Top 3 Expat Destinations in South America

by Antonu Bezboruah

Three Great Destinations in South America for Expatriates

Thinking of relocating to South America? Many places in this continent may suit your health, budget, and style. Every year thousands of people move to South America as retirees to enjoy the sunny weather and ensure that the retirement money they have lasts longer. Although not every part of the continent is economically and politically stable, some expat destinations in South America have increasingly become popular with expats in the last decade or so. Many countries have made impressive progress in terms of economy and administration to lure expats into staying there forever.

Factors that can help you in deciding to move to an overseas city or country may include taxes, lifestyle, work-life balance, social security, healthcare, etc. If you are looking for favorable conditions for overseas stay or retirement, here are three top South American destinations for expats that may be the right fit for you.

Colonia, Uruguay

In recent years, the number of people settling in Colonia, Uruguay has increased considerably. Uruguay is not only popular for its football team, but it also boasts a strong economy. Home to just about 3 million people, the tourism sector has enjoyed major growth in the last few years. Your trip to Colonia would usually begin at the tourism welcome center known as BIT. It has a beautiful audio-visual theatre to promote tourism and lure people into visiting the other Uruguayan hotspots as well. If you are in Argentina, you just have to cross a river to reach Colonia and Montevideo. Colonia has all the modern amenities that expats require to lead a hassle-free life. You will love its mild climate as you take a ride through the countryside that is painted with lush green agricultural land all around. Expats can even plan to build their property or ranch here because real estate and the land is easily available and also affordable. The taxes too are low as compared to those in developed western countries. At Colonia, don’t miss the opportunity to indulge in your favorite food and drinks while enjoying some live music on the riverside.

Cuenca, Ecuador

The beautiful city of Cuenca is located in Ecuador and welcomes expats and retirees in a huge number every year. The major lure for expats is the stable economy which is complemented by the international demand for its oil, bananas, and roses. The US dollar-based economy that it possesses is a boon for American expats who don’t have to adapt to a new currency after arrival. The tourism sector has helped boost Ecuador’s economy to a great extent. Cuenca is also known for its churches and stunning colonial architecture. Numerous tourists visit the Galapagos Islands in search of a peaceful and thrilling experience when they are in Ecuador. In general, Ecuadorians are visitor-friendly which is an added advantage for people who are new to this country’s culture and environment. Surrounded by lush forests, Cuenca can be a dream destination for people wanting to spend their golden years as retirees here. The standard of living and healthcare is high but available at a low cost. You can purchase health insurance for about USD 70 per month, and this would provide coverage for pre-existing health conditions too.

Lima, Peru

Lima, the capital of Peru fits in the list of favorite destinations for expats for many reasons. You just have to pay one-third for everything you would otherwise do in the United States. Restaurants are cheaper and groceries won’t cost you much. You can afford to live a decent lifestyle even with a moderate income as the residential rents are also not high. You simply can’t miss the wining and dining options offered by the finest restaurants in Lima, all at a cost as little as USD 20 per person. The thriving Peruvian economy is another reason why expats find Lima to be the right choice, especially for their happily retired life. Infrastructure development is on the rise and public transportation has improved immensely. The use of technology to adopt solar and wind as alternative energy sources will make life much better for the citizens of Lima soon. Lima also offers great real estate options, especially if you’re planning to reside in affluent districts of Miraflores, Barranco, and San Isidro. 

Plan Well Before You Move

Ideally, you should visit a destination at least once before you decide to relocate there as an expat. Spending a few days or a week will help you know a particular place better. Do the required research online before zeroing in on a place and finalizing it. Talk to locals and fellow expats to have a clear understanding of the pros and cons of an expat hub. Purchasing properties in South America is not very difficult, but do the necessary research or talk to various real estate agents to get the best deal. If you are moving to South America, you will also need to work with a good moving company. Moving overseas in a planned manner will save you the hurdles and hassles that most expatriates face.

Get the Desired Coverage in South America through Global Health Insurance

Being fully prepared to move to a South American city or country includes having adequate coverage in the form or health insurance for those living abroad for a year or more and travel insurance for short trips under a year. Make your trip to your desired destination a memorable experience by purchasing international health insurance that covers various health-related expenses. Healthcare in South American countries and cities is generally affordable and efficient. However, purchasing a global health insurance policy from a reputed company can be the best bet. Don’t forget to go through the terms and conditions before opting for an international health insurance plan. Expat Financial can help you out if you are looking for good health plans for you and your loved ones.

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