I Can Eat for $5.00 a Day in Mahahual

Yes, you read me correctly, I can eat most days in Mahahual for around five good old USA dollars.  I mean and not just eating a can and beans and some rice, I eat out every meal almost every day, or get take out.  I found this out the other day.  I got a $5 tip from a couple of college students here on spring break, for showing them around town.  After I got the tip, the guy who rides around on a bike here changing dollars to pesos came by.  I go him to change my $5 into pesos, and I got 96 pesos.

So after my tip I went to lunch at one of my usual haunts, right off the malecon.  I went to the Oaxaca girls place and got two empanadas, carne molido, and a garnacho, and it cost me only 26 pesos.  Later that day on my way home I stopped and got me a hamburger and fries from Solofish, and that cost me only 40 pesos.  So my total for my two main meals of the day was only 66 pesos, and this is not just on that day.  I eat for around 100 pesos every day, which is about $5 USA dollars.  I will now show you how I do it and provide some examples.

Hamburger and fries, 40 pesos.

First of all I am a bachelor, so I only have to feed myself.  Second, I am living in the K’ay Kook hotel now at the moment and don’t really have access to a refrigerator, just a freezer. Now when I originally moved into the hotel here last July, I was only supposed to be here two weeks to a month, it now has been eight months, but that is another story for the future.  I have been promised a place on the malecon to live, but there has been trouble with the legal procedures, more on that story later.

So being a bachelor here in Mahahual, I have learned it is as cheap to eat out here, as it is to cook your own meals.  Trust me, I have the good, cheap eating out to a science here. Now I am not going to include my drinks or my water in my daily eating totals, because I buy the big 5 liter water bottles, and 2-liter Coke Zero, and drink that with most of my meals.  I probably spend 20 pesos a day on my drinks and water, because it is important to stay hydrated here.

For instance, yesterday I was watching March Madness all day, and I had a fantasy baseball draft, so I went up to the corner and got me a hamburger for 30 pesos, and a bag of Cheetos 6 for lunch, for a total of 36 pesos, with the exchange rate now at 19.02 pesos to 1 USA dollar, that figures out to about $1.89 usd for lunch.  For dinner I ordered out for sushi, and had that delivered for 50 pesos, $2.62 usd.  So the total for the day was around 86 pesos.

But you are now thinking to yourself, well what about breakfast?  My answer, I am not a big breakfast eater, so I usually eat a sweet roll, or something  from the local bakery here. At Panaderia La Tartaleta, the local bakery here, I buy bags of day old pastries or rolls for 12 pesos.  It usually has three or four nice baked goods, and I eat one of those for breakfast with my Coke Zero.  Yesterday the bag I picked up had a brownie in it, a jelly roll, and a croissant filled with chocolate, not bad for only 12 pesos.

Thursday, I think I had chicken soup at Primos for 30 pesos for lunch, and picked up two slices of pepperoni pizza from Metro Pizza to take home for dinner, 50 pesos, another under $5.00 usd total, 80 pesos.  And as you can see, my meals are not bad, Metro Pizza has very good pizza, and the slices are big, good enough for me.

My meals also vary, one day I may get quarter chicken meal( pollo asada), rice and beans, tortillas, and salad for 40 pesos, at my place in downtown Mahahual.  So my diet varies, and is somewhat healthy, (beats eating fast food in the USA), and I can say almost all my meals taste good, I get a bad meal every now and then, but I usually stick to my usual haunts, so I know what I am getting most of the time.

I go to a place up on the corner a lot from my hotel, and the Mexican lady there has started making sandwiches, hamburgers, pastas, potato salad kind of Mexican style, and other meals for her customers to take home, and they are usually around 30 pesos.  I get these a lot at night, or on weekends, when I don’t want to venture all the way into town to eat.

Assorted salads, sandwiches, pastas, and even cupcakes, all around 20 or 30 pesos.

My store on the corner from where I live. I buy my ice there, and also a lot of my meals to take home. It is at the entrance to Barrio Cinco-Cinco, right across from Don Kike.

Mexican lady who owns store, with her hamburgers and sandwiches.

So as you can see, I got the $5 a day eating down to a science here in Mahahual.  Now I am sure I have left some people and places I eat out, and I will remember some later, but it is Sunday morning, and March Madness will be coming on soon, and I have to go watch my Gamecocks play Duke, (Go Cocks, sorry I had to throw that in there).

Now don’t get me wrong, I would much rather have my own kitchen to cook my own meals, but at the time being, this is my best option.  In fact something has to give on my “promised” apartment this week, or I am out of the deal, more on this later, I am not at liberty to go into more detail because of ongoing legal procedures, but lets just say, eight months is too long to wait for an apartment.

Thanks for reading,

Stewart Rogers USA-South Carolina

One thought on “I Can Eat for $5.00 a Day in Mahahual

  1. Favorite cheap eats in Maha:

    When I had a touch of stomach trouble I fell back on soups:
    Sopa de mariscos at Camaroncito — outstanding.

    Caldo de Pollo at Doña Manuela’s, and the Caldo de Res, when they have it.
    But I’ll pass on the mondongo (tripe).

    Tamales like your abuela made at the ‘Poc Chuc’ stand near the h/w store, right off the grill — the bomb.

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