** FOREWORD

Here’s what I know about Amy Jones. She’s the one you want in your corner if you’re considering a new life in Mérida. Amy is personable, filled with joy, and a font of knowledge about Yucatán and its capital city. And now she’s written this book. She’s a natural to write this guidebook. As a native Texan, Amy understands the perspective and concerns of newcomers from north of the border. She’s compiled her knowledge and insight to prepare you for your move here — and to think through all your obligations and potential pitfalls.

Now, you might think an old-fashioned guide is obsolete when there’s so much information for free on social media. But anyone who’s dared to ask an innocent question on one of Yucatán’s numerous Facebook groups learns quickly how confusing and dispiriting online forums can be. Who among these strangers are you to believe? Worse, the level of snark and sarcasm is astounding. It’s amazing how an innocent question can go south. Well, here’s your judgment-free zone right here in these pages.

Amy comes here with not just an open heart but the credentials to supply good hard information. She’s lived and worked on the Peninsula for years. Her locally-born husband Angel is a huge asset, as well, when it comes to the insider knowledge that helps her followers thrive in this beautiful but often bewildering place.

What is insider knowledge? It’s an understanding of the nuts and bolts required to be here legally, control your finances, and function as well as you can. Then thrive. It’s also an appreciation of the culture and traditions that still exist in this place. It’s up to you how much you want to try replicating the life you’re used to. Frankly, it’s easier now than it used to be. But if you ever plan to walk out your front door, it’s good to know a little about the people you’ll encounter. Believe me, as a foreigner, you don’t want to rub people the wrong way.

The Move to Mérida Guide could change your life. It will help you make this leap with your eyes wide open. Does this move really add up for you? Or is Mérida just a romantic flash-in-the-pan? A lot of people who move here end up moving on because — let’s face it — life here isn’t for everybody. Others stay here for decades, often never returning “home.” Home is here.

This is a book that didn’t exist when my partner and I began property hunting. Wow, do I wish it did. Luckily for you, here’s the kind of resource that every expat community should have: honest, independent, and comprehensive.

Lee Steele
Publisher, Yucatán Magazine