In their retirement, some U.S. citizens become expats, moving to a new country in search of a new experience.
Whether they're looking for warmer weather, a different culture and slower pace, or finding a way to better stretch those savings, there are a variety of reasons retirees choose to live in a foreign country.
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Latin America is a popular region with nearly a million Americans living between Mexico and the tip of Argentina due to a lower cost of living, according to Viva Tropical
Europe and Asia, however, may be surprisingly affordable as well.
Here are some of the popular retirement spots:
According to International Living,
Ecuador is the world’s best retirement haven. "Although prices have risen slightly in recent years, Ecuador’s real estate is still the best value you’ll find anywhere," the site says. From life in the Andes Mountains to trips to the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador has a warm climate and plenty to do and see with the public transportation to help you do it.
This Central American country offers the best retirement benefits in the world, according to International Living, with its Pensionado visa. The visa provides discounts for medical services, entertainment, restaurants, and even utilities.
Not far from home, Mexico has almost 850,000 American expats and plenty of U.S. influence from brands and franchises, yet the cost of living is just a fraction of that in the United States, said International Living. Communities for expats like Puerto Vallarta and San Miguel De Allende help to ease the transition.
With a robust economy and easy access to other southeastern Asian nations, Malaysia is an excellent location to experience oriental culture. It offers a unique mix of ancient and modern lifestyle as well as urban and jungle surroundings. Almost all Malaysians also speak English.
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When it comes to living in Europe, Spain is a great option, offering a lower cost of living and property costs while still maintaining a high-standard lifestyle. "A couple can live comfortably in many cities in Spain for about $2,600 a month, including rent, making Spain a great warm-weather, low cost choice for anyone who wants to spend time in Europe," said International Living. From picturesque landscapes to warm Mediterranean beaches, Spain has a great diversity in things to see and do.
While Paris may be pricey, southwestern France is fairly affordable for European standards. MainStreet suggests Pau, France, where there are "four seasons, lots of English speakers, all the Western amenities, entertainment and dining options" as well as "that socialist universal health care that folks back home kept wailing about." France is also a good central location for retirees who want to travel throughout Europe.
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