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sakfogel


Nov 14, 2009, 3:56 AM

Post #26 of 48 (4023 views)

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Re: [Starcradle] Shipping Items

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Dear Starcradle,
Your last message is alarming.
If you do not have sufficient funds to make the move to Mexico, what will you live on when you get here?
Everyone enters marriage with the hope of it lasting forever, but what if it doesn't? You will be in a foreign country with no means of support.
I see many expats come down here believing they can live on $1000 a month. Well you can if you don't pay rent, don't go out to eat at a restaurant, don't go to a doctor, and don't buy clothes.

Please take a realistic look at your finances. Better to delay, then to come to Mexico with no funds.
Do you have an independent income? Do you have a job you can do from home online?
And to come here without a computer is truly a desperate act. You will be cut off from family, friends, banking and other facets of your former life that are important.

Few people can pull up stakes, never look back and be happy.

It is not an easy transition. Mexicans are gracious, helpful, warm and friendly. But like with any other people you must earn their trust. You can find yourself a stranger in a strange land and broke.
And if you come and marry you are now 100% dependent on your new husband. Does he have the income to support you? Do you want to be dependent?
Do you have skills that are readily transferable to Mexico so that you can work?

Many people ask me about what it is like to live here, how I made all of the friends ( mainly Mexican) and whether I miss my old life. I tell them it was slow, sometimes the lonliness was overwhelming, but we had money in the bank and income.

We arrived here to take possession of the house we bought and had to immediately install good air conditioning, make major repairs, the septic system was non-functional, my mother died, and within a few months I had to have eye surgery! It did not feel like paradise.

Many people come here with fantasies of opening a fish charter business, or massage therapy or some kind of small shop.
It can be done, but dong business in Mexico is not easy.

Have you heard this adage: How to end up with one million dollars in Mexico? Start with two million!
Wrap up note:
If you do not have the funds to make the move, will not have a computer, no back up money, no income, no car, you are heading for disaster.
Susan Fogel
On the beach in La Paz
Author of Margarita Mind Series of Books about Mexico
Book #1 now available: www.MargaritaMind.com


La Isla


Nov 14, 2009, 8:31 AM

Post #27 of 48 (4009 views)

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Re: [sakfogel] Shipping Items

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The previous message is full of good advice for Starcradle, if a bit on the alarming side. However, I beg to differ with one detail. It is possible to live on $1000 US a month. That's about what I spend every month for everything including private health insurance and taxes for working independently on an FM3. I live alone in a small apartment in Mexico City in a nice centrally-located middle-class neighborhood. If I were living with someone, then my expenses would be somewhat lower, I imagine.


Starcradle

Nov 14, 2009, 10:49 AM

Post #28 of 48 (3994 views)

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Re: Shipping Items

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I appreciate the advice and the concern. I understand a few of the above reactions, as there is only so much that can be known of an individual based upon a limited number of posts on a message board.

There are several crucial details that I have purposely omitted regarding our very peculiar situation--information that only a few are privy to. I am not inclined to divulge them on a public forum, for they are far too intimate. (As an aside, they may engender a debate!)

Please be assured that I have considered all of this from a realistic standpoint. In stating this, I am not claiming that I've nothing to learn, or that the counsel of others is neither sought nor heeded. Yet I am not one to shut my eyes and take a leap. I tend to analyze situations from every possible angle. If any dim scenarios are presented to me, I assure you that I have thought of them and far worse. However, I am no longer going to exist paralyzed by fear, immobilized by the threat of myriad "what ifs." I certainly agree that one must be prepared--I have never stated otherwise--yet life is unpredictable and I am not going to torture myself into a frenzy, endeavoring to erect safety nets to protect me from every conceivable circumstance. This is not possible, as I have attempted it.

We have waited nearly thirty years to be together, my fiance and I. We have loved one another since we were five years of age. Although we believe that all things transpire when they are meant to, we are also vividly aware that time is precious and exceedingly limited. If it is utter silliness on my part--an act of "desperation"--not to want to wait an extra six months to be with him in order to save for a laptop to take with me, so be it.



Post Script: When I state that I may not have sufficient funds to move "when the time comes," I am speaking of the precise moment our home is available--furnished and equipped with the proper security measures. I was referring to an ideal time frame, not to departing without proper funds.


sakfogel


Nov 14, 2009, 7:52 PM

Post #29 of 48 (3951 views)

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Re: [Starcradle] Shipping Items

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Starcradle,
Of course I do not know your complete circumstances, and this is not the place to discuss them, nor should I be asking.
But because of my work, many , many people, single women especially, have asked for advice and counsel, or made remarks about how they were coming to Mexico on a wish and a prayer.

My concern for my sisters in the world prompted me to respond to your message. Your story sounds romantic and interesting.
I wanted to caution you in case you were jumping without looking.
I hope things go well for you.
Susan Fogel
On the beach in La Paz
Author of Margarita Mind Series of Books about Mexico
Book #1 now available: www.MargaritaMind.com


Starcradle

Nov 14, 2009, 10:23 PM

Post #30 of 48 (3933 views)

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Re: [sakfogel] Shipping Items

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I understand, Susan, and thank you.


rockydog85251

Nov 16, 2009, 3:31 PM

Post #31 of 48 (3891 views)

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Re: [Starcradle] Shipping Items

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Just a heads up.........here in Mazatlan they are now requiring foreign "volunteers" to get a "working" FM3....in other words, even though you are not receiving any compensation - the government will be! I'm not sure about how they are handling the RFC, tax reporting, etc. This is a real shame and potential loss for the many needy causes in the country that cannot be adequately dealt with by the government. Maybe this is something fairly new due to this being such a visable snowbird destination and may only a regional phenomenem for the time being.
Willie


La Isla


Nov 16, 2009, 4:22 PM

Post #32 of 48 (3885 views)

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Re: [rockydog85251] Shipping Items

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I've never run across this in Mexico City though my experience with volunteering here has been limited to one museum. I'd be curious to know if anyone other than Rocky has also run into this problem. The whole thing sounds screwy to me!


mazbook1


Nov 16, 2009, 5:06 PM

Post #33 of 48 (3876 views)

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Re: [La Isla] Shipping Items

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La Isla,

This is something that seems to have had its start in Puerto Vallarta sometime last year. Someone here heard about it and made a big deal about it with Migración and even asked a number of questions about it at a meeting of Friends of México where the delegado for Migración was speaking. Naturally, this caused the local office to start checking folks who asked about it and requiring them to get the "working" endorsement for their FM3s.

Like many things in México, a "let sleeping dogs lie" approach would of been much better, and a further policy for retired FM3 holders would be "don't ask, don't tell". However, the little wave of turbulence seems to have passed now, but we really won't know until the snowbird volunteers start showing up in droves.

(This post was edited by mazbook1 on Nov 16, 2009, 5:08 PM)


La Isla


Nov 16, 2009, 5:25 PM

Post #34 of 48 (3866 views)

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Re: [mazbook1] Shipping Items

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Your advice to "let sleeping dogs lie" could also be expressed as "don't ask and you won't be told (to get permission to volunteer!) is sensible. While living in Mexico, don't look for more official "trámites" to deal with than are absolutely necessary!


MazDee

Nov 17, 2009, 9:52 AM

Post #35 of 48 (3803 views)

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Re: [rockydog85251] Volunteer Endorsement

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Friends of Mexico, the organization which probably uses the most foreign volunteers in Mazatlán, just announced procedures for getting the endorsement from IMN. There will be NO charge for the endorsement. FOM has been working with the IMN to make the procedure as simple as possible. Apparently, people with tourist visas who work only an hour or so a week will not need an endorsement. I don't know much about the procedure, but wanted to point out that there will be no charge for this.


bournemouth

Nov 17, 2009, 11:03 AM

Post #36 of 48 (3791 views)

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Re: [MazDee] Volunteer Endorsement

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I read a report about this last week but couldn't, for the life of me, remember where I read it - maybe The News. Thanks for posting this, Dee.


Papirex


Nov 17, 2009, 8:15 PM

Post #37 of 48 (3732 views)

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Re: [La Isla] Shipping Items

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The requirement to have a working endorsement for a visa for unpaid volunteer work is recent, but not new and it is now required in several areas, but not everywhere yet.


There has recently been quite a bit of discussion about it on Carole Schmidt's San Miguel De Allende board: http://www.fallinginlovewithsanmiguel.com/ You may need to do some searching, a month or two ago, the American Consul for that area gave a presentation and answered many questions about the need for a working endorsement. The definitive answer so far seems to be a positive maybe.


Most charitable organizations probably do not have the funds to hire paid workers for all positions, hence the need for unpaid volunteers. I think that some dim-bulb in The Mexican Government did not think it through before this requirement was first implemented anywhere. It is already in place in some areas.


Rex
"The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved" - Victor Hugo


yucatandreamer


Nov 17, 2009, 9:23 PM

Post #38 of 48 (3719 views)

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Re: [mazbook1] Shipping Items

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Personally I think that vetting volunteers in some shape or form is a good thing. How many volunteers are have an agenda that may be motivated by religious or political motives. So many of the volunteers here in Yucatan are Evangelical Christians whose good works tend to destroy families and communities. Political liberals without any understanding of what they are doing jump into internal Mexican politics, volunteering their expertise and ideology. Luckily for both types of volunteers, they can leave and go home when it suits them.

This is not to say that there are many good people who volunteer time, money and labor to worthy causes. However Mexico has a responsibility to its own citizens to check out foreign volunteers, and Mexico has a right to direct how and where good works should be done.


Georgia


Nov 18, 2009, 6:32 AM

Post #39 of 48 (3701 views)

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Re: [Starcradle] Shipping Items

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Yes, and when you carry jewelry in carry on luggage watch it like a hawk when the TSA guys in the US go through it. My daughter and I have had some very questionable experiences. I usually wear the jewelry as I go through and then put it back in my carry on. Do not trust these guys. They are just ordinary people who work for low wages.


esperanza

Nov 18, 2009, 6:42 AM

Post #40 of 48 (3695 views)

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Re: [Starcradle] Shipping Items

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Have you looked into http://www.uship.com? You can post a request for shipping bids and see the quotes you get. There's no obligation to use any of the services offered to you, but you just might find something you like.

We used this service about six months ago to send a large, fragile, expensive item from Morelia, Michoacán to Santa Barbara, California and were extremely satisfied with the shipper. He asked a lot of questions about caring for the item in transit, he was careful, professional, and the price was right.

You will want a quote from your location in the USA to your location in Mexico, of course.

http://www.mexicocooks.typepad.com









Starcradle

Nov 18, 2009, 9:23 AM

Post #41 of 48 (3671 views)

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Re: [Georgia] Shipping Items

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Thank you for the continued suggestions!

If I wore all of my jewelry and subsequently placed them in my carry-on, I would be loaded down like Mr. T, only 10 times worse and without the gold. Therefore, it is not an option.

It seems that I will have to place some of my jewelry in my checked luggage, and the remainder in my carry-on. Although there are few pieces, if any, that could be considered "tempting," I realize there is an inherent risk involved.

Regarding the shipment of my items, I acquired four priority mail/flat rate shipping boxes this morning. Some have informed me that this service is trustworthy, while others have suffered through bad experiences.

Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that my items--whether jewelry, CDs, DVDs, vinyl records, etc.--will not be stolen, whatever method I use.



richmx2


Nov 18, 2009, 10:18 AM

Post #42 of 48 (3657 views)

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Re: [yucatandreamer] Shipping Items

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You have to remember the history of this country (the Mexicans certainly do). Foreigners have been imposing unsought "assistance" since 1521, when Cortés claimed he was spreading the gospel... and smallpox.


http://mexfiles.net
http://editorialmazatlan.com


Camille

Nov 18, 2009, 11:13 PM

Post #43 of 48 (3607 views)

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Re: [richmx2] Shipping Items

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But what better place than the dining table to begin to make peace?


richmx2


Nov 19, 2009, 12:58 PM

Post #44 of 48 (3565 views)

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Re: [Camille] Shipping Items

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A Wampoag gentleman named Squanto did just that... had a nice sit down dinner for the expats in Plymouth, Mass in 1621... and look what happened. Squanto himself died of smallpox a couple months later, and there weren't any Wampoags within a very few years. He should have demanded to see their visas.


http://mexfiles.net
http://editorialmazatlan.com


Starcradle

Dec 1, 2009, 7:50 PM

Post #45 of 48 (3392 views)

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Re: Shipping Items

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The Priority Mail/flat rate customs form is quite annoying.

On a side note: Susan, I am happy to report that we were recently able to acquire a new laptop for $200! I will (obviously) be taking it to Mexico with me.



La Isla


Dec 2, 2009, 10:33 PM

Post #46 of 48 (3247 views)

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Re: [Starcradle] Shipping Items

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In Reply To
The Priority Mail/flat rate customs form is quite annoying.




I filled the Priority Mail customs form out the other day before my return to Mexico to send myself some books and CDs. I didn't find the it annoying at all. Of course, I skipped the part where you are supposed to put the value and weight of each individual item you're shipping!


Starcradle

Dec 4, 2009, 9:45 AM

Post #47 of 48 (3189 views)

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Re: [La Isla] Shipping Items

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La Isla,

If I have any questions regarding the form, it is okay if I send you a private message?



La Isla


Dec 4, 2009, 9:54 AM

Post #48 of 48 (3183 views)

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Re: [Starcradle] Shipping Items

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Of course, you can send me a private message, Starcradle.
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