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Why I Decided to Give Birth in Mexico

Why I Decided to Give Birth in Mexico

I was pregnant in 4 countries and all were in different languages. I had prenatal visits in English, Italian, Polish and Spanish. Partially by choice, partially because of the situation.

When I was pregnant with my first son Dylan we moved from the US to Italy, only to run into a ton of complications and ultimately going to Poland last minute to give birth (full story here).

Ultimately it was a very good birth experience, so when I was pregnant with my second son Holden, even though we lived in the US we considered going elsewhere for the birth pretty early on and had good experience. Why?

Reason no. 1: Financial

We naturally had health insurance in the US and I had most of my prenatal visits with a doctor whom I liked. I had my 20-week ultrasound in Poland, because I was traveling and also because I couldn’t get an appointment in the US for some weird reason and just scheduled one there instead for $50.

However, when you’re self-employed and have pre-existing conditions our insurance options were limited to two options and each had the same deductible – about $8k personal and $17k for a family, which means that staying in the US would cost us about $8k or more.

The average cost of birth is about $10,000 in the US and more if you need a c-section which I did need. Needless to say, that would go into our family deductible, because some costs count into the new baby’s bills, not just mine.

More money for tacos!

Reason no. 2: Quality

I had my fair share of first-hand experiences with healthcare systems around the world, I was even studying nursing at some point and while doctors in the US aren’t bad per se they’re often limited by insurance requests and possibilities of getting sued.

In Europe, it’s not normal to have you induced at 39 weeks for no reason whatsoever, but in the US it’s completely normal. Many doctors will also not allow you to have a VBAC because they’re afraid of getting sued in case of a tear which is only 4%. This is completely not normal in Europe.

Regarding Mexico, there are many sayings that doctors will force you to have a c-section for no reason, but I’ll say this: that’s how I feel about the US, not Mexico and particularly not in private hospitals.

While c-sections rates are high they’re nowhere near as high as in the US where every third baby is a c-section baby.

I actually saw some records and even at my hospital under ‘high-risk pregnancies’ which naturally often have to be resolved by planned c-sections only about 20-30% had c-sections.

Most of my Mexican friends had either natural or water births. Even home births are on the rise.

In my case, it was pretty much obvious that I’d need a c-section and if I opted for staying in the US I was really given an option to just schedule it for whenever I want from week 37 a month in advance. Medically speaking it was completely unnecessary to do it so early and in both Europe and Mexico we were told to wait and stay monitored in case something changes.

The quality of pre-natal care was undeniably better and more personal than in the US. To the extend that I actually met my US doctor in the elevator 2 months after and he didn’t even know who I was after so many visits. In Mexico, the doctor knew me by my first name and was always reachable, even when he wasn’t working actually.

I wanted to have an option of choosing what I wanted to do. We also didn’t want to experience any surprises, such as husband could come only if he doesn’t leave – which wasn’t an option for us having a toddler at home or getting a call at 4am saying come now for your c-section, which with covid has happened to friends.

My hospital room

Reason no. 3: Citizenship

If you can get another passport, why not? Our kids automatically have 3 citizenships, but we decided why not give them the 4th one and get another citizenship for us. We started looking at which countries have the birthright which is pretty much almost entire Latin America, Tanzania, Canada and the US.

We considered Canada, but that would be pretty pricy and would only give citizenship to a child. Technically a child could sponsor us when he becomes an adult (the same rules apply to the US), but that didn’t seem very appealing.

Matt and I used to live in Mexico and have been debating buying a property for a while. However, it’s very difficult to get a property if you’re not Mexican as you technically cannot really own property – you can buy it but it’s more like leasing it.

Plus, both parents and siblings can become citizens after just 2 years of having a residency. It felt like a no-brainer to us.

Mexican baby


Tuesday 6th of June 2023

Hi Anna! I think I speak on behalf of all the expecting mamas out there-- blessed with growing bellies, raging hormones, and an insatiable wanderlust-- when I say, THANK YOU! The invaluable advice that you have gifted to us all on your website is appreciated more than you know :-)

I am a little late to the game. My fire academy training ran much longer than I had originally anticipated, and I am now 36 weeks pregnant. When I discovered just how pregnant I would be when academy ended, I wrote off the preliminary plan as a pipe dream and reconsidered giving birth in the US. As the date approaches, however, I find myself clinging tighter to my original idea. So here I find myself, trying to plan the birth of my baby girl in Mexico now- at 36 weeks. I live in California, and though I have a ticket to Cancun booked for 10 days from now (hoping to actually complete my training), I am beginning to think that driving may be a better option, seeing as I will be so close to my due date.

Do you know of any reputable hospitals or birthing centers relatively close to the border (or at least closer than Cancun)?

Anna Karsten

Friday 23rd of June 2023

I know there are various in Tijuana, but neither I or any of my friends or acquaintances have experience with them. Mexico City would be the "closest one" I can talk about and vouch for.


Thursday 1st of June 2023

Do you know anything about homebirth in Mexico? Mainly how to find a good homebirth midwife? Thanks for any help!

Anna Karsten

Saturday 3rd of June 2023

You can have a home birth. Just like most things in Mexico you find a midwife through the word of mouth honestly, just you have to make sure she's certified so she can submit paperwork needed. I know some in Playa del Carmen, but not sure where you're planning on giving birth.

Edward senah

Sunday 24th of July 2022

My girlfriend is pregnant and we are all Ghanaians,can I take her to Mexico to give birth on a tourist visa?? Will she and my baby become citizen??

Anna Karsten

Monday 25th of July 2022

Read the entire posts. No, only the baby gets citizenship. You and your girlfriend will need to apply for the residency.


Sunday 10th of July 2022

Hi Anna. I am in playa. I had a dream that my baby wants to be born here. So I did everything I could at 36 weeks to figure it out. I made it here and I love it. Back home I had a house fore and car fire and neither my fault both electrical. Allstate paid zero. I have been homeless careless and poor most do this pregnancy. My first dr appt was at 36 weeks. I had a miscarriage last year on my birthday July 19. The dr gave me a medication I wasn’t supposed to have that cause heart failure and non development. The er said that was the cause of my miscarriage. The dr never acknowledged it or apologized and I’ve been afraid to trust anyone since I’ve been pregnant again. This baby’s bday due date is July 19. I feel like “baby’s back” I’m so grateful and excited. I have little money and I’m new here. I want to live here. I’m having contractions. I have an Airbnb for now. I’m on 19th st between 10 and 15. I’m in Playa del Carmen close to the 88 beach. I appreciate any thing you can do. You are so valuable to take the time to post about your experiences. You helped me make this journey. I have $1990 pesos to last me until august 4, 2022. I have paid for my stay thru that date. I came with very little. I still have to pay for delivery, a Obgyn check get food and baby stuff. I had more when I came but I didn’t budget as well as I thought.

Love S7

Augustina Ojapah

Thursday 26th of May 2022

Thank you so much Anna, I only started reading your posts yesterday and I must say it has been very insightful.

I'm a Nigerian and have never been to Mexico neither do I have any ties in Mexico.

I'm four months gone and would really love to have my child in Mexico since it'd be highly beneficial to all of us.

Pls how do I even begin with getting the tourist visa or do I start by getting a hospital and Dr's appointment?.

Your expert opinion will be highly appreciated

Anna Karsten

Thursday 26th of May 2022

I'm not aware of visa situations for Nigerian passport holders but I know you need to apply for a tourist visa at the consulate.

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