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canada or mexico

Travel Forums North America canada or mexico

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1. Posted by weaversgal (Full Member 107 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

Hello guys... wow its been a while since i have posted on here... i'm just after some thoughts which might help me to make a choice...

basically i went backpacking around asia from 1st dec 2005 until march this year... i didnt work at all over there as i had lots of money saved up and i have now been back in the uk for 8 months but to be honest i'm hating it, i have itchy feet and i want to go and see somewhere new...

i have been toying with the idea of either 1) taking a working year out in canada or 2) getting a TEFL qualification in mexico and working out there teaching english... i could take the course in playa del carmen which would be nice...

but i really dont know what i want to do... i currently work in travel sales and feel like i want a change of scene but to do either of these options then i will need around £1500...

what im stuck with is which one to do! has anyone taught english? should i go back to doing bar work kind of jobs for a bit in canada or have a total career change... i really am torn... i applied for a repping job but didnt get through which is a blessing in disguise because i dont really want to do it, i just wanna be in the sun again!

can anyone think of any other options that i cud take? i dont really fancy going to oz or nz for a year and working there, dont know why but it just doesnt appeal...

i think the reason i havent jumped into any of these options is because im not sure if i would concentrate properly coz when i did my backpacking around asia i could leave a place as and when i wanted and never spent more than two weeks in any one place! i think for me to travel again i might have to do it like that... hmm....

any thoughts would be appreciated!!

Steph x

2. Posted by Calcruzer (Travel Guru 1999 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

Wow, what a choice. I wish I had the extra time you do.

Both Canada and Mexico would be lots of fun, but I guess it depends, like you said, on how long you can stay in one spot--and do your sideline journeys from there on the weekends. Playa del Carmen in Mexico is on the eastern Mexican riviera. Playa del Carmen itself is extremely small--so you'll need to realize that. It is a fabulous place for those who love the beach, though--since it is just south of Cancun and across the straits from Cozumel.

Traveling througout Canada would be a blast, though, also. British Columbia (Vancouver and Victoria) and over to Jasper and Whister would be good. Then east to Toronto and Montreal and maybe a sideline trip to Nova Scotia or the Yukon. Obviously, this will be a much colder area than Mexico--even in the summertime.

I can't make your choice for you--they both seem like fun. Good luck with your final decision.


3. Posted by kezin (Budding Member 104 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

Quoting Calcruzer

Traveling througout Canada would be a blast, though, also. British Columbia (Vancouver and Victoria) and over to Jasper and Whister would be good. Then east to Toronto and Montreal and maybe a sideline trip to Nova Scotia or the Yukon. Obviously, this will be a much colder area than Mexico--even in the summertime.


- Not Sure if you are commenting on Yukon specifically or Canada generally. If the latter- then I would like to clarify something here. Canadian summers are NOT ' cool '. Excepting the South- West and coastal areas of B.C. as well as most of Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador- and of course the Far North- from June thru and into early October the ' bottom half ' of Canada BAKES !!! Even ' up ' in the Yukon the temp. can be unrelentingly hot at that time of year. In Manitoba, Ontario, and Quebec the Summer's are absolutely insufferable; unbelievable humidity. a former girlfriend of mine from the Phillipines travelled from Vancouver to Ottawa last summer and told me she experienced heat- along the way as well as in the Ottawa region itself- beyond anything she was accustomed to back in the Phillipines. Here in Vancouver it gets uncomfortably ' warm ' in the summer- but nothing like in other parts of the country, ' inland ' territories. :)

4. Posted by natewhd (Full Member 35 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

Having never been to Canada, I would recommend Mexico. If you want to earn money in Mexico it is easy to find jobs teaching English and you wont need certification.
I have spent long stays in Mexico and have always been offered jobs teaching English wherever I went. I dont have TEFL certification and dont think it is neccesary. Most of the time they will assign you to a conversation class for advanced speakers and you will conduct discussion forums ion current events helping them to practice what they have learned.
Mexico is one of my favorite countries, full of wonderful people, diverse culture, and even better food.
If you do decide to go I can give you info and maybe some contacts.

5. Posted by outdooren (Full Member 86 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

If I were you I would do both back to back. You would earn more money working at a low paying resort job in Canada than you would in Mexico. However, it may cost less to live in Mexico. A resort type job in Canada would provide you with accommodation. I would head straight into the Canadian Rockies, lots of options, lots of jobs, lots of fun and some money too!

Mexico would be a wonderful experience as well.

I've worked out west in the Rockies and also spent a while in Mexico studying Spanish and backpacking. Two totally different experiences. Both worthwhile. I still say you should do both while your in this part of the world.

6. Posted by Calcruzer (Travel Guru 1999 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!


I presume your friend must have hit some unusual weather along the way, because the average high temperatures in Ottawa, Winnepeg, and Montreal are around 78 to 79 degrees in the summer, with rainfall of about 3 to 4 inches per month.

I meant my comment to explain the weather in a relative way (comparing Canada to Mexico--with Mexico being quite a bit hotter than Canada--not to say that Canada is cold all the time).

Hey, if you really want to experience some US "baking" is, let me invite you down to Miami in the summer, where the average highs are 91 degrees and the average rainfall is 9 inches per month, or to Phoenix, where the average highs are 104 degrees (but with only 1 inch of rainfall, thank goodness).

And if you are the hardy type, come stay a while in Needles, California--where the average highs are 109 in July and 107 in August. Then we'll talk about "baking". In Death Valley, California the temperatures have hit 127 on numerous occasions (which is why the highway through Death Valley is state highway 127). The highway patrol routinely cruises this stretch of road not to give speeding tickets, but rather because if someone's car breaks down and they don't have water handy, they will be dead before sundown from dehydration.

Enjoy--but carry water through Death Valley all the time.

[ Edit: Edited on Jan 12, 2008, at 4:10 AM by Calcruzer ]

7. Posted by Cool Paul (Travel Guru 611 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

seems to me you don't really know what you are looking for. I say give oz/nz a shot It might just be the adventure you are looking for. mexico could be cool too

8. Posted by LindsJ (Budding Member 29 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

Having lived and worked in Canada my entire life, I would like to challenge the poster who said it's only about 79 here in the summer. In recent years, Canada has seen some of its hottest summers. What is commonly forgotten about is the humidity here.

To the original poster:

If you decide on coming to Canada, I would highly recommend trying out the Canadian Rockies. Not only are they beautiful but there is so much to do year round from white water rafting and kayaking to skiing and snowboarding. Look for a job at the resorts. Many of them have staff residences or will help you find somewhere to live for a reasonable price. While in Kananaskis, Alberta, I was paying $5/day. The great thing about it was that it came right off my paycheque and I never had to worry about saving up the money when rent was due. And the pay isn't horrible. Five months out there as a server paid off all my credit cards, got me a flight to Toronto and back for a visit and I still managed to save about another $1000. And I went out there broke.

9. Posted by Calcruzer (Travel Guru 1999 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!


78 to 79 degrees with 3 to 4 inches of rain is what "The Weather Channel" reports as the monthly summer averages (highs) in Montreal and Ottawa over the past 50 years:

I was speaking in generalities and based on the summers I have been in Canada and in Mexico (3 years ago was the last time for Canada, and two summers ago for Mexico)--and usually when the temperatures are lower, it tends to be cooler. Thus, based upon temperatures only, one would expect it to be cooler on average in Canada in the summer than in Mexico. That was all I was trying to say. (Keep in mind also that I was trying to compare all of Canada primarily to Playa del Carmen).

Perhaps you are correct that it is more humid in eastern Canada (records of average rainfall are not kept in Mexico, so I have no way to compare)--and I agree with you and kezin that such a situation can make things much more uncomfortable than places where there are much higher temperatures but where there are much lower rainfall totals.

It's like the old saying, "It's not the heat, it's the humidity".

Here's the average high and low temperatures for Cancun and for Puerto Vallarta for comparison purposes:

[ Edit: Edited on Jan 15, 2008, at 12:37 AM by Calcruzer ]

10. Posted by outdooren (Full Member 86 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

Ok, I have to disagree with it not being hot in Ontario and Quebec. I live in Northern Ontario, Canada and it is super hot here in the summer. Between 30-40'C, sometimes with cool nights, if lucky, usually too hot to sleep. Many ppl agree that they cannot live without air conditioners. Granted it may not be as hot as in Miami, but I can't say for sure. Most ppl here go swimming in the many lakes, many ppl have pools in their yards to cool off in. And usually we get that kind of rain in November in between Fall and Winter.

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