At ages 67 and 72, we became senior nomads. We had taken stock of our lives and realized that we were happier on the road than anywhere else—and that becoming home-free would give us the flexibility we needed to experience life in other cultures. Since then, we’ve lived in nine countries, and we have no plans to stop until the wheels fall off!
- The One Thing Everyone Should Know Before Moving Overseas
Posted on April 9, 2013 by Dan Prescher
Over the last 11 years of living throughout Latin America, my wife, Suzan, and I have missed lots of things we had back in the States. The first one for me was roasted red peppers. Eight brands in the supermarket back home… none in the first two countries we lived in. (For Suzan, it was Triscuits.)
- The Problem With Retiring Overseas is Deciding Where to Live
Posted on March 5, 2013 by Edd Staton
When my now-grown son was a little boy I used to take him to Baskin Robbins for a cone. He would stare and stare at those 31 flavors. They were all so tempting, and I watched him grow physically agitated as he agonized over his decision. Inevitably he would always pick—chocolate chip. The same thing can happen now to folks scouring the Internet for possible retirement locations.
When my husband, Dan, and I were first married and first started thinking about living overseas, we pored over every issue of International Living and we read every International Living e-postcard. We compared and contrasted, planned and dreamed…Certain we would live in an exotic tropical destination, we wanted it to be relatively close to family and friends back home in the States…
We created our annual Global Retirement Index—in the current issue of International Living magazine—to help you navigate “our world.” It ranks the best destinations for retiring overseas today. And it’s informed as much by on-the-ground intelligence as by statistics—which is to say: It’s our judicious opinion. It’s designed to help you compare and contrast what we believe are your best options for retirement abroad in 2013.
If you’re reading this, chances are you’re dreaming of your own slice of paradise overseas. Maybe you fantasize about lounging on a tropical beach…or you long for the culture and convenience of city life…lush green mountain towns…or a little village by a lake…
Louise Orr finds it hard to stay in. Though she retired early at the age of 53, she doesn’t have much free time. “There are days when I say, thank God I don’t have to be anywhere,” she says. “Days when I can just work in the yard, or read a book.” It’s not that Louise is tied down to a business or a job…it’s just that there are so many fun and worthwhile things to do.
Exotic tropical islands, temperate mountain valleys, miles of deserted beaches, First-World cities packed with ultra-modern amenities, and ancient vineyard-shrouded hill towns… Among the top retirement spots in the world this year, you’ll find great variety in the cultural offerings, climates and lifestyles.
Ecuador scored well across all eight categories in the Global Retirement Index. However, there were some areas in which it did extremely well. Ecuador’s climate scored a maximum 100 points thanks to its mild, varied weather that makes for comfortable living year-round. Average daily temperatures reach into the 70s F, and the nights are cool and fresh.
Mexico secured third place in the 2013 Retirement Index. While it scored solidly across all categories, it excelled in two main areas. First up is the Ease of Integration category, in which Mexico clocked up a maximum score of 100 from 100. Mexico is right on the U.S.’s doorstep. And settling in becomes that bit more easy when you’re just a short trip from your family and friends.
Malaysia is something of a surprise package. The Southeast Asian country is not on many peoples’ radars. However, in light of its strong scoring in the Retirement Index 2013, it certainly should be. Malaysia surged into third place in the Index thanks in large part to its high score in the Entertainment and Amenities category, its low cost of living and the ease with which new expats can settle in.
Panama claimed second place in this year’s Retirement Index 2013, in fact it even beat our winner Ecuador across a number of categories. One of the main reasons why Panama scored so well is the selection of benefits it has in place for retirees…known as the pensionado program.
Costa Rica scored well across a number of categories to secure fifth place in this year’s Global Retirement Index (narrowly missing out on fourth to Mexico by less than a point). Two key categories for Costa Rica saw it perform particularly well. First up was the Entertainment and Amenities category, in which Costa Rica scored an excellent 94 points from a possible 100.
We’ve called on our network of experts and in-country editors to reveal their real estate contacts in each of the countries that performed best in our 2013 Global Retirement Index. Knowing the right people will help you negotiate the real estate landscapes in whichever country you’re interested in.
Below is a list (in no particular order) of nine great retirement havens to consider. From the beach to the highlands to city locales, there is something for everyone. All of the destinations are safe, welcoming, and relatively affordable when compared to life in the States. They are spread out around the world, from Latin America to Asia to Europe.
For 32 years we’ve encouraged readers to claim a richer, more fulfilling life – to reclaim their retirement – by looking beyond America’s borders. I’ve been privileged to be involved in International Living’s call to action for more than a decade.
“What happens in Vegas… stays in Vegas.” Well not today! I’m breaking the cardinal rule of Las Vegas. No, I’m not going to reveal wild tales of crazy escapades. Today, I’m spilling the beans on all the valuable expat information and ideas we learned here. When used, these will pay off in a big way as you make your overseas retirement plans.
Even if you don’t think you’re ready to retire… we learned today that ANYTHING is possible…no matter your age… or the size of your bank account. For example, in 2000, Suzan Haskins and her husband Dan Prescher took an early retirement from their marketing jobs. Ten years early, in fact. These Omaha natives had a modest income, some money tucked away and grown children.
My wife, Suzan Haskins, and I have lived abroad for nearly 12 years now, in seven different locations in four different countries. And at some point during each of those years, in each of those locations, we’ve asked ourselves, “Is it time to go back to the States?” We’ve said “no” every time…but not for the reasons you might think. We didn’t leave the States because we hated it. We love the U.S. and all the family and friends we have there.
- Your May Issue of International Living—Five Top Stories
Posted on May 3, 2012 by Eoin Bassett
“This is frontier country… You won’t find much here. Starbucks hasn’t made it, and there’s no Home Depot. But you will find an open door to immediate residency in Panama,” writes IL Offshore expert, Bob Bauman, in your May issue of International Living magazine. Bob explores an opportunity in Panama’s Darien province and reveals the ideal visa if you want to live in Panama, but don’t qualify as a retiree, or you want to avoid the process needed for an investor’s visa.
201 1 Live and Invest Overseas Conference Package
Las Vegas, NV – October 2011
In the Live and Invest Overseas Conference Package, we’ll show you how you can make that dream your reality… for as little as $697 a month. Maybe you long for your own cottage on a quiet beach… a grand apartment in a city vibrant with concerts and cafes… a mountain villa where the air is crisp… or even your own vineyard amid gently rolling hills. Whatever you fantasize about… come with that idea in mind. We’ll show you the places in the world today where you can live your dream, for a small fraction of what you’d pay for a comparable life at home.
“Where’s the cheapest place to retire?” Readers always ask. In the upcoming April issue of International Living magazine, we deliver the nuanced answers. Because no one-size-fits-all retirement destination exists.
At home, prices are rising. It costs more to put gas in the car, buy groceries, and pay for health insurance. At the same time, retirement savings eroded in the market downturn. And with interest rates at near-zero today, it’s difficult to rebuild. More than ever, retirees need to stretch their dollars.