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#1 Barrett

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Posted 24 February 2014 - 03:10 PM

Hello

 

My name is Barrett. I am 22 with a wife and 2 boys (I know I started young) I have been coming to Cozumel since I was a kid. Maybe 5 or so? My mother Tiffany actually built a house there. my grandmother Charlotte now lives in and rents out  the home. We are all from Dallas texas. My ex- step dad (who I am very close with) is from Canada but now Mexican and owns a nice charter business doing deep sea fishing and diving. I have always wanted to live here since I was a little kid. Of course my dad (the one in charge) never entertained the idea. Both my wife and I are in the insurance business. Something that we can do from anywhere there is internet and a phone line. I would definitely take a paycut however. Going commission only I expect we would bring in $2500 per month the first year. I have not asked my ex step dad about a job, Ive known his crew since I was a kid and don't want to take anything away from them.. Im sure here and there stuff wont be hard to come by though with him. We have about $15,000 saved. I have connections and roots here, but what about schooling? My oldest starts 1st grade next year. Who has advice for that? How much is it and what company to use? As of now, I don't want to commit to spending my life down in Cozumel, but I want to try it out and experience what I have dreamed of since I was a little kid. I want my kids to experience what I did. If it doesn't work out then at least I didn't give up on my dream! Any advice is welcome, and if theres any expenses I may not have thought about please let me know.

 

Barrett


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#2 Charles

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Posted 24 February 2014 - 04:01 PM

If you have U.S. based income of $2,500 dollars a month, you shouldn't have to touch your savings. You're talking over $30,000 pesos monthly. It won't be gringo life, but solid Mexican middle class. With your back ground and local connections, you should have assistance in learning the ropes and just how to go about the little things. Do you plan to have a car?  The one problem you may face is with regard to your "visa status". A standard 180 day "tourist visa" would be an expense if the family had to do a round trip out of the country every six months. People can chime in about schools, they aren't cheap, but you should be able to manage. In setting up a household, try to make do and not throw money at it to bring it all together at once.

 

I'd forget about any job on a boat. If you can work online, once settled, you should be able to do fine, even with two kids in private schools. A good time to start the kids, they'll be completely bilingual in 18 months. If it doesn't seem to be the thing for you, I'd try to give it a year or two if you can as it will be invaluable for the kids. Being native accent free in both Spanish and English will come in handy.

 

Get some advice on how best to handle residency and the visas issues.


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#3 Pirata Canadiense

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 02:48 PM

Hi Barrett

There is one I'm aware of that I myself have looked into and been in contact with; it's the Instituto Gardner
.  They have been very helpful with information and are quick to respond to emails.  This is the link to their site (Google Translate will do whole web pages for the most part if you need translation):  http://institutogardner.com/

 

The American School of Cozumel (Colegio Americano de Cozumel) closed it's doors a couple years ago.

There may be others but honestly,  I stopped my search after talking with the Gardner Institute. 

Adrienne


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#4 Charles

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 05:47 PM

You might want to consider Montessori for the younger, that too could be a good investment in education. You can find other, older threads via the search function on this topic

 

http://www.cozumelmy.../?hl=Montessori

 

The public schools can be hit or miss, generally in the private schools you can expect equal or superior to what you might find north of the border. As an added bonus, the kids will gain fluency in both languages. It will require some effort at home to make sure the learning process is equal in both languages to prepare them for future schooling in the States if that should become in the cards.


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#5 Lyuda

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Posted 30 April 2014 - 11:23 PM

Hi,
Anyone knows how much Montessori charges per month for toddlers?
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#6 eislander

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Posted 03 May 2014 - 04:04 PM

Hola,

 

I plan to move to Cozumel for at least a year.  I am researching the visa requirements.  What I need are opinions about long term rentals and driving. 

 

I would like to leave my car in the states and be free of a car.  Is that reasonable?  Is it better to have a car? 

 

I have lived and worked abroad, and traveled a bit. I feel confident about what I am doing but not about finding somewhere to rent.

 

Does anyone have a contact that can help with long term rentals or ....what should I do? Is it unreasonable to fly in and expect to find something?  The rents sound very reasonable and I can't wait.  I want to arrive this summer.

 

I really appreciate this forum.  Thanks for all of your help.

 

Elizabeth

 

 

 

 


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#7 Steve

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Posted 03 May 2014 - 05:34 PM

 I would recommend having a car on Cozumel. It's not necessary as you can always walk to wherever in town that you want to go and can always take a taxi back home if you have groceries or something else to take back home.

 

I like a car so I can go where I want when I want and don't have to worry about the weather. I normally put $200 pesos a week in for gas unless I am driving around the island a time or two.

 

I would fly in and have a place to stay for at least a month while looking for a place to rent. Once on the island you will meet people that can help you find a place.

 

Keep in mind that most of the lower rent places don't have a stove, refrigerator. gas tank, hot water, or furniture. 


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#8 kc5tng

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 12:19 PM

 I would recommend having a car on Cozumel. It's not necessary as you can always walk to wherever in town that you want to go and can always take a taxi back home if you have groceries or something else to take back home.

 

I like a car so I can go where I want when I want and don't have to worry about the weather. I normally put $200 pesos a week in for gas unless I am driving around the island a time or two.

 

I would fly in and have a place to stay for at least a month while looking for a place to rent. Once on the island you will meet people that can help you find a place.

 

Keep in mind that most of the lower rent places don't have a stove, refrigerator. gas tank, hot water, or furniture


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#9 kc5tng

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Posted 16 July 2014 - 07:48 AM

One thing I havent read but might have missed is Trash Pickup - I assume they have "trash trucks" that pick up the garbage and I also assume the cost is included in the "water bill" or No?


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#10 Coz2wonder

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Posted 16 July 2014 - 07:53 AM

Trash pick up is a separate bill.  Water is separate, as is your Electric bill.

 

The trash pick up, and water "may" be included in your rent.  You have ask the landlord what is, or is not included.


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#11 DebB

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Posted 17 July 2014 - 06:04 AM

Trash pickup is municipal and paid  by the property owner. A landlord's cost is offset by rental income, same as property tax and other ownership costs. As a general rule, it is not an itemized or separate charge.

 

On the car issue, IMO, a car is handy but its necessity depends on where you live. Urban transportation is very inexpensive but doesn't run 24/7. Taxis are always available and rates within town are low for residents..Rental cars for special trips are also inexpensive. And you can always make friends with people who have cars...If you are in a central location and on a tight budget, you will save money by not owning a car.


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#12 kc5tng

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Posted 17 July 2014 - 10:04 AM

And what might be the average cost of "trash pickup"?? As far as a tight budget goes, Im always on a tight budget; my wife however is not so much - - - :)


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#13 kc5tng

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 11:41 AM

This question is rather off the "subject' but when we get to Coz in November, whats the best way to pay for items and services in Coz - carrying a wad of Peso's- ( typing that out already sounds like( "A wad of Peso's? - dont be an idiot - Use your ATM credit or debit card ) or using our US credit or debit cards at an ATM or should we go in personally to a bank to do the money transfer? 


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#14 mstevens

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 06:31 PM

The only thing you can count on working everywhere is cash. All the big stores and many restaurants accept credit or debit cards, so we do that (since we don't have foreign exchange fees or international use fees), but we still have to carry cash. Keep in mind that change is a perennial problem and that large bills can cause issues. For bill paying, you can do a lot online but sometimes US cards won't work. Online, debit cards fail more than credit cards.


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#15 Freezin' Canuck

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Posted 19 July 2014 - 06:00 AM

If the purpose of the trip is to see if Coz is your residence of choice, you may want to get a feel for the place, i.e. paying in pesos, I find is the best. Possibly not as convenient when you have to convert back, especially on short trips of a few weeks, but generally better over the long haul in terms of prices, being treated as a "local", etc. For example, always have thirty five pesos for a cab in town. If i buy a replacement water jug, 15 pesos, etc. I know of at least one restaurant that has a two-price structure(they don't advertise this): one for locals and one for tourists (definitely pesos and a lot cheaper for the same food). You don't need a wad of pesos (but the pesos seems to go farther than the dollar) and as already said, credit card is the back up, with cash backing that up.
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#16 kc5tng

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Posted 19 July 2014 - 09:22 AM

@Freezing Canuck - ya know, that does sound like a plan. I really had not thought it out in those terms but getting used to paying in peso's would certainly be a good beginning to the process.  


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#17 divern2h20

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Posted 20 July 2014 - 07:06 AM

Last week while there I pulled into the new gas station on the transvarsal road.

While filling the car the attendant struck  up a conversation. Asking where I was from etc, 

When the car was full the pump read $458 mx He told me $46 us (sign posted exchange  $11.25 mx)

I reached in my pocket and pulled out pesos , counted out  $458 and told him no tip this time.

The look on his face was priceless!

 

 

 


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#18 kc5tng

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 08:18 AM

Ok, here's a question that just occurred to me to ask;  I remember pulling up the USD to MXN Peso exchange rate and last month it was a at either 12.97 or 13. to 1 then...but the exchange rate the gas station posted was only 11.25 - - - where did they get their info from or is my info the one that is wrong - or is it "arbitrary on the part of the seller?


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#19 pato52

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 09:10 AM

Official exchange rates are only recognized at banks and ATM's. Otherwise there is no law that sets what rate any business, taxi, beach bar or street vendor has to use. It is the Wild West with rates usually being set so the business benefits...not the customer!

 

Save money...use pesos.


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#20 Charles

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 09:30 AM

Although it is "arbitrary", low exchange rates tend to be what the dollar is worth to them. Many people can't come close to the exchange rates typically obtained by North Americans from ATMs. That 11.25 may be representative of the exchange rate at a casa de cambio or a neighborhood grocery store. Bank official rates for changing cash will be significantly lower than the international ATM rate. After hours casa de cambio rates will be lower than banks. I wouldn't translate a low exchange rate to necessarily mean a rip off.


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