10 Best & Worst Places for Expats

9.11.19 | More than 20,000 expats have weighed in regarding their experiences in nearly 200 countries/territories around the world in the newly released, Expat Insider 2019 survey.

The survey, now in its sixth year, ranks the best (and worst) places for expats. To compile the rankings, the survey considers a variety of factors in the following categories:

  • Quality of life
  • Ease of setting in
  • Working abroad (career prospects, work-life balance, job security, etc.)
  • Personal finance & cost of living
  • Family life

10 Best Places for Expats

  1. Taiwan
  2. Vietnam
  3. Portugal
  4. Mexico
  5. Spain
  6. Singapore
  7. Bahrain
  8. Ecuador
  9. Czechia

Topping the List

Taiwan, which has appeared in the top five since 2016, earned this coveted spot due to its high scores in quality of life, personal finances, working life, and ease of settling in. In fact, 86% are generally satisfied with their life in Taiwan. Nearly all expats rated medical care positively for quality (92%) and affordability (89%). One survey participant said, “The health insurance system and safety are what makes Taiwan attractive to me.”

According to one respondent, “The people in Vietnam are amazing.” The country, which earned the #2 spot, ranks fifth for friendliness and first for career prospects and job satisfaction. It also performed well for work-life balance as 71% of respondents rated it favorably compared to the worldwide average of 60%.

Which country are respondents most likely to recommend for expatriation? Portugal. Ranked third on the list, one expat described it as “peaceful, healthy, and safe.” The country ranked second for leisure options and personal happiness, and seventh for health and well-being, and 8th for safety and security.

10 Worst Places for Expats

  1. Kuwait
  2. Italy
  3. Nigeria
  4. Brazil
  5. Turkey
  6. India
  7. UK
  8. Greece
  9. Russia
  10. South Korea

Least Recommended

Kuwait ranks last in the survey, as it has every year except for 2017, and it is the country expats would recommend the least. When it comes to ease of settling in, it ranked last and for quality of life, it ranked second to last.

In Italy, according to one expat, “It’s very difficult to start a career or find any type of work with a decent income to raise a family . . .” The country lists near the bottom for personal finances and working abroad, and ranks poorly in quality of life and ease of settling in.

While Nigeria performs satisfactorily for personal finance and ease of settling in, it ranks low for satisfaction with working in Nigeria and ranks last for the local quality of life.

Check out the report, as well as supplemental information, here.

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