| Be cautious and be patient || Jul 27, 2004 |
I was born in Mexico City, where I lived for more than 35 years. I left Mexico City in April of last year, and I currently reside in the US.
I first have to say that making a living from free-lance translation in Mexico City is not always easy. In any case, it takes years to build a solid base of clients that will provide full-time work. Many translators I know do so on a part-time basis, and have another full-time job, which is the one that really puts bread on their tables. But wait and hear from other fellow Prozians in Mexico who are full-time translators; maybe their views will be more optimistic.
As for the visa, I again regret to be of little encouragement, but what I have seen -so far- is that it can be quite difficult to obtain an FM-2 (the type of document that will allow you to live and work in Mexico with some sort of permanency) as a free-lance translator. The government will probably tell you that there are many qualified Mexican translators, and that no foreign ones are needed. Unless, of course, your translation pair is an uncommon one and a Mexican company could prove they are in dire need of your services. But then again, let's wait for other colleagues answers which might provide more insight!
When I lived in Mexico, I met a few Canadians, British and Americans that were trying to do exactly what you want to do. Most of them were barely scraping a living as English teachers, free-lance journalists, reporters, editors, and whatever job came up, and most of them were doing it "illegally" because they had no permit to work in Mexico... Nevertheless, it looked like they were having fun, and were not too worried about the implications of living on a day to day basis, and "outside" the immigration law. The ones who appeared to have it easier were those who had married a Mexican national, and for whom getting an FM-2 had been easier.
I am really sorry I cannot be more encouraging, but my comments are based on what I saw was going one during the time I lived in Mexico City, and I doubt that things have changed much. Again, maybe someone else will be able to provide a brighter view. In any case, I wish you good luck; Mexico City is, indeed, an amazing city.
[Edited at 2004-07-28 00:06]
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