After spending most of your life working, you finally look forward to retirement, leaving behind all of your worries and concerns in exchange for free time and space. But have you ever considered what kind of life you want to live after you retire?
Many people have relocated away from the cities after retiring to return home to a more idyllic life, leaving the fast-paced life of the bustling city behind. More and more retirees are choosing to seek further afield - they want to sunbathe, a slower pace of life, lower tax rates, and a more fulfilling lifestyle.
According to the International Living Retirement Index released by International Living Magazine, Central America's Costa Rica topped the ten best countries to retire in 2021, followed by Panama and Mexico.
Two countries in Asia made the list: Malaysia and Vietnam. Malaysia, which provides a 10-year residency visa program called "Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H)", was placed seventh with a score of 79.8, while Vietnam was ranked tenth with a score of 75.5.
Costa Rica has risen from third place last year to first place this year! Costa Rica received more than 90 points in three categories: recreation, development, and health care - with health care receiving the highest score of 97.
Every year, millions of tourists flock to Costa Rica due to its tropical climate. In addition, the low cost of living, kind and welcoming residents, affordable health care, a diverse choice of housing options, and the country's natural beauty make it an ideal place for many people to retire.
In Costa Rica, a couple may live comfortably for roughly $2,000 a month. This includes the cost of renting a two-bedroom apartment, air conditioning, miscellaneous expenses, entertainment, transportation and health care.
Panama is located on the Central American isthmus, the southernmost country in Central America, with a total area of 75,500 square kilometres and a population of about 4 million people.
As a vacation and leisure-destined country, Panama does not appear to have many advantages over surrounding countries. However, this small Central American country has emerged as one of the best places to visit for vacations and retirement.
Panama has a beautiful natural environment and a tropical marine climate with temperatures varying between 23°C and 37°C throughout the year. Panama is a small but ancient civilization in the American continent, where modern life meets the colourful world.
The fact that it is relatively easy to become a Panamanian citizen is the main reason for its high rating. Panama offers various visa alternatives, including the Pensionado Program, which grants a residency permit to anyone receiving a monthly pension of at least $1,000.
If you do not meet the criteria, there are a variety of different options for obtaining residency. Furthermore, when it comes to real estate, foreigners have the same rights as native Panamanians!
Many people may have different perceptions of Mexico, but its deepest impression on the public might be the animated film "Coco". Mexico's unique colours and rituals are showcased in this video, particularly the Mexican Day of the Dead (Día de Muertos) culture.
In Mexico, it is believed that after death, people will go through a long journey to "Mictlan", the afterlife world. And only for one day, the Day of the Dead, will they be able to return to earth to rejoin their surviving kin. On this particular day, people will recall their loved ones who have passed away.
Mexico has a relatively low cost of living and is a low-tax, low-consumption country. It is comparatively more affordable than other European and American countries, allowing retirees to enjoy a good and leisurely life rich with culture.
According to the International Living Magazine, Mexico has the best housing facilities for the price. You can find a good house for $167,000 can be found in places like Tulum on Mexico's Caribbean coast. It's also relatively simple to blend in among Mexicans.
With a score of 75.5, Vietnam has a ranking of one of the best countries for retirement in 2021, getting into the top 10 out of 25 countries. This country has abundant tourism resources and a refreshing and beautiful natural environment with outstanding air quality.
The low cost of living is the most appealing aspect of Vietnam. You can live comfortably here with less than 1,500 USD per month in urban areas like Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh, making it a fantastic place to retire.
In addition, Vietnam is more strategic in terms of location compared to other European and American countries. It is located in the eastern part of the Indo-China Peninsula in Southeast Asia, bordering China in the north, Laos and Cambodia in the west.
Malaysia's ranking remains the same as last year, ranked 7th, the best retirement haven in Asia for the fifth consecutive year, the first in Asia and the seventh in the world.
Many people have moved to Malaysia through the "Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H)" 10-year residency visa program in recent years.
Malaysia has a comfortable season all year, with temperatures ranging from 21°C to 32°C, making it an ideal place to live in. There is a wide variety of street foods, large shopping centres, and cinemas, which are easily accessible and much cheaper.
Besides the low cost of living, medical care is a big consideration for many when deciding where to retire. Malaysia has world-class medical facilities, with government hospitals, clinics, and private clinics located in towns and cities, forming an extensive healthcare network.
Your desired retirement life abroad will not be a dream, with proper planning and preparation. Remember that before you decide to retire, absorb everything about the country and its environment before making a final decision.
Interested to retire in these five countries? Invest now and you'll have a second home there before you know it!
Just leave your contact details below, and our professional team of agents will assist you with all things property.
What do Chinese people think of the Japan lifestyle? (Plus tips on how to buy a house in Japan!)
Why is everyone watching Australian TV series "Selling Houses Australia"? (Plus Bonus Movie List!)
These 5 stunning countries are your dream retirement spots!
Interesting facts about Bangkok most people don't know!
Thailand now reopening for tourists! Which spots can you travel to?