Work In Mexico
Many of you have asked about working in Mexico
I have stated before that the Mexican Government feels no responsibility to see that foreigners who move to their country are “taken care” of.
So saying…although Mexico is a terrific place to live, it’s not really a great place to plan to work in. About the only good-paying job in Maz and Mexico, for gringos is in the timeshare sales area. If you are a good salesman, then you can probably make decent money selling timeshares. Other than that, the employment outlook is pretty bleak for gringos…as well as for Mexican nationals.
Remember, the average daily wage is about $5. If you’re thinking of starting a business of your own…well, we know of one real go-getter who just knew he could work the system and make money – he finally gave up a year later in pursuing his quest. He finally headed back to the states.
Of course, it can be done, there are some enterprising individuals in Mexico who have succeeded…but…well, good luck to you. Personally, I wouldn’t want to have to rely on that idea to make enough money to retire on.
In Mexico, gas stations are government owned – Premex is basically the onlyname you will run into. The green pump is for unleaded. They are all full-service stations – don’t jump out and start pumping yourself. The attendants will do that. Your windows will shine. An extra peso or two is nice to hand them for the service – a peso is equivalent to only about 10 cents US. Again, the average daily wage in Mexico is approximately 30$ Pesos – $3 USD to 40$ Pesos – $5.00US a day.
I feel this article is important. I have been receiving so many emails from people hoping to work in Mexico. And while yes, there are jobs available for gringos, and it’s really not in my nature to be negative, but, well, here goes – I’ve gotten this info from friends, from acquaintances, and from researching:
A tennis pro I just spoke with, at a quite posh resort in Mexico, is paid $10/day, plus lunch (3 tostados). Of course, I’m sure he receives tips. He is building his home, and hopes to have it done in about 10 years.
By one estimate, even after doubling between 2002 and 2005, the average manufacturing wage was $2.46 an hour in Mexico.
Social Security – one Mexican gentleman we met receives $300/month – he works part time also, and is certainly not rich, but is fairly well off by Mexican standards. He is fortunate – he owns his own home, but says he will probably work all his life – “don’t want to stay at home with my wife 24 hours a day”.
I’ve also received a couple of email from people who have sons or daughters who have taken the plunge and signed up with schools in Mexico thinking it would be a wonderful experience, only to return after a short stint, very disappointed.
I claim that Mexico is a great place to retire – not to work. My opinion has not changed in 8 years.
Of course, some people go south of the border to teach and do have success – but make sure you check everything out very carefully before committing the time and energy it takes to go south of the border – into a third-world country – with the expectation of making money…in any job.
The following quotes come from friends, acquaintances, and readers. I thought you might find this information helpful….
“From what I read and hear from teachers of English in other parts of the world, teaching English in Mexico ranks at the bottom of the scale of TEFL jobs – relatively few foreigners end-up enjoying their time in Mexico and most complain about the low pay and lack of hours to work.”
“At my first university teaching job, I earned almost 15,000 pesos a month ($1,300) with benefits and perks like an office and a computer. At my next job, also at a university, I earned slightly more that 4,000 pesos a month ($350) for teaching more hours to bigger classes.”
“We’ve met many people with the hope and dream of getting a job teaching English and making a bundle. The word “shock” is putting it mildly when they find out what their salaries will be in some of these private schools. A good pay scale would be less than $3.00 an hour. I know of some schools that pay even less than that amount.”
“Mexico City, Guadalajara and Monterrey are the cities where you’ll find employers paying the best wage to Americans teaching English.”
So, do check very carefully if you or your children want to pursue this type of work. One more time – The Mexican minimum wage is about $3.00 per day, and over half the nation lives on less than this amount. The average daily wage is approximately $4.80 a day – it has increased and will probably continue to go up.
I think you all by now know that eldest son taught English in Europe a few years ago and enjoyed the experience …even met his beautiful wife there! I have received more than a few emails questioning the advisability of teaching English in Mexico – and other subjects. I would never tell anyone simply not to do something, but I very seriously suggest you do a WHOLE LOT of research before jumping into that.
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Barbie Parks is the publisher and editor of MoneySavingMexico.com. She is the author of Retire In Luxury: How To Retire Abroad And Live Better on Less and her latest book, Money Saving Mexico: How To Save Money On Everything South of the Border.