How To Retire Overseas, Step 2
You’ve got your list. (If you missed Tuesday’s issue, catch up here.)
Now you need another, shorter list, one that includes the destinations that might support the lifestyle you seek.
How do you choose your ideal retire overseas haven from among the 200-plus countries in the world? To help focus your thinking, here’s a sampling of our picks for the world’s top overseas retirement havens in 2015:
In the Americas:
- Ambergris Caye, Belize
- Cayo, Belize
- Northern Belize
- Granada, Nicaragua
- Pedasí, Panama
- The Panama City Beaches
- El Valle, Panama
- Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
- San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
- Las Terrenas, Dominican Republic
- Buenos Aires, Argentina
- Mendoza, Argentina
- Punta del Este, Uruguay
- Montevideo, Uruguay
- Cuenca, Ecuador
- La Serena, Chile
- Medellín, Colombia
- Chiang Mai, Thailand
- Hua Hin, Thailand
- Dumaguete, Philippines
- Cebu, Philippines
- George Town, Malaysia
- Nha Trang, Vietnam
- Danang, Vietnam
Now, here’s the problem. I can’t take this conversation much further.
You’ve got your list of what matters to you… and now you’ve got a list of the world’s top retirement havens right now.
Given all this, should you retire to Panama… or to France? To Argentina… or to Thailand? I have no idea.
You’ve got to do the work of considering the top countries in our World’s Top Havens list in the context of your personal preferences and priorities yourself. You’ve got to connect your own dots.
If you’re looking to retire on a limited budget, look closely at Ecuador, Nicaragua, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam, the world’s most affordable places to live comfortably.
If you want a temperate climate year-round, put Cuenca, Ecuador, and Medellín, Colombia, at the top of your list. If you want four seasons, think about Argentina, Chile, France, or Italy.
Get the shakes at the thought of life without reliable Internet? Take Nicaragua off your list and parts of Ecuador, too. If top-tier infrastructure is a deal-breaker for you, I’d recommend reconciling yourself to city living in Latin America and Asia in general. You can’t count on regular, reliable Internet in the “interiors” of most countries in these regions.
Don’t like bugs? Don’t retire to a tropical beach.
Get sad without sunshine? Don’t move to Ireland.
Want to start a business? Come to Panama, the most business-friendly jurisdiction in the world today… or Malaysia if you want to be on that side of the planet.
Travel a lot? Come to Panama in the Americas or France in Euro-land. From Tocumen you can get anywhere in North or South America with ease… and from Charles de Gaulle, you’re no more than a couple of hops away from anywhere, period.
Value regular nights of culture? Consider Buenos Aires, Paris, or (more budget-friendly) Medellín.
Want to be far away from the troubles of the world? Think about Cayo, Belize, where life continues safe, simple, and separate.
“Retiring” with children? Education is your number-one priority. In this case, consider France, Panama, or Argentina.
If you have an ongoing health concern, medical care facilities are your top priority. Put, again, France, at the top of your list if budget is not another of your key criteria… and consider Panama, Malaysia, and Colombia if it is.
Panama is an international banking center… Nicaragua is not.
Foreign ownership of property is restricted in Thailand, if that matters to you.
Argentines enjoy drama—in their politics, in their economic policies, in their cocktail party conversation. Will you find that entertaining or unnerving?
France is one of the most legislated places on earth. The French, though, simply ignore the rules and the restrictions as suits them. Could you?
Taxis in places like Panama City, Panama, and Granada, Nicaragua, often come minus things like door handles, air conditioning, and tail lights. Will that bother you?
Latinos live life loud and in the street and don’t value their own time let alone yours. The French are reserved and formal. Asians don’t have the same ideas about personal space that North Americans do.
Which of those things make you uncomfortable?
OK, over to you. You’ll have to continue this line of thinking for yourself, but you get the idea.