Do you often dream of taking long walks along an idyllic beach in Puerto Vallarta? Or do you prefer hiking lush mountain trails in San Miguel de Allende? Are you a food and drink enthusiast who doesn’t mind living in a warmer location? Then Mexico may just be your dream destination! What do you need to move from the US to Mexico? Check out this detailed checklist to help you stay on track.
Dream Destination Loading: Moving to Mexico Checklist
You can relocate to your favorite Mexican city and start a brand new life. And this handy checklist is the perfect way to start this process:
Learn More About Mexican Regulations
Although Mexico is the USA’s next-door neighbor, there are differences in regulations and laws between both countries. Therefore, you need to do your research. Be sure to contact the Mexican consulate while you are in the USA to get the correct info for ex-pats relocating to Mexico. Some of these topics include:
- Visas and permits
- Family vaccination requirements
- Health insurance coverage
- Restrictions or taxes on shipped household goods
- The import taxes for high-value items
- Vaccines and quarantines for your pets
You will need to file all your applications for your permits and visas in advance. Also, review your travel documents to ensure that they are not close to their expiration dates.
Consider Your Finances
While it’s exciting to move to Mexico, you also need to be practical. How will you support yourself (and your family)? Therefore, you must account for several financial obligations for your new life in Mexico:
- Living Costs: You need to know the average grocery costs, rental rates, mortgage costs, and utility expenses. Compare these figures with what you currently spend in the USA. The good news is that the cost of living in Mexico is far lower than in the US.
- Job Market: Unless you are retired, then you will need to earn to sustain your new and exciting Mexican lifestyle of adventure. If you are moving to Mexico as a part of your work, or you are a digital nomad, then this won’t be an issue. Otherwise, make sure that your Spanish is good, you have the right visa that allows you to work in Mexico, and that you have a few job opportunities to explore.
- Pension Access: If you are retired, then you need to find out how you can easily access your funds while living in Mexico. Research the most cost-effective and safest way to transfer your pension to your new hometown.
Arrange Your Healthcare
Your health is always important, regardless of your age. Healthcare coverage also differs across countries. As soon as you have settled in, you will need to arrange local health insurance policies for yourself and your family members.
You can choose between relying on public health coverage or getting private health insurance. Many ex-pats choose private health insurance for greater reliability.
Also, if you (or any family member) regularly take medication, stock up on prescriptions. Why? Because it may be hard to get them in Mexico.
Settle Your Accommodation
When you get your accommodation before your international move, it is much easier for you and your family. Here’s what you need to consider before moving to Mexico:
- Sell: Do you need to sell your existing home in the US to be able to pay for a new home in Mexico? If so, be sure to put your house on the market so that it will sell in time. If you sell your home too fast, have a back-up plan to stay with family, friends, or in a hotel.
- Buying: If you’re purchasing a house in Mexico, we recommend that you wait at least a month. This will help you to learn more about your new environment and decide where would best suit your family’s needs.
- Renting: This is the most affordable option for many ex-pats. Renting gives you the chance to get temporary housing while you decide on where to put down roots.
Get Your Travel Documents Together
You should request official copies of your essential documents. Make sure that you allow at least several weeks to receive them. The documents that you will need include:
- Birth and marriage certificates
- Proof of citizenship
- Medical, dental, and vaccination records
- Drivers license
- Insurance policies
- Academic records and diplomas
- Employment records
- Proof of employment
- Proof of residence
- A living will
Before You Leave for Mexico
You are all set to legally enter and enjoy your new Mexican hometown. You need to organize how you are going to complete your move. While you are in the USA, you should:
- Make your travel reservations: Last-minute tickets for flights, trains, and ferries are expensive. You need to make your reservations far in advance to get as many savings as you can. Select the departure date and time that is convenient (where you don’t get to Mexico in the middle of the night).
- Arrange the shipping of your household goods: Get quotes from several moving companies. US Border Movers is an international moving company with many years of experience helping valued clients relocate from the USA to Mexico. Your shipment will take a while to arrive in Mexico, so pack separate luggage to take with you as you fly or drive to make your way there.
- Organize your bank accounts, debit, and credit cards: Be sure to review your accounts and let your banks know that you are moving to Mexico. Consult with a financial advisor to figure out how you will handle your assets from outside the US. You may also want to register with a service that facilitates cheaper and easier international bank transfers.
Final To-Do Items
Here’s what you need to keep in mind as you prepare to enter Mexico:
- Arrange pet care: If your pets are accompanying you to Mexico, ensure that your pets get all their shots and have the correct pet carriers. If they will remain in the USA, arrange suitable homes. Also, find out the length of quarantine your pets will undergo once they arrive in Mexico.
- Get your International Driving Permit: Ensure that your driver’s license is not about to expire soon. If you want to drive upon getting into Mexico, you will need your International Driving Permit before you leave the US. Be sure to get some extra copies of this form so that you can renew it each year via mail. This will give you enough time to figure out how to get a Mexican driver’s license. Always carry your International Driving Permit and US driver’s license with you.
- Cancel your subscriptions and forward your mail: Make sure that you cancel all your subscriptions. Also, complete the necessary paperwork at the post office to forward your mail to your new address.
Once You Arrive in Mexico
You’ve made it to Mexico! Yay! Let all the fun begin! But, you need to cover some key bases before you go out and have fun:
Open a New Bank Account (or Two)
Once you have your new address in Mexico, you can go ahead and open your local bank accounts. Some international financial institutions and mobile banks will allow you to open your accounts before you arrive in Mexico.
Sign Up for Health Insurance
You have the choice between a public health insurance scheme, versus private health insurance. Many ex-pats prefer to go for the latter because they offer more and have convenient services.
Learn More About Your New Home
Mexico has a rich culture with many fascinating aspects to explore and experience. Learn about the history, people, food, music, and much more! Make friends with the locals. The more you know about Mexico and Mexicans, the quicker and easier it will be for you to settle into your new country.
Improve Your Spanish
While there are many ex-pat communities in Mexico, you need to be able to converse in Spanish to experience authentic Mexico.
Furthermore, your bills, government paperwork, and other important documents will be in Spanish. Most negotiations and contract signing (like for an apartment) are also done in Spanish. Therefore, you will need to pay for translation services, but this is not a cost-effective option, so it’s better to learn Spanish for yourself.
Understand Your Tax Obligations
Even though you live in Mexico, you will still need to pay US taxes. You may also face taxes in Mexico. However, contact your financial advisor to figure out what you need to do for your unique case.
Explore Local Transportation Options
Don’t just stick to private transport. Discover the joys of Mexico’s colorful public transport options. Learn about the pros and cons of each option.
If you moved to Mexico with your family, then you need to get your children enrolled in school. You can choose between a public school or an international school, although most ex-pats prefer the latter option. You may also hire a nanny depending on your children’s ages and your work schedules.
Get Insurance for Your Assets
You should get comprehensive insurance plans to secure your property and vehicles in Mexico. Be sure to get an insurance provider that specializes in serving the ex-pat community.
Invest in a VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) Phone Number
These phone numbers come in very handy when you need to keep in touch with family and friends in the US. A VoIP lets you use a phone number with an area code of your choice and it helps you maintain valuable connections.
Get Reliable High-Speed Internet
If you rely on the internet a lot for work or entertainment, then you need solid Internet connectivity in Mexico. Research the best Internet providers in Mexico and make your best choice.
Need Help Moving to Your Dream Destination in Mexico?
What do you need to move from the US to Mexico? We’ve shared all that you need to know. Are you ready to move to Mexico? US Border Movers is your best choice for a hassle-free move to your chosen Mexican hometown. Let us help you get settled into your new home so that you can embark on your Latin American adventures. Contact us today!