Friday, October 12, 2012

5 places Overseas That Are Ideal for Retiring

Have you ever arrived from a dream in the morning thinking about where you would love to retire? If you have, I can almost guarantee you have let your mind wander to a foreign country. What would it be like to live in an ancient city or on a sunny shore? Could you actually do that? Well the answer is a definite resounding yes...yes you can. People from around the world move to foreign shores to become expats in their retirement...a lot of people.

In my dreams this morning I thought about Panama or Spain. Then my mind wandered to the wonderful Kohs in Thailand. Island living can be the best for some people. I have always thought that Bulgaria would be interesting and I love the idea of living in a place like the Bahamas. However, dreaming is one thing and actually making that dream come true is another. Before you even begin, you need to think how you will manage your financial affairs if you live overseas. You need to remember that having an international bank account is also important. Do your homework and dream on.

1- Bahamas The Caribbean lifestyle has a lot of appeal because of its relaxed vibes. I visited the country many years ago for a very short period of time. The people were on island time and I liked that a lot. The natural beauty of a tropical climate is always appealing.  The cost of living in the Bahamas may not be as low as some developing nations but the Bahamian dollar is on a par with the US dollar so moving back to the states later is not a big problem. And I will tell you that there is nothing in this world more beautiful than that beautiful clear water.  WOW!

2- Spain  Spain has a beautiful coastline on the Costa del Sol. The Mediterranean is like a magnet attracting people from northern Europe. Anyone that lives in Europe knows that this is the destination for those seeking a respite from the cold North Atlantic. In fact, I suppose that a lot of writers disregard this area because it is one of those "been there done that" locations. HOWEVER, I absolutely love it. The food, international atmosphere and beautiful location are just perfect.

from Tourism of Thailand
3- Thailand This country is a great draw for expats. The tax advantages and low cost of living make it ideal for Westerners. Winter tourist from Europe, Africa and the Middle East find the simplicity of island life or life in north Thailand to be perfect.  I have been to Bangkok and Koh Samui.  The island of Samui was charming beyond belief.  I could see myself spending a lot of time on that tiny island. The island of Phuket and the northern Thailand city of Chang Mai are the Thai people's favorite. They will always ask you if you have been to those places in polite conversation.The Thai people are the most charming lovely people I have ever known. 

4- Bulgaria I am told that Bulgaria is becoming more and more popular for British retirees.  This is one of those places that boasts a beautiful historic past. The capital of Sofia dates back to the 8th Century B.C. and has a population over 1,250,000. It is the capital of the country. It seems Bulgaria has it all. There are many ski resorts, opportunities for cultural experiences, and of course, there is the Black Sea. What more could anyone want? A visit to the Bulgarian Travel Organization will provide you with more information than you could ever want. 

5- Panama I dream of that part of the world. The idea of a tropical climate with a high standard of living yet still affordable should be the ideal. Panama has some very appealing advantages for retirees. For example, if you buy a home valued at $200,000, you can have a resident’s visa AND be property tax free if you make it your sole residence.  

I found several things you should think about before making this kind of decision in a Forbes article.  They mentioned things like language, climate, medical care, ease of acquiring residency, tax laws, cost of living, crime and most important of all, how you can keep your money safe.    

The world is your apple and if you are nearing retirement, this may be the time for you to begin making those "trial runs" to countries around the world. Take a vacation to see if you can find your ideal overseas retirement spot. Remember there are over 200 countries on this earth. There is probably someplace that is just perfect for you. 



  1. I knew many expats in Thailand. I heard that Costa Rica is good, too. And did you see the wonderful movie The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel?! Are you and Earl considering any of these places for yourselves??

  2. I don't know about the other countries, but Thailand was very accessible for our families. Something to consider.

  3. We spent last February in Ecuador. It's one of the places we would consider.

  4. Galen, we did just watch The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel the other night. I love it...out-sourcing seniors! Who knew.

    Costa Rica is definitely on my list of places to visit. Bulgaria sounded very good to me too.

    No, we are not considering moving overseas. That time in our life has passed and we are moving on. Beside, if we did move overseas, I would just go about finding people like my friends here. I love travel but I will always be a S.N.O.B. ;)


  5. Shelley, you are an experienced expat I know. Thailand is worth checking into. I love that part of the world.


  6. Linda, I see you have traveled a great deal since retirement. You can see how trying to decided on a place to move to would be hard.

    Best wishes to you and your husband. You do good things.


  7. Wow! I love this post. The pearl of the Andaman Sea, Phuket, Thailand, attracts the tourists from all over the world with its white sand beaches, crystal blue water, tropical wether, top class facilities in terms of restaurants and hotels.

    resorts in phuket thailand


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