What Does It Cost To Move To Mexico?

Whenever you move, there are upfront moving costs. Even if you’re moving across town or even within the same state, there will be moving expenses.

Even though you can expect to reduce your living expenses when you move to Mexico, there will still be some expenses you need to plan for when you move. In today’s post, I will detail some of these expenses you should plan for, and I’ll also give you some tips on how you can save money with a few moving tips.

One of the highest upfront costs when moving to Mexico is securing a rental since you’ll have to factor in one month’s rent as a deposit and your monthly rent. Some other common expenses when you first move to Mexico could be the cost of getting your residency visa. See the chart below with estimated moving expenses for a couple to move to Mexico. Keep in mind that if you’re single, your expenses can be less. (all prices are shown in USD and calculated based on an exchange rate of $20 MXN to $1 USD)

Airfare to Move to Mexico (est $300 each)$600
Pet Airfare$600
Immigration Lawyer’s Fee$400-$800
Residency Visa$200-$400
Mexico Driver’s License$30
First Month’s Rent & Security Deposit$2000
Stock Up on groceries$200
Eating Out Expenses$200
TOTAL$4,500 *approx
sample of moving expenses when moving to Mexico


If you buy a car, that could be an additional $10,000 to $20,000 depending on the car you select. Full coverage insurance for a $20,000 car, will cost about $500 a year but you can opt to pay monthly.

If you wanted to import your car you could be looking at $2-3K depending on which customs broker you use.

If you pick the wrong immigration contact or the wrong real estate company, it will increase your costs substantially. Some lawyers and real estate companies do price gouging and you could end up paying the gringo price.

If you don’t have pets, you can remove that expense from the chart above. But if you have more than one pet or a large pet that needs to go in cargo, the expense could be substantially more than $600. The $600 is the estimate for pet airfare, possible health certificates, and paperwork the airline may require. You can save a significant amount if you decide to drive with your pets to Mexico as opposed to flying. However, if you hired someone to drive your pets for you to Mexico, then you could easily add $4,000 to the cost of moving.

The first month you move to Mexico, you’ll be more likely to eat out more often to try out different restaurants, so I added $200 for eating out expenses. Even with the best intentions to start cooking right away, it can take some time to unpack and unwind. You should plan this expense.


To reduce your costs to move to Mexico, you should wait to get your residency until after you’ve spent time in Mexico and decide this is where you want to live. If you’re from a country where no visa is required, you get up to 180 days in Mexico. You can use that time to scope different areas before moving forward with residency.

If you rent for less than $900 per month, that can reduce your upfront moving expenses, but if you rent for more than $900 a month, it will increase your upfront moving expenses. Ideally, you should find a furnished rental that includes all utilities, so you don’t have any other upfront rental expenses like electricity or internet. Also, avoid pushy agents who make you get a rental bond (fianza de arrendamiento) if you don’t meet some of their criteria. There are plenty of rentals in the city you’re interested in that won’t require you to get a bond.

We advise that you only rent a furnished rental. Otherwise, you’ll also have the expense of buying furniture, which could double your upfront expenses. See what a $900 per month furnished rental looks like in the picture below. 

An affordable place to buy furniture, bedspreads, curtains, kitchen appliances, and more in Mexico is Coppel. Their furniture quality is similar to a Walmart.


If you buy health insurance in Mexico, it could add another $150-$200/month for Mexico-only private insurance. International Health insurance could be an additional $250-$400 per month per person. You can also self-insure with no fixed monthly expenses. Self-insure means that you’ll pay for a doctor visit as you need them. It’s $20-$40 to see a doctor in Mexico, depending on where you go and whether it’s a specialist or just a general practicioner.

We really recommend that you come to visit Mexico before you decide to move to Mexico. As much as we love living in Mexico, we know it’s not right for everyone. To see if Mexico is right for you check out our FREE Living in Mexico Guide.

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. Freebies says

    I am very happy to read this. This is the type of manual that needs to be given and not the random misinformation that’s at the other blogs. Appreciate your sharing this greatest doc.

  2. Hairstyles says

    I am not sure where you are getting your info, but good topic. I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding more. Thanks for great info I was looking for this information for my mission.

    • Mariana Lange says

      Glad you found this to be a good topic. It’s important to know this info before considering your move. I get my information from personal experience and from my research

  3. Sharon Leigh Warlick says

    Hi Marianne,
    See my email address below.
    Can I schedule a day & time to finish our conversation?
    Let me know.
    Enjoyed our conversation this afternoon. So happy to get upfront info about Queretara.
    Chat Soon,

  4. Jamylah says

    Very helpful information, I always want to move to Mexico but kind of scare because all you ever heard of Mexico is crimes, not safe. You can’t live there alone as a black female.
    I’m debating, Mexico, Spain, Bolivia or Costa Rica.
    I have to choose. I’m looking for the cheaper life style from u.s

    • Mariana Lange says

      Good points Jamylah!
      However, you will find that when you live in Mexico the color of your skin is not a problem. Mexico is one of the easiest countries to integrate to as a foreigner because the Mexican people are very friendly.
      And everything you hear on the news is correct up to a certain point. Because remember that the media is there to sell stories. Most people live in peace and are not afraid of living in Mexico because the majority are not affected by the cartel violence. But if you read the news it makes it sound like the cartel is everywhere- which isn’t true.

      Hope this helps!

  5. Joan Bell says

    Hello Mariana,
    I am thinking about moving to Los Barriles in Baja, from Seattle, WA. I’m trying to find out what the cost is for moving furniture and boxes of stuff. Can you help?
    Thanks so much.

    • Mariana Lange says

      Hi Joan!
      We are not a moving company, so anything I tell you will be a range. However, we have a directory of international movers we highly recommend working with in our Mexico Relocation Online Guide.


  6. Mercy says

    Hello amariana, I’m from Africa, I love to study electrical engineering in Mexico, how will I get low cost schools for my course?
    Thank you

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