A Look at the Salaries of 25 Occupations in Mexico

If you want to know if your pension, Social Security, or annuity payment will be enough to live in a foreign country, a good rule of thumb is to look at the salaries in that country. It is a simple economic truth that if the salaries are lower across the board, the cost of living is lower. It also stands to reason that if your monthly retirement benefit is higher than the average salaries for many occupations, you will be just fine.

I created a list showing the median monthly income for 25 occupations in Mexico ranging from waiter to commercial pilot. Although this list does not contain every possible occupation, it is a good representation of pay scales in Mexico.

The data was obtained from misalario.org, a nonprofit organization that provides information to both workers and employers in Mexico concerning salaries, labor law and careers.

Occupations and Monthly Income

The following shows the median gross monthly income for a person with 5 years of experience in the listed occupation:

1. Teacher, Primary School: $11,878 pesos ($642.05 USD)

2. Security Guard: $5,056 pesos ($273.29 USD)

3. University Law Professor: $17,323 pesos ($936.37 USD)

4. Chef: $11,638 pesos ($629.08 USD)

5. Cook in a restaurant: $6,623 pesos ($358.00 USD)

6. Lawyer: $18,451 pesos ($997.35 USD)

7. Legal Assistant: $11,972 pesos ($647.13 USD)

8. Cashier in a Supermarket: $5,299 pesos ($286.43 USD)

9. Auto mechanic: $7,761 pesos ($419.51 USD)

10. Foreign language interpreter: $17,507 pesos ($946.32 USD)

11. Waiter: $6,394 pesos ($345.62 USD) …so tip well!!!

12. Carpenter: $7,548 pesos ($408.00 USD)

13. Taxi Driver: $7,726 pesos ($417.62 USD)

14. Hotel Manager: $17,332 pesos ($936.86 USD)

15. Customs or Immigration Agents: $16,533 pesos ($893.67 USD)

16. Commercial Pilot: $38,395 pesos ($2,075.40 USD)

17. Bank Teller: $9,662 pesos ($522.27 USD)

18. Account Manager in a Bank: $16,530 pesos ($893.51 USD)

19. Data Base Administrator: $20,562 pesos ($1,111.45 USD)

20. IT Support Technician: $12,044 pesos ($651.02 USD)

21. Human Resources Manager: $21,180 pesos ($1,144.86 USD)

22. Air Conditioner Technician: $12,504 pesos ($675.89 USD)

23. Pediatric Nurse: $10,881 pesos ($588.16 USD)

24. Gynecologist: $25,969 pesos ($1,403.72 USD)

25. Firefighter: $5,649 pesos ($305.35 USD)

The salaries in U.S. dollars (USD) were calculated based on an exchange rate of 18.5.

Interesting factoid: #16 is only for Mexican citizens by birth. To learn why, check out Mexico: Surprising Jobs Off-Limits to Foreigners.

Let’s Wrap This Up

When compared to countries like the United States or Canada, the salaries in Mexico are significantly lower; however, this means that the cost of living in Mexico is also significantly lower. This fact compels many of us retirees to move south of the border. Although our monthly pensions, annuity payments, or Social Security payments are sometimes barely enough to get by in our home country — we can live very well within our means here in Mexico.

For those of you who are still at working age and want to move to Mexico, I strongly recommend trying to find some source of income online. There are some useful links to remote job sites at Remote Jobs: The Key to Funding a New Life in Paradise.

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About the Author

Q-Roo Paul
Paul Kurtzweil (Q-Roo Paul) is a former lieutenant from the Polk County Sheriff's Office in Florida. During his 25-year career, he received numerous commendations to include two of the agency's top honors: a Meritorious Service Medal and a Medal of Valor. In 2015, Paul retired and moved to Mexico with his wife. He now spends his days enjoying the Riviera Maya and blogging from the beach.

20 Comments on "A Look at the Salaries of 25 Occupations in Mexico"

  1. Liz Trujillo | July 28, 2016 at 1:19 pm | Reply

    Useful and factual information. However, I did not think American citizens can work in Mexico? Can you inform on this? Thank you.

    • A U.S. citizen can work in Mexico, and several do. You can create your own business and create jobs or you can get sponsored by a business. Of course under Mexican law, 90% of the workforce must be Mexican (excluding management).

  2. Kathryn schnell | July 28, 2016 at 1:54 pm | Reply

    Keep blogging! Such a resource. What about hairdressing?? I didn’t see that on the list. Could I work in a salon or open up a space??

    • I do know a few expat hairdressers. You will always do better operating your own business and servicing other expats.

  3. Yes, and here is a good option for earning good retirement income in Mexico. Serve the tourists. I have been operating a wonderful small family resort for the last 5 years. Although it is only 3 casitas around a lovely pool at a gorgeous beach, I easily make enough income in less than 6 months to live like a queen all year here in Baja California. I plan to put my sweet spot known as Baja Beach Oasis on the market soon, so if anybody is interested, please contact me at bobbimc1@gmail.com. bajabeachoasis.com

  4. Mark Quiring | July 28, 2016 at 4:14 pm | Reply

    Do you know of any US physicians who have retired to Mexico and are practicing there?
    Thank you, Mark

    • No, we don’t know of any. All the doctors that we have met have been Mexican.

      • MARK QUIRING | August 3, 2016 at 8:29 pm | Reply

        Wasn’t sure if there are brokers there to facilitate the process to get the proper documents done etc… I went to medical school in Monterrey, NL Mex. thus fluent in Spanish and was just thinking when the time comes to make the move if I would be able to work part-time if I wanted to. I’m checking with my medical school.
        Thank you, have enjoyed your blogs.

  5. Did you know that only Mexican citizens (by birth, not naturalized) can be airplane pilots in Mexico? Same with flight attendants and aircraft mechanics.

  6. Very interesting information. Thanks for making this available.

  7. Do you know what the condo maids and other condo staff earns on an average?

    • I’m not sure what they make here. If a resident hires a cleaning person, they usually pay between $200- $500 pesos depending on the number of hours spent there. For example $500 pesos ($25 USD) for 6 hours.

  8. Hey Paul Great article. What would real estate agents make?
    Thanks Rod

  9. What about dentists?

  10. Seriously enjoy all the blogs but now I have two questions.What can you suggest for buying a house in P.V. and you say you pay insurance,is that for health or ??? Thanks,look forward to your comments!

  11. Kelli D Alves | April 26, 2017 at 7:38 pm | Reply

    Why should one tip a waiter well in Mexico when they make as much as other occupations with the same skill level? The reason we tip waiters in the USA is because they make a much lower minimum wage ($2.10 per hour USD). So, if you suggest that we tip waiters well, then I would suggest that you advise tipping ALL low wage earners in Mexico well. It’s only fair…and logical.

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