Living in Cuernavaca, Mexico On Less Than $500 USD a Month

by | Feb 16, 2022 | Mexico | 1 comment

Though I came with a one-way ticket not knowing how long I would stay, I have lived in Mexico for nearly six months. During this time, I have been able to assess the cost of living. I will share with you how I lived in Cuernavaca, Mexico for less than $500 USD a month.

You can find the town about 56 miles southeast of Mexico City. With its abundance of modern services and amenities and the year-round temperate climate, Cuernavaca is well-known for its upscale and boutique hotels. Even better: this lovely city has one of the largest expat communities in Mexico.

But how about the financials?

Mexico’s current minimum wage sits at 123.22 Pesos (6 USD) per day, which comes to 180 USD per month. This is not a sufficient amount to cover your basic needs or enjoy a decent quality of life. But let’s break down the cost of living to get a better understanding.

Housing and Accommodation in Cuernavaca

Mexico City outside a USD 230 Apartment
Mexico City outside a USD 230 Apartment

Regarding accommodation, it’s just like anywhere else. There are plenty of options available; renting a room with Airbnb, an entire apartment, or purchasing a property.

The monthly rent of a single room in a shared apartment or house with all utilities included could range from 3,000 to 5,000 MXN, equivalent to 130-230 USD.

There are many options available, especially in the higher range because of the city’s history. After the conquest by the Aztecs and later by the Spanish, Cuernavaca became a popular getaway destination for wealthy Spaniards living in Mexico City.


Today, it continues to be frequented by middle-and upper-class Mexicans who own homes in the provinces.

Food and Home Supplies in Cuernavaca

Cuernavaca Street Market by Tatiana Moreno
Cuernavaca Street Market by Tatiana Moreno

But let’s talk about my favorite subject because of its variety, color, and mix of flavors. You guessed it: food!

It is inexpensive; 1 kg (2 lbs) of tortillas, which are part of most Mexican meals, cost around 0.80 cents.

Based on what I have spent during my stay here, the food cost for a person per month from the local market and supermarket comes to around 2,000 MXN, $90 USD.

Transportation in Cuernavaca

I have not used local transportation, but I know that it costs 8 MXN per ticket, that’s around 0.30 cents. It is 3 MXN cheaper in the capital, equivalent to 0.20 cents per ride. In Cuernavaca, you can also take a cab or call an Uber.

Other Expenses in Cuernavaca

Based on the above information, we could have a buffer of around 150 USD for other expenses, and that’s assuming that our accommodation costs 230 USD, our food, and home supplies 90 USD, and 30 USD for getting around. If you would like to have a meal in a restaurant, it could range from 15 to 20 USD. But there is an option for everyone. There are also many small Taco places around, which will serve way cheaper food, and it’s equally good in my book. Here’s the breakdown.

Living Cost Breakdown in Cuernavaca by Tatiana Moreno

It’s all about choices. What are your budget preferences? Share with us below!

by: Tatiana Moreno