Oct 6, 2010, 2:02 PM
Post #5 of 5
I drive down to San Carlos almost every week to attend a tech meeting, sometimes play cards with other expats there, and just to enjoy the area. I live about 85 miles to the north in Hermosillo, where it is always much hotter than in San Carlos. Going down there is a pleasant diversion for me.
It has become, over the years, very gringoficated. You can get by almost everywhere with English only. Most of the people I know there are so used to transacting their business in US dollars that the recent crack down (some of the stores will no longer accept dollars for purchases over US$100) has caused all sorts of indignation among the gringos there. There is apparently only one easily accessible ATM machine in SC and people there are always scrambling to exchange dollars for pesos. Even then, you can live and function there almost as if you were in the USA.
Most of the people I know there who rent, who do not own their own houses, pay their rent in US dollars. Most of the time it is a bank/electronic transfer from their US accounts to the US accounts of the landlords. And rents are high...very high, by Mexican standards. But I understand landlords are more like US landlords, maybe because many of them are Americans, and they are more responsive to their tenants, when there are problems in the rental. Mexican landlords will try to just ignore you or mañana you to death, or until you give up.
Everything is expensive there...more so than in Guaymas or Hermosillo, or in other little towns around. The cost of living most everywhere in Sonora is higher than elsewhere in Mexico. Hermosillo, where I live, is a thriving city, with lots of well off Mexicans, and the cost of living here is very high compared to most of the rest of Mexico. Nearby Guaymas (5-10 miles from SC depending on which part of SC and which part of Guaymas you are talking about) is supposed to be a little more reasonable. Rents are considerably lower there than in SC or in Hermosillo. Guaymas is very much a Mexican/Sonoran small city, while SC is very much a gringo retirement/resort area.
Someone who replied to your post that airfares to the US from Guaymas are very high but more reasonable from Hermosillo, was essentially correct. I would say prices from Guaymas are off the charts and prices from Hermosillo are astonomical. A 45 minute R/T flight from Hermosillo to Phoenix is rarely less than US$600. It is just staggering.
Follow Bouremouth's advice and check out the two local bulletin boards for specific help with the fishing. San Carlos is primarily a fishing town. It was historically, before the gringos took it over, and it still is. Just that now it is all sports fishing by wealthy gringos. To get fresh Mexican caught fish, like shrimp, go to Guaymas.
SC is naturally beautiful. Very hot in the summer and humid. Winters, to me, seem delightful, but I rarely spend more than 10-15 hours at a time there. I hear some people complain of cold and wind in the winter.