In the US, unprecedented numbers of seniors are pushing past the once typical retirement age of 65 and working until about 72. Simultaneously, millennials are hustling to amass income-generating assets and living off rice and beans to retire early.
While there’s no one way to approach retirement, many are getting creative in stretching their money for a comfortable — and even luxurious — third act of life. One strategy? Retiring abroad.
International Living, a magazine focused on Americans living overseas, released its annual Retirement Index on Wednesday.
The index, which ranks countries “where you can live a healthier and happier life, spend a lot less money, and get a whole lot more” in retirement, was created through extensive surveys of US expats, the magazine said.
Retirees living overseas ranked their experience across 10 categories: housing; benefits and discounts for seniors; visas and residence; cost of living; assimilation and entertainment; quality and accessibility of healthcare; development; climate; government stability; and opportunity for semi-retirement.
Each category was then given a score out of 100, combining several nitty-gritty details. For example, the housing category encompassed the value of real estate, the cost of building, property taxes, and even whether there is opportunity to earn money renting. The cost-of-living category addressed minutiae like the cost of a liter of milk and a movie ticket, while the healthcare category covered the costs of medical procedures, common medications, and ease of access, as well as quality.
After balancing all 10 categories, the magazine ascribed a final overall score, also out of 100, to each country.
Here are the top countries for retirement, ranked in ascending order of final score, according to expats who have already made the move.
10) Vietnam 5) Colombia
9) France 4) México
8) spain 3) Costa Rica
7) Malaysia 2) Panamá
6) Ecuador 1) Portugal