The most important thing for me has been making a budget and sticking to it. We live on 2,000-2,500 pesos a week and save for student loans, unexpected emergencies, and surviving the summer without my pay. Most of the time, we make it on less than that. If you need a bank account affiliated with a US bank, Santander is affiliated with Bank of America. This means you can withdraw money from BoA free of charge at Santander ATMs.
There is very little in the way of bills since most things are paid for when purchased. Electricity can be paid many places, but we use the special kiosk in a local shopping center; the back of the bill will list other locations. Our water is paid at OXXO, a convenience store; this is also where we load time on our phones. We pay for our cable and internet at the local Cablecom center.
Paying US debt while in Mexico?
Chances are if you have a job in Mexico, it will not pay enough to both live well and pay American debt. You will need to find other ways to get money. If you are a teacher, there are online universities, such as Kaplan, which need instructors for online classes. There are also online language universities which look to hire native English speakers—such as Open English. As a native English speaker, you can also make very good money tutoring in English or offering business English classes. If there are hotels that want to attract English speaking guests, you can approach them with an offer to translate materials, create promotions, or maintain an English version of their website. If you want to sell goods, you could buy items in bulk through eBay or a specific supplier and sell them. You could also form a collective of craftspeople and take a commission to sell their items online. No matter what option you choose, making it in Mexico while shouldering American debt is not easy.
Questions for my Readers
What Mexican bank do you think is the best? Why?
What is the best way to get money to your home country to pay on bills there?
Do you have any money-saving tips for living in Mexico?
Do you have different bills from those I listed or do you pay them in a different way?
Are you paying off US debt? How do you do it?