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No Spanish language, just English.Can I live in Mexico ?

I notice lots of people fantasize about coming to live here in Mexico. Why Not go to some other Spanish speaking country? I have met tons of English teachers here in Mexico, Guatemala and Colombia. They all are underpaid and complaining about it. In San Miguel we volunteer for free to teach English at the library.  Don't people realize that in your retirement years you will find yourself "underfunded" ? Doesn't anybody think about that anymore?

Ronniestm :

I notice lots of people fantasize about coming to live here in Mexico. Why Not go to some other Spanish speaking country? I have met tons of English teachers here in Mexico, Guatemala and Colombia. They all are underpaid and complaining about it. In San Miguel we volunteer for free to teach English at the library.  Don't people realize that in your retirement years you will find yourself "underfunded" ? Doesn't anybody think about that anymore?

The other Latin American countries are all attractive and might be good choices depending on your interests.

For me, the closeness to the US is an advantage.
I like the people and the culture which is rich and varied.
Prices are such that I get the most mileage out of my retirement income and have money left over for travel.

You could certainly live in Mx with no spanish but what standard of living would that be,unable to converse in daily matters.Seems your best bet would be to go to San Miguel de allende,but for the cost of living there you could easily afford a nice retirement in some parts of the usa,if you have an itch for all things Mexican I suggest for example you spend some time in a Mexican area in your hometown,if that does not suffice come on down,Prepare yourself with some Spanish classes,I know for a fact that almost all the protestant churches offer basic English classes free of charge but also its a fantastic environment for learning spanish.

VadimDiver :

Hi,
I don't know Spanish not at all,but know English and Russian languages. I am thinking about moving to Mexico (any area,closer to sea/ocean). Are there areas,where local Mexicans speak in English ? Is it possible to live in Mexico without Spanish language ? I am food service/hospitality manager.Mucho gracias.

You might find somewhere between playas de tijuana and Rosarito Baja California to your liking. Lots of expats and a growing Russian community.It looks to have your basic requirements met. Low rent,Beach area, Also you are close to San Diego where every language is spoken. Also there is a Canadien Consulate close.

When I grow up I want to be just like you! I am 46 and even though I’m married with children I vacation sometimes by myself in Bucerias Mexico. I am taking my small dog for 3 weeks this year. I think you are very courageous! I can’t seem to learn Spanish either! I have been trying for years but my Spanish is embarrassing almost nonexistent.

I was surprised that so FEW speak English when I went there.  I do not have a linguistic gene and I am hopeless at languages.  I have traveled extensively in foreign countries and relied on phrase books ....sometimes with amusing results.  No huge problems.  In countries  like Japan where a phrase book i useless I still managed to get by....but then many more people in Japan speak English than in Mexico.

Signing up for utilities can be a bit of a challenge as there may not be an English speaking person in the office of that utility.   That was true when I signed up for phone and electricity and cable. 
However you can do it.  Read the reply I  entered on the blog yesterday for Randy T.

  On my first trip to the market I wanted to buy bread and I couldn't find it, in this large supermarket.  I knew the word was
pan according to the phrase book.   I asked several store personnel for 'pan' and they gave me a blank look.  Finally a non employee heard me and told me the word is pronounced  pon   as in pong for ping pong.

You can manage just be prepared for some interesting experiences.   after  6 years I could wrap my tongue around  about 1OO
words,    I  tried to learn languages when in school and I literally failed  all attempts I tried Spanish then.  I couldn't get french,german or even Gaelic  ( my grand parents came from Ireland durng the great famine) so I knew I would have some challenges but I moved to Mexico anyway.

It will be a great adventure...... Good luck.  Anne

Well Ann, actually " Finally a non employee heard me and told me the word is pronounced  pon   as in pong for ping pong." That is not correct, it is not like pong.

What I would suggest is you look at and practice the spanish alphabet. Even if you sort of know the word , if you pronounce it with an English pronunciation you may not be understood.
it is pan, not pronounced as pong, but with the spanish alphabet not English alphabet creating a more ponn sound. With English you would have a strong emphasis on the a creating a more Annn sound.

Spanish is much more complex than people are lead to believe, it takes a lot of work , but it is worth it and I have found it essential.   In the area you live  there are a huge number of people who speak English.   Yet, Some times I think they would rather not bother, and seek out someone who does speak Spanish or direct you to someone who speaks English also.

The thing is if you are not going to learn Spanish, it would be a good idea to learn words and how to say them correctly in case you have pain, need help or are lost ., any critical words. The little tourist books are not really sufficient.

There is an app for Android in the Playstore, "Google Translate."  Not only does it produce translations in text, it pronounces the translation for you.  It's free.  The application is also available for the PC - translate.google.com.  I don't doubt it is available for Apple and Microsoft smartphones.  Even though my Spanish is excellent, it comes in handy for situations that are new to me.


This reminds me of an experience in Okinawa (Japan) before smartphone.  I don't speak any Japanese but on the plane over, the Japanese gentleman who was sitting next to me taught me how to say I don't speak Japanese.  the first time it came in handy was while I was out driving and had a sudden need to use the restroom.  I stopped at the first convenience store and hurried inside.  Ran up to the counter, said "I don't speak Japanese," squnched up my face and bobbed up and down.  It took a second but a kid came out from behind and escorted me to the restroom with a smile.  Another day I got in the wrong lane to pay the toll for the expressway.  I couldn't figure out where the slot to put the coins in.  Shortly a a voice came over a speaker that sounded impatient.  I did my, "I don't speak Japanese" number and he appeared shortly and opened the barrier for me.  I tried to pay him but he waved me on.

Anne, Pan, bread, is pronounced more like the "o" in pond.  You might wan to prepare for new situations using an online translator at home like Google or Bing.  If you have a smartphone with a data account, there's "Google Translate" for Android and almost certainly for the other brands.  Even if not, you can use the browser on the phone to go to translate.google.com or bing.com/translate.

gudgrief :

Anne, Pan, bread, is pronounced more like the "o" in pond.  You might wan to prepare for new situations using an online translator at home like Google or Bing.  If you have a smartphone with a data account, there's "Google Translate" for Android and almost certainly for the other brands.  Even if not, you can use the browser on the phone to go to translate.google.com or bing.com/translate.

Definitely Gudgrief,

there are a number of very helpful apps for smart phones . I have google translate on my phone to help with pronunciation or words in a pinch.
Recently I had problems with the spanish for makeup remover, I knew the word but clearly I had gotten lost in translation. Google stepped in. Duolingo and duolingo tiny cards are good for practice. They are all free.

Thank you for your ideas.  I  have been managing nicely since December of 2006,  I don't have a smart phone.  I am sure the young lady from Canada will get along nicely too.

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