As soon as you start telling people you’re planning on moving to Mexico (or basically anywhere outside of the country), you’ll begin to realise that everyone’s an expert on international moves!
All of a sudden, your cousin twice removed is gushing words of wisdom despite living in the same village his whole life and your school friends crawl out of the woodwork shouting ‘be careful!’ as if you’d maintained a loving relationship in the five years since you last saw one another.
In short, when you decide to move abroad, everyone’s suddenly full of well-intentioned advice. While some of it may prove useful (hint: take advice from people who’ve been there, done that), some of it is just plain terrible.
So, here are some of the worst pieces of advice we’ve heard about moving to Mexico.
Sell everything before you leave!
The idea of selling everything you own before you leave crops up time and time again, as people seem unable to reconcile the fact that moving abroad does not equal backpacking around the world. Maybe in some people’s definition it does, but for those who move abroad to live and work in a new country (a.k.a. people who aren’t pressing pause on everyday life to travel for a while) there’s really no need to sell everything.
International removals companies exist for a reason, everyone! And they might save you money and stress in the long term too, especially if you compare the best deals at Buzzmove first.
After all, while paring down your personal belongings to the bare minimum seems cleansing at first, when you get to Mexico and realise that, actually, you could do with some sweaters and you miss your favourite household trinkets, you’ll be stressed and obliged to drop a load of money replacing everything anyway. Just taking what you need in the first place can negate all of that hassle!
Stock up on ~insert something they think isn’t available in Mexico~
On the flip side, other terrible pieces of advice you’ll hear about moving to Mexico (or moving abroad in general, really) focus on over-packing a select few items, because you won’t be able to get them where you’re going.
While this is mostly good-natured advice, it’s often misguided and ill-informed by the idea that Mexico is a ‘third-world country’ with little to no access to basic supplies that you’ll need for day-to-day life.
This is exemplified by the sheer number of people who warned us to stock up on feminine hygiene products like tampons before moving out there. Their rationale was that you can’t buy them in Mexico and that if you do find them, they’re expensive!
First of all, where aren’t they expensive? Second of all, of course you can find them in Mexico!
Basically, be a bit sceptical about seemingly everyday things people tell you to over-pack.
(Obviously this doesn’t apply to home comforts like teabags, Jaffa Cakes and Marmite, of course!)
Don’t worry about sorting a job…just teach English
There’s a very common and pervasive assumption that people who move abroad, especially to places like Mexico, which often get lumped (incorrectly) into a ‘third-world, what-are-you-going-to-do-there?’ bracket, only go to teach English.
Many people do go to teach English, and that’s fine, if they’re qualified teachers.
However, one of the worst pieces of advice anyone can give you about moving to Mexico is that you shouldn’t line up a job before arriving. Instead, just look for teaching work when you arrive!
Of course, this is feasible—many Mexicans are looking for English classes. However, you probably won’t have a work visa, so you won’t be able to get a legal position at a language school and, if you’re only a native speaker, rather than a trained teacher, you’ll soon realise you’re in over your head when your students start asking you about grammar!
Long story short: don’t assume you can just float by on your Western Anglophone privileges! Get a job!
Don’t do it
If there was one chart-topping piece of terrible advice that people planning a move to Mexico often find themselves on the receiving end of, it’s ‘don’t do it!’.
These people are jealous of you and your grand plans and they should be ignored at all costs, because, really, moving to Mexico is one of the best decisions you’ll ever make.
What do you think to this terrible advice? We’ve sure you’ve heard it all before, but let us know in the comments.