Our New Years wish for 2017 was to increase our family. My husband and I are greatly blessed with an incredible 5 year old boy named Joseph, that we were able to have through our fourth IUI almost six years ago. Unfortunately, as life goes on, our son and our careers took center stage. And as time passed way to fast we are now finding that we are both about to be in our 40’s and we feel like there is a big piece of our family missing. We both never intended on Joseph being an only child, but we both never thought that we would spend over $20,000 to have him either. I think that we both would have gone right back to the fertility clinic we had success with in the first place but money also became a large factor.
As we began to talk to family and friends about our wish to become parents again and try to find a more cost effective way to do IVF, Mexico became an option. In doing some research on fertility clinics in Mexico, I began to find that the cost was almost a third of what we would have had to pay in the states. My husband and I were quoted from Reproductive Biology Associates a Fertility clinic in Georgia $27,000 to do IVF, and what I was finding in Mexico the cost would range from around $6000-$9000. So we decided to take the plunge and we were going to go for it.
My research lead me to find two fertility clinics that I was really drawn to, due to success rates and the care they gave their patients. The first clinic I considered was Liv in Puerto Vallarta. I sent them a request for a quote for IVF, with PGS testing and ICSI and they quoted me $9000. I was ecstatic. How could this be so much cheaper in Mexico than it was in the States? How could we not do it now! The second clinic I inquired about was IREGA in Cancun. I reached out and the quote came back about the same. So what was going to be the deciding factor in picking a clinic?? Well we started to research plane tickets and the cost difference was huge. For some reason it was considerably more to fly to Puerto Vallarta than it was to fly to Cancun. So we decided then that we would go to Cancun.
I contacted IREGA and Tori Brown is the office’s English speaking consult. She sent me a list of what the Dr. there needed to treat me. So I sent for my records from my previous fertility clinic. Tori also sent a list of lab work that they needed from me and my husband. I included a link to what the copy of the paperwork and bloodwork requested. So all of you can see what was required for me to fill out and what testing we needed to have completed. We choose to have the blood work completed in the States before we went to due our insurance covering blood testing and if we waited to have these tests performed in Mexico we would have had to pay out of pocket for the tests to be done there.
After we sent my previous chart from the IUI’s I had to have our son, as well as the test results, Tori then told us the Doctor, Dr. Mayra was going to review my chart and she would then get back to me. Within three days I had an email sent back with scripts to order medication and a plan of what was about to happen. Dr. Mayra ordered for me to be on birth control pills the month prior to us going to Mexico. She ordered this to help my ovaries calm down and to prepare them for stimulation. Then I had to order the stimulation shots. I got pricing from two different pharmacies IVF Meds and IVF Pharmacy I ended up ordering them from IVF Pharmacy, because they were a little cheaper and I could put the order on my credit card and I didn’t have to send the requested money order or bank transfer to IVF Meds. I needed to order 5 days worth of Gonal-F 300 IU daily. So I choose to do the preloaded pens and I ordered 5 of them and the cost ended up being $889, $49 dollars of which was for shipping. I am including a copy of the sample protocol I was given to follow for meds, just incase someone is interested in seeing it.
So now came the fun part, because I was on birth control pills it was easy to figure when I was going to be getting my period and so we could then book our flights, hotel and maybe a rental car. Our flight on Southwest Airlines leaving from Atlanta Georgia on February 28 at 11:05 a.m. and arrive in Cancun at 2:05 p.m. the cost of our tickets was $898.66 or $449.33 each. and we would come back March 19 at 7:20 p.m. We then emailed Tori at the office to see what she suggested for Hotels. She sent me a list of hotels from previous couples that had gone down there to do IVF. Some couples choose to stay in the Hotel Zone down by the beaches and others choose to stay downtown, within a couple of miles to the clinic. We ended up deciding on staying downtown at the Smart Oasis. This hotel was beautiful and very close to the clinic. The hotel ended up costing us $1149.50. We then started to do some research on some cool excursions to do while we were down there to take away from the stress of the IVF process and to have a little fun. After all we were in Mexico, why not have a little fun and create some awesome memories. We figured we wanted to check out some of the local Mayan ruins so we looked into booking an excursion to Chichin itza, Tulum another set of ruins, this time on the ocean and into maybe into going scuba diving. We didn’t book anything though, until we met with the Doctor on my first appointment.
So it was finally February 28 and we were on our way to Cancun, Mexico. We both had our passports and we were ready for this awesome journey in our lives to begin. When we arrived we in Mexico we had to go through customs. Customs was an absolutely crazy experience. There were so many people trying to get their luggage, then race to the outrageous long lines to get through customs. It was crazy. About an hour and a half after we landed we had finally made it through customs and we went to go and rent a car. Once we figured out where we needed to go we made our way to the car rental building just outside the airport. While in line to rent a car, there was another American couple there trying to do the same. The husband was belligerent and rude. I was doing my best not to pay attention the impending argument and I started to read a rather big sign in English on the wall. This sign was a warning for foreigners that were there to rent a car. It detailed the process that should there be a car accident, you would be thrown in jail until the police there figured out who was at fault and what the damages were to be. I then proceeded to nudge my husband and told him to read the sign. As we were reading the sign we were motioned by the guy behind the counter that it was now our turn. I looked at my husband and told him that I was very uncomfortable renting a car and that maybe we should just take a cab to the hotel and figure it out from there. We then left the building with no rental car and we never looked back. We ended up taking a cab to the hotel. It cost us $40, and in my opinion it was the best decision we made that whole trip.
It took about 30 minutes till we arrived at our hotel the Smart Oasis downtown, and we checked in. The man that checked us in noticed that our stay was booked for a little over two weeks, so to make our stay more comfortable, he upgraded our room to a nice suite, with a mini refrigerator, and a nice couch, as well as a king size bed. After we went to our room to drop off our luggage, and freshen up we left the hotel and found a small restaurant around the corner. The restaurant was really good and really cheap. While eating we noticed a rather large building across the street, with the name Chedraui, and we both tried to figure out what it was. Ultimately we decided we would check it out when we were done. To our surprise it ended up being a large Walmart type of store. While we were there, we grabbed some drinks and some snacks, the food and drinks were so cheap it was unbelievable. I highly recommend going and getting simple things to get you through this time. It is a lot cheaper than room service after all. We then headed back to our room. After we put our things away, we decided to explore the hotel a little bit. The hotel has a spa, three restaurants, and a beauty salon. There was a large pool, and four small personal hot tubs for couples. There is also an open cabana bar right by the pool. As well as a night club on the premises. The main restaurant on the property was mostly buffet style for all three meals and for breakfast it cost $5 plus tip for both of us for the breakfast buffet. They even had smart cars that you could rent on the property, the cost was pretty reasonable, but again you run the risk of being thrown in jail if you were to be in an accident.
Our appointments will be detailed in the next post. I hope you enjoy reading our experience!