How To Find Cheap Apartments In Playa Del Carmen

Cheap Apartment Playa del Carmen Mexico
My Gated Apartment Building
Playa del Carmen, Mexico

I’ve spent the last year living in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. My first cheap apartment near the beach only cost $500 a month. This is how I found it.

Playa del Carmen is a laid-back beach town located in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. It’s a favorite spot for backpackers and expatriates from around over the world.

Digital nomads like myself like to base themselves here for a few months to get work done. There are a lot of benefits that come with living in Playa del Carmen.

Tasty cheap food, inexpensive housing, good public transportation, and white sand beaches make it ideal. Not to mention modern conveniences like fast internet, decent nightlife, and Walmart.

But there are all kinds of fun things to do nearby as well.

You can explore ancient Mayan ruins, go snorkeling with sea turtles, scuba dive underground cenotes, and more.

Inside Apartment Playa del Carmen Mexico
Every Apartment Should Have a Hammock!

Searching For An Apartment

After arriving in Playa del Carmen, I recommend staying in a hostel or cheap guesthouse to use as a base while you search for an apartment.

I began by reading this helpful post from Wandering Earl, and then asked locals for advice using the Playa del Carmen CouchSurfing forum and a Playa del Carmen Facebook Group.

What did I want my apartment to include?

It needed to be furnished, including a kitchen, hot water, and be somewhat secure. Air-conditioning would be nice too. I also wanted to be able to walk to the beach. Wireless internet was an absolute must.

I didn’t care if it was fancy or not. Just basic & clean would be fine with me. The budget I set for myself was $500 per month.

Kitchen Apartment Playa del Carmen Mexico
A Simple Kitchen

No Luck At First…

Walking around town looking for Se Renta signs didn’t yield much. There were plenty of signs out there, but after calling I was told the building was full. Or the price was out of my range.

Unfortunately, it was still high-season (November – March). I’d need to narrow my search down to apartments that were actually available and would meet my budget.

Time to hit the internet.

Now I’d been traveling in Central America for over a year so my Spanish was decent. But good Spanish isn’t a requirement, because Google Translate will give you a pretty good idea what they’re offering & for how much.

Some of the landlords speak English, others don’t. So when you call, just ask a friendly staff member at your hostel to do the talking for you. I recommend offering to buy a few cervezas for their trouble!

Local Classified Websites

Both include local apartment listings with photos, details, and prices.

Beach Playa del Carmen Mexico
My Beautiful Beach 2 Blocks Away

My Apartment In Playa Del Carmen

Using these websites I found my ideal studio apartment for only $500 a month! It was located close to the city center in a local Mayan neighborhood.

Just a 5-minute ride by city bus or Colectivo to get into town, and only two blocks from a beautiful (uncrowded, tops-optional) beach.

My apartment included an air conditioner, ceiling fan, cable TV, fridge, hot water shower, gas cooker, kitchen utensils, WiFi, and a secure gate out front. Electricity was extra, but it didn’t cost much as I rarely used A/C.

There was also a pair of hammock-hooks built into the wall! Hammock not included — that I picked up on my own. Laundry service was available across the street for a couple bucks.

It was exactly what I wanted.

Nicer one bedroom apartments in the center of town run $800-$1000 USD.

Vacation Rental Mexico
Bric Rentals In Playa del Carmen

Rental Resources In Playa

Playa del Carmen has recently become a popular town for expats from the United States, Canada, and Italy. Here are some additional resources to help you find an apartment in Playa.

If you want a company to help you find an apartment, make sure to visit my friends over at Bric Rentals. They offer short or long-term vacation rentals for any budget. ★

Travel Planning Resources for Playa del Carmen
Vacation Rentals: Bric Vacation Rentals

Packing Guide

Check out my travel gear guide to help you start packing for your trip. Pick up a travel backpack, camera gear, and other useful travel accessories.

Book Your Flight

Book cheap flights on Skyscanner, my favorite airline search engine to find deals. Also read my tips for how I find the cheapest flights.

Rent A Car

Discover Car Hire is a great site for comparing car prices to find the best deal. They search both local & international rental companies.

Book Accommodation

Booking.com is my favorite hotel search engine. Or rent local apartments on Airbnb ($35 discount!). Read my post for tips on booking cheap hotels.

Protect Your Trip

Don’t forget travel insurance! I’m a big fan of World Nomads for short-term trips. Protect yourself from possible injury & theft abroad. Read more about why you should always carry travel insurance.

Recommended Guidebook: Lonely Planet Yucatan
Suggested Reading: The Maya: Ancient Peoples & Places

READ NEXT: Things To Do In Playa Del Carmen

Do you have any cheap apartment hunting tips?

THANKS FOR READING

Hi, I’m Matthew Karsten — I’ve been traveling around the world for the last 9 years as a blogger, photographer, and digital nomad. Adventure travel & photography are my passions. Let me inspire you to travel more with crazy stories, photography, and money-saving travel tips.
Matthew Karsten
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