Living in Mexico
Mexico Everyday life
Currency: Mexican Peso (MXN)
Exchange rate: 25.9 MXN per € (July 2020)
Time zone: UTC 6 Tiempo Central – UTC 7 Tiempo de la Montaña-
Country code: + 52 (0)
Climate (for capital): Cold tropical
International Airports (IATA): MEX (Mexico City), CUN (Cancun), GDL (Guadalajara
Entry and residence regulations
Different visas are required depending on the reason for your stay in Mexico. At the end of 2012, the residence regulations for foreigners in Mexico were reorganized or simplified. There are three main residence permits:
Visitante (tourist visa), for citizens of the Schengen area as well as Great Britain and Ireland a tourist stay of up to 180 days (after applying for an extension) is only possible with the possession of a tourist card, which can be obtained when landing or at the consular offices. The card must be kept and presented again when leaving the country, otherwise a fine is due.
Resident temporal (temporary residence permit), up to 4 years.
Resident permanent (permanent residence permit), more than 4 years.
The Federal Foreign Office has compiled addresses of German representations in Mexico, a country located in North America according to itypetravel.
Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, travel to Mexico that is not absolutely necessary should be avoided.
Housing and supply
Panoramic photo of the Mercado Libertad
One residential area in Mexico is called “Colonia”. It is generally a good idea to find an apartment or house in a good, safe area. In large cities such as Mexico City or Guadalajara, proximity to the workplace is a decisive advantage, as the distances are often unimaginably large and a lot of time and nerves can be saved in rush hour traffic.
Due to crime, there are often security guards at the entrance of an apartment building or at the gate of screened residential areas (so-called “cerrada” or “zona residencial”) who ask the visitor to state his destination and the reason for his visit.
Shopping street in San Cristóbal, Chiapas
When using a broker, all costs incurred must be clarified in advance (e.g. amount of commission, fees, etc.) and what the service is based on. There are sometimes different, not always immediately recognizable customs than in Germany.
Shopping opportunities for groceries and all other everyday items exist in the cities in department stores, shopping centers with parking facilities and a diverse range of retail outlets. In addition, various and numerous markets offer an extremely extensive range of household and fresh goods, such as fruit, vegetables, meat, fish and poultry. Meals prepared by market women themselves are usually excellent, but should only be eaten immediately where there is running water. Meals that are reheated at home can be bought without hesitation. While the shopping malls in the big cities usually have security guards available, care must be taken in the markets not to carry any valuables with you and only as little money as needed. Theft can occasionally occur in a crowd.
Department stores and supermarkets in larger cities are open until late Monday through Sunday. Small family businesses, especially outside the city centers or in the country, occasionally close for lunch.
Money and money transfer
In large cities, credit cards can be used to pay in shops and hotels, as well as to withdraw money from ATMs or at the bank counter. For security reasons, cash should only be withdrawn from the machine if you are accompanied and, if possible, at a busy location. In small towns, in markets and in small bars, cash is indispensable, with card payments becoming more and more widespread. Current exchange rates can be calculated through various exchange rate online sites, e.g. at oanda.
Sending money is possible through Western Union Money Transfer through numerous sales locations or online. However, depending on the amount, the fees can be 15%. The higher the amount, the lower the fee.
Information on the denomination and appearance of Mexican banknotes can be found on the Banco de Mexico website.
Mexican banknotes and coins
Procession in honor of the Virgen de Guadalupe in San
88% of Mexicans profess the Roman Catholic faith. Expression of the syncretistic belief is, among other things, the passionate veneration of the Virgen de Guadalupe, as well as the festivities and customs on the day of the dead. 7.5% of Mexicans are Protestants, Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses or belong to evangelical denominations, the influence of which is increasing particularly in peri-urban and rural areas. Information on the religious groups can be found in the Mexico Info.
Church of San Cristóbal in Tlacotalpan, Veracruz