Skip to comments.Great ExPat Options Where are they? Costa Rica? Others?
Posted on 11/07/2012 2:10:02 PM PST by NoLibZone
I desire to explore options for relocation away from the US.
Countries to live in.
What are some expat Freepers experiences and tips and tricks?
There aren’t too many attractive options out there and even fewer countries that will let you stay longer than a few months. A young couple I know is getting ready to move to Costa Rica. They have to deposit money in CDs in a bank down there to prove they have income to live on. They say they and their young kids can live pretty well on about $2500/month and they have an online business.
Chile is fairly friendly to immigrants but it’s a long way down there, airfare is expensive, I understand the language is difficult to learn (not typical Spanish).
I believe there’s an age limit to immigrate to New Zealand, but if you have enough money, age probably doesn’t matter.
The big thing with these countries is that they expect you to arrive with money in the bank and a way to earn a living without being a drain on their country. Imagine that!
Is there any way of renouncing one’s US citizenship but retaining resident alien status or something equivalent?
Hell, wait a year and we’ll be to the left of Canada and Europe.
I get the bring money for a buy in part.
It make sense to us worker bees.
The choice is staying in a country that wants to turn into a 3rd world country versus moving to a 3rd world country. Not good.
I posted this to another thread this morning...
USN (not retired) Vet, I’m 65, retired, and I have lost 30 pounds, lowered my BP, and no longer need to take the diabetes meds from VA. I have another 20 to go, and my activity level, while making for lots of aches in forgotten places, has me feeling so much better.
Oh yeah, I am moving to the Philippines in January! Cheap, warm, and great people!
Rent for House or apartment: 50,- - 120,- US$ 2500 - 6000,- Peso
Electricity without air con 20 - 30 ,- US$ 1000 - 1500,- Peso
Electricity with an air con 60,- US$ 3000,- Peso
Tap Water 2,- US$ 100,- Peso
Garbage (mostly free of charge)
Telephone & DSL (Globe) 16,- US$ 995,- Peso
Drinking Water (1 unit every 2 days) 9,- US$ 450,- Peso
Food for two people 100,- US$ 5000,- Peso
Gas for cooking (700 P every 2 month) 7,- US$ 350,- Peso
Transport (Jeepney or Motor Bike) 12,- US$ 600;- Peso
Cable or Satellite TV 7,- or 15,- US$ 350,- or 750,- Peso
House Helper 40,- US$ 2000,- Peso
Total cheapest: 227,- US$ 11345,- Peso
Total deluxe: 380,- US$ 19245,- Peso
Here are some sites to check out!
There’s always Texas, it’s not another country but sure seems like it.
It’s nice here on the Alabama Gulf Coast. Very Red.
We are now to the left of Canada, even our corp taxes far exceed theirs.
The Dominion of Melchizedek
it’s been awhile, but hubby & I looked into it. Basically, you renounce citizenship...which isn’t that bad part if you don’t have a ton of net worth. It’s trying to get back on a Visa that’s the problem.
Perhaps you are looking for a dual-citizenship thing?
I believe, at least for now, that it is still possible to transfer funds into Texas.
But be sure you have a CURRENT passport. We’re still debating the need for Entry Visas, but a passport will soon be a must at our checkpoints.
Also, to be eligible to vote here, you MUST renounce all liberal leanings from your home state. We already have millions of these “social transplants”, so we don’t need anymore.
If all can be accommodated, then: WELCOME TO TEXAS!!!
They know all the good the good places, and they know enough to keep it quiet.
My top choices are Canada and Germany. Both are doing better economically.
Ok I found this:
RETIRING IN COSTA RICA
Pensionado and Rentista Residency
Costa Rica has had a Pensionado (Retiree) and Renitsta program for more than 40 years. This program continues to date as follows:
If you are planning to retire in Costa Rica and you have a pension or investment income then you may qualify for either PENSIONADO RESIDENCY or RENTISTA RESIDENCY. This program is governed by the New Immigration Law which confers residency status as follows:
1. PENSION BASED RESIDENCY [Pensionado]
The Pensionado (Retiree) applicant must demonstrate a permanent fixed income from a pension or similar retirement income of at least US$1,000 per month. The typical applicant in this category has a government, private sector pension or social security retirement benefits. The legal basis for the pensionado category under the new immigration is Article 81 of Law 8764.
2. INVESTMENT AND INCOME BASED RESIDENCY [Rentista]
To apply for residency under the Rentista portion the applicant must demonstrate a permanent fixed income of at least US$2,500 per month. This amount includes the applicant, their spouse and all their children which are under the age of 25. The legal basis for the rentista category under the new immigration is Article 82 of Law 8764
Generally, those who seek the Rentista category do not have a pension source and instead have investment income. To apply for this category it is necessary to provide proof of the investment and that it will generate the requisite amount per month which is required under this program. As such the applicant must provide a letter from their bank or financial institution where your funds are deposited certifying the existence of that income. It is not required that the funds be held in Costa Rica. The letter can be issued by international banks as well as Costa Rican banks.
The ideal letter issued by the financial institution should state that the recipient will receive at least US$2,500 per month in Costa Rica in a stable and permanent manner.
In both cases, Pensionado and Rentista the beneficiaries must comply with the following:
Prove that the funds were deposited in Costa Rica. This issue generally comes up when you are going to renew your residency category. When you renew your status you will be asked to provide proof that the funds have been sent to Costa Rica. As such keep records of all deposits until you complete your renewal of status. The easiest way to comply with this requirement is to ask your bank to issue a letter stating that you have an account with them and indicating that during the year you have exchanged the amount required by the immigration law i.e. $12,000 per year for Pensionado or $ 30,000 per year for Rentista.
Contribute to the Social Security System of Costa Rica. The current Immigration law (8764) requires that all residency holders must contribute towards the Costa Rican Social Security and Medical System (C.C.S.S.) The easiest way to comply is to request a voluntary policy known as seguro voluntario. The amount you pay is based upon the amount of income you report. Since the law establishes the monthly requirement i.e. $1,000 for Pensionado and $2,500 for Rentista those are the amounts they will base the payment on. For Pensionado that generally translates into a monthly social security payment of around $50 per month..
Check out www.sovereignman.com for a ton of info about citizenship in other countries.
Yep....Uruguay’s been atop my list, as well. Methinks we must get the same financial newsletter(s). :)
I looked into this a while back but couldn't find one.
200K buys you in to Costa Rica:
INVESTING IN COSTA RICA
THE INVESTOR PROGRAM [Inversionista]
THE INVESTOR PROGRAM [Inversionista]
The Investor Category requires an applicant to demonstrate to the Department of Immigration that they will be coming to Costa Rica to invest in the country. The current Immigration Law maintains the investor category which had existed in previous immigration laws. The category is found in Article 79 (4) of the law.
In the past the law specifically excluded personal investments such as purchase of home, lots or buildings to qualify for this category. Subsequently on August 28, 2009 the Director of Immigration issued Circular UPI-239-2009-LAS which modified the types of investment that could be made to qualify for this category.
That circular states as follows:
The investment amount must be $200,000 United States dollars or more according to the official exchange rate which is established by the Central Bank of Costa Rica. The investment can be made in tangible property, shares, negotiable instruments, productive projects or projects which are deemed of national interest
In January of 2011 the government published the proposed regulation to the Immigration law and it adopts the flexibility in this category to be able to qualify with the purchase of tangible property, shares, negotiable instruments, productive projects or projects which are deemed of national interest
The door appears to be opening for new investor based applications. As more applications go through the process we will have a better criteria for how they are ruling on these applications.
Also bear in mind that the granting of Inversionista category is a discretionary matter with the Department of Immigration. It requires financial statements audited by a Certified Public Accountant to document the financial investment plan proposed.
There’s a FReeper (Dang it - I cant remember his handle right now) who lives in the Phillipines. He posts quite often. He has often posted on the advantages and disadvantages.
Doesn’t Texas have to pay the debt of the US?
Have they pulled out?
He moved to northern Thailand a few years ago and said he likes it much better.
I too live on the Alabama coast, but am looking at Panama as an Ex-Pat destination. Visited there a few months ago and liked it very much - much more than Costa Rica. It is relatively cheap, and a lot closer than other choices such as Chile or the Philippines.
“My top choices are Canada and Germany. Both are doing better economically.”
Still have to get used to the idea that rational health insurance will be dead.
Lose your ID. Go to Arizona and announce you're an undocumented worker to a police officer. Preferably a sheriff. That'll probably get you treated like an alien.
“they expect you to arrive with money in the bank and a way to earn a living without being a drain on their country.”
That’s how it should be here!
Sounds to me like anyone living in Kalifornia is an ex-patriot.
Are those figures monthly or annually?
I have a friend that moved to Panama. Says they have an “instant visa” for skilled workers.
My brother is married to a great lady from Pampanga and he got married there in Cebu.
Apparently, the family he married into is affiliated with one of the most powerful political families there, the Cojuangco so it did not surprise me that the wedding was paid for, with armed guys from the Army to protect us.
I still remember going into Malate for the night life, and my in-law provided 2 armed guards for me. The chicks thought I was some Hollywood actor or something LOL
Bump for later.
Explore the free info there.
Beware of some So. America places though: most are crime infected and if you are used to the (so far) relative safety of the US it will be a shock.
As a stranger in a foreign country, you don’t have the rights afforded by the United States Constitution. As a foreigner, you can’t assert them overseas. For the moment, our Contitutional rights remain intact. A coup could break-out at anytime in another country, in which case the rules may be suspended and any protection you may have had under that country’s laws are subject to interpretation by whoever’s in charge. I’ll take my chances here. Besides, I speak the language!
“My top choices are Canada”
I;m from kanadastan. You will have to get used to anti-Americanism down there from media to neighbors. If you like paying for national healthcare (it’s mandatory or else the gubmint goes into your bank account), provincial control of your car insurance and beer/liquor, also controlled by the govt. Say goodbye to seeing beer at convenience stores as you will never see them unless you are in Quebec.
Monthly rent for my new place (brand new construction in a gated community near Cebu City, two blocks from the water) will be 6500pesos or about $160 +/- at current exchange rates.
Read the two “Living” sites I gave and get lots more info... and sulit offers the classifieds!
...And the US.
Freeper AlexW moved to the Phils several years ago and lives well on a modest income and has a young wife and child.
Guam is another option as is Costa Rica.
I’ve been in contact with Alex sporadically for a few years and am considering retiring to the Phils myself.
The Philippines are comprised of 7,000 islands and English is spoken by most of the natives.
Alex lives on the beach in a cottage and his rent is $100.00 a month.
Yes, it’s hot and humid most of the time, but it’s inexpensive and the people are friendly.
It is a 3rd world country, so it’s not America, but in a few years, I expect America to be a 3rd world country as well.
One downside is the Philippine Peso has dropped in value against the American Dollar (Thanks, Obama!) but the Phils are still a great value and a single guy can live very well on less than 1k per month.
I’m going to look into Guam as it is a US territory and the cost of living is reasonable, but not as inexpensive as the Phils.
Costa Rica, Ecuador are also other options.
It depends on your finances. New Zealand and Australia would be optimal. Vancouver. All nice but expensive. Look to Panama. Costa Rica has a fare amount of crime.
I too have had this discussion with my family. Now that we are no longer a free country, we can pick from the various socialist countries out there. As it goes, our “takers” are really not as civilized as they are in other countries.
I am hoping that Texas would start succession plans. I am serious.
Chile - on the move up, low pitch fork factor, not at war, any climate zone you could want, easy to get residency and eventual citizenship, spanish
Uruguay - can fit in, low pitch fork factor, look like Europeans, spanish, Rush sighted there, lots of good farmland and water
Singapore - new world financial leader, well run, crime pretty non-existent, entrepreneurial, limited free speech. Not cheap.
Philippines - nice climate, can get by with English, depending on where (Cebu nice), cheap to live there.
Thailand - excellent medical care that is inexpensive, warm, friendly, cheap
[ditto, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Cambodia)
Most everywhere, you will appear to be one of them. You will need to speak their language eventually - though there are many expats throughout Europe. English speaking: Malta, UK, and many english-speakers in most countries.
Depending on what you are looking for and your age: New Zealand, and of course, Oz.
And that’s just it, what are you looking for??
Many places have displace our own country in terms of economic freedom and many measures of happiness.
I retired in Nicaragua and I enjoy it. Very inexpensive and becoming popular with North Americans. Check out this site for lots of info and contacts.
In the Phils, you can stay for 21 days on a Tourist Visa, but can have it extended to 60 days at any travel agency for up to 2 years.
After 2 years, you must leave the country for a minimum of 48 hours.
Most non-citizens fly to Thailand for a weekend, then repeat the above indefinitely.
The other option is to deposit 50k with the Phil Government to become a retiree citizen, but I hear that they are relaxing the rules to make the country more friendly to Ex-Pats that wish to retire in the Phils.
If you haven’t been in touch with AlexW, you should send him an email as he is also living in Cebu and loving it and can give you valuable advice as he has been living there for a few years.
I’m in Hong Kong and the only way you can live here is either get a job (work visa) or marry someone from here (dependent visa).
If you want to own a gun...forget it here. You can own but but you need to store it at the local shooting range. If you want to keep it at home then you need government permission to do so.
Don’t ask me. I was born here, raised my kids here, served in this nations Army and I’ll die here. And no marxist pig will ever chase me out.
Cuba is a beautiful island.
Allow all Cubans to immigrate to California or the other west coast states, and the Great Northeast. The Castros may move to D.C. and live on the citizens’s dime, as they always have.
Annex Cuba and allow it to run as an independent financial state analogous to Hong Cong.
Rodney just explained my situation here in the Philippines, but I will add to it.
This is great if you are single, but I do not know if it would be the best for married to a western lady with family.
A family might have trouble adjusting to third world culture, but it might work in some of the more sophisticated resort areas.
As Rodney mentioned, we live on less then $1000 per month.
I get online mailings every few days from WWW.Internationalliving.com, and WWW.Escapeartist.com
Both specialize in central/south America, and they have very glowing reviews. Look them up and get on their mailing list.
If I were not here, I would be hot to trot to central America.
Before moving here, I spent about 8 years in central Europe, my last being 5 years in Slovakia. I moved here from Slovakia in Jan. 2009, following a one month visit in August of 2008.
I live in Dalaguete, Cebu www.dalaguete.gov.ph
Can I ask you where you are? Hong Kong Island...Kowloon...New Territories? My several recent visits there seemed damn expensive to me.Or is there a way to do it cheaply?