The gig economy has revolutionised the way businesses near and far employ staff. With more demand for remote employees and contractors than ever before, freelancers and digital nomads have some decisions to make about their next work site.
After working on the west coast of Mexico for 3 months, I have been able to jump between cities to find that ideal fit and San Pancho ticks all the boxes.
Here are the 5 reasons you should choose San Pancho, Nayarit as your next freelance destination.
1. Cost of Living
With your mind on money and money on your mind, it’s important to find places that are affordable and with good access to necessities**. San Pancho hosts an assortment of accommodation options to suit any budget. Aside from the type of accommodation, cost variables include, vicinity from the main business district/the beach and at what time of the year you are visiting. During the low season, the cost is slightly cheaper than that of Puerto Vallarta and Sayulita. For a studio home, with a private bathroom, away from the main precinct, expect to pay anywhere between $35AUD to $45AUD a night for an extended stay – 3 weeks and greater. Closer to the main street, these prices rise by about 20% at the very least.
The cost of staple groceries vary from store to store. You will find an Oxxo (Mexico’s 7/11) at the start of the main road (Av Terecer Mundo), just off the main highway. Further down the road is a Kiosko (the alternative to Oxxo) and little further down, you’ll find an independent grocer just off the main road. Alternatively, for the best deals, you can travel to Mega in Bucerias, which will take you 40 minutes on the bus for 40 pesos, one way. Ultimately, I have found that living costs in San Pancho are about the same and less in some instances than that of Puerto Vallarta and Sayulita.
See full list of prices below
Even being tucked away behind mountains and cornered by ocean, San Pancho is well connected to major hubs. For major shopping excursions, the central bus stop at the beginning of the main road (Av. Tercer Mundo) will take you to Bucerias, where you will find Mega and Chedraui. Follow the bus route and you will find yourself in Puerto Vallarta. Buses operate daily and are quite frequent – every 15 minutes from San Pancho and every 30 minutes on the way back. A one way ticket to Bucerias is 40 pesos, to Puerto Vallarta 100 pesos.
Relative to its neighbour towns, Sayulita and Puerto Vallarta, San Pancho is quiet; making it conducive to a productive work environment. Locals are polite and tend to keep to themselves but more than happy to lend a hand if asked. If you are staying in the primary business area, expect to hear street sounds and conversations at night but certainly nothing to distract from sleep and work. During busy periods, like Semana Santa, there will be larger than usual crowds, so I advise finding accommodation slightly distant from the restaurant district.
4. Reliable Wi-Fi
The Wi-Fi in San Pancho was one of the fastest I experienced throughout my stay in Mexico. But it hasn’t always been rainbows and butterflies. During my first stay in San Pancho, the internet capabilities of the AirBnB I was staying in were shocking. Generally speaking, your fastest net speeds will be found in the bigger towns, like Sayulita and Puerto Vallarta. However, on my return to San Pancho, I made arrangements to visit the Airbnb prior to booking, to test the internet speed. My advice is to verify the internet speed and reliability with the host or reception before booking accommodation, as connectivity can vary between different places. If they are unsure, just ask if you can make a trip over to test the internet. It’s certainly worth the trip to assure you of a functional work space.
5. Lots of things to do
The freelance life can be mentally and physically draining, so we all know the importance of a day off. For a little town, San Pancho is packed with activities. From open mic sessions, to yoga, to horseback riding and of course surf lessons. The town also has a craft-beer brewery! Every few weeks there are festivals or celebratory events. The town will shortly host a 3-day Reggaeton festival in memory of Bob Marley.