Many Mexicans, especially those that work in the tourism industry, speak English. You do not need to know how to speak Spanish to get by.
If you’re planning on staying for an extended bit, its wise to learn a little bit of conversational Spanish – you will find that Mexicans will welcome and help you speak the language. If you do speak, even only a little Spanish, give it a try while you’re here – don’t be shy – and you’ll enjoy the experience even more so!
In 2010, the entire Bay of Banderas adopted Central Time. Just to the north in the state of Nayarit, the time changes to Mountain Time (one hour behind PV).
The time zone was complicated throughout the bay – there were so many issues with the airport being in a different time zone, they changed the zone so that the entire state of Jalisco was in Central Time.
You are not allowed to work on a Tourist Visa. As a Temporary Resident, you can apply for a work visa, they will determine whether you will receive permission – only then can you apply for work. Be patient, this can take 30+ days. As a Permanent Resident, you can work here – you must report to the Consular office to report your employment information. You’ll need a document from your employer.
They say that you cannot have a job that would take away from a Mexican but I haven’t found this to be entirely true. Keep in mind that the average daily wage in Mexico is less than $8 US dollars PER DAY. So be sure to do your research on the pay rate before you get to far into the process.
Check in with an immigration attorney if you are considering working here and earning pesos.
Some airlines enforce a 6 month valid rule, so it’s best to check in with them before your flight. They may not let you board your flight. You might be okay, but why risk it? Take a look at your passport – if you have less than 6 months until the expiration date, get it renewed now.
You’ll need to complete the paperwork through the particular airline you select. Emotional Support Animals are very different from Service Dogs. You will need your doctor to complete a form with a diagnosis as well as proper vaccinations for your pet. Some airlines are requiring a psychologist or psychiatrist sign the letter, not your General Practioner. Your pet needs to be well behaved and trained. There is generally no cost to bring your pet in the cabin but it must fit within the footprint of your seat.
If you have your original prescription bottle with your doctor’s name, that should be sufficient. There are a few prescription drugs that you can’t bring into Mexico and a few non-prescription drugs (like Sudafed) that are off limits. Best to Google this before your trip as this list is always changing. Plan to bring enough for your trip or at lease 6 weeks, you can usually source the prescription here in a local pharmacy (some will require prescriptions, but keep trying other pharmacies, one is likely to sell it). I recommend to start looking for meds you may need as soon as you arrive, don’t wait until you need them.
You’ll need a notarized letter from the lien holder giving you permission to take the vehicle into Mexico (it’s so much easier if you own the vehicle outright). You should plan to stay on the toll roads – have your pesos ready – these are the safest roads to drive. Don’t opt to make this a sight seeing trip – unless you’ve done it several times before – you are moving all your personal belongings and that is stressful enough. You need to itemize a list of your belongings – in case they ask you for it at the border. You’ll need to know the address of where you are planning to unload. Your vehicle will need an import permit plus you’ll pay an immigration fee. Carrying a gun across the border can get you a $25,000 fine and up to 25 years in jail. Don’t drive at night. Not all hotels allow pets. Nice to have a locking pin for your license plate, just in case. Have a map in case you don’t have WiFi service. You may be denied entry if you’ve had a DUI in the last 10 years.
In other words, be smart about it. Do your research. Go with your gut on choosing the safest place to stay. Have a backup plan.
Most people will tell you that if you want something from the US or CAN, you should bring it yourself, or have a friend that is visiting here bring it with them. But sometimes, you just need something shipped to you while you’re here.
Services are improving but there are no guarantees – you can have your items delivered to your house but you’ll need to be present. Or you can pick up at various locations (it depends on who you choose as a shipper) – this is likely the more reliable route.
Regardless of where you are from, you’re going to find the cost of living or visiting Mexico to be less than you are accustomed to. In general, it can be about 1/3 to 2/3 of the price you would pay ‘back home’. The closer to the beach you are, the higher the prices.
Read more about this here: Life in PV, Part 1
Most small dogs are allowed to travel in the cabin with you for a fee. Larger dogs can travel in the cargo area during certain times of the year. The airline will have rules and processes about traveling with a pet – you’ll want to check with the airline as they can vary.
You’ll also need to visit the vet for proper vaccinations before you travel. You should plan a few months in advance for travel if you plan to bring your dog.