Mexican Residency/Pilot Shortages/Streaming Services Abroad

Nomadico issue #42

A weekly newsletter with four quick bites, edited by Tim Leffel, author of A Better Life for Half the Price and The World’s Cheapest Destinations. See past editions here, where your like-minded friends can subscribe and join you.

An Honest Rental Car Reservations Company?

While renting a car in the USA is a breeze, internationally it can be a time-consuming, frustrating minefield where everyone seems to be out to scam you—and in a different language on top. I recently booked with DealMobility, a company that lets you add on legally necessary insurance and no more for rentals in Mexico, Costa Rica, and Panama (for now). I still got the hard sell pitch from Europcar—one of the worst offenders in Mexico—but after figuring out that they couldn’t charge me again for something I had clearly prepaid already, they let me go on my merry way without incident.

Mexican Residency Has Gotten Pricier

If you want to apply for legal residency in Mexico, your remote career or business now needs to be well beyond the start-up phase. The formula is tied to the Mexican minimum wage and since that went up quite a bit this year (good news for the locals), so did the minimum income for residency. Add a decline in the dollar thanks to debt ceiling showmanship in congress and you now need to show a sustained monthly income of almost $3,400 for temporary residency, plus another $1,120 or so for each dependent if applicable. You can live very well on a fraction of that, but those are the current rules. One way around this is if you have bank assets of $56,000 or more at the current rate and yes, retirement account funds will qualify. See the formulas here if you’re earning in euros, pounds, or something else.

Tell Your Kid to Become a Pilot

If you have a teenager who wants to travel and get paid, they might want to look into flight school. There’s a staggering shortage of pilots around the world right now and it is going to take quite a while for any solution to catch up since the workforce is mostly 40+ in age. This article lays out the ugly details, but to give you an idea, “Estimates vary as to how big the pilot shortage will be and how soon it will cause problems, but in broad terms analysis seems to settle on a shortage of around 55,000 pilots by the end of the decade…”

Arbitrage for Streaming Services

If you’re establishing a home base abroad somewhere rather than just passing through, you might want to keep an eye out for video streaming deals aimed at locals. Last year I signed up for HBO Max in Mexico and I pay less than $3 per month, locked in until I cancel. Paramount Plus is about $4.50 at the current exchange rate and Disney Plus is about $8.50, but it debuted at half that when it launched.


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