I recently spent some time in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico. The town is a favorite destination for digital nomads and entrepreneurs looking to escape the winter weather of North America.
It’s also an ideal spot for travelers who are looking to enjoy their stay away from home without spending too much money on accommodations. There are plenty of hostels, apartments, hotels, and condos available for rent at all price points. Here are some recommendations around Playa del Carmen for digital nomads, if you’re visiting this beautiful beach resort city!
How is internet speed in Playa Del Carmen?
In most places, cafés, hotels, Airbnb, the internet speed is great. Even if you’re planning to work from the beach, literally from the beach, you will be more than fine in many areas.
And that’s one of the reasons I liked staying in PDC. Internet was great and stable, at least for my needs (video calls, emails, online apps).
When something was wrong with the signal (yes it happened in some places) I just had to switch to the 4g network (which was sometimes even faster than the wifi network).
See below a screenshot coming from Nperf.com, and click on it to see more.
4G+ (in red here) is everywhere, including the beach.
I suggest you read this article in which I explain how to get the best internet speed in Mexico.
Where to stay in Playa Del Carmen for Digital Nomads?
For cheaper prices
If you wish to pay a cheap price to stay in a decent place that has a good internet speed, I suggest you try to negotiate with landlords directly once you are in Playa Del Carmen.
This advice might not be really helpful, as it could be applied to most destinations, but this will always be my first advice. Getting rid of third parties like Booking.com or Airbnb will always allow you to save a few dollars each night. And in PDC, there are lots of apartments available.
Up to you to decide if you will stay in Centro (very busy, loud, expensive, but very much alive) or close to the beach around 70th street (a nice neighborhood, very close to the beach), or in a more remote area where you’ll find the best deals.
I recommend booking an Airbnb around 70th street if you wish to stay close to the beach. You will find all sorts of accommodations, at all sorts of prices.
The beach there is cool. It’s quite large, not crowded, but you might be a bit annoyed by Sargassum.
Hotels in Playa Del Carmen for Digital Nomads:
I recommend one particular hotel, where I stayed one full month, which is called Isabella Boutique Hotel. It is located in Centro, however, it is almost fully protected from all the loud music coming from 5th avenue.
It is a really quiet hotel, with good internet speed, a real swimming pool, a bar, a restaurant, and lots of fat iguanas.
And more importantly, it is pretty cheap! My girlfriend and I booked a beautiful and comfortable sort of hut, for 30 days, breakfast included, for about 950 USD (with direct negotiations).
There is also a hotel in Centro that is dedicated to digital nomads, it is called Selina. There are Selina hotels all across Central and South America. I went to check the PDC one, and I thought it was pretty cool. If you wish to meet other DNs, Selina might be the best option in Playa Del Carmen.
Playa Del Carmen FAQ
When is it a good time to travel to Playa Del Carmen?
The best time for digital nomads to visit Playa Del Carmen is from November to February when it’s slightly cold but not hot at all.
What’s the best way to get around?
The easiest and cheapest way to get around in Playa Del Carmen is by Uber or Taxi. Tuk Tuks are also available but they charge a bit more than the others. Unfortunately, if you want to go outside of Playa Del Carmen there’s no easy way for public transportation. You have to pay for a private taxi, Uber, or rent a car.
Is Playa Del Carmen safe?
Yes, it’s totally safe. During the day you can walk around without any problem or just catch an Uber/Taxi if you are not feeling comfortable with being on the streets. At night be careful about where you go and don’t show off your stuff.
How to spend less in Playa Del Carmen?
Try not to stay on 5th avenue when looking for a place to have lunch or diner. Even on the next avenue, the 10th one, most restaurants are way cheaper.
Get Rappi, the food delivery app. You will find many cheap restaurants delivering really good food. For hungry people, I strongly recommend Le Petit Paris. There is nothing French about their food, nothing fancy either. But it’s cheap and it’s keeping you fed for the day.
As written above, negotiate with hotels and landlords directly instead of booking your application through apps. And more importantly, book for a longer period. In many places, you will get really big discounts if you book for 30 days.
Why stay in Playa Del Carmen?
Playa Del Carmen is a good place for digital nomads to be. Internet is fast. There are lots of things to do in Playa Del Carmen.
- You can easily go swimming or snorkeling in stunning places like Cozumel. You can go shopping in one of the several malls you’ll find there.
- There are some good restaurants as well as bars and nightclubs.
- More importantly, from Playa Del Carmen you can go to Tulum or any other major towns around in about one hour of drive.
- You can also easily visit the best Cenotes from Playa Del Carmen.
- Cozumel and Isla Mujeres can be visited from Playa as well
If you would rather stay in a calmer city, I recommend checking on Akumal or Puerto Morelos. And if you’re looking for a real remote place to work from, I suggest you read this article, Mahahual for digital nomads.