“Ms. Peddicord, France is a wonderful country to visit, and Paris is one of the most visited cities in the world for good reason. However, the expat quoted in your recent article is not writing from a retired person’s perspective. She arrived in Paris most likely via a company that paid her relocation, paid for language classes, paid for her accounting fees, etc., etc.
“If a retiree is considering Paris, it would have to be for a short-term stay unless money is not a consideration. You also would have to get a special visa for longer than a three-month stay. Anyone living there will most likely have some assets to afford the lifestyle mentioned in that article.
“Rents in a nice area are quite expensive so expect to pay a high rent. Paris is equivalent to New York City but your tax burden is much higher and more time consuming. I think most people will lose interest just looking into getting a visa. After that, your accountant and estate attorney will convincingly persuade you to look elsewhere and recommend that you just go for a nice long vacation instead.
“Expats are sponsored by their companies. I do not think it is accurate to suggest that an average nonworking retired U.S. person can move to Paris and retire.
“Reality is often much different than fantasy!”
–Steven B., United States
I know many expats living in Paris who weren’t relocated there and who aren’t supported by a corporate sponsor… including the writer of the essay you’re referencing. Paris can be an easier and a more affordable option than you might imagine.
Much of the cost of living in Paris has to do with how you live. Paris can be expensive for the tourist. A Coke on the Champs Elysee can cost more than lunch for two in a nice bistro on a side street in a far less recognizable corner of this city.
A friend once spent six months living in Paris. He tracked his spending month by month. What he found was that his cost of living decreased each month, while the quality of his experience of being in Paris improved. The difference? He was learning to take advantage of Paris as a local, rather than a tourist.
This is the kind of honest, in-depth discussion we’ll engage in during my Retire Overseas Conference in Orlando with the help of expats currently living and retired in the places we’ll be featuring (including, yes, Paris).