Staying a good long time in Mexico City means taking care of some things at home. Checking in with the office. Attending a meeting or two, or touching base with clients. It’s all good.
Nearly all of the problems that Digital Nomads, or remote workers more generally, stem from problems overstaying the term allotted by the FMM (tourist visa). Here’s how to avoid such problems and stay longer, and see more.
- Don’t over-stay your FMM, no matter what. Check the corner of the FMM, (you get it from the Immigration Official when you enter the country).
- That number can’t be extended or renewed. When your time is up, you’ll need to leave the country. That can mean a short flight, or a trip to the consulate in your home country. But…
- Don’t expect to get 180 days every time you cross the border. You may get up to 180 days, but terms of 90 days or even fewer are not unheard of. The Mexican Migration Institute, which issues short term, and long term (non-resident and resident) permits, monitors lengths of stay. They also issue work permits. And you need to have a clean record if you really do want to stay longer.
- Don’t even think of staying in a central neighborhood. As charming as you might find them, if an area is already flooded with international visitors, you need to look further. Don’t further contribute to housing problems and increased prices for all the people in the area. Instead, try to stay in a place that isn’t crowded with non-Mexicans. You’ll find much cheaper rents, and you’ll be helping the entire economy.
- Don’t stay in your comfort zone. There are lots of new places to see and explore and these pages cover all of them.
- Don’t try to get by with little or no Spanish. Everyone appreciates every little advance you’ll make in communicating in Spanish.
- Don’t ignore local traditions and customs. The more you learn, the better your experience.
- Don’t solicit work from Mexican companies and don’t accept employment or money from Mexican people. At least not until you get your residency and work permits in order.
- Don’t think Racism and Classism don’t exist just because you benefit from the status-quo. They’re serious issues. And while the people who visit Mexico City tend to think they’re above all that, you can do better. Spend a little time and money in one of Mexico City’s public markets. Make it one outside the city center, too.
- Don’t be down if some Mexico City residents aren’t that happy to see you. We’re all in this together, and being aware of all of the above will help to change things, for the better, and for everybody.
Mexico City is glad to have you. There’s no question about that. But it’s a real city, and full of real people. Meeting and spending time with many of them is part of what makes any trip so much fun. Keep all of the above in mind and you’ll have a better time of it.
Why Mexico City? | What Not to Do When Remote Working