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Old 04-08-2013   #16 (permalink)
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3,500 usd per month from a steady job and no need to try to find work here? Go for it, kid. You've got nothing to lose. Learning Spanish and integrating yourself with the young local Mexicans (and the young people from all over the world who flock here) will greatly enhance your experience.

I moved here with very few expectations, shooting for at least 6 months to a year. Almost 9 years later and I'm still here--though I live on much less income.

Playa del Carmen isn't paradise--no place is. But at least you can get up every day and know you've just got to throw on your flip flops.

I think you've got the right attitude and the right idea--welcome to Playa!
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Old 04-09-2013   #17 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by NoMoreAmerika View Post

1. I am EXTREMELY sick of the US, the bullshit politics, bullshit government and the day-to-day rat race that's required just to simply survive. I feel trapped, I cannot relate with most people and just need to get the heck out of this materialistic, "money is king" atmosphere. I'd like to be able to spend some serious time on self-reflection, relaxing with a slower paced lifestyle in a beautiful area with like-minded people. OH yeah, and for much cheaper than I do here in the U.S.

2. I'm fortunate enough to be able to work remotely, so I'll be getting paid in USD which is a big plus and probably the only factor that makes it possible for me to relocate to Mexico.

Welcome Josh

My two pesos on this one is to not get too excited that Playa and the Riviera Maya is not a materialistic "money is king" place. In my opinion after having lived here for some time, it is, it will just be that you will now be that 1% rather than the 99% you were in the US.

Also if you think MX government is that much different from the US you will need to spend some time talking to some nationals on their feeling of the MX government. There's a reason many are willing to die to get to Amerika.

Good luck and remember that the grass and the internet speed and reliability is not always greener and faster on this side of the fence. Also remember that what will enable you to live here well on $3,500 is that the person serving you a beer or a taco is likely making only $1,000/month.

Cheers and envious that I could not have done it at your age rather than 15 years later that I actually have

RDM
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Old 04-09-2013   #18 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by reddogmax View Post
Welcome Josh

My two pesos on this one is to not get too excited that Playa and the Riviera Maya is not a materialistic "money is king" place. In my opinion after having lived here for some time, it is, it will just be that you will now be that 1% rather than the 99% you were in the US.

Also if you think MX government is that much different from the US you will need to spend some time talking to some nationals on their feeling of the MX government. There's a reason many are willing to die to get to Amerika.

Good luck and remember that the grass and the internet speed and reliability is not always greener and faster on this side of the fence. Also remember that what will enable you to live here well on $3,500 is that the person serving you a beer or a taco is likely making only $1,000/month.

Cheers and envious that I could not have done it at your age rather than 15 years later that I actually have

RDM
Hey thanks, I appreciate the honest input.. I suppose being somewhere where I'm not an official "national" will make it easier for me to not be frustrated by the way government works, if that makes sense. All in all, I'm just frustrated that hard work and $80k in student loans has gotten me practically nowhere in the US, and if things are going to be like that then I'd rather be somewhere where I can enjoy my money, not to mention somewhere more aesthetically pleasing - at least for me. I just don't enjoy the mentality of the "average" American, I'm not very interested in accumulating useless items at this point in my life, nor am I interested in accumulating somewhat worthless real estate in a highly unstable market with an unpredictable future.

I'm sick of traffic, sick of supermarkets packed with morons, sick of the red tape involved with practically everything here in the US, sick of people with no other knowledge than their profession or sports statistics, etc..

I just want to travel, spend some time in a few different places and explore what's out there. At this point in my life, and for very good reason, I just badly need to get out of here, I have been planning to do so for years and now I'm able to. Mexico is close, beautiful, and ideal for what I need.. So, I'll do the "permanent tourist" thing for a while and see how it goes.
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Old 04-09-2013   #19 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by NoMoreAmerika View Post
sick of the red tape involved with practically everything here in the US, ..
No red tape here, nope, not any, none I've seen


RDM

Thinking red tape here could be a thread in and of itself.
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Old 04-09-2013   #20 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by NoMoreAmerika View Post
I'm sick of traffic, sick of supermarkets packed with morons, sick of the red tape involved with practically everything here in the US, sick of people with no other knowledge than their profession or sports statistics, etc..
Whoa, definitely not trying to discourage you, but after reading this, I have to be honest. Life here can be incredibly frustrating. Long lines, seemingly insensible 'rules' and red tape, inept and/or uneducated workers frustrating your intention to have a productive day, etc. It's getting better, but you still have to have patience and let go of your ideas about efficiency. It can take you ALL DAY to run 2 errands. Things can be difficult to find in stores, traffic can be horrendous, you will get the runaround.

On those days, you just do the best you can and get to your safe haven asap. And maybe go out of town for a couple of days, to Bacalar or Mahahual, where the pace is much slower.
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Old 04-09-2013   #21 (permalink)
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Heather is SPOT ON here. I find everything is a heck of a lot more difficult in Playa compared to here at home. And, most things, seems to me, are a heck of a lot more expensive. We can never ever just go to one place to find something. You are lucky if after going to 5 places, that you find what you are looking for.

We have a home there, and I can honestly say, I don't believe I could live there full time (year round), unless I had to for some reason.
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Old 04-09-2013   #22 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Heather View Post
On those days, you just do the best you can and get to your safe haven asap. And maybe go out of town for a couple of days, to Bacalar or Mahahual, where the pace is much slower.
Just to expand on this, you might want to give both Bacalar & Mahahual a trial period before you commit to anything long-term in Playa. They're both a lot smaller, more laid-back, and lacking in the amount of traffic and box stores that Playa has. OTOH, they don't have the nightlife and a lot of the conveniences that Playa has. I could definitely dig living in either Mahuhual or Bacalar, but I'm not single and I'm not 30.

The last time I was in Mahahual, about 3 years ago, it was growing fast. They had a brand-new brick boardwalk and new houses and businesses were sprouting up everywhere. Bacalar is very laid back but somewhat underdeveloped. It's growing, but nothing like Mahahual. I'll be back down there this summer.
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Old 04-09-2013   #23 (permalink)
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Whoa, definitely not trying to discourage you, but after reading this, I have to be honest. Life here can be incredibly frustrating. Long lines, seemingly insensible 'rules' and red tape, inept and/or uneducated workers frustrating your intention to have a productive day, etc. It's getting better, but you still have to have patience and let go of your ideas about efficiency. It can take you ALL DAY to run 2 errands. Things can be difficult to find in stores, traffic can be horrendous, you will get the runaround.

On those days, you just do the best you can and get to your safe haven asap. And maybe go out of town for a couple of days, to Bacalar or Mahahual, where the pace is much slower.
Yikes! I suppose the "red-tape" I speak of is better defined as dealing with day to day things that come along with renting, bills, paying a parking ticket, making a change of address, etc... I am trying to set myself up to completely avoid any and all paperwork while in Mexico. Renting a room on easy terms, not having/registering a vehicle, not applying for a work visa or permanent residence, no Mexican bank account, no bills in my name..

Aside from converting money and finding the goods I'll need at the store, I figure (at least I'm hoping) that I will not have to deal with a lot of the headaches I deal with here. I really appreciate the input and honestly, I don't expect it to be a walk in the park, but I'm intentionally going to try and keep my life there as simple as possible. I am a bit weary of getting the run-around in certain situations, but I'm trying to arrive prepared for those situations to avoid inconvenience. So far I've got a voltage converter/stabilizer for electronics, 2 extra debit cards, 2 US photo ID's, A GSM/unlocked cellphone with satellite service (expensive!), and.... that's about it.. Any other recommendations on some things I might want to bring along to make things easier/avoid immediate inconveniences?
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Old 04-09-2013   #24 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Dan-0 View Post
Just to expand on this, you might want to give both Bacalar & Mahahual a trial period before you commit to anything long-term in Playa. They're both a lot smaller, more laid-back, and lacking in the amount of traffic and box stores that Playa has. OTOH, they don't have the nightlife and a lot of the conveniences that Playa has. I could definitely dig living in either Mahuhual or Bacalar, but I'm not single and I'm not 30.

The last time I was in Mahahual, about 3 years ago, it was growing fast. They had a brand-new brick boardwalk and new houses and businesses were sprouting up everywhere. Bacalar is very laid back but somewhat underdeveloped. It's growing, but nothing like Mahahual. I'll be back down there this summer.
Thanks and while I'll definitely check that out, I'm thinking Playa would be a better spot to initially get my feet wet, so to speak. I don't want to be in the middle of nowhere right off the bat - I'd like to at least familiarize myself with the basic customs at first. While I understand that Playa isn't totally quiet and moving at a snail's pace, I'm assuming it's probably much more relaxed than Cancun, and SURELY more relaxed than Fort Lauderdale.. I'd like to get the hang of things in Mexico before going off the beaten path, and I'm not going to be in a living situation that I'm obligated to keep, it's just month-to-month so I think that keeps me pretty flexible as well.
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Old 04-09-2013   #25 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by NoMoreAmerika View Post
Yikes! I suppose the "red-tape" I speak of is better defined as dealing with day to day things that come along with renting, bills, paying a parking ticket, making a change of address, etc... I am trying to set myself up to completely avoid any and all paperwork while in Mexico. Renting a room on easy terms, not having/registering a vehicle, not applying for a work visa or permanent residence, no Mexican bank account, no bills in my name..

Aside from converting money and finding the goods I'll need at the store, I figure (at least I'm hoping) that I will not have to deal with a lot of the headaches I deal with here. I really appreciate the input and honestly, I don't expect it to be a walk in the park, but I'm intentionally going to try and keep my life there as simple as possible. I am a bit weary of getting the run-around in certain situations, but I'm trying to arrive prepared for those situations to avoid inconvenience. So far I've got a voltage converter/stabilizer for electronics, 2 extra debit cards, 2 US photo ID's, A GSM/unlocked cellphone with satellite service (expensive!), and.... that's about it.. Any other recommendations on some things I might want to bring along to make things easier/avoid immediate inconveniences?
You don't need a voltage converter here.
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Old 04-09-2013   #26 (permalink)
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You don't need a voltage converter here.
I know it's 110, but I'm kinda paranoid about my laptop - I'm a graphic designer so it's very expensive and I'm only using the converter because it has a voltage stabilizer.. Is that something I don't need to worry about? I was under the impression that voltage in certain areas might fluctuate enough to harm sensitive electronics..
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Old 04-09-2013   #27 (permalink)
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If you are planning on staying longer than a tourist Visa allows (up to 180 days), you will have to go to the Mexican Consulate in your home state BEFORE YOU LEAVE and arrange to get paperwork.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NoMoreAmerika View Post
Yikes! I suppose the "red-tape" I speak of is better defined as dealing with day to day things that come along with renting, bills, paying a parking ticket, making a change of address, etc... I am trying to set myself up to completely avoid any and all paperwork while in Mexico. Renting a room on easy terms, not having/registering a vehicle, not applying for a work visa or permanent residence, no Mexican bank account, no bills in my name..

Aside from converting money and finding the goods I'll need at the store, I figure (at least I'm hoping) that I will not have to deal with a lot of the headaches I deal with here. I really appreciate the input and honestly, I don't expect it to be a walk in the park, but I'm intentionally going to try and keep my life there as simple as possible. I am a bit weary of getting the run-around in certain situations, but I'm trying to arrive prepared for those situations to avoid inconvenience. So far I've got a voltage converter/stabilizer for electronics, 2 extra debit cards, 2 US photo ID's, A GSM/unlocked cellphone with satellite service (expensive!), and.... that's about it.. Any other recommendations on some things I might want to bring along to make things easier/avoid immediate inconveniences?
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Old 04-09-2013   #28 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Nerak936 View Post
So.... you're moving to a place in Mexico that you've never spent any time in (because America SUCKS as much as your current ability to speak Spanish).

I hope you're up for a challenge and an eye opening experience.

(You might want to keep your options open in Chicago in Awful Amerika just in case Playa isn't the paradise you anticipate it to be.)
After reading what the others have posted, can you now more fully appreciate my initial comments?? Not trying to quash your mellow or discourage your dream.... but ya just gotta realize relocating to Playa isn't like "living all over the place in the U.S."

I have absolutely NO desire to EVER move to Playa or any other part of Mexico. I also absolutely LOVE the current 2-3 weeks a year I spend there and look forward to it during the other 49-50 weeks.
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Old 04-09-2013   #29 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by NoMoreAmerika View Post
So far I've got a voltage converter/stabilizer for electronics, 2 extra debit cards, 2 US photo ID's, A GSM/unlocked cellphone with satellite service (expensive!), and.... that's about it.. Any other recommendations on some things I might want to bring along to make things easier/avoid immediate inconveniences?
You won't need a voltage converter but I would advise a couple of good surge protector power strips as many places are lacking in outlets. I'd make sure wherever you're renting offers internet (some, not all, rentals do) and avoid using your satellite service. But... you can buy a SIM card for your phone with no more than a half a day spent doing it. Patience is of the essence, in all things here though. I promise you, you will often ask questions like, "Why do I have to...," "Why do they do it this way," and a thousand "Why don't they...?" The answer is always, "Because it's Mexico." And it is what it is. For those of us who stay, the trade-off of the beach and the ocean and the sunshine and the places where peace and quiet are found more than make up for the difficulties. But expecting it be effortless is unrealistic, too. You're in a situation that will be easier than it is for others, but don't expect it to conform entirely to your dreams. More likely, your dreams will need to conform to here. But if it's a good fit, you'll be very glad you gave it a go!
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Old 04-09-2013   #30 (permalink)
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If Mikey was here this thread would be a lot more interesting
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