Mexicans Look Beyond The Northern Border

Oct 21, 2016

Mexican national Isela Montalban moved to Munich, Germany five years ago because of the quality of life and opportunity.
Credit Isela Montalban

It’s one of the largest migrations in modern history; Mexicans moving to the United States. But a 2015 Pew Research Center report revealed a reversal of that flow more Mexicans are leaving the U.S. than coming in. Institute of Mexicans Abroad data reveals that instead more and more Mexicans are going to other countries.    
“Of course, no one wants to go back to Mexico. No one! “ said Isela Montalban.

Montalban is from Tepic, Mexico. She says she wanted to come to the U.S. to expand her career horizons and complete a masters degree but Mexican friends already here talked her out it.  

“I have heard that a lot of people went to the USA, they wanted to go to the USA and  anyhow for me it is a country it has many troubles.” Montalban said “I get the feeling Latinos are not well paid in America.”

So Montalban went to Germany where she works for an international logistics company. She says she was impressed by excellent salaries, a high standard of living and the benefits employees are entitled to such as sick and maternity leave.

“What I find here there is always this balance with the family and work. This balance with work-I don’t know how you call it.. for Germans it is really important.” Montalban said

Though Montalban says it did take some time to adjust to the colder climate and more reserved personalities as well.

“It was difficult anyway at least here in Munich they are not that open” Montalban said “It is not like Mexico where you go one week and you will have a bunch of friends.’

Montalban isn’t the only Mexican attracted to German prosperity or to rethink a move to the U.S.  Institute of Mexicans Abroad data shows in just the last four years there has been a more than doubling of Mexican nationals in a number other first world economies.

From 49 thousand to 118,250 in Canada, 23,000 to 50,000 thousand in Spain and in the 5700 to 12,000 in the UK.

“I get about 5 to 10 inquiries from Mexican people every day,”  Laura Morales said. Morales is an immigration attorney based in the U.K.. Morales struck out on her own four years ago – starting a firm catering to Spanish speakers trying to move to the UK.

“It is definitely a good business opportunity …“I realized there was a need for legal advice out there and that is how I started working with Mexican people.” Morales said.

Morales says a lot of her clients have been in the U.S. previously…Most are college educated, have highly compensated professional careers and have passed English speaking tests.

Morales says while interest is rising- U.K. immigration policies are getting more stringent.