Moving to Mexico
Moving to Mexico does not require a particular visa in advance; you can enter as a non-resident and then get an employment pass from the National Institute of Immigration. The most common visa for expats is the FM3 which allows you to stay one year in Mexico and which you can renew every year. Learn more about immigration laws and moving options with ExpatFinder.
Notwithstanding the recent health issues, Mexico continues to be an expat haven. The relaxed ambiance is a bonus for foreigners wanting a career change or a new lifestyle.
Mexico is a federal republic, consisting of thirty-one states and the Federal District with a population of 122.3 M as of 2013. Compared to Western countries, the pace of life in Mexico is much slower. Expats living a fast paced life should take a breather and become accustomed to Mexico's hará mañana (will do tomorrow) approach to life. Learning the language is advantageous as 97% of the population speaks Spanish. However, English is used in commercial centers in the cities. Mexico is a middle-income country with a free market economy. The currency is Mexican Peso or M$. Mexico City is the capital city and one of the most popular destinations in the world. This old city is vibrant and extraordinary. Another famous area, Acapulco, known as the Pearl of the Pacific, is a world-famous resort with recreational activities like diving and snorkeling, fishing, river rafting and golf.
Working expats are attracted to the competitive industry of Mexico. Most of the multinational companies have moved to Mexico to save on labor costs and taxes. Furthermore, Mexico is a member of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with US and Canada as trade partners. An additional driving force for choosing Mexico is the extremely affordable cost of living in this colorful country. Foreign workers who are financially stable can enjoy a laid back lifestyle and spend most of their time with their family. American expats, who make up one percent of Mexico's population, are fascinated by Mexico's private health care, affordable yet top-notch. Some say the Americans are not content with their health system, hence the move. Another reason for all the smiles is the sunny weather. However, expats do need to consider issues like sanitation and safety when contemplating a move to Mexico, notorious for its poor sanitation and high crime rates in the urban areas. Despite there being no official religion in the country, Mexicans are extremely religious. Predominantly, Roman Catholicism is the faith of more than 90% of the population in Mexico.
Foreigners or expats need to get an FM3 Non-immigrant Visa to live temporarily in Mexico. The permit's validity is one year, but it can be renewed annually. To live permanently in Mexico, expats need to get an FM2 Immigrant Visa, the equivalent of a resident alien visa or green card in the US. To apply for citizenship in Mexico, you must have lived in Mexico for five years with an FM2 visa and have been granted permanent resident status. Expats need to pass an exam, and a basic grasp of the Spanish language is an advantage.
Dreaming about a luxurious life for less is everybody's dream, so it's easy to adapt to Mexico's laidback lifestyle.
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