In this interview series we let our members take the spotlight! Today, we are talking to Pedro from Mexico City. Pedro is a former expat who has recently moved back to his native Mexico. He gives travel tips and advice for new arrivals on his VIVAMX Adventures page.
Please tell us a little bit about yourself. Who you are, where you come from, where you moved to, when you came back to Mexico, etc.
I am a Mexican global citizen. I graduated in finances and entrepreneurship and worked in tourism back in Mexico. I lived in Europe two different times. And I learned a lot from the people in various countries that I visited.
I returned to Mexico City a few years ago, and now I am ready for the next challenge, to move to South America or Europe again. I have the resources to help, guide, and offer solutions for new arrivals in Mexico and Mexico City. Helping out expats indirectly benefits other Mexicans, I suppose.
When and why did you decide to start blogging about Mexico?
12 years ago — I started in 2001 when I realized how important sharing information was. I was also writing at Lonely Planet for a while.
Do you have any favorite blog entries of yours?
Here is my collection of Mexico-related links!
Tell us about the ways life in Mexico differs from life in other countries. What would you say are the main reasons why expatriates in Mexico may experience culture shock?
Mexico is just Mexico — you don’t need to compare it with any other country. But there is something relaxing in the air even when you are in a crowded city. It’s a Latin American country, so family, friends, party – it’s the way of life. I think the weather and sunny days around here make people smile, even if they have personal problems.
Every expat knows that life as an expatriate or international traveler comes with some hilarious anecdotes and funny experiences. Care to share one with us?
A memorable “classic” is that some people get confused by the yellow color of hot habanero chili. They think it is like mango – so watch out!
Which three tips would you like to give future expats before they embark on their new life in Mexico?
– Relax and don’t compare Mexico with your country. In many cases it just won’t be the same.
– Try to learn Spanish: this will make you feel more like you belong, and it will make it easier to network with people.
– Read and learn more about the country. There is a lot to discover; you may be able to forget other countries, but never Mexico. Yes, you may even cry when you leave the country. 🙂
How is the expat community in Mexico? Is it easy to find like-minded people or fellow expats?
Mexico City in particular has a big international community, but in any small city you will find a lot of foreigners that fell in love with the country. In Mexico, you can also find InterNations communities in Cancun, Guadalajara and Mexico City.
How would you summarize life in Mexico in a single, catchy sentence?
Mexico crazy loco! 🙂