What’s it like to work as an Au Pair? One Insider Shares His Experience!

Have you ever considering work as an au pair? An Au Pair is a nanny for international families. The job can include child care, tutoring, driving, and more for the family that you get placed with, and work can be found around the world.

I interviewed Josh, a 22-year old Australian working as an au pair in Germany. He shared some serious insight, so if you want to work as an au pair and get paid to travel, keep reading to find out everything you need to know to land the job!


The Stats

When you work as an au pair, all of these numbers can vary by location and family so you need to be sure to get everything in writing in your contract before you start. These numbers reflect Josh’s experience with a family in Germany in 2018.

Average Income: 250 euros a month + 60 euros per month toward a language course

Free Housing/Utilities: Yes

Tax Free: Yes

Free Healthcare: Yes

Vacation Days: 2 days of paid vacation per month

Certifications Needed: No college degree is necessary, but offering a police clearance can help as you’re working with children. Any other work experience with kids or training can be helpful as well.

Contract Length: 6 months

Where to Get a Job: Josh recommends Au Pair World, and it’s the only site he used to land his position. You can also look around on Great Au Pair, New Au Pair, or AuPair.com among many other options.




Finances can vary drastically, but just know that the numbers are never going to be too high. One of the main draws of work as an au pair is integrating into the local lifestyle. That means more often that not you’ll live in the families house, share your meals with them, and even use their car. All of those benefits are free of charge, which makes your actual salary go down to accommodate them.

Each country has a different pay rate, but in Germany Josh is making 250 euros per month. He also gets free housing, utilities, and his own car to use in his free time.

Taxes can be really tricky when working abroad, so you’ll have to look into that in your home country. Right now, Josh isn’t making enough money to break the tax threshold in Australia so his income is tax free. His host family also provides insurance through “Au Pair Dr. Walter,” which covers most healthcare options. Again, this is very country specific, and you’ll have to look into each separate situation that you consider.



Getting the Job

Josh recommends using Au Pair World to find a job for two reasons: it’s easy to navigate, and even better, it’s completely free.  From there, you can start the application process.

It begins with either you or the family sending a message stating that you’re interested and think you may be a good fit. After that, you can move on to Skype meetings. If you’re applying from within the country you want to work in like Josh was, it can even be possible to schedule in-person meetings before you commit to a family.

I asked Josh for tips on becoming a desirable candidate, and he says “you really must be yourself, relax and don’t stress about anything. Ask questions and be interested.” If you have experience or qualifications for working with kids, also make sure you mention them as well.

And the hardest part of getting the job? Accepting the offer. This is where you need to take the most care to ensure the family is a good fit, and more importantly, that your contract is fair and includes everything you’ve agreed upon. Some ways to do this are visiting your family before you sign a contract, or contacting previous employees and asking for an honest review of their experience. Once Josh heard their positive recommendations, it made it easy to choose the right family for him.

“The contract is also the most important part of your employment, so you need to be incredibly careful with your negotiations. Read it, highlight the potential things you have questions about before signing to clarify it, negotiate if needed and of course mention/include anything that you would like e.g. paid phone bill each month, personal use of car etc. Some families draft up their own contract, some go with the contracts offered on the website. See that the daily tasks are roughly outlined with the working hours stated and don’t get stung!”

Josh shared on example of a friend that’s an au pair and didn’t ask about the pets. Now they’re stuck watching it every time the family goes out because it was outlined in their contract but they didn’t double to check to make sure they understood before they signed it. Be careful to go over each and every task that’s expected and make sure you agree before you sign anything!




Josh works less than 20 hours a week for 310 euros per month, plus free food, housing, utilities, and use of a car. He was already in Germany when he accepted the job, but it’s also common to negotiate with your family to get part or even all of your flights out to their home city covered.

Other benefits of being an au pair are having plenty of free time if your family goes on vacation, or even the opportunities to travel for free along with them. If you’re uneasy about living in your family’s home, it’s also possible to work with one that provides an off-site apartment for private living space.

The salary is pretty low, so it’s hard to save money with the job. Instead, most au pairs use it as a way to see the world for cheap, and travel longer than they otherwise would be able too.




So, what does the day to day life of an au pair look like? Josh broke down his schedule for me, and it looks like this:

“Every morning I wake up at around 6:45 to be in the kitchen at 7:00 helping the mother prepare the boys lunches.


I make the kids beds, then we all have breakfast together and I ride a bike with the youngest one to school at around 8:00.


After that I go to my language school, then visit the gym usually for an hour and finally return home for some lunch with the family.


When the youngest is finished at around 3:00 I go with my bike to pick him up. This is where my work usually starts every day.


From about 3:00– 6:00 I help the parents drive the boys to and from sports. They are a very active family and the main requirement for the au pair job was to be a driver. I also mind the kids on a couple weeknights and usually one weekend night.”

So, the work load doesn’t look too bad. But wha if you want to travel? I asked Josh how easy it is to take vacation, and he shared that it’s not usually a problem as long as he schedules it with the family a month in advance. You can also get approval for special holidays, events, or trips you may already have planned for the future when applying with your family and ironing out the contract. He’s already explored some of the major nearby cities and has visits to Berlin, the Netherlands, and France marked on the calendar.

Josh was given his own bedroom in the house with an ensuite bathroom, and feels very safe in the neighborhood. Of course, one of the best things about traveling is the food, and working abroad as an au pair is no different. His meals usually consist of breads, meats, and chases for breakfast, and hot meal at lunch, and more charcuterie or cooked dishes at dinner. Yum!

At the beginning of a contract, living with a family can take a little getting used to, but Josh quickly found a work/life balance.  He has no problem recharging in his room, hanging out with the boys to play games outside of work, or making plans with other au pairs in the area based on the local tips and suggestions of his family!



Work as an Au Pair: Josh’s Experience

Many people choose to become an au pair to extend their travels and supplement their language learning. Josh agress that work as an au pair is “the best way to explore a culture and to see other countries in Europe without breaking too much of the bank.”

After working as an au pair for two months, he recommends it for those who are looking for the same lifestyle. You won’t be able to earn and save a lot of money, but you will definitely become immersed in the culture, kickstart your language learning, and get some great experience working with children. Josh says another bonus he didn’t expect is that “I have made some amazing friends from community pages setup on Facebook. It’s a great way to meet people from all around the world.”

Surprisingly for him, one of the biggest downfalls is how close he has come to his family, and how difficult it will be to say goodbye when his contract ends. “It’s going to be sad to have to leave one day… but life goes on and the boys become older.”

Work as an au pair isn’t a permanent position for most people, but a way to extend travels and stay abroad longer. Josh plans to use his savings to continue backpacking through Europe for 3 or 6 months after his first contract ends, then sign up for one more sitnt in Germany to complete his language courses before he heads home.


Work as an Au Pair for Language and Cultural Immersion

Out of all of the jobs in my working abroad series, working as an au pair pays the least. However, it also is the best ways to learn a language, get involved with a local culture, and make friends and connections that last a lifetime.

It’s all about what you are looking for in both your travels and career at the moment. If you’re not ready to jump into a full-time position or just want a way extend your backpacking trip without taking on too much responsibility, working as an au pair could be a perfect role for you.

All my love,

PS Not sure if an au pair position fits your needs? Don’t forget to check out more guides to making money while you travel, like teaching online ESL classes, starting a digital marketing business, getting a job as a flight attendant or even working on a yacht!

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Hiking in Mexico City: Cumbres del Ajusco National Park

If you’re looking for hiking in Mexico City, Cumbres del Ajusco National park will definitely be on your radar. Although I personally prefer hiking in Izta-Popo National Park because I enjoyed the erupting volcanos, during a long-term stay Cumbres del Ajusco is worth visiting as well. Here’s is everything you need to know to get there!



Why Go to Cumbres del Ajusco National Park

There are a few reasons. First, Ajusco is the 4th tallest mountain in the country (Izta and Popo come in at third and second). Second, the park is cool because it was created in 1936 and is the third oldest national park in the country (only Desierto de Los Leones and Izta-Popo national park are older).

Finally, it’s unique in that it actually makes up half of the Mexico City Federal District! I was pretty surprised that one of the biggest and most polluted cities in the world was actually half national park…


How to Get to Cumbres del Ajusco National Park

So, you have two options. The first is to take an uber. This is what we did, and I though it would be super easy, right? Wrong! First of all, the driver had no idea where we were going (whyyyy pick up ride then?!) and didn’t know how to use GPS somehow… so we stopped and asked for directions multiple times despite me begging him to use my phone instead.

ANYWAY. If you choose to take an uber and your driver knows where to go, there’s still the issue of traffic. The ride will take you anywhere between an hour and an hour and a half depending on what time of day you go, so waking up super early will be your best bet.

When you go, make sure you use this address in your GPS: Cerro Pico del Águila km 21, Col. Héroes de 1910

The cost to get to the park from Mexico City by Uber should be around 250 pesos. We paid 220, but if you get stuck in a lot of traffic, I think the price can go up.

The other way to get to Cumbres del Ajusco National Park is by bus. Go to the Universidad Station and ask for the one going to San Miguel Ajusco. The trip costs 7 pesos per person and the ride will take about an hour and a half.

From San Miguel Ajusco, you’ll need to get a taxi to the trailhead. That will be about another 15 to 20 minutes, and will probably cost around 100 pesos because most drivers will be stuck doing a round trip. Make sure you put the above address in your GPS again, because there’s no real official entrance to the park (that I know of anyway) or trailhead, so your driver probably won’t know where to go unless you show him.

So basically, if you add up the taxi to the bus station and the taxi to the trail, the costs come close to just taking an Uber. The prices are similar but an Uber is faster, so that’s what I recommend.



Hiking up Cerro Ajusco

Yes! You made it to the park! When you’re getting dropped off, you’ll pass the GPS pin on your phone and see nothing but forest on the side of the road, just ask your driver to keep going a minute or two further until you get to the restaurants. There will be a couple on the right side of the road, and one on the left. There will also be a big sign with a map of the park on the left as well.

If you’re facing the restaurant on the left side of the road (or if you come from the other direction and my instructions are confusing, just make sure you’re facing the side with only one large restaurant and not a few small ones). Go to the left of the restaurant and you will see a trail leading into the woods.

Take the trail for a few minutes and it will come out onto a road. Keep walking up it and go through a gate and through a playground. Here you will come to a sketchy bridge. Cross it, and take the trail to the left.

Once you’re on the trail to the left, you’re good to go! It’s pretty well maintained, you’ll probably see a few other people on it, and anytime it splits there’s usually markers pointing you in the right direction.

The trail stayed flat for about 45 minutes, then started to go sharply uphill. The climb was really tough actually, especially in the high altitude (the park is at 12,795 feet). We decided to stop and just enjoy the view about halfway up instead of finish the climb. It really was beautiful, on one side the park stretched out, and on the other was Mexico City. Try to get there early if you can, we went in the afternoon and the skyline was pretty much totally covered in smog unfortunately.

If you do decide to go all the way to the top of Cerro Ajusco, it will take you about three hours (depending on how fast you hike) and then a couple more to get down. Definitely pack some snacks, enough water, and sunscreen!



What else to do in Cumbres del Ajusco National Park

So, this section is pretty much only for people driving in their own cars. Just from looking around google it seems like there is more to do in the park if you go to the right places, like ride bikes, go on a horesback ride, rent cabins, etc. I can’t find much info on where that’s located, but if you search in Spanish you may have better luck, or just drive through the park and stop where ever looks interesting! We only got to see a small piece of it, but there’s definitely more to do if you have the time.


Lunch in Cumbres del Ajusco National Park

Ok, back to the hike. Once you get back down to the road, eat at the restaurant where you started! The food is really good, and really cheap. I had a beef sope and barbacoa taco, and Dan had three tacos. Each item was only 25 pesos. When we were there the sun was shining and groups were day drinking, it was a super relaxed atmosphere. Too bad we had such a trek back home, otherwise I definitely would have stayed for a few more beers!



Getting Back to Mexico City

Ok, this is where the transportation gets kind of annoying. Theres basically no way to get back down the mountain because there’s no service to call an Uber, and no taxis driving by.

We asked the waiter what we should do, and he told us his dad would give us a ride! So, that was nice. We paid him 100 pesos to drop us off at the bus station.

From there, it was a 1.5 hour bus to Mexico City, and then a 20 minute Uber back to our apartment. The taxi plus bus plus Uber combo to get home took over two hours, and only cost four pesos less than the entire Uber trip on the way out… yeah.

I’d suggest skipping the bus and trying to get a taxi or Uber straight from San Miguel Ajusco back to the city.


Hiking in Cumbres del Ajusco National Park

I kind of have mixed feelings about hiking in Cumbres del Ajusco. The nature was really nice and the views were beautiful. However, the transport situation was annoying at times, and definitely long. If you have a car, this is a perfect day trip from Mexico City, otherwise, visit at your own risk!

All my love,

PS explore my Mexico page for more Mexico City inspo including hiking, weekend trips, craft beer, and evening acitivites from my month in the city.

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9 Evening Activities in Mexico City Perfect for any Budget

Yes, you know all about the day trips and awesome parks in Mexico City, but where can you spend an evening here?? As a digital nomad, it can be really hard to find destination recommendations that aren’t aimed at traditional vacationers with all day to kill.

Luckily, I’m here to help. I spent one month living and working here, and this is my list of the top nine evening activities in Mexico City!


1. Check Out Biblioteca Vasconcelos

Time: Open until 7:30 pm
Cost: Free Entrance


Girl in Biblioteca Vasconcelos


This was the very first place I went in Mexico City. After seeing the amazing pictures online, I knew I had to get there.

Biblioteca Vasconcelos is perfect if you love photography, or just getting off the beaten path in a new city. Spend time admiring the views from every floor, snapping some insta worthy shots, or just sitting quietly with a book to read. The library also has gardens surrounding it that you can check out on a sunny day, and balconies on the top floor with expansive views of the city.


side view of the book shelves at biblioteca vasconcelos


This is possibly the most unique building I’ve ever seen, and it felt just like stepping into a sci-fi movie one thousand years in the future. For digital nomads, Biblioteca Vasconcelos is a must see evening activity in Mexico City.


2. Visit the Basilica de Guadalupe

Time: Open until 9pm
Cost: Free Entrance

The Basilica of Guadalupe is a major Catholic site in Mexico City. Your probably weren’t expecting a church on my list of evening activities in Mexico City (lol of course you were) but if you’re at all religious or interested in history or spirituality, this is a must-see. Even if you’re a firm atheist, it’s still an interesting stop just for the sheer importance of the site to the Catholic community.

What makes this church so special? In 1531 the Virgin Mary is said to have appeared to a Mexican man, now Saint, named Juan Diego. The four apparitions occurred on a hill near this spot, and the Basilica was built as a shrine to commemorate it. It even holds Juan Diego’s cloak, which miraculously bears the image of Mary that is now famously known as Our Lady of Guadalupe.

There are now two Basilicas on the site (one old and one new), and both are currently open for exploration, prayer, and meditation.


3. Take a Cooking Class

Times: Chosen around your schedule
Cost: Around $50 to $80 usd per person

If you have room in the budget, this is a delicious and educational way to spend an evening in Mexico City. I mean, we all know Mexican food is one of the best cuisines in the world, so what better way to enjoy it than by learning all the techniques you need to make it at home? While researching it for my to do list, I found a few different class options you can check out here and here.


4. Take in the View at Torre Latinoamericana

Time: Open until 10pm
Cost: ~100 pesos per person

This famed tower was once the tallest in Mexico City, and is one of the most beautiful evening activities in Mexico City. Come for dinner, drinks, or just the view. You can buy tickets in the lobby for 90 pesos to head to the observation deck, or you can go to the restaurant, one floor lower, for free.

If you don’t want a whole dinner, you can just get a beer and still hang out at the bar for a bit and snap a few photos of the view. Just make sure you go on a day without smog!


5. Try Craft Beer at a Local Brewery

How convenient, I have a guide right here that doesn’t just list the best breweries in Mexico City, but ALL the breweries. It was actually pretty difficult to make because the craft beer scene in Mexico City is up and coming, and there’s not a lot of info from the breweries online yet.

My favorite brewery on the list is HOP 2, but I really enjoyed our visit to La Graciela and The Tasting Room as well. There are a bunch of breweries spread out across the city, so head out for your thirsty Thursday and try some beers you won’t be able to get anywhere else.



6. Wander the Quaint Neighborhood of Coyoacan

Time: Always Open
Cost: Free

This neighborhood is so cute, and great to explore day or night. Some people actually think it’s more lively in the evenings, and I have to agree.

Daniel and I went around 4:30pm and spent a few hours here. There is a large market, two beautiful squares, an ornate church, tons of hip bars, restaurants, cafes, and shops, and side streets lined with brightly painted houses and green leafy trees.

If you go, I recommend checking out Los Mercaderes Coyoacan for beautiful bottles of mezcal or tequila, grabbing a beer at the cool La Calaca Bar, and walking through the large Viveros de Coyoacan park.


7. Go to a Mexican Wrestling Match

Time: 7:30pm on weekdays, 8:30pm for the Friday matches
Cost: Tickets range from 100 to 420 pesos per person

Yes! Lucha Libre, or Mexican wrestling, is such an big part of Mexico’s culture in the city. There are matches every Friday, and you can buy tickets directly at the box office before they start. However, if you can’t make a Friday show or want to see more than one, there are sometimes fights during the week as well.

I definitely can’t guarantee it, but check out this calendar of events on Ticketmaster to see if any are coming up. If you can, choose one at Arena Mexico which is the main stage.

Daniel and I went to a Friday match and had soooo much fun. Even if you’re totally not into wrestling and don’t speak Spanish (check and check) the wild atmosphere and sheer absurdity of the event will get yelling and cheering along with everyone else.


Wrestling Match in Arena Mexico


8. Cheer on Club America at a Soccer Game


Time: Weekday matches start around 8:45pm
Cost: Tickets range from 150 to 1,000 pesos

Like the Lucha Libre events, these are totally dependent on schedule. Don’t look too far in advance though. Daniel and I checked the schedule a month before we arrived in Mexico City, and saw nothing listed. A few weeks later when we arrived, there were two games added in during our stay. They play at the famous Estadio Azteca, which is the biggest stadium in the country.

Unless it’s a really big match you can buy your tickets right at the stadium and have fun cheering on Club America, Mexico City’s official team. If you’re lucky enough to catch a game, it’s an awesome way to spend an evening in Mexico City!


9. See the Ballet Folklorico

Time: See the schedule here
Cost: Tickets range from around 360 to 1500 pesos

The ballet is a great evening activity in Mexico City because not only do you get to see a show, but it’s also located in the beautiful Palacio de Belles Artes. The building looks gorgeous day and night, and has a museum you can visit as well on your night out. If you want to learn more about the culture of Mexico, or just enjoy a good show, definitely try seeing the Ballet Folklorico after work.


If you’re looking for a fun evening activities in Mexico City, look no further. This list has something for every interest and every budget. If you’re a digital nomad in Mexico City and have more evening destinations to add to the list, please comment below and let me know!

All my love,

PS for more things to do in Mexico City check out the rest of my articles here


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The Complete Guide to Breweries and Craft Beer in Mexico City

Craft beer in Mexico City is amazing, but trying to find out where it’s served is not. Seriously, putting together this article felt like investigative journalism at times.

My hunt for the best breweries encountered some major roadblocks, because a lot of the information online isn’t clear… specifically which bars serve craft beer, and which actually brew their own. It was also confusing to find which breweries have tap rooms, and which are just businesses that are closed to the public.

On Friday, Daniel and I showed up at Cerveceria Reforma because we believed it was a brewery open to the public (it’s not, yet). The owner, Ivan, came out to meet us and was genuinely confused why we were standing outside of his business!

We explained we were looking for craft beer, and he helpfully took us under his wing and got our search on the right track. Oh, and then a 7.2 magnitude earthquake hit, his power went out, and we walked across the city together because none of us could get an Uber and the traffic was insane… Safe to say, our search for craft beer in Mexico City has been incredibly eventful.

I put a lot of work in finding the best beer tours, breweries, bars, and taprooms here, so you can enjoy them all on your next night out. I hope this complete guide helps everyone discover the up and coming awesome world of craft beer in Mexico City!


Turi Cervecero Beer Tour

Location: Click Here for a list of locations where you can buy tickets (the tour isn’t listed on the site at the moment, but it is definitely still running as of March 2018)

This beer tour is perfect for someone who wants to see a lot of what Mexico City has to offer in a short time frame. The tour is 400 pesos per person, and runs every Friday and Saturday evening for 4.5 hours.

They take you to visit four different breweries and taprooms, some of which aren’t even open to the public, like Cerveceria Reforma. The other options include Cru Cru, Hop 2, and Crisanta (breweries) and Sonny Diaz, Deposito, and Fiebre de Malta (bars).

The price of your ticket includes one beer at each of the four locations you visit. I haven’t done this tour, but it could definitely be a great and easy option to try some craft beer in Mexico City. If you check it out, please comment below or shoot me a message to tell me how it was!


Breweries in Mexico City

Daniel and I visited every single brewery in the capital’s city limits. This isn’t just some options you can try, it’s all of them. Keep reading to see locations, prices, my reviews, and more!


Taller de Cerveza La Graciela

Location: Orizaba 163, Roma Nte, 06700 Ciudad de México, CDMX
More Info Here

This is a small brewery, restaurant, and bar, and one of my favorite places for craft beer in Mexico City. They have a window into their brew room that you can check out, outdoor seating on a lively sidewalk, and tons of different beer options.

You can try their own beers on tap, or browse a long list of bottles from both Mexico and around the world. I got a coffee stout (I’m a sucker for a stout) and Daniel got an IPA. Both were 100 pesos.

We went on a Saturday night and it had a really lively atmosphere. The best part about La Graciela is that it’s right next to a few other bars and an ice cream place, so this can be one stop for your entire night.



Location: Calle Querétaro 182, Roma Nte, 06700 Mexico City, CDMX
More Info Here

Escollo was the first craft beer in Mexico City that I tried, and it was super strange because right when we walked in a saw a sign on the wall for Warped Wing!

Warped Wing is a brewery in my hometown in Ohio, and one of the stops in my DIY brewery walking tour of Dayton. Turns out, the two owners are friends and had created a beer together in 2015. Small world.

On to the beers themselves, Escollo is both a craft beer bar and a brewery, and they had eight different options of their own beers to try. I had the stout and Daniel had an IPA, but we actually each preferred each other’s and traded.

Escollo is good because the beers are pretty cheap, and you can even get some of their drafts for only 60 pesos. It’s also within walking distance to La Graciela. However, the atmosphere could definitely use some work… at 8pm on a Saturday night it was almost empty. If you want a quiet night out, this is the place, but if you’re looking for a lively brewery, there are better options.


Escollo Brewery in Mexico City



Location: Av. Plaza De la República # 51, Tabacalera, 06000 Cuauhtémoc, CDMX
More Info Here

Daniel and I went to Crisanta for Valentine’s Day, and to be honest we left a little disappointed. They advertise themselves as a brewery, but had none of their own beers when we went. It looked like their brewing equipment has been completely disassembled in the back, and upon closer inspection many reviewers have had the same experience. So, don’t go here expecting to try their house beer.

The food was pretty average, and prices kind of high: 190 pesos for a burger or pasta dish, and 80 pesos and up for craft beers. The selection was definitely good, and the open front had a view of the Monument to the Revolution which is lit up beautifully at night. The place was full and had a nice vibe. If you’re in the area check it out to try some craft beers in Mexico City, but even though it bills itself as a brewery, I don’t think it is anymore.


HOP: The Beer Experience

Location: Roma 13 Col. Juarez, Mexico City, Mexico 06600
More Info Here

Just so you don’t get confused, there are actually two locations for this brewery (and we visited both). First, I’ll talk about the HOP 1, the original at the location listed above. We walked here after having dinner and drinks at Crisanta, because it was only 15 minutes away.

The place was small but packed. They had about 20 craft beers listed on the wall (ask which ones are their own) and we got a flight. Because it was Valentine’s Day they also gave us a taster of five chocolates to try with the beers. So cute!



HOP 2, their second location, is in the Narvarte Poniente neighborhood. This the the larger location where their beers are actually brewed. When Daniel and I visited they had only had one of their own beers on tap (the Pale Ale, it was pretty good) but they also had at least 20 other craft options to try.

The brewery was by far my favorite of all of them. The vibe was super cool with picnic tables and lights string across the ceilings. The kitchen is also in a food truck right in the middle of the bar! I actually felt like I was back at in the States at a brewery in Chicago or LA. The draft selection at HOP 2 is also great, and you can tell it was curated with care because almost everything we tried was delicious.

HOP 2 is great for groups because all the beers are on tap, so you can get pitchers for a really good price. On Wednesdays, each pitcher also comes with a free large pizza! So, Daniel and I got about 6 beers and a large pepperoni pizza for 250 pesos, in one of the coolest bars in Mexico City… awesome. They also have flights for 125 pesos each, and lots of different deals like all-you-can-eat pizza on Tuesdays.

Finally (if I haven’t already sung its praises enough) HOP 2 has a small shop in the front where you can buy any of your favorite beers to go on your way out. I bought the Chai Tea beer from Error de Diciembre brewing to try at home, and it was delicious.



Cerveceria Cru Cru

Location: Cjon. of Romita 8, Roma Nte., 06700 Mexico City, CDMX
More Info Here

Ok, this is where Ivan’s insider info really came in handy. He’s good friends with the team at Cru Cru, and told us to go check it out. It’s not officially open to the public, but if you knock on their door they’ll let you in and sell you some craft beer to try. SECRET BREWERY! Guys, it doesn’t get any cooler than this.

Daniel and I went on a Friday evening, (luckily this one was earthquake free) and knocked on the door as instructed. The place is built into a historical monastery with interesting murals on the wall, and they had an arcade machine as well as indoor and outdoor seating. I tried the Gose beer, which is made with grasshoppers… it was pretty interesting. Daniel had the porter which was great.

If you do decide to stop by, try to go around 8pm on Friday or Saturday, when the tours are going to be there, so it’s not to inconvenient for the staff 🙂


four beers from cerveceria cru cru


The Tasting Room

Location: Calle de Chiapas 173, Roma Nte., 06700 Cuauthémoc, CDMX
More Info Here

This is a super cool craft beer bar, that I think has only recently branched into brewing. They had two of their Casa Cervecera Morena beers on tap, and I tried the IPA. The flights here are 125 pesos for Mexican beer, but the price goes up if you want a flight of imports.

We were here on a Saturday night and the bar was completely full, the vibe was awesome and modern, and there were at least 20 different craft beers on tap form around the country and the world. I loved it!


Principia Tasting Room

Location: Avenida Magdalena 311, Local A, Col del Valle Nte, 03100 Ciudad de México, CDMX
More Info Here

This was the last of the breweries that we tried. Well, actually it’s just a tasting room, but you can try the Principia beers here. I liked the vibe, and when we went they had two of their brews on tap. The rest of the selection was a couple different Mexican breweries, and (not sure why) eight beers from Founders in Michigan. They had some bottled beer options to choose from as well.

It was good for a chill night out. I tried both the Principia beers and two others in a flight for 100 pesos, and they were all pretty good. Their food looked great and I really liked their branding too. My only complaint would be that the selection could use a little more variation.




Awesome Craft Beer Bars

Tried all the breweries and ready for something new? Here are some of my favorite craft beer bars in Mexico City.


Roma Biergarten

Location: Calle Querétaro 225, Roma Nte., 06700 Mexico City, CDMX
Perfect for: Getting a drink after a delicious dinner at the Mercado Roma (it’s located right upstairs).
More Info Here


Fiebre de Malta

Location: Calle Río Lerma 156, Cuauhtémoc, 06500 Ciudad de México, CDMX
Perfect for: I’m not sure… Unfortunately I didn’t have time to make it here, but Ivan recommended it and you know you can trust a local brewer!
More Info Here


Fritz Bar and Restaurant

Location: Av. Dr. Río de la Loza 221, Doctores, 06720 Ciudad de México, CDMX
Perfect for: Enjoying a large beer selection before a Lucha Libre event at Arena Mexico.
More Info Here


La Belga Beer Store

Location: Calle Querétaro 96, Roma Nte, 06700 Ciudad de México, CDMX
Perfect for: Getting a few craft beers to go.
More Info Here


The Craft Society

Location: Plaza Luis Cabrera 16, Roma Norte, 06700 Cuauhtemoc, CDMX
Perfect for: Day drinking on a sunny day in Roma.
More Info Here



Craft Beer Festivals in Mexico City

Finally, don’t miss these festivals celebrating all things craft beer in Mexico City.

Beerfest Texcoco February 24 – 25 || More info here

7th Annual Puebla Beer Fest March 2 – 4 || More info here

7th annual Cervefest March 16 – 18 in Xochimilco || More info here

Cerveza Mexico Oct 26 – 28 || More info here

There’s also a Craft Beer Camp (sounds like a dream come true) and Taco and Beer Fest that happened in 2017. No dates seem to be announced for 2018, but definitely something to keep an eye on.


Craft beer in Mexico City is everywhere if you know where to look. Try these breweries and bars to get your fix, and explore the world of Mexico’s microbrews. Support the local beer scene on your next night out with this complete guide!

All my love,



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Instagram Makes it Look Easy: The Truth Behind Life in a Prius

No agenda to keep, new cities every week, and a weirdly strong opinion about Taco Bell.

It might not be what 28-year-old Jordan Thornsburg expected when he graduated from Miami University in 2012, but the daily grind of post-grad life in Dayton, Ohio had him rethinking his priorities.

Some people buy an RV, others renovate a van… Jordan Thornsburg lives in his Prius. The videographer and creative mind behind Macroscope Pictures has been living in his car since March 2017, and gave me a glimpse into his incredibly unique and often hilarious life on the road.

Where, how, and most of all, why? He answered all of my questions and more about a lifestyle we’ve all thought about in passing, but never really had the guts to make happen.


Leaving His Old Life Behind

As with most major life-altering decisions, it all started with a break up.

“I had a really great relationship that ended right before 2016 when she decided to move to the UK and I did not. That severance was the catalyst for a lot of soul searching about the course I wanted my life to take. According to a 2010 census bureau survey, Ohio residents are the 3rd most likely to still live in their state of origin.  I knew I wanted to defy this trend, but I didn’t know where to start. How exactly does one decide where they want to spend their life when they’ve experienced so few of the options?” 

Although traveling the country seemed like a faraway, fleeting thought, it soon turned into an obsession. He scoured Youtube daily for ideas, saved money for months, and finally landed on his escape plan.

“A few DIY projects and Goodwill drop-offs later, I quit my job, and on March 1st, 2017 I told Siri to set a course for yonder.”

So, what makes Jordan different from the rest of us? Not much, really. He’s just a college grad who was underwhelmed by the monotony that adult life often becomes. Traveling the country and living in his Prius was the solution, and so far, he’s loving it.

Jordan recommends the lifestyle for “those who seek to challenge themselves, collect less bullshit space-consumers, and live while they’re alive. You can work for 50 years at the same job in your hometown saving smart for a retirement of travel adventures, but not only are you going to be the least physically capable of enjoying it you’ve ever been, there is also no guarantee you won’t die before the time comes.”

And if you need a little more inspiration…

“We gave a manbaby [Trump] access to a button that could trigger the end of every conscious creature on the planet. Go for broke!”



The Day to Day Life of Living in a Car

Many of the basic amenities we take for granted in an apartment are non-existent in a Prius. So, what exactly does the day-to-day routine of a car dweller look like?

“Ironically while I set out intending to escape routine, I ended up discovering its value. When you are hopping from one place to another nearly every week, keeping a routine that sets you up for physical and mental flourishing becomes much more challenging.”

Jordan hoped that getting away from the distractions of every day life would help him become a better version of himself. So far, it’s a work in progress… 

“On an ideal day I go to the gym, meditate with Headspace, chip away at a creative project, cook, journal, and read/listen to philosophically enriching or educational content. The daily reality involves failing to do half of those things, eating out, and wasting time on Tinder.” 


The Basics

I’m glad Jordan mentioned Tinder, ’cause I was feeling like it was time to get pretty up close and personal. Specifically, how does showering work when you live in a Prius without running water? The answer is “hobo hygiene,” and it’s easier than you think. He pays $32 a month for a YMCA membership that grants him access to 2,700 gyms across the country, effectively solving all the problems associated with trying to smell like an upstanding citizen while living in a car. 



Internet Access

Showering may be one thing, but internet access is a whole different beast when living on the road. Can you imagine life without unlimited wifi? For Jordan, that’s been one of the toughest aspects of the lifestyle, but also one he’s grown to appreciate in a certain way. 

Jordan “shares” (aka uses 95% of) a 15gb month family cell phone plan with his parents. Even that’s not enough, though, and local libraries and Starbucks have become frequent haunts for him. Still, limited internet access could be a blessing in disguise for a lot of us who have become addicted to our screens. 

“An unlimited data plan is very tempting, but at the same time I actually appreciate the limitation. It’s an incentive to put my phone into airplane mode and experience the world, rather than sit in my car and gorge on Netflix.”



Most Priuses don’t come with an open kitchen plan, and cooking outside on the hitch on the back of a car sounds less than ideal. Still, it can and does happen (although, pretty infrequently). Jordan only owns a single fold up burner, a spoon, and a pot.

To be honest this sounds like my own personal version of hell, but some people just really don’t care that much about food variety. When your fridge is a high-efficiency cooler only sporadically refilled with ice, something’s gotta give. 

“Despite having all the gear I need to make meal magic, I can’t help myself from analyzing the time and resource investment it takes vs. optimized drive-thru fast food orders. My diet right now is in large part made up of healthy choices from Taco Bell.”

He usually opts for one of two options every time he goes. Two mini skillet bowls fresco style or two tostadas fresco style (no chipotle sauce!) both run him only $2 – $3 for a filling 300 calorie meal.




You can’t just park overnight wherever you please. Living in a Prius involves a certain amount of stealth, and Jordan’s sleep game has been slowly evolving over the year.  “I started out sleeping in Walmart parking lots. Later, I discovered how much I get a kick out of sleeping in a downtown area where a hotel would cost a fortune.” Jordan will let you aspiring Prius dwellers in on a little secret: “most metered parking spaces in excellent locations don’t start charging until 8am.”

If you can get your ass out of bed early (not too hard when the morning sun is cooking you, Jordan says) these become convenient places to settle down for the night. And when he’s not checking out new cities, Jordan likes to sleep in nature. “Lastly,” he says, “I got hip to the wealth of Bureau of Land Management properties, where you can camp for up to 14 days straight free of charge.” He also recommends Freecampsites.net as an enormously helpful resource for car dwellers in the country.


Let’s Look at the Finances

We’re all wondering it, so I asked it. How can you make money when you live in a car?

Well the honest truth is… you don’t. Jordan saved up money before he went on the road so he has the freedom to go where he wants, when he wants, and only take on paid work that he really enjoys.

Over the past year he’s worked on freelance shooting and editing projects and a few corporate video gigs. However, most of his time is spent working on passion projects, like the #ShotsOrShots drone challenge he and his friends complete every week on his Instagram, or the videos showcased on his Youtube channel, like this promo he made for the Summer Shadows Tour.



On average, Jordan spends between $500 and $650 a month to live in his Prius, depending on how often he goes out for dinner and drinks with his friends. However, I noticed that health insurance wasn’t listed on his budget breakdown. Jordan may be different from most millennials in a lot of ways, but the cost of health insurance is still f*cking up his life like the rest of us.

Instead of doctors, Jordan uses “peppers to absorb my toxins and crystals I bought on Ebay to provide healing energy.” He’s just kidding though.. kind of.

“I use the kind that’s imaginary and I pay $700/year in penalties. I looked into buying healthcare and it would cost me $3000/year and not even begin covering me until I’ve spent something like $5000 out of pocket. On principal, I’d rather die.


Lifestyle: The Pros and Cons of a Living in a Prius

Since Jordan started traveling, he’s been able to spend weeks in each of the top three cities he always wanted to live in: Denver, Austin, and Los Angeles, and that’s just the start. The list of places he’s traveled to was over 30 entries long, including Miami, Atlanta, Las Vegas, and national parks throughout the west.

I wondered if there’s a car or van life culture that’s hidden to the untrained eye, and Jordan says he’s met a few others like him. However, the lifestyle is so nomadic that he didn’t really see any common threads that tie them all together. “I’ve been surprised about how much variance there is. Variance in upbringing, wealth, motives, political affiliations, physical health, mental health, diet, etc. But if you judge the “culture” by the 25,000 youtube channels on the topic, you could begin to think they’re all vegan bloggers.”

As far as the worst parts about living in a car, Jordan says it’s hard to keep a healthy morning routine, and (despite the amount of time he spends on Tinder), dating is difficult and the logistics of his love life have become pretty interesting.

However, one of the best parts about it is pretty clear. He has “the freedom to pick up and go wherever I want, whenever I want. My friend was talking about how she really wanted to visit Taos, NM. One Google search and an hour later, I was on my way there.”



Stand Out Moments

Every adventure has it’s memorable moments, and Jordan’s is no different. We discussed some of the scariest events that he’s been a part of on the road.

“In New Orleans I found myself feeling extremely tired, so I pulled over to take a nap in an unfamiliar part of town. After putting in my ear plugs and masking my eyes, I heard what was very clearly gunshots. Despite this realization, I drifted to sleepy boy land. Next I woke to a cop shining his flashlight through my windshield. ‘This is not the place you want to do what you’re doing,’ he told me. He was obviously right.”

What’s as scary as gunshots and cops in the night? Easy: “Being on a road in Texas. Any road.” Jordan has found driving in the Longhorn state to be more terrifying than anywhere else he’s been in the US.

“You’ll often hear excessively long horn blasts and dramatic skidding to a stop. During one week there I saw two minor collisions. Another time I was first on the scene where a vehicle ran off the road and tumbled into a ravine. The driver was fortunately okay enough to crawl out and attempt to act sober… That said, I still love Texas.”



So, How Long Will it Last?

Traveling the world is fun but can also be romanticized, and I know it’s definitely possible to get disillusioned with the nomadic lifestyle. I asked Jordan if he has any plans to get a permanent place soon, and put the Prius lifestyle behind him for good.

“I don’t have an end date in mind but I’m not in any hurry. With my Prius I feel like I’m lacking nothing, and the cramped space reinforces my motto: Sleep in your car, live in the world.” 

Right now, finances are fine and life on the open road has only just begun. He gets to see the world, push his creative limits, and hopefully become a better version of himself along the way. Exploring and creating are major perks, but most importantly for Jordan “living a life self-defined comes with a sense of pride.”


Jordan lives in his Prius so he can make videos for YOU. Follow him on Instagram, subscribe to his Youtube channel, and check out his site at Macroscope Pictures. 

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