Living and Retiring in Cancun: A Tropical Paradise on a Budget

If you’re looking for a place to retire or just want to escape the hustle and bustle of city life, Cancun might be the perfect destination for you. With its beautiful beaches, tropical weather, and affordable cost of living, Cancun has become a popular spot for retirees and expats worldwide. In this blog post, we’ll explore some key aspects of living and retiring in Cancun, including the cost of living, weather, neighborhoods, things to do, and top beaches.

In our latest video, we cover what living in Cancun is like

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Cost of Living

One of the biggest draws of Cancun is its affordable cost of living. Compared to many other popular retirement destinations, such as Florida or California, Cancun offers a much lower cost of living, making it an attractive option for those on a fixed income. According to Numbeo, a website that compares cost of living data from around the world, the cost of living in Cancun is around 46% lower than in Los Angeles and 32% lower than in Miami.

The cost of housing is also significantly lower in Cancun than in many other popular retirement destinations. For example, a one-bedroom apartment in the city center of Cancun costs around $400 per month, while the same apartment in Miami would cost around $1,800 per month. Groceries and dining out are also affordable in Cancun, with a meal at a mid-range restaurant costing around $10 per person.


Another major draw of Cancun is its warm and sunny weather. The city has a tropical climate, with average temperatures ranging from 75°F to 85°F throughout the year. While the summers can be hot and humid, the winters are mild and comfortable, making Cancun a great destination for snowbirds who want to escape the cold.


Cancun is divided into two main areas: the Hotel Zone and the downtown area. The Hotel Zone is a narrow strip of land that runs along the coast and is home to many of the city’s resorts, restaurants, and nightlife. While the Hotel Zone is a popular tourist destination, it can be expensive to live there. The downtown area, on the other hand, is more affordable and has a more local feel. Some of the most popular neighborhoods in the downtown area include:

  • El Centro: This is the historic center of Cancun and is home to many of the city’s cultural attractions, including museums, galleries, and theaters.
  • Puerto Juarez: This neighborhood is located on the northern edge of the city and is known for its beautiful beaches and seafood restaurants.
  • La Gloria: This neighborhood is located in the southern part of the city and is home to many expats and retirees. It’s known for its affordable housing and quiet streets.

Things to Do

Cancun offers a wide range of activities for residents and visitors alike. Here are just a few of the top things to do in the city:

  • Visit the beaches: Cancun is known for its beautiful beaches, with plenty to choose from. Some of the most popular include Playa Delfines, Playa Tortugas, and Playa Chac Mool.
  • Explore the Mayan ruins: Cancun is located near many ancient Mayan ruins, including Chichen Itza, Tulum, and Coba. These ruins offer a glimpse into the history and culture of the region.
  • Enjoy the nightlife: Cancun is known for its vibrant nightlife, with many bars, clubs, and restaurants staying open late into the night.
  • Go shopping: Cancun has a wide range of shopping options, from local markets to high-end malls.
  • Take a day trip: Cancun is located near many other popular destinations, such as Playa del Carmen

Mariana Lange

Mariana Lima-Lange was born in Mexico and immigrated to the U.S. when she was a child. She spent every summer visiting family throughout Mexico and is very knowledgeable about Mexican culture, lifestyle, and traditions. She is fluent in both Spanish and English.

Reader Interactions


  1. Beatrice says

    How do I get a resident visa to live in Cancun?I understand you cannot open a bank account in Cancun unless you have resident visa.

  2. Erin Becker says

    Dear Mariana,
    Thank you for your knowledge, kindness and patience. I’m a 59 yr old woman married 41 yrs. We are retired no children or family and I love Mexico and the people. I know it would be good for us to move there, but my husband is holding back. We see what America has become, we are law abiding caring and this is well the big question is how do I get my husband understanding what I know in my heart is the right thing to do? I can’t get even a general Dr here that does anything I tell my husband why stay here? Im ready overall to go it alone as our marriage is not good. The last time in Mexico was Cancun 2008 before we went 8 times starting in the 80s we loved each time. He keeps saying about hurricanes and humidity yet we live in lower Alabama were hit with a major hurricane the first yr here. The people are Not nice the Drs lazy and lousy and nothing to do. I love culture, history and life for me is well non existent.
    With admiration and genuine appreciation for your time, strength and thoughts,

    • Mariana Lange says

      Hi Erin
      Unfortunately there isn’t any advice I can give you but the only thing I can say is you can’t force someone to like a new place.

      However I’d recommend you guys visit a few inland cities and towns instead of the resorts and perhaps he’ll see México in a new light

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