The Space for Expatriates
So let’s finish off a few more topics on the cost of living in Los Cabos. There are a few items I didn’t get to in the last few posts, notably the cost of gasoline, propane and TV.
Gasoline is still relatively inexpensive here. The prices are set by the national government, and only they are allowed to sell. So all stations in an area have the same price per liter and it doesn’t pay to shop around. When I filled up last week the price was 9.96 pesos for a liter of regular and 10.50 pesos for premium. If we assume a 13.5/1 exchange rate (which is today’s) that puts the price at $2.78 for regular and $2.94 for premium. The next possibility of a price change is in October. The real trick is to get all the gas you’re paying for; the stations are notorious. But that’s another blog…
Now before we get off things automotive, I may have neglected to mention car insurance. YOU MUST HAVE MEXICAN INSURANCE. Your U.S. policy will not cover you down here. Period. If you get into an accident and don’t have proof of Mexican insurance you go to jail regardless of who’s fault the accident was. I just checked, the policy I took out last January was $261 US, I’m pretty sure that’s much less than it would be in the States. There are a number of providers, notably ING, Qualitas, and GNP. If you are bringing a car down to Cabo you’ll need the insurance before you cross the border, if you buy it at the border you’ll pay a premium. Contact an insurance agent before you start your trip or consult AAA. Besides having the best Baja guidebook they also offer Mexican insurance. As I recall the rates weren’t bad.
OK, the cost of propane. I checked this morning and the current rate is 6.87 pesos per liter, so that comes to $1.92 per gallon. Trick here: the gas companies must print the cost per liter on the side of the truck; you might want to do your own math when having your tank filled.
Now for TV. Ahem. There is a local satellite service called SKY. They have a variety of packages starting at 226 pesos, or $16.75 per month. Since I don’t have SKY I don’t know how many English language channels they have, but I do hear complaints about limited choices. What most ex-pats do, which is not specifically legal, is bring their own. If you’re from the US you’ll want DISH Network, and from Canada STAR Choice. DirectTV does not perform in Cabo. The best deal is if you have someone willing to let you piggy-back on their account by installing a new receiver in their ‘guest cottage’. Otherwise there are a few people here bootlegging the services but you will of course pay a premium.
Now I know I’ve forgotten something else, please leave a comment and let me know!
Carol Billups is Broker/Owner of Cabo Realty Pros. She has enjoyed working with both buyers and sellers for over eleven years and still thinks hers is the best job on earth. She is also the real estate columnist for Los Cabos Magazine. You can read more of her articles on the website blog www.caborealtypros.com. You can reach her from the U.S. or Canada at 1-760-481-7694, or in Cabo at 044-624-147-7541. You can listen to our 24/7 broadcast on http://www.livecabo.net for a mix of happy music, weather reports and local information.
© 2012 Carol S. Billups