The Working Holiday Visa for Mexico

Updated 2022-10-09 13:37

Mexico is a destination that has something special for everyone — with its fabulous beaches, ancient ruins, enticing and colorful culture, vibrant cities with colonial architecture, and truly extraordinary and varied cuisine, Mexico is a tropical treasure that will appeal to participants of the working holiday program! In this article, we will give you all the information you need to apply for your Working Holiday Visa with the Mexican government and also make your stay in the country as smooth as possible. 

Mexico is one of the world's wealthiest countries in terms of history and culture. As one of Latin America's most touristy countries, Mexico offers many opportunities to explore its ancient historical sites or to relax on one of its many unique beaches along the Pacific Ocean or Gulf Coast. You will love the energy and beauty of Mexico, and with the Working Holiday Visa program offered by this country, you can take your time to discover or rediscover all that Mexico has to offer.

Conditions to be met for obtaining a Working Holiday Visa for Mexico

To be eligible for the Working Holiday Visa in Mexico, here are the requirements you will need to meet:

1. Your nationality

Mexico has successfully concluded working holiday visa agreements with the following 8 participating countries:

  • Germany
  • Canada
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • South Korea
  • France
  • New Zealand
  • Peru

Note that the agreements with Chile, Colombia and Peru are part of the Pacific Alliance - an agreement that gives residents of these four neighboring countries easier access to a visa that will allow them to travel and work in each of the other three countries for one year.

Good to know:

Unfortunately, being a resident of one of these eight countries is not enough for you to be eligible for the WHV — you also need to reside there at the time of your application.

2. Your age

You will need to be at least 18 and no more than 30 years old at the time of your application. This means that you can still apply until the day before your 31st birthday. But it is not recommended to wait until the last minute to apply!

3. Having a valid passport

As with all international travel, a valid passport is a non-negotiable requirement. You will need a passport that is valid when you apply for your WHV with the Mexican government and will also be valid for a minimum of 12 months after your arrival in Mexico, that is, for the duration of your stay in Mexico until you return home.

Your passport must also have a minimum of two blank pages! Space is needed for your new visa to be placed in it. The customs authorities will also need to stamp it when you enter and leave the country.

Good to know:

It is recommended that all participants who have received their visas be extremely careful with their passports. In case of loss, reissuing your visa could be complicated.

4. Having sufficient savings / minimum budget

You will need to have some money set aside to cover all your needs (food, accommodation, transport, etc.), at least for the beginning of your stay in Mexico. You will need to have a minimum of 2,500 euros, or approximately 52,398 Mexican pesos, in your bank account, and you will need proof from your bank that you have this amount.

You will also need proof that you have purchased a return air ticket. Of course, if you do not yet have a return date or cannot yet book a ticket to return after twelve months, you will need to show at least a single ticket and sufficient funds to purchase a return ticket to your country.

5. Having a medical insurance policy

A health insurance policy that will cover you for the entire duration of your trip is mandatory. You will need to provide proof of this when you apply for your WHV visa with the Mexican government. Please note that this proof must be an original document — it must be signed and stamped by the insurance company you choose.

6. First-time participation

As for most WHV agreements around the world, one of the requirements is that you have not participated in this program before. This means that if you have been on a WHV in Mexico before, you will not be able to return a second time.

However, if you have been on a WHV anywhere else in the world, such as Argentina, Japan, Spain, Hungary, or Brazil, this will not be a problem.

7. The quota per country

When two countries enter a working holiday agreement, a quota is usually agreed upon. This quota represents the number of visas granted to participants from one country per year, and it allows the country receiving the participants to have control over the number of entries into its territory each year. In the case of Mexico and the 8 countries with which it has signed WHV agreements, the quota per country is currently 300 places per year.

Good to know:

For better chances of being granted a WHV to Mexico, it is recommended that you apply at the beginning of the year, as the annual quota is updated on January 1st every year!

8. Travelling as a couple or in a group with a WHV

It is worth noting that when you apply for a WHV for Mexico, you cannot take your dependents with you. If you wish to go on a WHV to Mexico with your partner or friends, each of you will need to make a separate application that will be processed independently. Each individual must, of course, be eligible under the conditions mentioned in this article.

9. Having a clean criminal record

To be allowed to go on a WHV in Mexico, you will need to provide a clean criminal record to prove that you have never committed a crime. You can obtain this document through your country's Ministry of Justice.

10. Duration and fees for the visa

When you get your visa, the clock starts ticking — you will have 180 days (6 months) to travel to Mexico. Please note that, unlike other WHV agreements where the visa starts on the date you arrive in the country, the Mexico WHV visa starts when it is delivered to you.

There is a fee for applying for the visa, but this varies from country to country. In the case of France, for example, you will need to pay 35 euros to the embassy.

How to apply for a Working Holiday Visa for Mexico?

Here are the documents you need to present when applying for the WHV in Mexico:

  • A valid passport - It is important that you scan pages 2 and 3 of your passport (the part containing your personal information) and two blank pages (to show that you have room to put the visa and new stamps). If you have been to Mexico before, you will also need to provide a scan of your Mexico entry and exit stamps!
  • An unretouched passport size (3.5 x 4.5 cm) color photo (on a white background, no glasses, no clothing that would prevent complete identification of the person, taken not more than 30 days before the application.
  • A recent proof of address - a utility bill showing your current address should do the trick.
  • Cover letter - this should be in Spanish and detail the purpose of your trip to Mexico. Explain what attracts you to the country and why you have chosen it.
  • Proof of sufficient funds - a bank statement for the last three months or a credit card statement showing the credit limit should do the trick. This document has to show that you have sufficient funds to cover round-trip airfare and expenses during you stay in Mexico (see above under 'Having savings').
  • Airline tickets
  • Medical insurance policy quote, including comprehensive coverage, valid for at least one year from the entry date.
  • A clean criminal record
  • A medical certificate explaining that you are in good health.

Useful addresses:

Embassy of Mexico in Paris - France

9 Rue de Longchamp,

75116 Paris,


Embassy of Mexico in Bogota - Colombia

Calle 113 No. 7-21.

Torre A Oficina 204.

Edificio Teleport Business Park



Embassy of Mexico in Seoul - South Korea

Tower B,

6 Yulgok-ro,



South Korea.

Embassy of Mexico in Berlin - Germany

Klingelhöferstrasse 3,

10785 Berlin,


Embassy of Mexico in Ottawa - Canada

45 O'Connor St,


ON K1P 1A4,


Embassy of Mexico in Lima - Peru

Av. Jorge Basadre

710 Esquina Los Ficus

San Isidro,



Embassy of Mexico in Santiago - Chile

Félix De Amesti No. 128,

Las Condes,



Embassy of Mexico in Wellington - New Zealand

185-187 Featherston Street,

Wellington 6011,

New Zealand.

Things to consider before moving to Mexico on a WHV

The cost of living in Mexico

Before traveling to Mexico, we recommend that you have an idea of the cost of living so that you can prepare your budget.

Here is a table that will give you an idea of the cost of living in Mexico - (source Numbeo; as of July 2022):

Currency: US Dollars (USD)


1-bedroom flat (in the city center)


1-bedroom flat (outside the city center)


3-bedroom flat (city center)


3-bedroom flat (outside the city center)



Water, electricity, air conditioning, heating, waste collection for an 85m² apartment


Internet (60 Mbps or more, ADSL/cable, unlimited data)



1 ticket (one way) for local transport


Monthly pass for local transport



Rice (1 kg)


Milk (1 L)


12 eggs (normal size)


Bread (500 g)


Chicken (1 kg)


Red meat (1 kg)


Oranges (1 kg)


Bananas (1 kg)


Apples (1 kg)


Potatoes (1 kg)


Onions (1 kg)


Water (1.5 L)


Wine (mid-range bottle)


Local beer (0.5 L)


Imported beer (0.33 L)


Cigarettes (pack of 20)



Movie theatre - 1 seat


Sports club - monthly cost for 1 person


Looking for accommodation in Mexico

One of the most important steps when preparing for your WHV in Mexico is finding accommodation - you don't want to be left without a place to stay when you arrive.

Firstly, you should be aware that most accommodation in Mexico is furnished. Airbnb is still one of the most popular accommodation search platforms - this website has many listings, some of which are long-term - you won't have any trouble finding the type of accommodation you want, in the area you'd like to visit, on the budget you want. Nestpick, Realtor, Homefinder, or TripAdvisor will be able to help you find short or long-term housing options in Mexico.

Looking for work in Mexico

The best way to find a job in Mexico is the same as anywhere else in the world: search online or on the street for places to work, then visit them to ask for an interview. If you already have a profession, such as finance or engineering, we advise you to search on websites such as Visahunter, Targetjobs, or GoAbroad.

Also, don't forget that you could teach English or any other language you speak locally!

Learning the language

Practice your Spanish as much as possible! If you want to understand or be understood during your stay in Mexico, you should speak as little Spanish as possible. You are therefore advised to take a few lessons before you leave, watch films in Spanish and use applications such as Babble, Duolingo, Memrise or Rosetta Stone that can be your best friends to learn the language.

Initial steps to take on arriving in Mexico

The « tarjeta de residente temporal »

The "tarjeta de residente temporal" is a card given to temporary residents and must be done within 30 days of your arrival in Mexico. You will need to go to the Instituto Nacional de Migracíon (INM) if you want to stay in the country for the twelve months granted by your WHV visa. You will have to go back to your country after six months if you don't make this card.

The price of this card is about 190 euros, and to get it, you will first have to apply online.

The work permit

The work permit is a process that you can start once you have received your "tarjeta de residente temporal" and you have found a job with a Mexican company. As the name suggests, this permit will give you permission to work in Mexico. The cost of the work permit is around 140 euros.

Useful links:

Temporary Resident Card

Work permit in Mexico

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.