To be an expat is to be an adventurer. Not only is being an expat a great way to gain life experience and learn about a new way of life, but you’ll also broaden your horizons, test your flexibility and hopefully meet a lot of new and exciting people.
From Spain to Singapore, there are many awesome places to be an expat. Here, we look at some of the best cities and countries to live based on the quality of life and expat satisfaction.
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Rich with culture and full of beauty, Vietnam is quickly becoming a firm favourite among expats. It offers a great work-life balance and the people there are warm, friendly and welcoming. It’s also an affordable place to live meaning financial security isn’t difficult to achieve. What’s more, the food there is divine.
According to an online survey with the expat community, InterNations, 89% of expats are happy with their life in the country’s largest city, Ho Chi Minh. 88% are happy with their job there, 84% are pleased with the cost of living and 77% said that making friends there was easy.
Thanks to the quality of its schooling, Spain is one of the best places for expat families. Not only are the school and childcare systems top grade, but the working environment is relaxed and there’s a high standard of physical and mental wellbeing. The climate is pretty good, too.
The InterNations survey reported that 80% of expats living in the country’s capital Madrid were happy with their life there. 89% were satisfied with the healthcare and 66% said they were content with the work-life balance there. Siestas at lunchtime? Sign us up.
Sydney may be expensive, but it offers a great quality of life. In fact, a recent survey on Condé Nast Traveller revealed that over half of expats living Down Under reported that they were healthier. This is significantly higher than the global average of 35%. All that sunshine, exercise and healthy eating does do you good after all.
Despite the high cost of living, 82% of Sydney expats are happy with their life there. 89% are pleased with the healthcare system and 77% are happy with their job and work-life balance. If they’re surfing after seminars, it’s no wonder.
Singapore has long been a favourite with expats. The quality of the schooling there is outstanding and both job security and wage growth are high. According to the InterNations survey, 71% of expats are happy with their job in Singapore and 78% are happy with the work-life balance.
In addition to an excellent education system and great job prospects, Singapore offers an advanced healthcare system, low levels of crime and a real melting pot of East-meets-West cultures.
Home to stunning ski resorts and impeccably clean streets, Switzerland is a firm favourite among expats looking for a luxurious way of life. Yes, the country is expensive but average annual salaries more than match up. In fact, according to a survey by HSBC, expats living in Switzerland earn twice as much as expats living anywhere else in the world.
Switzerland is also home to three of the Top 10 cities for quality of life, according to the 2019 Mercer Quality of Living Survey. These include Zurich, Geneva and Basel. In Basel, 79% of expats are happy with their lives and 92% are pleased with the quality of medical care. Not bad at all.
Full of natural beauty, Canada ranks high with expats when it comes to mental wellbeing, job security and ease of settling in, according to a HSBC survey. The study also found that Canada is exceptionally tolerant when it comes to different races, faiths, genders and sexual orientations. Canada and your open-mindedness, we salute you!
In addition to a welcoming environment, Canada also boasts low air pollution, a high level of public safety, free public secondary education and universal healthcare. And thanks to its strong ties with the tech scene, it’s becoming more and more popular with young, white-collar workers. We’re not surprised!
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