Updated 7 months ago

Are you planning to move to Mexico? The most important first step is to spend some time in the country prior to making the move. Visit different regions and meet people, both Mexicans and expats. Ask how much it costs to rent houses and apartments, what the local schools are like, and if the area has any serious safety issues.

Stay in a hotel or hostel with a kitchen, and go to the public market or grocery store to buy a week’s worth of groceries. Go out to dinner a few times. How much did you spend? Is it more or less than what you expected?

Once you’ve found a place where you can imagine yourself living, think about how you will support yourself. Do you have sufficient savings, or will you need to get a job? This consideration is also important for determining your legal status in the country. Most tourists can stay for six months, but if you’d like to stay longer, you’ll need to look into visas for Mexico. For temporary residence with permission to work, you’ll need a job offer, and for temporary residence without permission to work, you’ll need to prove that you have enough savings to provide for yourself.

Finally, before you bring your possessions, you’ll need to secure a place to stay. Read more about finding accommodation in Mexico.

Before you move

While exploring Mexico before your move, look at the prices of furniture, kitchen appliances, and electronics. The cheapest furniture is made by local carpenters, many of whom walk around city streets pushing bedroom sets and bookshelves, looking for customers.

Another option is large department stores in malls, which sell a wide variety of furniture, appliances, and kitchen supplies. Two of the biggest are Liverpool and El Palacio de Hierro. Take a look at their websites to get an idea of prices.

Although furniture and appliances may be cheaper in Mexico than in most western countries, this is usually not the case for electronics. Laptops, smartphones, and flat-screen TVs are expensive in Mexico, and in fact, many Mexicans prefer to travel to the United States to buy these items.

Moving companies

Once you’re ready to move to Mexico and you know what to bring, you’ll need to choose a carrier to help you move your things. A moving consultant will eventually visit your home to assess the volume of belongings that you intend to transport. You’ll have to specify which objects require special care, like special packaging. You also must specify what you will do yourself, such as disassembly of furniture and packing dishes. You can find international movers on the internet.

Most companies will send your belongings directly to your new home. Some carriers, however, do not deliver to individual homes but to a storage unit, which means that you’ll need to find a Mexican mover to bring your belongings to the final destination.

Make a comprehensive list of your belongings in order to establish a value statement. The carrier will usually offer you insurance that covers damages at the value you indicated on the statement. The cost of insurance will vary according to the overall value of your belongings and where they are being shipped.

Customs in Mexico

It is important to inquire beforehand with the Mexican Customs Department about the particularities of importing your goods into Mexico, including which items are prohibited and what is the current monetary value of your items that cannot be exceeded.

 Useful links:

El Palacio de Hierro
Federation of European Movers – FEDEMAC
The International Federation of International Movers – FIDI
Mexico Customs Department

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