American Expatriates Should Go Here…June 9th, 2012 by The JetSetter Team | Comments Off on American Expatriates Should Go Here…
Analysis paralysis is a real thing, and American citizens who finally make the decision to expatriate often find themselves fretting day and night about where they should go. After all, the world is a pretty big place, with lots of choices. While the decision comes down in large part to personal preference, there are other factors to consider, such as:
- Is the local culture compatible with American values?
- Are there lots of homegrown yanks who have already expatriated there?
- How easy is it to accomplish day-to-day activities only speaking English?
- How easy is it to find jobs?
- Is it affordable?
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Costa Rica has perhaps the most stable government in Central America, and since it’s been premised upon a proven democracy for at least the last 60 years, things are run there in a familiar way for Americans. That might be what makes Costa Rica one of the most popular destinations in the world for American expatriates. It doesn’t hurt that it’s not too far away from home either, not to mention the low cost of living. In fact, if you’re ever feeling lonely, there’ll never be a shortage of Americans on vacation to remind you of home.
South Africa has been steadily growing in popularity for American tourists, especially for students studying abroad. It’s far away from America, sure, but South Africa has that perfect combination of exoticism and familiarity. Of course, it helps that they speak English! You can start your day with an English breakfast and then finish it on a wildlife safari. It doesn’t get much better than that.
Some might think Mexico is a little too close to home, but that’s also what makes it so convenient for Americans. In fact, Mexico undoubtedly houses more American expatriates than any other country in the world. Combined with the low cost of living and the intense familiarity of the culture to any American from the Southwestern United States, Mexico makes a cozy destination for the weary yankee.
Spain has a lower cost of living compared with central and northern Europe. Mix that with its dynamic location and lively culture and it’s clear why Spain has become a top destination for expats from
around the world. The European culture will be familiar and accessible for Americans, and getting around speaking only English should be a breeze. Spain also has historical and cultural wealth that’ll keep any expat’s mind afloat. Also, it’s become an extremely popular destination for college students
With Brazil’s burgeoning world power economy and the steady need for English teachers, it’s become a favorite location for American expats. That stable economy means jobs, and the cost of living in Brazil is still fairly low. The culture is diverse, yet remarkably friendly to Americans, and it’s another country with just the right mix of exoticism and familiarity. Compared with most other South American countries, it’s easier to get around here speaking only English.
Italy’s appeal is similar to that of Spain’s on this list, but with Italy you get just a little bit more. The cultural history is magnificent here, there’s a stronger American expat presence, and in just about every city or town with a university you’ll find American college students studying abroad. And come on– it’s Italy!
Randy Newman once joked of Australia, “[America’s] building its own American amusement park there.” Indeed, Australian culture will easily be the most familiar to the American among this list. English-speaking, BBQing, beer drinking Australia has a lot to offer the American. But with Australia you get a little more of the rugged and adventurous. It also helps that the Australian dollar still comes at a good exchange rate. And they’ve got surfing too.
The Czech Republic is among the cheapest places for Americans to live in Europe, and there’s always a high demand here for English teachers. Those factors alone might make it the most suitable country in Europe for American expats. It doesn’t hurt that it’s a beautiful country with a rich cultural history. People here are particularly friendly to Americans, and positioned right in the middle of Europe, you’re just a train ride away from everything the continent has to offer.
Thailand’s culture might be less familiar to Americans than any other on this list, but the country makes up for it in every other category. Thanks to the Amity Treaty of 1968, American companies have to jump through fewer hoops than any other nationality to operate here. The people are exceptionally kind and welcoming, cost of living is cheap and there’s a continuous and voracious need for English teachers. Thailand puts out a serious effort to lure the American expat. As much as you want to go there, they want you to stay even more. It’s become one of the top places in Asia for American tourists, youth backpackers and, of course, expats. Admittedly, it also gets extra points for closest resembling paradise. You’ll instantly forget where you came from the moment you step off that plane.
First and foremost, Buenos Aires made our list for one of the cheapest cities in the world for American expats to live in. That gives this beautiful, diverse, and inexorably friendly country major props on this list too. Among South American countries, getting around here speaking English is relatively simple, and the cultural wealth is the only thing that matches its landscape. Argentina is receptive to Americans. It’s a top location for students, and the standard of living relative to the cost of living is unmatched. There’s no surprise why American expats are flocking here, and we recommend you do the same. Argentina strikes just the right balance among all the things considered among this list.
It seems to us at the Jetsetter Show that this list is a pretty good one, though your mileage may vary. Choosing a new homeland is the most personal of experiences and not to be taken lightly. It should go without saying that you need to spend some time visiting a target country first. Kick the tires. Take it for a test drive. A country can look quite different from a distance than when you’re actually knocking knees and elbows with the local population.
It seems to us that one of the biggest considerations should be the existence of a sizable American expatriate community. After all, if a high number of your fellow citizens have already made the decision to relocate and decided to stay, that would seem to bode well for your chances of liking it. But keep in mind that a good bout or three of serious homesickness is liable to occur. Be ready for
it, deal with it, and move on with the grand adventure.
The Jetsetter Show Team
Flickr / sanchez jalapeno
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