word go look it up your self

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MrsJaneSimmondsPhD
8/16/2019 22:38 EST

Here it is right from the own web page and the link also . Permanent Resident Visa
Permanent Resident Visa

Foreigners who wish to remain in Mexico indefinitely may apply in person for a Permanent Resident Visa at the Consular Office closest to their place of residence.

Requirements:

Visa application form properly completed and signed.
Passport or valid travel and identity document, original and a photocopy of the page containing the photograph and personal data.
Original and a photocopy of the migratory document accrediting your legal stay in Canada (only for applicants who are not Canadian citizens).
One photograph measuring 3.9 cm x 3.1 cm, face uncovered, no eyeglasses, frontal view, in color and with white background.
Payment of fees in cash for the issuance of the visa.
Applicants must also present the following documents, depending on the category under which they are applying:

a) Retirees or Pensioners:

Original and a photocopy of investment receipts or bank account statements showing an average monthly balance equivalent to $148,886.00 Canadian dollars during the last twelve months, or
Original and a photocopy of proof of tax-free monthly income from pensions in an amount greater than $3722.15 Canadian dollars during the past six months. If the applicant is the sibling of a foreigner who holds a permanent resident visa, provided the applicant is a child or adolescent and has not married or has been declared incompetent and under the sibling’s legal representation, ties can be demonstrated by presenting the birth certificates of the applicant and his/her sibling, original and a photocopy of each;
Valid permanent resident visa, original and a photocopy, and
The applicant must prove economic solvency to support each of his/her family members during their stay in the country, with:
Original and a photocopy of investment receipts or bank account statements showing an average monthly balance equal to $744.43 Canadian dollars during the past twelve months, or
Original and a photocopy of documents showing that the applicant has employment or a pension with a tax-free monthly income greater than $744.43 Canadian dollars, during the past six months. https://consulmex.sre.gob.mx/toronto/index.php/en/53-visas/228-permanent-resident-visa

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longtimelurker
8/19/2019 08:33 EST

"No. Sorry. I think it's 1200 - 12 hundred.
I'm so frazzled with it all now"

Mzred, don't worry about getting a residency visa, you can't qualify anyway.
Just go with a tourist FMM card and see if you find a place you like.

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steviesunshine
8/21/2019 18:35 EST

I agree, go for it. I choose someplace closer to the border for border runs. You can live on that for food and rent. If it doesn’t work out you can always come back.

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MzRed
8/22/2019 15:12 EST

Thanks, everyone.
I have a lot of planning, sorting out, thinking, and Math to do. LOL
Y'all have been very helpful & I appreciate it.

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Fredonia
8/22/2019 17:55 EST

Rosarito's not too bad with quite a few expats and near the border. I would avoid Tijuana, but it's nearby in case you need something. I agree with you about the political situation, but I'm choosing to stay and fight the fascists, even if they come to my door. (armed and ready).

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mannem
8/28/2019 08:27 EST

For reference, the monthly income requirement for residency is 300 times the Mexican daily minimum wage, which increases yearly.

Right now minimum wage is $102.68 pesos per day.

.Multiplied by 300 = $30,804 pesos.

Today's exchange rate is 19.98 pesos per dollar. So, that would mean a monthly US income requirement of $1,571.

There are expats in Mexico who never applied for residency living on a lot less.

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Sydney841
8/28/2019 14:46 EST

Hi, MzRED!

I too, have some financial concerns so I have some idea of what you're going through. [I started the 'Overwhelmed Future Resident of Latin America' thread.]

Between you and your roommates, it looks to me like you could make it on your combined incomes but I'm not speaking from first hand experience. Listen to the expats who are there or have lived there before. It looks like they think you'll be okay.

In the meantime, regarding residency, 'longtimelurker' gave me some great advice in the thread mentioned above.

He said: "I wouldn't worry about residency right off. There are more important things to consider in the beginning. Getting involved in government makes things complicated.

"Come on a tourist visa for a hundred and eighty days. Then make a border run to get another 180. That will give you a year to get the lay of the land. Then you can decide if you want to live in Mexico or not."

This took a weight off my shoulders for the time being. I hope it does the same for you.

BTW, since my Social Security will be somewhat lean in the beginning (since I will only get half of my ex-spouse's until I decide to claim my own), I plan to earn money on the internet. There are MANY 'Digital Nomads' that live where there is a strong internet connection. You never know, you may have some skills that may be needed online. :-)

Sydney841

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Sydney841
8/28/2019 14:46 EST

Hi, MzRED!

I too, have some financial concerns so I have some idea of what you're going through. [I started the 'Overwhelmed Future Resident of Latin America' thread.]

Between you and your roommates, it looks to me like you could make it on your combined incomes but I'm not speaking from first hand experience. Listen to the expats who are there or have lived there before. It looks like they think you'll be okay.

In the meantime, regarding residency, 'longtimelurker' gave me some great advice in the thread mentioned above.

He said: "I wouldn't worry about residency right off. There are more important things to consider in the beginning. Getting involved in government makes things complicated.

"Come on a tourist visa for a hundred and eighty days. Then make a border run to get another 180. That will give you a year to get the lay of the land. Then you can decide if you want to live in Mexico or not."

This took a weight off my shoulders for the time being. I hope it does the same for you.

BTW, since my Social Security will be somewhat lean in the beginning (since I will only get half of my ex-spouse's until I decide to claim my own), I plan to earn money on the internet. There are MANY 'Digital Nomads' that live where there is a strong internet connection. You never know, you may have some skills that may be needed online. :-)

Sydney841

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MrsJaneSimmondsPhD
8/28/2019 17:16 EST

Mannem this in got from the Mexican Govt page updated as of June 2019 So unless you have more updated information than June 2019 then you are mistaken with your information you gave.
Because this it is right from their own web page and the link also . Permanent Resident Visa
Permanent Resident Visa

Foreigners who wish to remain in Mexico indefinitely may apply in person for a Permanent Resident Visa at the Consular Office closest to their place of residence.

Requirements:

Visa application form properly completed and signed.
Passport or valid travel and identity document, original and a photocopy of the page containing the photograph and personal data.
Original and a photocopy of the migratory document accrediting your legal stay in Canada (only for applicants who are not Canadian citizens).
One photograph measuring 3.9 cm x 3.1 cm, face uncovered, no eyeglasses, frontal view, in color and with white background.
Payment of fees in cash for the issuance of the visa.
Applicants must also present the following documents, depending on the category under which they are applying:

a) Retirees or Pensioners:

Original and a photocopy of investment receipts or bank account statements showing an average monthly balance equivalent to $148,886.00 Canadian dollars during the last twelve months, ($111,867 US ) or
Original and a photocopy of proof of tax-free monthly income from pensions in an amount greater than $3722.15 Canadian dollars ($2,796.71 US) during the past six months.If the applicant is the sibling of a foreigner who holds a permanent resident visa, provided the applicant is a child or adolescent and has not married or has been declared incompetent and under the sibling’s legal representation, ties can be demonstrated by presenting the birth certificates of the applicant and his/her sibling, original and a photocopy of each;
Valid permanent resident visa, original and a photocopy, and
The applicant must prove economic solvency to support each of his/her family members during their stay in the country, with:
Original and a photocopy of investment receipts or bank account statements showing an average monthly balance equal to $744.43 Canadian dollars ($559.36 US) during the past twelve months, or
Original and a photocopy of documents showing that the applicant has employment or a pension with a tax-free monthly income greater than $744.43 Canadian dollars ($559,36 US), during the past six months. https://consulmex.sre.gob.mx/toronto/index.php/en/53-visas/228-permanent-resident-visa

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giershift43
9/1/2019 02:47 EST

Concern with a social security income of $650 a month, are you receiving SSI or social security? If you get SSI,they don’t pay it for anyone outside the country.

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wico6768
10/23/2019 01:26 EST

I will call and go in to the consulate in Denver prior to doing this, however, I am somewhat concerned that you need to be retired and have a pension, or savings. I have an income. Husband won't, cause his job will not let him work remotely. I can. I will have verifiable income of about 9K monthly, but, I am an independent contractor. My income comes from my home state. I am not an employee. It will show up in my bank account as a direct deposit every month though, and is well over the minimum requirement.

We also have an investment account, but if we buy the house we have gone to see and want, it won't be enough for permanent visa for husband, AND, we don't want to tap into 401K yet, so that cannot be used. Are we SOL?

Once we go, husband will be working as an independent contractor also, and will be able to show income after, just not in advance. This income we know he will have, but it would be stupid for him to quit his job now, cause it is our health insurance and 401K max contribution, until he quits.

We will be living in Cozumel. Easy for us to get back home to Denver, and also, we love diving there.

Thanks for any advice.

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Cozumeldeb
10/23/2019 09:52 EST

Hi, we live in CZM and have our permanent residency, fully retired. I think u have a couple of choices. #1 don't buy a house right away..this goes for anywhere in MX. Our 1st visit was 1989..we bought in 2001. Learn the area..all of the area, remember no zoning in MX, unless you want to live next to all night cantinas, auto repair or drug house..House v condo..when u do buy..we intended to build, after much discussion we went condo route..very tough to get bldg materials, quality near impossible. Next consider security, sadly break ins are very common. Work for young people is scarce..
My advice is take your time, rent for at least 1-2 yrs. There is a reason so many houses on the market. Experience the island and u will make the right decision..living + vacationing are different. Explore QRoo + Yucatan etc. Beautiful country.
Any specific questions be happy to answer.
Deb

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Cozumeldeb
10/23/2019 10:04 EST

Good advice..Go to your MX consultant..ours is Chicago..very helpful. We got ours 2016..also be aware you need to report to INM within 30 days with ALL completed paperwork..my advice is go to ex-pat site in your area of interest and ask for recommendations, we used a lawyer and worth it in our opinion..unless fluent in Spanish..

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RVGRINGO
10/23/2019 11:15 EST

Inky has brought up some very good clues, which should be enough to convince you of the necessity for meeting the income requirements for a proper residence visa. Your current income just won't suffice.
If you were to need hospitalization, you would be in very serious trouble, as there is no safety net for you. An auto accident, or other emergency situation would put you in dire straits.
Your rent, utilities and groceries will eat up your total income.
I, unfortunately, must suggest that you give up on the idea.

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TextoMex
10/23/2019 11:18 EST

MzRED "My fear is that the current prez will be re-elected, and if that happens, I can't live here. I just can't deal with his stuff."

no entiendo
$650 / monthly

Is that X 3?
If you're living comfortably in Vegas, you can live comfortably in Mexico. My question, are you receiving any other government benefits? Subsidized housing, food stamps,... Live across the street from a food kitchen?

I don't know why you can't live in the US if he get's re-elected. Things are only going to get better when they send some of the criminal democrats to jail!

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giershift43
10/23/2019 11:19 EST

I also do not want to live under Trump’s authoritarian and cruel administration

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Cozumeldeb
10/23/2019 13:06 EST

100% agree..but based on day to day news..he'll be ousted soon.

When u post $12k mo is that USD or Pesos? If u SS is $1000 usd mo..that will be tight.
Google Guanajuato commune, I'v read about a group of Americans there..Guanajuato is a beautiful city in the mountains..near perfect climate.

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Cozumeldeb
10/23/2019 13:11 EST

Bahaaa, ignore Tex/Mex guy and political stuff..Most people have opinions one way or another..Mexicans by in large are lovely people..as one of my Mexican friends told me they ignore the haters/trump losers.
Good luck on your move..

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morepaul
10/23/2019 14:05 EST

Cozumeldeb,

You talk from 2 sides of your mouth. Are you bipolar? First you state " ignore Tex/Mex guy and political stuff." then at the end you state"Mexican friends told me they ignore the haters/trump losers." Is this SOP from all liberal viewpoints or just you? Hmmmm

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morepaul
10/23/2019 14:27 EST

Just reread what I wrote and it was a little over the top, My apologies., but I get very tired of hearing any person say one thing and then do another .
Lets keep this forum clear of political drama.

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giershift43
10/23/2019 14:44 EST

I want no political drama either, but it seems we cannot completely escaped it. People expressing fear about the current administration as a motivation for leaving or just talking about not being able to sleep at night is real.

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giershift43
10/23/2019 14:44 EST

I want no political drama either, but it seems we cannot completely escaped it. People expressing fear about the current administration as a motivation for leaving or just talking about not being able to sleep at night is real.

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Cozumeldeb
10/23/2019 16:50 EST

MorePaul..
Do u live or visit in MX? Guessing wannabe ex-pat, whatever...if u live in MX and downgrade the citizens by supporting hate speech against them..then IMO this is not the country for you or the last guy.
Move along.

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morepaul
10/23/2019 17:09 EST

You assume waaaay to much there Cozumeldeb!!!! "Yes" I am an expat and "No" do not support what you interpret as hate speech unless that means in your mind a person who disagrees with your so called rational thinking.

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davidL
10/23/2019 21:52 EST

It would be great if you could "consulate shop," but as I recall you have to apply at the consulate that jurisdiction over your place of residence. In my case I was living in Pittsburgh and had to process my RT at the Philadelphia consulate.

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davidL
10/23/2019 21:54 EST

Why can't we edit these darned messages? :) "...but as I recall you have to apply at the consulate that HAS jurisdiction over your place of residence."

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giershift43
10/23/2019 22:02 EST

Agreed

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Eidel
10/23/2019 22:29 EST

I don't think that is true. I applied for my visa in Chicago although I lived in Michigan and there is a Consulate in Detroit. Chicago did not refuse my application.

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davidL
10/24/2019 14:59 EST

That is interesting. I may have misunderstood or perhaps it's a case o different strokes for different consulates.

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davidL
10/24/2019 14:59 EST

That is interesting. I may have misunderstood or perhaps it's a case o different strokes for different consulates.

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davidL
10/24/2019 14:59 EST

That is interesting. I may have misunderstood or perhaps it's a case o different strokes for different consulates.

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Rodrigo1974
10/24/2019 18:37 EST

if worse comes to worse, enter mexico legally on a tourist visa and get a job working off of the books at some restaurant or resort. do this before your tourist visa expires. that's what a lot of immigrants do in the united states. with all of the undocumented central americans, africans, and europeans in mexico currently, you should be able to function. God forbid, though, if you have a medical emergency. A trip to one of the border states may be necessary to utilize emergency medicaid, or you may need to pay for any treatment done in mexico in cash beforehand. this is living on the edge, and i'd never do it or recommend it, but that's your choice. also, it's even cheaper in guatemala.

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Expats talk about the best places to live in Mexico City, living near work to avoid hours of traffic every day, crime in Mexico City, international schools and much more.

Expats talk about the best places to live in Mexico City, living near work to avoid hours of traffic every day, crime in Mexico City, international schools and much more. ...

Living-in-Mexico-CityIs Mexico City Safe?

Is Mexico City Safe? What are the safest neighborhoods in Mexico City? Expats answer these questions and offer tips (based upon first-hand experience) for avoiding being the victim of a crime.

Is Mexico City Safe? What are the safest neighborhoods in Mexico City? Expats answer these questions and offer tips (based upon first-hand experience) for avoiding being the victim of a crime. ...

Retirement-In-Lake-ChapalaAn Expat Shares What it's Like Retiring in Lake Chapala, Mexico

A retiree who has lived all over the world as a house sitter, talks about packing up and making the permanent move to Lake Chapala, Mexico. She had been there many times before and is thrilled she finally made the move - she appreciates the lower cost of living, expat community, close proximity to Guadalajara.

A retiree who has lived all over the world as a house sitter, talks about packing up and making the permanent move to Lake Chapala, Mexico. She had been there many times before and is thrilled she fi...

Moving-To-Poza-RicaAn Expat Talks about Moving to Poza Rica, Mexico

An expat talks about what it's like living in a city in Mexico that's not popular among expats. While the cost of living was extremely low, he advises others to choose cities with a more expats.

An expat talks about what it's like living in a city in Mexico that's not popular among expats. While the cost of living was extremely low, he advises others to choose cities with a more expats. ...

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