Expat guide to living in and relocating to Mexico



Mexico bridges the gap between two continents, assimilating the traditions of both. A Spanish colony for the most of its history, the country’s pre-existing pre-Columbian heritage mixed with Hispanic flavor, developing into a stand-alone culture on its own. Expats head to Mexico for broad range of lifestyles, from coastline living, rural simplicity, to urban progression and modern metropolitan. Read through our handy guide, we’ve got lots of info for your trip.

Mexico City

Expat Clubs

Canadian Club of Lake Chapala

To promote good fellowship among Canadians and friends within the Lake Chapala area.

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.canadianclubmx.com/ 


Circle of Friends

A group for new residents of Torreon. A way to make friends, find answers to questions, and share social events and activities with families from around the world!

Email: [email protected]


English Speakers in Action in Hermosillo

A support group for English Speakers in Hermosillo, Mexico, providing information, social activities and a chance to make new friends with both expats and English Speaking locals.

Website: esiahermosillo.wordpress.com/


The International Women's Club of Merida, Yucatan, Mexico

An international group with members including women from all age groups and diverse ethnic, social, and economic backgrounds. English is the official language of the club and is spoken with many accents and in varying degrees of proficiency, thus enriching the membership experience.

Website:  iwcmerida.com


Lake Chapala Society

The Lake Chapala Society has dozens of activities and services, scores of volunteers, and thousands of members.

Address: 16 de Septiembre 16-A, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico

Tel: +376 766 1140, +376 766 4685

Website:  www.lakechapalasociety.org


Mexico Accueil

Mexico Accueil est une association civile à but non lucratif. Avec un inscription annuelle vous avez le Guide de Mexico Accueil et du bulletin mensuel: la RËVista, l'accès aux cafés mensuels et à toutes les activités organisées par les membres de Mexico Accueil.

Website:  www.mexicoaccueil.com/page.php

International Schools 

Alexander Von Humbolt (German)

The school is a nonprofit, bicultural, civil association with recognized before the Mexican educational authorities and German studies. 120 years of history leading up to the present from a school that staying true to their primary principles.

Curriculum: German, Mexican

Website: www.humboldt.edu.mx


American Institute of Monterrey

AIM educational programs and validity is certified by the Ministry of Education of the State of Nuevo Leon. The school became the first educational institution in Latin America to be accredited simultaneously by the New England Association of Schools & Colleges (NEASC) in the US, and by the Council of International Schools (CIS) in Europe. Both organizations evaluate educational institutions worldwide and maintain the highest standards.

Curriculum: Social-Emotional Development Curriculum SEAL

Address (San Pedro): Perseverancia 100 Colonia Balcones del Valle, San Pedro Garza-Garcia, N.L. MÉXICO 66220

Tel: +52 81 81 74 37 00

Fax: +52 81 74 37 01


Address (Santa Catarina): La República 300 Colonia La Aurora, Santa Catarina, N.L. MÉXICO 66378

Tel: +52 81 80 48 37 00

Fax: +52 80 48 37 01

FB: www.facebook.com/Aimonterrey

Website: www.aim-net.mx/newsite/aim2011/index.php


American School Foundation of Guadalajara

The American School Foundation of Guadalajara has been accredited since 1965 by AdvancED/SACS CASI. ASFG’s Mexican program is accredited by the Secretaría de Educación Jalisco (SEJ).  ASFG’s high school program is certified by the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Mexico (UNAM).

Curriculum: AdvacED, Mexican Curriculum

Address: Colomos 2100, Col. Providencia, Guadalajara, Jalisco México C.P. 44630.

Tel: +52 33 3648 0299

Fax: +52 33 3817 3356

Email: [email protected]

Website: warrior.asfg.mx/


American School of Puerto Vallarta

The American School of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, is a private, non-profit, non-sectarian, co-educational institution offering a bilingual, bicultural education for students from pre-school through high school. Founded in 1986, the school is dedicated to an American style education, high academic standards, and the caring environment a small school can offer.

Curriculum: American, Mexican

Address: Albatros 129, Marina Vallarta, Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, México C.P. 48354

Tel: +52 322 221 1525

Fax: +52 322 226 7677

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.aspv.edu.mx


Greengates Mexico City

Greengates School is a privately owned, co-educational day school set in the northern part of Mexico City, in an area of over 20,000 sq. meters. For over 60 years the school has been preparing students for university study worldwide and developing caring global citizens.

Curriculum: British

Address: Circunvalación Poniente 102, Balcones de San Mateo, Naucalpan de Juárez, Estado de México

Phone: +52 55 5373 0088

Fax: +52 55 5360 4120

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.greengates.edu.mx/


Instituto San Roberto Monterrey

Instituto San Roberto is a private school, founded in 1982 by Mrs. Monica Sada. It is named in honor of Mr. Roberto G. Sada, Jr., one of Monterrey’s most important businessmen, and father of Ms. Sada.

Address (San Agustin): Real San Agustín No.4, Garza Garcia, N.L., C.P. 66260 México    

Tel: +52 81 8625 1500


Address (Valle Alto): Camino a Valle Alto km 1, Monterrey, N.L., C.P. 64989 México    

Tel: +(52) (81) 8000 2150          

Website: www.sanroberto.edu.mx/


The American School Foundation, A. C.  Mexico City

The American School Foundation, A.C. is an academically rigorous, international, university preparatory school, which offers students from diverse backgrounds the best of American independent education. In all aspects of school life students are encouraged to love learning, live purposefully and to become responsible, contributing citizens of the world.

Curriculum: American, International Baccalaureate

Address: Bondojito 215, Col. Las Americas, Mexico City, Mexico 01120


Tel: +52 55 5227 4900

Email: [email protected]

Website:  www.asf.edu.mx


The American School Foundation of Monterrey, A.C.

The American School Foundation, A.C. is an academically rigorous, international, university preparatory school, which offers students from diverse backgrounds the best of American independent education. In all aspects of school life students are encouraged to love learning, live purposefully and to become responsible, contributing citizens of the world.

Curriculum: American, International Baccalaureate

Address: Bondojito 215, Col. Las Americas

Mexico City, Mexico 01120

Tel: (5255) 5227-4900

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.asfm.edu.mx


The International American School of Cancun

The International American School of Cancun, Mexico, is a private, non-profit, non-sectarian, co-educational institution offering a bilingual, bicultural education for students from seventh grade through high school. Founded in 1998, the school is dedicated to an American style education, high academic standards and the caring environment a small school can offer. Most of the students enter the school through the primary school Comunidad Educativa del Sol, a Mexican bilingual primary under the same administration. The International American School of Cancun is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), Mexico’s Ministry of Education (SEP) and the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM).

Curriculum: American, AP

Address: Av. Colegios SM 306 Mza. 17 Lt. 39, Blvd. Colosio Km 5 Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico

Tel: +52 998 882 2269, +52 998 882 2273

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.iasces.com/


Westhill Mexico City

Westhill Institute is a Pre-K through grade 12 school located on the western edge of Mexico City. The student population is approximately 60% Mexican nationals and the remaining 40% represents 25 different countries and cultures.

Curriculum: American, International Baccalaureate

Address (Athos): Monte Athos 330, Lomas de Chapultepec, Miguel Hidalgo. 11000 Mexico City, Mexico

Tel: +52 5520-2455/2467

Fax: +52 5520-2452

Email: [email protected]


Address (Carpatos): Montes Carpatos no 940, Lomas de Chapultepec, Zip code: 11000

Mexico City, Mexico

Tel: +52 5282 4686


Address (Santa Fe): Domingo García Ramos 56, Zona Escolar Prados de la Montaña, 05610 Mexico City, Mexico

Tel: +52 8851 7073

Fax: +52 8851 7073

Website: westhill.edu.mx/

Local News in English

Atención San Miguel

San Miguel de Allende News, Community and Culture, San Miguel Allende Guanajuato, Mexico

Website: www.atencionsanmiguel.org/


The News (Mexico)

This is an English-language news site that covers local and international news events, sport, and opinion.

Website: www.thenews.com.mx/


Playa Maya News

Community news for those living in the Riviera Maya.

Website:  www.playamayanews.com

Country Information 

Location: North America

Capital City: Mexico City

Other Important Cities: Monterrey, Guadalajara, Veracruz, Puebla

Currency: Mexican Peso (MX$)

Language: Spanish

Calling Code: +52

Internet TLD: .mx

Electricity: Mexico runs on 127V 60Hz. The major provider of electricity in the country is Comision Federal de Electricidad CFE.

Address: Reforma 164 Col. Juárez México, D.F.

Website: www.cfe.gob.mx/paginas/home.aspx


Emergency Numbers: General Emergency: 080

Police: 060

Ambulance: 065

Firefighters: 068


Country Information



Country Study


Embassy Information


Residents Visa and Work Permit information

Citizens from North America, Australia, most in South America and Europe may enter the country visa free and stay for up to 180 days. Other countries will have to obtain a visa prior to travel through a Mexican embassy or consulate in their home or host country. The Mexican immigration site has information on visa regulations for each country: www.inm.gob.mx/index.php/page/Paises_Visa/en.html and www.inm.gob.mx/index.php/page/Paises_No_Visa/en.html


Staying in Mexico for an extended period requires either of two types of visas: Non-Immigrant Visas FMT and FM3, which are renewable after 12 months, and Immigrant Visas FM2, which are similar to Non-immigrant, except expats use this visa to gain permanent residency in the country.

Non-Immigrant FMT is a short-term visa that lasts for 6 months and usually is for tourism short business trips. It can be acquired through any Mexican consulate or travel agencies. The visa will have to be returned upon exiting the country.

Non-Immigrant FM3 is a long-term visa that are valid up to one year and renewable for 4 years. This visa is not transferable nor can it be converted to an immigrant visa. This visa can be acquired through any Mexican consulate. Proof of sufficient funds or income is required to be eligible. This visa is mostly for students, long-term visitors, journalists, artists and athletes. Expats under this visa may obtain work legally by getting a permit from the National Migration Institute in Mexico: www.inm.gob.mx.

Immigrant FM2 visas are valid for up to one year and renewable each year. After 5 years of continuous residency in Mexico, expats are eligible to apply for permanent residency. FM2 are for specific candidates: retirees, investors, professionals, high-level personnel, scientists, technicians, family members of Mexican citizens, artists and athletes, and assimilated individuals. Application can be done from within the country while an expat is under a Non-Immigrant visa.

Documents required, but not limited to:
  • Visa application
  • Valid passport and passport copy
  • Passport size color photo, white background
  • Visa fees

The Mexican consul in Washington DC site has more information.


Housing options in Mexico are plenty, there are many to choose from in every neighborhood or colonial. Renting is more popular than purchasing properties. It is important that expats acquaint and familiarize themselves with their surroundings. Rental prices are higher in major cities and neighborhoods near the city center, however moving away prices exponentially drop. A 1 bedroom apartment typically costs between $200 to $300 per month, while a larger 3 bedroom from $500 to $600.

Learning Spanish is definitely a must to streamline the process, as English is not predominantly spoken in the country. Most real estate agencies have Spanish-speaking staff. Knowing the language also helps in finding a guarantor, a Mexican citizen and property owner who will vouch for expats; this is required by landlords. Expats have a reputation when it comes to rent.

Another option of finding accommodation is through classified ads, word-of-mouth and sweeping neighborhoods for listings. These are more formal ways of securing a lease, cutting the process short by directing tenants to landlords immediately. However, it does not offer tenants lawful protection against any mismanagement or unfair rental practices.

Rental contracts are valid for various durations, but most demand a minimum of 12 months, which is automatically extended. The notice period for terminating the contract is 1 month. Deposits is made up of 1 month, which is refundable. Expats are advised to have a inventory check to make sure that any missing items or damaged fittings are accounted for before moving in, so that it will not be charged against the deposit.

Rent is paid either by cash or bank transfer, directly to the landlord or the real estate agency.

Driving License

Expats may use their domestic license to drive legally in the country, however an international license is recommended for translation purposes. Foreign drivers must carry both domestic and international license (if acquired) while driving. It is highly advised to carry all available identification documents while traveling around Mexico as police officials are vigilant. 


Zika VirusZika Virus: What You Need to Know

With the outbreak of the Zika virus growing at an alarming rate to the point where a global emergency has been declared by the World Health Organisation (WHO). Here’s some information to help you familiarise yourself with the disease, and some must-know facts about Zika if you are an expectant parent. To begin with, Zika virus is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito from the Aedes genus, in tropical regions. 

Find out more >>

There are public and private medical treatments available in Mexico. The public healthcare is funded by the social security system, and gives subsidized to free treatments. However hospitals in the public sector are limited and become overcrowded. Mexican citizens and expats who can afford it go to private institutions for services; expensive yet reliable and sufficient. Private insurance companies are also available in the country, expats prefer taking out health covers from them.

Insurance Companies

HDI Seguros

HDI Insurance is based in the city of Leon, Guanajuato and operates branches auto insurance, personal injury and accidents. With a legacy of over 70 years in Mexico, has 40 offices and 9 service centers Self-soon in major cities of the Republic.

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.hdi.com.mx/


ABC Campus Santa Fe

The ABC Medical Center is a Private, Not For Profit Institution (IAP) dedicated to excellence in health promotion, restoration and preservation.

Address: Av. Carlos Graef Fernández 154, (entrada por Av. Vasco de Quiroga), Col. Tlaxala Santa Fe, Cuajimalpa, Mexico City, 5300, Mexico

Tel: +52 55 1103 1600

Website: abchospital.com/


Centro Medico Dalinde

The Dalinde Medical Center is a tertiary hospital and high complexity with over 60 years of experience providing health services. Dalinde has technology in all areas in order to provide physicians and patients with the best tools for accurate diagnosis and timely treatment of all types of diseases.

Address: Tuxpan No. 25 Colonia Roma, Mexico City, 6760, Mexico

Tel: +52 55 5574 4444

Fax: +52 55 5264 8082

Website: www.dalinde.com/


Clinica Londres

The Angeles Clinic London Hospital has the ability to intern more than 5000 patients annually, with rooms distributed as follows:
  • 112 inpatient beds
  • 1 Master Suite
  • 4 Suites
  • 77 Standard
  • 7 Beds in Intensive Care
  • 8 Berths in the Coronary Care Unit
  • Intermediate 4 Cots Pediatric Therapy
  • 1 Neonatal Incubators in Therapy
  • 1 Bed in Pediatric Therapy
  • 1 Baby in Pediatric Therapy
  • 1 Baby in Neonatal Therapy
  • 3 Baby growth and development
  • 4 Berths in Short Stay

Address: Durango # 64, 2do. Piso, Col. Roma, Mexico City, 6700, Mexico

Website: hospitalesangeles.com/clinicalondres/