Salty Dog

Top Ten Countries To Retire

43 posts in this topic

Posted (edited)

This was written with Americans in mind, but it could apply to someone from any country. I know most will say the Philippines is the greatest place on earth to live, but at least here is some comparison.

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Top Spots to Retire

Stretch your nest egg in these 10 lovely countries

Forget Florida and Arizona. If you're hoping to make your dollars stretch further in your golden years, you may want to consider joining the growing number of Americans who are opting to relocate abroad. More than 550,000 Americans now receive their Social Security benefits overseas, an increase from the nearly 400,000 reported in 2000, according to the Social Security Administration.

But which place is best? While everyone has an opinion when it comes to the ideal retirement spot, the experts at International Living (IL), an authority on global retirement opportunities, has done a lot of legwork to help you make a decision.

In its Annual Global Retirement Index, released in January 2017, IL named Mexico the best country in the world to retire, followed by Panama and Ecuador. The yearly index is designed to help whittle down a retiree’s choices by ranking countries based on factors such as cost of living, retiree benefits, climate, crime and health care.

With its low costs and friendly locals, Mexico is no stranger to the index, consistently ranking in the top 10 over the past 14 years. And in 2017 — for the fifth time — it nabs the top spot.

To see the complete list and to find out what makes these places worthy of your attention, scroll through the countries below.

1. Mexico

The country offers a wide variety of options for seaside living as well as established expat communities in many areas. (The colonial town of San Miguel de Allende is home to thousands of Americans.) Affordability is another magnet, with many expats living well on as little as $1,200 a month. The dollar’s strong position against the Mexican peso means the cost of living provides an even better than normal value.

2. Panama

Besides being close to the U.S. (making travel easy), Panama uses the American dollar, so you'll have no worries about currency fluctuations. What’s more, Panama offers a wide range of options for becoming a legal resident, and its top-notch medical care is highly regarded. The best hospital, Punta Pacifica, is affiliated with Johns Hopkins and is known for performing cardio surgery, neurosurgery and a variety of complex procedures.

3. Ecuador

Beyond its fabulous weather, Ecuador is a standout when it comes to affordability and the availability of real estate to buy or rent. It’s actually not difficult for a couple to live on $1,500 a month. There’s also no shortage of retiree perks. Those over 65 get discounts on flights originating in Ecuador as well as up to 50 percent off public transportation and entry to movies and sporting events.

4. Costa Rica

Costa Rica’s breathtaking landscapes and unspoiled beaches have long fueled this country’s popularity among travelers. For retirees, a highly regarded health care system, with costs just a fraction of what you might pay in the U.S., is also a huge draw. And getting residency status couldn’t be more straightforward. Retirees just need an income of $1,000 per month from Social Security, a pension, disability or another similar source. That covers the applicant and a dependent spouse, offering a nice solution for long-term living in Costa Rica.

5. Colombia

Once rejected as a possible retirement haven because of its reputation for conflict and drug cartels, Colombia has shed its dark past and stepped into the spotlight as an attractive place for those seeking excellent health care, a temperate climate and a low cost of living. This country at the northern tip of South America offers lush green coffee plantations, beautiful beaches and quaint colonial towns — something for everyone.

6. Malaysia

Clean and modern, Malaysian cities boast an unrivaled public transportation system as well as some of the friendliest people in Asia. The country also straddles the tourism market, managing to offer both memorable budget holidays and first-class luxury vacations. Its multicultural society tolerates all religions, and it’s this fusion of cultures that, for many, makes Malaysia so special.

7. Spain

In Europe, Spain stands out because of its superior infrastructure, world-class health care system and laid-back lifestyle. And for retirees on a budget, the low cost of living and real estate is appealing. Indeed, a couple can live comfortably in a smaller city for as little as $1,900 a month, including rent. Small one- and two-bedroom apartments can be rented for a mere $500 a month and purchased for $70,000 and up. Another plus: the Mediterranean diet, which is both good and good for you.

8. Nicaragua

Until recently, the largest nation in Central America has been generally sidestepped in favor of its more popular neighbors, Costa Rica and Guatemala. Not anymore. Although Nicaragua remains poor, there have been major infrastructure improvements during the past few years, including an expansion of the international airport in Managua. To top it off, there’s great health care, little traffic, warm people and a low cost of living. A couple on a budget can be comfortable on $1,500 a month —not bad.

9. Portugal

Another inexpensive country, Portugal also entices retirees with its low cost of living and real estate. A couple can do well on just $1,700 a month in many smaller cities; in Lisbon, the capital, about $2,200 a month or more is needed. Other big draws are the usually mild climate and the country’s superior red and white wines. (The seafood is excellent, too.) The laid-back atmosphere means less stress, and the western coast, lined with beaches, offers plenty of recreational opportunities.

10. Malta

On a map, this tiny island chain between the coasts of Sicily and North Africa is easy to miss. But this Mediterranean destination has been enchanting countless visitors for decades, thanks to its centuries-old cities, sapphire blue waters, and 300 days a year of sun and warm weather. For retirees, the cost of living is remarkably reasonable; a couple can live here for under $2,700 a month. And if you ever find yourself getting island fever, you can simply take a three-hour ferry ride over to Sicily or hop on an inexpensive flight to Paris.

Check out International Living for more details.

 

Edited by Salty Dog
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Philippines would probably be down around 99  :as-if: 

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The top retirement country for Americans is the USA. It offers fantastic beaches, beautiful mountain living and first world infrastructure. The weather in the southern states is comfortable year round. Many or most couples own their own home outright by retirement age and can live on as little as $2,500 per mont. :lol:

 

But that information wouldn't sell them magazines or real estate.

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1 minute ago, Edwin said:

The top retirement country for Americans is the USA. It offers fantastic beaches, beautiful mountain living and first world infrastructure. The weather in the southern states is comfortable year round. Many or most couples own their own home outright by retirement age and can live on as little as $2,500 per mont. :lol:

 

But that information wouldn't sell them magazines or real estate.

I will second that but it does cost much more on property taxes and other related home ownership fees, one should have insurance in the US and that too cost a bunch, as well as labor to get things fixed or upgraded cost a lot more in the US, yet we find shopping much less expensive in south Florida than in Cebu and the other places we have been in the Philippines, so in the end, it cost us around the same to live in Florida as in Cebu and especially when property value gains in the US come into the equation.. 

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1 hour ago, Lee said:

Philippines would probably be down around 99  :as-if: 

The Philippines is rated at number 19, below Cambodia and Thailand.

I'm just shocked that Mexico is rated number 1 with all the drug related killings there...

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International Living is primarily a real estate consortium. They are NOT a service to retiring Americans. They make their money from seminars to the gullible and selling real estate to the even more gullible. They seldom advertise countries in their magazine where they don't have real estate to sell. Obviously, because of the real estate laws in the Philippines, they don't push it much. In reality, it is equal to most of the countries on their list (in value for money).

Costa Rica, Mexico and Nicaragua are more dangerous the the Philippines, and in most places, their infrastructure is no better than here. It is a stretch to mention international airports as improvements to infrastructure when primary infrastructure facilities, such as sewer collection and treatment, pure water, communications, power and roads, are so inadequate. It is like the Philippines thinking about inter-island high-speed trains when nothing else works properly. It's just silly.

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32 minutes ago, Mikala said:

 

I'm just shocked that Mexico is rated number 1 with all the drug related killings there...

I did business in Mexico for over 15 years.  I still have an interest in property there. Mexico is very much like the Philippines, and in fact the USA. There are places I would love to live in , and places you couldn't pay me enough to live in.

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Posted (edited)

9 minutes ago, Headshot said:

 

Costa Rica, Mexico and Nicaragua are more dangerous the the Philippines,

Thats like saying the USA is more dangerous to live in because you live in downtown Detroit and so have personal knowledge of living in the US !  When you start generalizing things by country, race, or religion you lose much of you credibility imho .

Edited by Davaoeno
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good...I hope everyone retires to those top ten places...:rolleyes:

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The Philippines is not longer a budget shopper paradise.  

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