Best Countries for Americans Who Want to Live Abroad

Family at the airport with suitcases

Many Americans have had their optimism and hope for the future eroded by politics, never-ending scandals, and the cost of living increasing from day to day. It’s natural to want a fresh start in the new year, whether that’s in terms of location, lifestyle, or career. Simply put, a place to escape to, even if it’s for just a while.

It is possible to be a proud American and take a break from this lovely country. Though you may risk some judgemental glares when announcing you’re moving, especially if you’re from the depths of the South, your peers should know that you made this decision only to better yourself and your future.

Let’s stop chit-chatting and dive right into the list of the best countries for expats! Who knows, you may not even wish to come back after making these countries your home!

This post is part of our Expatriate Lifestyle Series

Portugal

The progressive nation to the west of Spain continues to entice young expats, especially company owners, with its low cost of living and friendly business incentives.

Although Lisbon receives more attention, you should not overlook Porto, a hive of creative activity and a major textile and industrial center. Take advantage of the city’s steep, cobblestone streets on your day off and visit some of the cafés, medieval cathedrals, and port distilleries. You may go on a boat tour of Europe’s oldest wine area in the Douro Valley or ride your bike to a series of beaches.

A view of Lisbon, an interesting European destination for Americans workers who want to live abroad

Braga, Portugal’s third-largest city and less than an hour from Porto, also has a lower tax rate for new businesses. Baroque architecture has earned Braga the nickname “Rome of Portugal,” but the city also has plenty of parks, foreign schools, and cutting-edge businesses to attract talented individuals.

Thailand

Retirees, company entrepreneurs, and digital nomads often choose Thailand as their permanent residence. The climate and cost of living in Thailand are top-notch. Bangkok, Thailand’s capital, has become a major worldwide business and expat center while yet retaining much of its original, local flavor. If you’re looking for a beach vacation in Thailand, you should visit Phuket, Koh Samui, or Koh Phangan.

View of a busy street in Thailand, an interesting city for expat workers

Because of tourists and expats, English is widely spoken across Thailand, especially in Bangkok and Chiang Mai. In order to see as much of the nation as possible in a short amount of time, you can use Thailand’s excellent public transportation system.

If you meet the requirements, you may apply for the Thailand 10-Year Visa Program, which would enable you to stay in the nation for ten years with no restrictions.

Singapore

A third of Singaporeans are foreigners, so you won’t feel too out of place as an expat there. Singapore’s status as one of the greatest locations for American expats comes as no surprise, given the tens of thousands of Americans already living there.

Even though incomes are often lower than in North America, expats may be eligible for a relocation incentive. Singapore has very low taxes, but as an American citizen, you should still research whether or not you are required to make annual payments to the US tax system.

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When deciding whether or not to relocate your family from the United States to Singapore, you should give careful thought to the schooling options available to your children. You’ll rest assured knowing that this tiny country has one of the best education systems out there.

A view of Singapore and interesting and progressive city for American overseas expatriate workers to consider living

For us Americans, healthcare is a very sensitive topic. Luckily, if you move to Singapore, you’ll enjoy quality healthcare that is available for all residents. You only have to pay a portion of their medical costs.

A major selling point for Singapore among Americans considering a move is the city-state’s exemplary safety record. It is one of the safest cities in the world in terms of violent crime, and it is also one of the cleanest.

The high cost of living, including the cost of food and accommodation, should also be considered. This is due to the fact that Singapore is a very small island, meaning that most necessities must be imported.

Germany

Germany has a lot to offer tired Americans, including cheap beer and wine, schnitzel, and the Autobahn. Being in the geographic center of Europe makes it an ideal destination for short vacations.

Munich is not just the entrance to the Alps but also a city with easy access to the headquarters of several global corporations. Ambitious IT types and free spirits alike are drawn to Berlin by the city’s cheap cost of living, famed nightlife, and growing startup culture.

View over Berlin - an interesting destination in Europe for Americans to consider living

While Americans may enter Germany on a three-month visa, moving there officially requires mountains of paperwork. Even mundane actions like establishing a bank account or acquiring a cell phone generate a paper trail. This is particularly true in Berlin, where potential renters may have to compete with as many as twenty other people for a chance to see a flat. The entire process is a bit tiring, but once you make it, you’ll be able to enjoy your life like nowhere else!

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