Want to spend your golden years in comfort? These countries are calling you

Find out the countries where you can spend your retirement years.

Want to spend your golden years in comfort? These countries are calling you

Retirement brings an end to our work life and generally results in a fall in income. Even before we retire, we make plans to utilise our retirement benefits in a prudent manner so that we can enjoy the rest of our life in peace and comfort. 

Patriotism aside, the fact is many consider migrating to another country after retirement. This is largely because some countries are more liveable than others, thanks to factors like cost of living, affordable healthcare, tax benefits, immigrant friendliness etc. 

Related: 5 Indian cities that are great for retiring in 

Let’s look at some countries that are most sought after by retirees, in no particular order.

The Americas

1. Mexico – As a retiree, you can migrate to Mexico on a temporary resident visa, which is valid for up to four years. You will be able to lead a decent life if you have an income of Rs 1-2 lakh a month. Mexico gives you the option of living in hill stations, bustling cities, rustic villages, or beach towns. The healthcare system is considered good and relatively cheap, and is free for permanent residents above the age of 60.

Related: Is your child your retirement plan?

2. Ecuador – A consistently moderate and pleasant climate in and around the Andean highlands makes Ecuador a perennial favourite among retirees. A family of four can live on around Rs 85,000 a month, not including rent. Ecuador ranks high in International Living’s Annual Global Retirement Index in criteria such as health, lifestyle, entertainment, amenities, etc.

3. Costa Rica – A retired life in Costa Rica can be amazingly economical; the country is rated excellent in terms of buying and investing, healthcare, lifestyle, entertainment, and amenities. If you have a monthly income of Rs 71,000 (USD 1000), you can qualify as a resident. This means access to the national healthcare system for a paltry USD 95 per month for a couple.

Related: How is asset allocation linked to retirement planning? 

4. Nicaragua – A beautiful coastline, cities with a colonial legacy, and captivating mountains make Nicaragua an ideal tropical destination for retirees. It is one of the cheapest countries to live in and has good potential in real estate. This, combined with its accommodating retiree programme and low property tax, makes it a tempting retirement destination.

Continental Europe

5. Italy –Any country that celebrates the beauty of doing nothing (dolce far niente in Italian) can only be paradise for retirees. Of course, you will need decent financial means to migrate to Italy, but with its illustrious history, art and culture, Italy is an unmatched retirement destination. It has affordable healthcare and ranks quite low in the cost of living index, considering it’s a first world European country. 

6. Spain – Lying below Italy in the cost of living index are the two Iberian nations, Spain and Portugal. Apart from the low cost of living compared to European standards, the laidback life of Spain, with its warm climate and world-class cities, gives it an interesting mix of features. It has diverse terrain with beaches, hills, and dry interiors. The healthcare system is excellent, and so is the food. 

Related: Living in home versus living in a retirement home in India 

7. Portugal – Located west of Spain, Portugal also offers great value on the cost of living parameters, particularly if you plan to retire in the smaller towns. Healthcare is quite affordable and is publicly funded, and can be availed of by anyone after paying a specific fee. Non-EU residents can fulfil one of the conditions of the Golden Visa Scheme to immigrate to Portugal.

8. Croatia – This central European country goes a step ahead and actually offers tax breaks to people who migrate there to settle down. Things have improved from the times when civil war wrecked the country; today Croatia is embracing rapid development. Placed slightly above three of the BRICS nations in the cost of living index, Croatia also affords easy access to some fine European holiday destinations such as Austria and Switzerland.

Related: Best countries to retire in and why 

The Far East

9. Malaysia – Malaysia is an interesting mix of Malay, Indian, and Chinese cultures. There’s no language barrier here as English is widely used. Malaysia also offers long-term visas to people who are looking to settle there. What’s more, retirement benefits from another country are not taxed.

10. Thailand – Thailand is affordable for retirees from anywhere in the world, given its reasonable cost of living. You are required to generate a monthly income of over Rs 1,40,000 (USD 2,000) to settle down there. The country has built a good healthcare system and is known for its natural beauty and foreigner-friendly population.

So start making plans now and you will be able to live your retired life the way you want it!


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