Top 5 emerging expat destinations

Say ‘expat’ and most Brits dream of the lush climates of Australia or New Zealand, or the many and varied career opportunities offered in the USA, Canada or nearby Germany or France. While these common destinations remain attractive, a growing number of expatriates are now exploring the unique opportunities provided by a range of overseas territories beyond the ever-popular top ten.

Below we explore the five most attractive emerging destinations for British expats:

5. Ecuador

The Republic of Ecuador is gaining popularity for expats, largely thanks to the low cost of living combined with the availability of real estate in highland areas that help protect from the heat. Low utility, rent and food costs make the Republic an increasingly popular place for expat retirees, generally settling in Vilcambamba, Cuenca or the capital city, Quito.

Expats looking for adventure will find a wide array of climates to explore, from costal beaches to the 10,000 foot mountains or the rainforest teeming with wildlife.

Job opportunities for expats primarily involve their major exports: oil and agriculture. Others teach English or set up their own local businesses, such as restaurants.

4. Panama

Another destination attracting expat interest due to low living costs, Panama offers affordable healthcare, residency incentives and inexpensive local food and drink.

Retirees are highly incentivised in Panama, enjoying a wide range of discounts on entertainment, local transport, hotels, restaurants, medical costs and utilities.

The only landmass bordering North and South America, Panama’s 29,000 square miles are among the most bio-diverse in the world, attracting some 900 species of local and migrating birds and a huge variety of edible plant-life, evidenced by the wide range of local produce available in the nearby marketplaces.

3. Costa Rica

Like bordering Republic Panama, Costa Rica offers affordable cost of living and a thriving economy, with a number of popular havens for expats including the Central Valley, Southern Zone and Gold Coast.

Costa Rica is renowned for its friendly residents, always willing to help and patient with expats trying to practice their Spanish.

Foreign business is encouraged while the environment remains resolutely protected, meaning great employment opportunities for expats seeking the Caribbean sun.

2. Mexico

The fourth Spanish-speaking nation on our list, Mexico offers a number of beach towns along the Gulf and the Yucatan Peninsula, as well as bustling interior cities which many expats call home.

Once again the relatively low cost of essentials (especially rent and local food) is a big draw for the growing expat population, coupled with the varied landscape, offering the intrepid outlander anything from canoe rides and mountain trekking to beach parties and water sports.

Community is of high importance to Mexicans; expats may quickly find themselves invited to neighbourhood festivities, religious ceremonies and even weddings.

 1. India

A world away from the rolling beaches and tropical jungles featured above, India is now a well-known ‘up and coming’ destination for British expats thanks to it’s growing industrial sector, boasting a wide range of expat careers in construction and engineering, IT and telecommunication and financial services.

India is attractive for expat families, with high quality yet affordable childcare and education, as well as low cost healthcare, fashion, food and household goods.

A large and populous country, India is incredibly diverse. Away from the thriving, bustling cities of New Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai, the northern border boasts the colossal Himalayan mountains, while the east hosts the Thar, or ‘Great Indian’ Desert, and the serene Keralan lagoons and beaches across the south.

Western state Goa is a popular destination for holidaymakers and expatriates alike, with stunning beaches and a rich subculture heavily influenced by 16th century merchants. The relaxed atmosphere attracts many repatriates looking to settle, resulting in a flourishing retirement community.

With 600 offices in 45 countries, Pickfords relocates thousands of expats to destinations across the globe every year. To find out how we can help you fulfil your expatriate dream, visit our website or call 0800 019 8557.

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