Moving to Baja Norte

Hi everyone,

My husband and I are planning on moving to the Baja Norte region in October /November 2015. Like others we have come to a crossroad in our lives...he is retired and although I am still working I am not sure how much longer I will be able to continue (I have hip and back problems). The cost of paying all the high medical bills has taken its toll on our bank account and now we must make some decisions. We have been considering moving to either Baja or Ecuador and it would seem the best bet would be Baja Norte. We currently live full time in our 5th wheel (we have a camping membership) so we have already downsized our personal items. When the time comes we are planning on selling our 5th and truck, probably for what we owe, and renting. Does anyone have any connections to someone who can help us find a rental unit when the time comes. We live quite simply but do however need internet connection, my husband is writing a book and needs the access.

Right now we are looking at about 8 months or so to get ourselves in order. Any help with this process would be greatly appreciated. I am not sure how to give my personal email, privately to someone on this site, but I would love to correspond with any and all who can help.

Thanks everyone and I look forward to getting to know you and being a part of this forum. 😊

Please check my previous posts.  Email me direct if you like.  I moved to Baja at age 75, not speaking Spanish and knowing NO one.

If I can do it, you can do it.

Thank you so much for all of your valuable information!

Hi,  how are you?  How are your plans for moving to Baja.  I notice you are from Bow.  We lived in Skagit Co. for several years in fact built a house in Alger not far from Bow.  We have been living in Chapala area for almost two years.  Now we are moving to Baja Norte. (Ensenada). about the same time.  We are due to arrive Oct. 5th.  My private email is ****. Shoot me a line.    Mike

Moderated by Christine last year
Reason : Please do not post email address on the forum for security reason

If you are not a heavy-spender as most expats living here in Baja are you should be able to live comfortably.  Ive met many American expats living here in RVs in the various RV parks so that could save you $$ on rent.  Do a Google search for Baja RV parks where you will find info (and sometimes reviews).  If you plan to live in an RV I would get as far away from the border as possible.   I assume you do know that the entire state of Baja is in draught (as in California) so you need to be aware of that along with the water situation here.  Many places in Baja esp. if they are on the coast use either salt water in the taps or have water trucked in (at additional cost) so one should be aware of these conditions.

Just came across your post from earlier in the year. It sounds like adventure ahead!! This is the time of year you had hoped to be in the Baja. Have you made it? Would love an update as we are planning to do a similar thing in the coming 2 years 🏄🏊☕️

Hi,   Well we are full steam ahead.   We have spent about a month and a half moving from Lake Chapala, Mexico where we spent the last two years.   We liked it but there is really not much to do there except eat.   For that and the need to be closer to the US for Dr's appts. we are moving to Baja Norte.  We traveled to Oregon, WA  and MT. to visit relatives and friends,  what a great time.   Now after traveling the coast of CA (beautiful) we are overnighting in San Luis Obisbo.  We have a few things to do in SD and plan to be in Mexico by the 23rd of Nov.   We will look around a little more and try to locate a rental.   Perhaps we will put a deposit on a place for mid December as we will visit friends in Todos Santos for a week or so.   We are looking forward to settling in.

It is always helpful to have the assistance of a local."concierge"....especially when dealing with landlords, deposits etc.  If you can get thing s in pesos, you will do better.  The current rate is 16 pesos for a dollar. Every "gringo" is "rich" in the eyes of locals, I have used the same person since  May of 2006, speaks English and is incredibly honest and helpful.  Since I don't drive, I pay him $100 a month to drive me where ever. But I know how much the fare would be for wherever he drives me and    I keep track.  If I am under the $100 so be it but if I am over, I pay him accordingly.

For other help I pay him $10 an hour plus metered cab fare for help like with tradespeople etc. When you need to call a plumber, on your own,  or something like that, you are at the mercy of whomever you might call.  He found a dry cleaner that did super great alterations, a computer store that was REALLY good (I had tried several on my own) et al.  When I needed to to go the ER during the night, he came and took me......waited to see what happened etc.  At those times I "tipped:" him more than I usually paid him.  Found a super  dentist in Zone Rio (best dentist I have had) and the list could go on and on and on.

To give you an idea of the kind of person.  He has regular customers he takes to the border  every morning ( who cross to work) and he stops by (with out pay) every  to make sure I am okay.  I am now 84.

I have recommended him to others relocating and the reports have all been great.

When he isn't  helping others like he helps me, he drives his own cab and has done so for years there. His wife has a beauty "parlor" (salon is not appropriate for most  hairdressing establishments...suggests more posh than these establishments usually are). He has three sons, one at university, two younger.

He has lived in the states, speaks English is a good driver  and WHOPPEE he has seat belts that are usable, not buried under the seats of the cab.

He helped me when I wanted to move from an apartment to a house, and found a great rental, negotiated a great price and found some one to move my household goods, again at a good price.  I choose to live in local neighborhoods.  Lots of Americans in Playas.  I don't speak Spanish. I don't have a linguistic gene.....only about 100 words after  10 years.  It has not been a problem for me.

Juan Garcia Ibarra, 011 52 228 1111,

I Have had to come to the states for family matters and I can't wait to
"go home to Playas" and Juan is  one of the reasons.  I wish you well
on your move.  I love living in Playas  and suggest you consider secciones Jardine(sp? (close to the border and the village or still within walking distance but a bit farther from the village...Secciones Dorado. (sp.

OOPS  about forgot!   You can get better currency conversion south of the border.  I would only covert  About $50-100 in San Ysidro.  You have to pay for your 6 month tourist visa when you enter. ( I have never gotten anything but a 6 month tourist visa and my current one is still good for my return!) The best conversion place(s) in San Ysidro are about a block or two south of the Chase Bank on San Ysidro Blvd at the end of I 5.  I find the one on the east side of the street (there area several on the west side) usually has the best conversion rate.

Juan knows the best places for the best conversion rate in Playas.  I have always had him change my money (see previous post re his help).  I didn't connect with him until I had been in Playas 5 months.  If I had had his help when I first moved there I could have saved $2 or 3K that being a gringo and not knowing "the ropes" so to speak, cost me.

Sounds like the adventure is going very well indeed. Good for you!! What communities/ towns comprise Baja Norte? It is not somewhere we have been. I gather it must be very close to the California border?
Would love to hear more about how it all goes. That was an EXCELLENT suggestion Anne ( such a good name lol)about having a local help you. Makes so much sense and is a win win for everyone! Juan sounds like quite a treasure Happy travels and we look forward to your next update
Anne and Ross

I can't believe it.  I just  spent 30 minutes writing  on life in Playas plus factors, mail, health care, shopping et al and lost it.   You can phone me 928 565 1159\
or email me.  There is a private email system part of this forum.  I don't know how to use it but maybe you can figure it out. I don't have time to do that all again this morning.


Thank you so much for taking that time to share info on your part of paradise. Sad that the email went somewhere!! I always liken email to socks in the washer
Many times 2 in 1 out. I believe the lost emails and socks must be together!  My direct email is xxx if you put together another info packet or find the 1st one. What are the closest towns to you that I could look up on a map
Happy Day

Moderated by Bhavna 10 months ago
Reason : Please exchange contact details via private messaging.
We invite you to read the forum code of conduct

Your post is very encouraging.  I would need the kind of help you describe if I were there.
I am glad to hear that you have been able to arrange it.

I just joined the My wife and I are going to make our first trip to the Ensenada, Baja area in I am guessing March 2016. We have been reading about the area. We considered Ajijic, Jalisco area and visited there for three weeks but came away feeling like something was missing. It seems like the Ensenada area has a lot of things to do.
Looking on the real estate web sites for a rental just to get an idea about the market and what is available and at what price. We are in Atlanta and thought about driving so we can have a car to scout out the area while there but it is 2200 miles just one way from Atlanta to Ensenada.Thinking about flying to San Diego and renting a car and driving in.Do you know if the rental car companies will allow you to drive into Mexico?

Hi, Anne;
I just read your blogs re: Playas and wanted you to know that I AGREE with you 100%1
I too have lived in Playas almost 3 years now and find it to be a "Slice of Heaven."
My name is Mike (TJMike7) and i'm 64 but Wished i'd moved here sooner. My apartment on the 3rd floor overlooks the ocean and i'm on Paseo Ensenada just South of the Calimax.

….And you're Right, Gringo's Worry Waaay too Much!
Good Luck to you and Hope you have a Wonderful future in Playas. :)

HEY Mike.  I just replied to your post....had a couple of typos and when I tried to correct them I lost the reply.  DUH!  computer challenged.  I would like to chat with you about your building.  Are we allowed to put on email addresses on the forum??   xxx THanks.

Moderated by Bhavna 10 months ago
Reason : Please exchange contact details via private messaging.
We invite you to read the forum code of conduct

Hi, Anne;
Ay chi wawa (Spanish for OMG). I'd rather not show an e-mail address only because I have no idea how many other people may see it and cause problems. Maybe we could meet for coffee or at the swap meet on Mondays. But, I will try responding to yours and let's see what happens. Thanks for the reply, Mike

Hi Anne
I put mine on a post to you last week [havent heard back yet lol]  I just substitued the word at for the sign and it went through fine  Hope to hear back
Take care
Anne and Ross

Hello everyone

Sorry in advance for the off-topic.

Concerning your email addresses, contact numbers and so on, as you are on a public forum, everyone can see those infos.

We remove these contact details from your posts so that nobody can misuse these details, spam you or hack you.

So we will be removing all contact details from this thread and we suggest you exchange your details via the private messaging system. Click on the member's profile/name, you will see a green tab with " Send a message" written on it on the upper right handside of the page.

You will get some useful infos here : Useful tips to avoid being scammed

Best of luck,

15k members and 30k iam better plsce to live

We are a couple in our mid 50's very active.  Love Valle de Guadeloupe and the beach.  Have vacationed in Baja Norte.  Should we have security concerns living in the region?  Is there enough of a community to feel welcomed?

I d ont know about that area specifically but the Playas, Rosarito, Ensenada  area has over 2000 expats.
if you would like to chat  xxx

Moderated by Bhavna 2 weeks ago
Reason : Please exchange contact details via private messaging.
We invite you to read the forum code of conduct
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