México

Basics Facts

 

• A total of 68 languages are spoken in Mexico. One of them is Spanish, which is the officially-recognised national language. The other 67 are indigenous languages which are not recognised by any official source.
• Mexico covers an impressive land area of 1,964,375 kilometers squared, maxing it the 15th largest country on the planet.
• Mexico is the 11th most populous nation in the world and home to roughly 116,220,947 people. Population density is around 57 inhabitants per kilometer squared.
• The volcano, Pico de Orizaba, rests at 5610 meters above sea level and is the highest point in Mexico.
• Laguna Salada, at 10 meters below sea level, is the lowest point in Mexio.
• The United States, Guatemala and Belize all share borders with Mexico.
• Mexico operates within three different time zones: Central, Pacific and Northwest.
• Chihuahua is the largest state in Mexico, covering 247,455 kilometers squared.
• Tlaxcala is the smallest state in Mexico, covering 3,991 kilometers squared
• The colours of the Mexican flag originally stood for: green (hope), white (unity), and red (blood of the nation’s heroes).
• The currency used is the Mexican Peso.

Reasons to Visit

 

• One of the main reasons to visit Mexico is to see, firsthand, the real effects of a country which has been profoundly influenced by many cultures and times — influences which have taken the physical forms of historic Hispanic cultural traditions, ancient Mayan ruins, and US modern construction and principals.

• The hustle and bustle on the streets of Mexico’s main cities, particularly Distrito Federal, is another reason to visit Mexico. Life is never dull and the warm reception of the welcoming Mexican people just adds to city-life flavour.

• Food lovers will have a wonderful time in Mexico. Many of the recipes are based on the use of corn and cornflour, including the famous Mexican tacos which you will find on all street corners across the whole of the country. A few good shots of tequila of an evening will also get you in the Mexican swing of things.

Life in Mexico

 

Mexico’s political constitution was formed in 1917. Its federal government is separated into three distinctive sectors — those being the judicial, the executive and the legislative sectors — and is representative of the United Mexican States. The president of Mexico works as both the head of state and the head of government. Mexico operates under a multi-party, democratic political system.

Public education is monitored by Mexico’s Secretariat of Public Education, or the Ministry of Education in Mexico. The ministry is in charge of the regulation of all educational standards in Mexico. The only exception to this rule are the country’s “autonomous” universities. All private educational institutions in Mexico must also comply with mandatory approvals set forth by the Secretariat of Public Education and they must be officially registered with this body in order to legally offer tuition of any kind in Mexico.

Mexico’s Federal Government is in charge of finding the funds and maintaining a system which works to ensure that a state healthcare option is available for all Mexicans unable to afford the costs of private healthcare. The private healthcare options in Mexico function within what is known as a free-market system. This means that you can only access the kind of healthcare you want to access via Mexico’s private healthcare system if you have the means of paying for that care. Both private institutions and individual medical professionals offer their services to those who can afford them in Mexico.

 

Top destinations

 

• Puerto Vallarta — A visit to Puerto Vallarta in the Sierra Madre Mountains will reveal an incredible 64-kilometre stretch of Mexican coastline. The city is also known for its tasty cuisine.

Oaxaca — The southeastern spot, Oaxaca, isn’t just an architectural jewel. It’s also a great place to visit if you want to mix a little bit of mountain trekking with beach relaxation and jungle adventure. Oaxaca has a little bit of everything to offer.

Cozumel — One of the best locations for watersports, such as snorkeling, kayaking, surfing, and deep-sea fishing, Cozumel is also home to some of Mexico’s most crystal-clear waters and some of its most prized coral.

Mexico Distrito Federal — Mexico’s capital city was built over what was left of the legendary Aztec city of Tenochtitlan. In 1978, routine maintenance work unearthed a huge stone disc (3.25 metres in diameter) which was the first of more than 7000 subsequent objects belonging to the Aztecs which have since been discovered.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

 

Passport/ Visa Requirements

 

• Is a visa required?: Depending on your country of origin. For more information, please check this website: http://www.projectvisa.com
• Allocation of Tourist Visa: Tourist Visa is received at the airport of México City
• Duration of Tourist visa: Lasts up to 90 days

• Tourist Visa Extension: It is possible to extend by leaving the country and flying in again or by paying an extension fee

• Passport validation: Must be valid for at least 6 months

Return/onward flight ticket: Generally not required upon entering the country
Confirmation of Funds: Declaration of sufficient funds will not be required

 

Money/Currency

 

Currency: Mexican Peso
Inform Banks: Give the dates of travel and destinations to prevent security blocks on your bank and credit cards
• Cash: Always take enough cash to cover your expenses for the first week in case there is a problem with your bank cards or access to ATM’s is limited.
• Credit Options: Good idea to have at least two different credit/debit card options i.e. MasterCard, Visa, Maestro, or Cirrus.
• Travellers Cheques: Will only be able to exchange in major cities and best to take them in Dollars
• Western Union: If at any time you have any problems in accessing money you can use Western Union transfer. Money can be sent from your home country and received in Mexico the same day.

 

Healthcare

 

Vaccinations: Hepatitis A&B + Typhoid + Rabies recommended
Malaria medication: Generally not necessary
See local GP: If vaccinations or medication is required see the doctor 4-6 weeks before your departure
Less than 4 weeks before you leave: You should still see a health-care provider for needed vaccines and other medications and information about how to protect yourself from illness and injury while travelling.
Check the following for up to date information: World Health Organization, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

TESTIMONIALS

''I came to the Spanish School in April 2012 at the start of my travels in Latin America. It gave me the perfect start to learning Spanish. The friendliness of the staff and the warm atmosphere made studying there a joy. As a total beginner, the language was made to feel as less daunting as possible and I thorou...ghly enjoyed my time there. I would not hesitate to recommend this place to anyone.'' Spanish course. John Townsend, UK

 

''I was two weeks in Puerto Vallarta the summer of 2012. I travelled there alone and the school organized a host family for me really close to the school and the beach. Perfect! I really liked the way they teached us spanish there. I did everything from learning from a book, playing games, singing songs and making excursion to learn new words. This was great! You could also eat really good and homemade mexican lunches at the school. And they had a cooking course for us.'' Spanish course. Tonje O., Norway

 

''The style of the Spanish school is excellent. I adore the personal nature and "homey" feel of the hacienda style campus. Everyone in the school felt like someone you could trust! The best thing about the school is the people, Susie at reception, Mayoli in the kitchen and of course my teachers Sergio and Enrique, they were all wonderful.'' Spanish course. A. Grubard, USA

 

''I very much enjoyed my time at this school. I have made some very good friends and at the same time learned to speak Spanish. I would love to come back and continue my education one day if time allows, hopefully in a less humid time of the year.Coming to this school has encouraged me to look into trying out a different language in another country. I will miss you all and look forward to seeing you again one day.'' Spanish course. G. Penfold, New Zealand