25 November 2012


Not long ago, I subscribed to daily e-mails from an organization called International Living, which provides information and guidance for those thinking about retiring outside the U.S., as well as overseas travel and investment.  The daily windows onto living overseas are interesting, and often tempting.  I'm not certain how well I would adapt to being an ex-pat, but given the dozens of places I've lived over the years, I suspect the adjustment wouldn't be that difficult.  One retains one's U.S. citizenship, and surrenders no rights or entitlements like Social Security.

Recently IL published a list of their choices for the top ten retirement havens ~ places where living is both sweet and inexpensive compared to the U.S.  Each entry includes an overview which includes climate, cost of living, health care, and inducements aimed specifically at retirees.  The nations include ~

Exotic, no?  It's hard to argue with the attraction of living in a semi-tropical country where one's income affords a comfortable-to-generous lifestyle.  Learning a new language is one consideration (except in Belize, where the official language is English) ~ but while you're learning, you are bound to find enough English-speakers to help in the transition.  And your choices in-country are up to you ~ whether to live on a tropical beach, in the mountains, in a city or the countryside, perhaps a secluded village with access to both culture and nature.  (Click on either photo to enlarge)

No relocation need be permanent, of course.  And one would want to research and visit one's top choices before making a decision.  Who knows, it might be entirely workable to spend a year or two in each of a series of countries and cultures.  Me, I wouldn't mind adding Ireland, New Zealand, Spain, and Botswana to the list.  My only hesitation is leaving my cats behind.  Who knows, living somewhere so exotic might lure my son and his family, or certain treasured friends, to visit!

So what destinations entice your imagination?

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