If the idea of remote working appeals to you, you’re certainly not alone. Figures show that almost 5 million US employees work remotely at least half of the time. While that could mean just working from home, for others that means taking the plunge and traveling. One of the most popular destinations for Americans who are looking to work remotely has to be Mexico.
And while Mexico is certainly an appealing destination to work from, there are some key things that you’ll need to consider before you go. Whether you’re looking at a temporary move, or even uprooting and starting a new life, here’s a look at all that you’ll need to think about.
If you decide to live in Mexico on a permanent basis, you will be able to access the public healthcare system just like other citizens. The drawback here is that usually all consultations are conducted in Spanish. If this is a language that you’re not fluent in then the chances are that you’re going to struggle. That being the case, it is well worth taking the time to explore what is on offer privately.
If your remote working in Mexico is only going to be temporary, then it is worth treating this just as you would any other type of travel. This means that you should look into the options that are available to you in terms of health insurance. Getting the right cover can give you added peace of mind and remove one of the major worries that workers have when they’re in a foreign country.
A look at bank accounts
Of course, if you’re going to be in Mexico working remotely, you will need to explore the options that you have when it comes to bank accounts. Certainly, if you’re making a longer-term move you will benefit from having a savings account as well as a current account. Fortunately, the process of opening a bank account in Mexico is relatively simple.
Opening a bank account in Mexico will mean physically attending a local branch. When you go you’ll need to have the following with you:
- Proof of Mexican address
- Initial deposit
If you are only in Mexico temporarily, you’re going to find it hard, if not impossible, to open an account. It is not something that is offered to tourists ad the chances are that you will need to prove residency in the country. If you are moving to Mexico to work remotely permanently, this is no issue and you’ll find that the whole process is easy.
How will you send money?
Regardless of how long you’re going to be in Mexico, there is likely to be a need for you to send money. It could be that you’re looking to send money ahead of your travels or it may be that, whilst in Mexico, you’re wanting to send money home to your family or friends. No matter what your reason for sending money, you’ll want to find the quickest and cheapest way of doing this.
It is common for people to turn to their banks for sending money. While this may make sense in some regards, the truth is that this is rarely, if ever, the best option. What you will find is that money transfer providers offer a service that is superior to banks. These tend to charge lower fees and tend to be much quicker to process payments.
We recommend that you carry out research to find the best company to send money to Mexico and see which provider gives you the fastest service, and lowest fees if you need to send money immediately.
What about needing a Visa?
If you’re looking to make a permanent move to Mexico and to work remotely for the long term, then you’ll need to explore what is required in terms of a Visa, and even residency. If, however, you are only looking at a temporary move, there may be no need for a Visa at all. There is certainly no such thing as a remote working Visa that you’ll need to apply for.
If you are a US citizen, you are able to visit Mexico and stay for up to 180 days without the need for a Visa. What you will need is a valid passport and a Multiple Migratory Form. These documents are usually enough to allow you to work remotely from Mexico temporarily.
If you are employed by a US company, and working remotely for them, then you’ll continue to pay taxes in the US. This applies if you have made a temporary move to Mexico and are not planning on staying beyond the 180 days that are allowed without a Visa. In these circumstances, you are not classed as part of the Mexican economy and so no taxes are due in the country.
If you decide to make a permanent move to the country and continue to work remotely, you will then need to taxes in Mexico. The main tax that you’ll need to consider is the income tax. This can see you paying anywhere between 1.92% and 35% of what you earn. Then there are other taxes linked to property and, if you set up your own company to work from abroad, Federal Corporate Income Tax.
The cost of living
Part of the appeal of remote working is to find a country where it costs less to live. This means that you can carry out the same job, but increase your disposable income. If this is your plan with Mexico, then you’ll need to consider the area that you move to as it’s not the same planning to be based in Puerto Mexico City as doing it in Tijuana, Puerto Vallarta, Puerto Escondido, or Riviera Nayarit.
While the cost of living may vary from place to place, the general consensus is that an income of $1,500 a month can see you living more than comfortably. Many of the bills that you’ll need to pay are often cheaper in Mexico than they are, for instance, in the US. Whether making a permanent or temporary move, it is possible to enjoy an enchanted standard of living on the same salary.