*The UK is no longer part of the EU and therefore while the information in the following Blog was correct at the time of writing, it would be best to gain more current information.
The expat way of life can be attractive for those looking for a different work-life balance, a new job, a better standard of living or an adventurous lifestyle. Many Britons, especially the young are considering leaving the UK for one of the above-mentioned reasons, and according to a new study by Currencies.co.uk, a third of UK employees will think about leaving the country in the next 5 years. The survey found that the poor economy and lack of employment opportunities in the UK coupled with the hope of better prospects are the main drivers for most expats.
But with so many Brits looking to move abroad, where are the most popular expat destinations?
Australia has been a popular expat destination for many years among Britons. Australia has a similar culture to the UK, and of course they speak the same language. Australia has a population of 22 million but a much greater land mass than the UK, which means you can get away from the hustle and bustle experienced in many UK cities. The country boasts a pleasant climate, and many beaches, parks and gardens, and most expats enjoy the outdoors lifestyle immensely. The country’s education system is excellent, universal health care is provided to the population, and there are a wide range of both temporary and permanent job opportunities, with relatively high salaries. For those looking for a similar cultural experience to the UK, but a more relaxed lifestyle, Australia’s cities, like Sydney, Melbourne, or Brisbane can be the perfect expat destination.
2. New Zealand
Located east of Australia and made up of two main islands and numerous smaller ones, New Zealand offers a unique culture, a distinctive fauna, and the opportunity to enjoy a wide range of outdoor pursuits, from cycling and hiking to surfing and extreme sports. New Zealand has a population of just over 4 million, high living standards, and many professional opportunities for skilled people, especially after the Christchurch earthquake.
Belgium, located centrally in Europe, has a cosmopolitan and multilingual society, and is home to the headquarters of many international organisations as well as the *European Union. Belgium is a hotspot for many multilingual expats and offers a variety of professional opportunities connected to the European Union government and the international organisations based there. Although living costs are relatively high, especially in larger cities like Brussels or Antwerp, Belgium has remained relatively insulated from the negative effects of the economic recession. Offering a range of exciting professional opportunities, excellent restaurants, and a varied culture, Belgium can be a perfect destination for those looking to move to a cosmopolitan destination.
Spain has always been one of the most popular expat destinations, and although it has been hit rather hard by the economic crisis and unemployment levels are high in some regions, it can still be an ideal destination for many. The country’s warm and sunny climate, welcoming people, picturesque cities and landscapes and the relatively low cost of living will continue to attract British expats for many years to come. Employment opportunities might not be as good as in Australia or the USA, but many young professionals can find jobs in Barcelona or Madrid, and with its low house prices and amazing beaches, Spain remains popular with those planning to retire or those who are just taking a break.
Singapore is becoming one of the most popular expat destinations in Asia and worldwide, especially for those who are looking for new business opportunities and a cosmopolitan lifestyle. Singapore is an island country with a growing market-based economy and very strong financial, communications, and transportation sectors. Singapore might not be the best choice if you are looking for a relaxed outdoor lifestyle, but you’ll enjoy good living standards, a comfortable life and will find an abundance of professional opportunities. You’ll also have the chance to enjoy Singapore’s diversity, rich culture and excellent restaurants.