These Are The Best Countries For The Budget-Conscious Expat
Vietnam, Mexico, and Indonesia are the best destinations when it comes to finances, according to findings in the Expat Insider survey.
Global expat community InterNations conducts one of the biggest annual surveys on life abroad, Expat Insider. In 2022, close to 12,000 expats representing 177 nationalities took part and shared their thoughts on life abroad — including their finances.
1. Vietnam Offers Great Value for Money
Vietnam is the undisputed winner in the Personal Finance Index, placing first across all measures. Four out of five expats in Vietnam are happy with the cost of living, compared to 45% globally. In fact, 45% even consider it very good (vs. 14% globally).
Expats are also generally happy with their financial situation (79% in Vietnam compared to 60% globally). Three-quarters agree that their disposable household income is more than enough to live a comfortable life in Vietnam, compared to 45% globally. What is more, 8% say that they earn over $250,000 USD per year (vs. 3% globally).
Financial reasons are not the main motivation for expats to relocate.
Still, financial reasons are not the main motivation for expats to relocate to Vietnam (3% versus 2% globally). Instead, the majority move for a job (44%, versus 36% globally), and there is an above-average share of expats who were looking for a personal challenge (9% versus 5% globally) or wanted to live in Vietnam in particular (8% versus 4% globally).
2. Mexico Delights with Low Costs
Mexico ranks second in the Personal Finance Index 2022. Over three-quarters of expats there rate the cost of living positively (77% versus 45% globally) and are satisfied with their finances (77% versus 60% globally). About two-fifths (38%) are completely happy with their finances (versus 22% globally).
Nine in ten (90%) also share that their disposable household income is enough or more than enough to live comfortably (versus 72% globally). Two-thirds (67%) agree that it is more than enough (versus 45% globally).
3. Indonesia Makes Saving Easy
Indonesia offers “great opportunities for saving with low living expenses."
The third place on the podium goes to Indonesia. Close to three-quarters of expats there say their financial situation is positive (versus 60% globally). Similarly, 73% are happy with the local cost of living (versus 45% globally) — and over twice the global average say very much so (30% versus 14% globally). Or, in the words of an expat from South Korea, Indonesia offers “great opportunities for saving with low living expenses."
Close to two-thirds (64%) find that their disposable household income is more than enough to lead a comfortable life (versus 45% globally). Overall, 87% say that they have enough or more than enough (versus 72% globally). An above-average 7%, claim an annual income of more than 250,000 USD (versus 3% globally).
Find out more in the Expat Insider 2022 report.