September 9, 2018
The best countries for expats have been ranked by InterNations as part of their annual Expat Insider survey. We take a look at the results.
There are an estimated 57 million expatriates across the globe with the term ‘expat’ no longer limited to corporate employees relocating from a company’s headquarters.
Instead, more and more expats are moving overseas in search of a dream. Some have remote jobs and are now working from a location they love. InterNations’ latest survey looks at how expats’ motivations for moving are changing where they go.
Now in its fifth year, the Expat Insider survey is the largest of its kind. InterNations draws on its 3.2 million members and surveys over 18,000 expats from 178 nationalities living in 187 countries or territories.
- Find remote jobs at companies genuinely committed to remote working
InterNations uses its members’ answers to rank 68 destinations on how expat residents feel towards their home away from home. The survey uses 48 individual factors that influence an expat’s experience of living in a foreign country including safety and security, family life, finances, travel and transport options, ease of settling in and average working hours.
Best and the worst countries for expats
Bahrain, Taiwan and Ecuador have been ranked as the three best countries for expats in 2018. Bahrain received high scores for making expats feel at home and is popular with expat families. Taiwan, up from fourth in 2017, has been ranked second with expats citing a high quality of life thanks to affordable healthcare and good transportation infrastructure.
After ranking 25th out of 65 countries in 2017, Ecuador has moved up to third in 2018. The impressive improvement is down to excellent results regarding finances, ease of settling in and expats’ work-life balance, although it should be noted a large proportion of the respondents are retirees (46%). Additionally, more than four in five expats in Ecuador (83%) rate their financial situation favourably.
While there has been change at the top of the ranking, at the bottom it’s the usual suspects. Seven out of the 10 worst-rated countries were already in the bottom 10 in 2017.
Kuwait is back in last place, a position it held from 2014 to 2016, while Saudi Arabia is just behind in 67th. Both countries rank poorly for ease of settling in and general satisfaction with life abroad. India continues its slide down the rankings to third worst with expats citing career prospects, general satisfaction and work and leisure negatively.
The UK continues its downward trend – after already tumbling 21 places last year – dropping to 59th place in 2018. The Brexit vote continues to concern expats and has caused a drop in the strength of the pound. The country now ranks as one of the worst countries for expats.
The best countries for expats Ranking 2018
Participants were asked to assess up to 48 factors concerning various aspects of life abroad on a scale of one to seven. The mean values were then calculated to create the below ranking of the best countries for expats.