Retirement Abroad: The World\’s Best Countries to Consider

Retirement Abroad: The World’s Best Countries to Consider

Retirement is a time to relax and enjoy one’s golden years. If you are looking for a change of scenery and an affordable lifestyle, retiring abroad might be the perfect option for you. There are many countries that offer a high quality of life, lower cost of living, and beautiful landscapes that you can explore. But before making the decision to retire abroad, it’s important to do your research and consider the pros and cons of living in a foreign land.

In this article, we will take a look at some of the best countries to consider for retirement abroad, along with their benefits and drawbacks. We will also answer some of the most frequently asked questions related to retiring abroad.

1. Costa Rica

Costa Rica is known for its hospitable and friendly population, tropical climate, and lush landscape. The country boasts beautiful beaches, rainforests, and volcanoes, making it a popular destination for retirees seeking adventure and relaxation. The cost of living in Costa Rica is also very affordable, especially for those who are used to the high costs of living in the United States or Canada.

The average cost of living in Costa Rica is approximately $1,000 – $2,000 per month. This includes housing, food, transportation, and healthcare. The cost of healthcare is also very affordable, with many retirees coming to Costa Rica specifically for medical tourism. One negative aspect of retiring in Costa Rica is the lack of safety in certain areas, as well as the limited job opportunities.

2. Mexico

Mexico has long been a favorite destination for American retirees. The country boasts breathtaking beaches, rich culture, and delicious cuisine. Retirees can choose from dozens of popular expat destinations, such as Puerto Vallarta, San Miguel de Allende, and Cancun. The cost of living in Mexico is also very affordable, with the average cost of living ranging from $1,200 – $1,800 per month.

Mexico also offers top-quality healthcare, which is why it is a popular destination for medical tourism. However, retirees considering Mexico should be aware of the high crime rates, particularly in certain areas. It’s also important to note that the healthcare system in Mexico is different from that in the United States, so it’s important to do your research before making any decisions.

3. Portugal

Portugal is a beautiful country with a rich history, friendly locals, and a laid-back lifestyle. Lisbon is one of the most popular destinations for retirees due to its mild climate, affordable cost of living, and vibrant culture. The average cost of living in Portugal is around $1,500 – $2,000 per month.

Portugal is also known for its excellent healthcare system, which is available to everyone, including foreigners. The country has a high standard of living, but job opportunities for foreigners may be limited. It’s also important to note that the language barrier can be difficult, as Portuguese is the primary language spoken in the country.

4. Panama

Panama is a popular retirement destination for its affordable cost of living, warm climate, and beautiful scenery. The country offers a variety of environments, from tropical rainforests to sandy beaches to urban areas. The average cost of living in Panama is around $1,200 – $2,000 per month.

Panama also offers top-quality healthcare, which is available to both locals and expats. However, some areas of the country may be prone to natural disasters, such as flooding and hurricanes. It’s also important to note that the country has a high crime rate, particularly in urban areas.

FAQs about Retirement Abroad

1. What are the benefits of retiring abroad?

Retiring abroad offers several benefits, including a lower cost of living, a change of scenery, and a chance to experience new cultures and landscapes. It can also offer opportunities for adventure and new experiences that may not be available in your home country.

2. What are the drawbacks of retiring abroad?

Some of the drawbacks of retiring abroad include language barriers, cultural differences, limited job opportunities, and safety concerns in certain areas. It may also be difficult to adjust to a new way of life, particularly if you are used to the comforts and conveniences of your home country.

3. How do I choose a country to retire to?

When choosing a country to retire to, it’s important to consider factors such as the cost of living, climate, language, healthcare, safety, and cultural fit. It’s also a good idea to visit the country before making any decisions, to get a feel for what it’s like to live there.

4. How do I prepare for retirement abroad?

Preparing for retirement abroad involves researching the country you plan to move to, learning about the local customs and language, getting your finances in order, and making sure you have the necessary paperwork and permits to live there. It’s also a good idea to have a support system in place, such as friends or family members who live abroad, or local expat communities.

5. What are the visa requirements for retiring abroad?

Visa requirements vary by country, and it’s important to research the specific requirements for the country you plan to retire to. Many countries offer retirement visas, which may have age requirements and/or income requirements. It’s also important to have a valid passport and any necessary medical or travel insurance.


Retiring abroad can be an exciting and rewarding experience, offering the chance to explore new cultures and landscapes while taking advantage of a lower cost of living. However, it’s important to do your research and consider the benefits and drawbacks of living in a foreign country. By choosing the right country and preparing thoroughly, retirees can enjoy a comfortable and fulfilling retirement abroad.

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