Everything You Need to Do to Move and Live in Mexico

Guides to Moving to Mexico

People decide to live in Mexico for many reasons. For some, it's the warm weather and good climate. Mexico's different regions have their own climate conditions, but in general, the weather is inviting most of the year.

Despite the reports of drug wars and drug-related crime, people continue to choose Mexico as a place to live, retire, own a vacation home, or as a holiday destination. Many are beginning to realize the advantages of living in a place where the median household income is...MORE about one tenth of that in the US. You really can live well for very much less.

While you also shouldn't ignore security concerns, it is useful to put these media reports in perspective. Do the dangers posed by drug lords in mostly border towns condemn the whole country as a "must-avoid" destination?

The best bet is to do your own research, try things out for size and see for yourself if Mexico is your country of choice. And here's the best place to start. 

  • 01 of 10
    Girl holding US money in a fan
    James Gill / Getty Images.

    This is still one of the biggest reasons people decide to move to Mexico from the U.S.  It is definitely cheaper down south.  But how much cheaper?  Can you afford to live down there on a tenth of the income?  Well, there are many that do just that.  Come check out the cost of living in Mexico as compared with that in the U.S.

  • 02 of 10
    Person holding an open US passport
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    Here is all you need to know about the visa requirements for Mexico, whether it is for a short visit, or whether you are moving there for an extended period.

  • 03 of 10
    Woman waearing a black jacket scratching her head with a puzzled look on her face
    Getty Images.

    How does one move belongings to Mexico?  Here is all the information you need to walk you through the process.  There will be paperwork and other hoops to jump through, but don't worry.  We will walk you through the steps.  You will find it less painful than you expected.

  • 04 of 10

    Visa for Mexico - the FMM

    African American couple looking at paper with an open laptop
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    What is the FMM?  This is the tourist card you receive on the plane, or on crossing the border into Mexico.  Here we explain what you should AND should not do with this piece of documentation.

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10
    Couple holding hands walking past yellow wall in Mexico
    Gary John Norman / Getty Images.

    The FM3 (or No Inmigrante) Long-Term, Non-Immigrant Visa is what tourists apply for in order to stay in Mexico for anything longer than the six months' maximum they get at the border.  Find out here what the criteria are for obtaining a Non-Immigrant Visa.

  • 06 of 10
    Close up of couple with luggage and passports
    Tetra Images / Getty Images.

    If you want to stay in Mexico for anything longer than six months (without having to exit and re-enter the country), you will need to apply for an FM3 (No Inmigrante) visa.  Find out here how to do this.

  • 07 of 10

    Visa for Mexico - The FM2 Inmigrante

    Hispanic couple walking on cobblestone stree
    Jeremey Woodhouse / Getty Images.

    The FM2 visa, which has lately been renamed the Inmigrante Visa, is what you'll need if you want to be a permanent resident in Mexico or if you are plannind eventually to obtain Mexican Citizenship.

  • 08 of 10

    All you need to know about Driving to Mexico

    Couple in jeep driving outdoors
    Trinette Reed / Getty Images.

    Are you planning on moving to Mexico? If you're intending to drive across theborder into Merxico, you'll want to read these suggestions. Here is the guide that will tell you what youl need to drive across the border into Mexico. Just follow these steps.

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    How safe is it to live in Mexico?

    Panoramic of the Mayan ruins of Tulum, Mexico
    Matteo Colombo / Getty Images.

    Just about everyone has heard the stories about how unsafe Mexico is to visit.  But my sister and her husband have been living in Mexico for over a year now, and are happy and safe.  Of course they have had people asking them the usual questions. Are you crazy?! Is it safe? What about the crime? Haven't you heard about the shootings and killings?  Find out for yourself if the media reports are fact or exaggeration.

  • 10 of 10

    How to Move Pets to Mexico

    Terrior dog in a moving box
    B2M Productions/Getty Images.

    In this story we follow a couple who drive from Saskatchewan to Southern Mexico, with everything they own including two large dogs and an old, old cat, while dodging a hurricane along the way.