image

Would you consider retiring abroad?

Many people dream of living abroad after retirement or travelling long term.

From experiencing new places to chasing warmer weather, there’s dozens of reasons for packing up and moving away from the place you raised your family.

Cheaper and more convenient travel options like the train, plane and ferry mean the world is smaller than it once was; you can live abroad and still maintain close ties with those you love back home.

Money is also a factor – moving to rural France or Spain may be cheaper than retiring in a British city, making it an attractive option for many couples already working hard to stretch their pensions.

The savings made to the cost of living and positive factors like lifestyle and weather mean in the last decade more people than ever have been retiring and moving to Europe to enjoy their retirement.

What do you think? Would you consider retiring abroad? And what are the factors that impact your decision? Share your views at Speakers Corner.

Would you consider retiring abroad?

752 people have already voted, what's your opinion? Yes No

What are your views?

We'd love to hear your comments

Not a member?

You need to be a member to interact with Silversurfers. Joining is free and simple to do. Click the button below to join today!

Click here if you have forgotten your password
Gertrude49
11th Sep 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
I have been retired abroad for 14 years. I have enjoyed it immensely but maybe should share a few useful experiences with you.
Don't be dazzled by TV programmes or being on a holiday. Do your homework by renting in a country for a few months and see if you really like it - especially in the heat of summer and the depths of winter.
Take plenty of time finding out about the legalities involved in buying a home. What and who is to be trusted and what are the processes to buying? What financial outlays are there? Ask other Brits about their experiences - I could write a book about mine! Don't get duped as so many have been. Can you get your title deeds easily?
Can you manage the language? It helps to do so. We moan in the UK that incoming migrants don't seem to bother learning English but too many Brits expect everyone to speak English wherever they happen to be.
Health services - what are they, how good are they and how much do they cost?
What impact might there be on your pension if you move abroad?
Cost of living - it can be high in some areas.
Ease of movement - can you get back to the UK quickly and easily if you want to? Air fares are rising....
Resale - can you sell up easily or would it take years to get free of the encumbrance of your home in the sun?
So - a few pointers before you start. Hope it helps
Costezuela
4th Sep 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
My wife and me moved to Spain 20 years ago - at the time we ran an hotel but are now retired. It was the best thing we ever did! Our daughter followed us and is now married to a Spaniard and we have two lovely grandchildren.
The Spanish way of life is more relaxed, the people are friendly and we often get involved in conversations with complete strangers.
Our visits back to the UK are becoming less each year as we find it too hectic, the people so insular and often rude and, as for the traffic!, enough said!
Give me Spain any day.
angelontheroof
2nd Sep 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Having had a house in the South of France for 15 years with a view to possibly retire there, the escalating costs of living in France has challenged that idea. Added to which are the uncertainties following Brexit. Apart from the weather, we underestimate the quality of life in the UK and spending extended time abroad helps one to appreciate that.
iestynlad
27th Aug 2018
0
Thanks for voting!
Lady below asks a valid question... where will have us. We take everyone here but doors elsewhere remain closed to us. Interesting to see what will happen after next March
Paula1960
22nd Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Definitely, when can I go. Xx
welshlady47
18th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t!
Darkstar
18th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Catton
17th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Would seriously consider it but with all the financial situations involved and Brexit, probably not.
jason49mac
17th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
If I had enough to buy my own place there
SusanBaron
15th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Greetings All, I have been traveling for the last year and a half and I'm pretty sure I will retire abroad when I stop traveling. All of you travellers, I would love to hear about your travel tips, especially in Europe, and I'll be happy to share mine. Happy traveling, [email protected]
Ciel
28th Sep 2018
0
Thanks for voting!
Nice to "chat" to a fellow traveller....
I have lived and worked in eight countries - Europe,
North Africa and the UAE. I think one must be an open and flexible kind of person, eager for new experiences to get the most from your travels. Don't always wait for somebody to make the first move, search out clubs and societies that may be available in the local areas. Try and learn at least something of the local language. Mix where possible also with the indigenous population !Just a few helpful tips for anyone contemplating moving abroad.
David46
15th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
When I was younger I would have thought of retiring, probably to a Greek island. Now I have chronic leukaemia and excellent treatment at Poole hospital, coupled with three adult children, one of whom also has cancer I have given up on the Greek island idea and just enjoy my life in England.
Frank
13th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
I put yes but it would be a really hard decision to make to much going on and interested in to many things so at this moment in time I am far to busy to move away.
Calli
13th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Would like to live in a different part of Canada for a bit, but to leave the 35c plus summers and the minus 35c winters... never. Being cold outside is always an excuse to stay in, drink something lovely and warming and read a book in front of a roaring fire. The hot summers, well we just try to deal with it.
AverelleN
10th Aug 2018
4
Thanks for voting!
My husband and i retired early, bought a house in France and joined in with village life. We made an effort to improve our french and worked hard on our house. We joined french choirs, I started a drama group and taught french children(plus some english children), my husband wrote several history books and translated for a french author. In 2009 when the £ was almost at parity with the euro we found our pensions were not sufficient, life became quite difficult. I took on work cleaning gites and holiday apartments, not much fun in 29degrees + c. Finally after 12 years there we decided to sell up (at a loss) and come back to the UK. Life there was good, the healthcare far better than the NHS but unless you have work or have very generous pension provision it can become difficult. Would I do it again, yes, because if you don't embrace change life becomes stale. Are we glad to have returned that is also a yes but we came back to a different country to the one we left in 2004.
Yodama
11th Aug 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
Good ole' Blighty AverelleN, a country full of eccentricities and beauty. Everything may not go like clockwork but it somehow works.
My favourite slippers are a bit tatty but ever so comfortable, a bit like Britain and its potholes.

For me, still the best country in the world.
ginntonic
10th Aug 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
I don't think I will move far from where I am living now. Over the years I have had the fortune to live in a few European countries due to work. We have also lived in quite a few different places in the UK. I think I can safely say we are now settled in our home on the North Yorkshire coast. I have a lovely group of friends, nice neighbours, a nice lifestyle that suits us and our family is not too far away so I get to see my daughters and grandchildren often. We are able travel far and wide on holiday. All things considered I wouldn't want to give all that up to start again some where new.
Yodama
9th Aug 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
Having lived in the far east ( India, Borneo, Ceylon and Singapore) and for many years in Africa, it was a wonderful feeling to come back and feel "home." Everything feels familiar, if I speak about Fawlty Towers, people know what I mean. Being a resident in a foreign country has its downsides too.

Wherever or whatever you do in a foreign country, you are always treated like the outsider you are, no matter how you try to integrate.

It was such a relief to come back to England where I fit in ( sort of.)
Britain for me is a fantastic place to be in spite of our weather. Don't want to move again, maybe a holiday here and there but not permanently.
Lionel
10th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
'It was such a relief to come back to England where I fit in ( sort of.)'

I couldn't agree more.

I loved Czech, it's people, it's way of life and the values these hard working people held: family first, honesty and integrity.

Coming home after my last excursion to Czech and Poland England lacked a lot for me. It took time to settle down again, and a second wife!

For almost two hundred years my family, originating in Poland, inculcated each succeeding generation with Britishness. To be precise, Englishness. I guess that's why England feels like home.
Helly1957
9th Aug 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
My ideal would be to live in the UK in the summer months and somewhere abroad in winter months to get the best of both worlds.
Anyone like to join me?
OldFart
9th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Have been holidaying in Malta for over 50 years and would love to retire there but house prices there make it unlikely to become a reality.
janwills
9th Aug 2018
0
Thanks for voting!
We have a motor home and travel extensively around Europe and absolutely love it and the climate
We think our best option is to downsize and rent a place in Spain for the winter which we will possibly do. It's as cheap if not cheaper than staying at home for the winter
We have also found a place that we would be happy to stay for a few months which is important
Kobyhodge
9th Aug 2018
7
Thanks for voting!
I left the UK 6 years ago on my 65th birthday to retire to France with my Polish wife, however after 3 years we realised that it would be wrong on my part to pop my clogs and leave her in a country she didn't know and so we moved to Poland, which has proved to be quite literally the best decision I have ever made. My Pension was barely enough to live on in the UK, whereas here it is multiplied by the exchange rate, currently 4.73 Zloty to £1, but has been as high as 6 with the added benefit of 1 Zloty buying as much as £1 buys in the UK. We managed to buy a beautiful 240 sq.m house with initially 3 bathrooms and 3 kitchens, both now reduced to two on a 1,000sq.m plot of land with and additional 180 sq.m of garages and work shops, so I am never bored as I love gardening and woodwork. Oh, the cost of the house £60,000. In short I would recommend this area to any retiree, lovely people, countryside and a very safe environment. Also a good investment as our property has already increased in value by almost 60% in 2 years.
Lionel
9th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
I know Poland quite well, having been there many times. Yes, yours is a good life there.

I had wanted my second wife to migrate to either Poland or Czech - I have familial connections with both - but she has family here. In the event they needed her, and to some extent me, so we were right to stay here.
Wilf
18th Aug 2018
0
Thanks for voting!
That sounds like an incredible investment and value for money
Capri
9th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
We would like to rent out our house for a year and buy a motor home in Australia and travel around the coastline of Australia for a year, and pop across to New Zealand for two weeks before we come home.
Yvonnewilkie
9th Aug 2018
4
Thanks for voting!
Part of me would love to retire abroad. Glorious sunshine and an outdoor life. But the reality is I would miss my family too much
SilverBlue
9th Aug 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
Yes have to agree with you it’s a nice idea to live abroad but I would miss my children and grandchildren
LanceFogg
8th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Definitely YES! I have always wanted to retire to somewhere near Paphos in Cyprus. The climate is good, not too hot, the locals are great and English is spoken just as much as Greek. The food and lifestyle are very healthy but the bonus is the scenery with the hills around Paphos giving marvellous views and there's great trekking or driving through the Troudos mountains.
Hank999
8th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Lance, Friends purchased a cottage in Cyprus and the problems they had were numerous. The locals made things unpleasant as soon as they knew the new owners were English. Old laws were used to block the only window in their kitchen because it overlooked someones property and had done when the previous local owner lived there. They had to register with the police and it took ages. The police admitted Cypriots come first. They were lucky they sold it to a Cypriot and returned home to the UK. The legal system is archaic and I guess the only thing would be to buy a property where a number of foreigners reside.
Helly1957
9th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Not too hot? Lance I think you'll find the summer is VERY hot LOL
and Hank one can always rent somewhere rather than buy?
Hank999
9th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Helly I agree renting is a good idea. My friends did it all wrong - the list of the problems they had was 50% down to them but they are a couple who never looked beyond their holiday experiences
Gertrude49
11th Sep 2018
0
Thanks for voting!
Cyprus gets to the high 30s in summer and is very hot. It can drop to around 5 in the winter and it rains like mad. You can ski up on Troodos as it snows. A pleasant place to live but be very careful. Make sure, if you buy, that the current owner has a Kocan (title deed) in their possession. Otherwise don't touch! Try and get one of the traditional houses as they are built for the climate. The modern places are thin shells of concrete and you will freeze or fry! The local hospitals are ok and the private ones are very expensive as are drugs - at present a lot of the Greek Cypriots are crossing the border to the North to buy medicines at a third of the price. There is ongoing dislike between north and south - but both are totally safe and peaceful.
Wilf
8th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Maybe but where? Also I think most people want to move to get to a better climate. Well we have had that in the UK for the past 3 months and glorious it has been to. I think the grass is always greener. It would be great to afford a property abroad and have one here as well that is the trick...only one tiny issue....where is the money coming from to buy a villa in Europe or the Caribbean-----I must get the right lottery numbers this week!=sorted!
Hank999
8th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Wilf, you have hit the mark and a private jet would be nice
Darkstar
8th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Alicia
8th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
No I was born here and I love London and Cornwall too much to ever leave !
ecarg
7th Aug 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
No leave behind family and friends not to mention the cat ,who is to old to move.
However my brother and partner have moved to Spain this year for the climate.What a summer wev'e had !
But if people want to leave Britian I hope they enjoy themselves ,but personally I'd rather explore a lot of the areas that make Britian the beautifull place it is.
Jay
7th Aug 2018
0
Thanks for voting!
I would move to an area with a climate more suited to my needs
Raedor
7th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Ah, The Real Marigold Hotel syndrome, excellent climate, your pound turning into gold inside your pocket, whats not to like. After watching one of these programmes I made further enquiries and found that the difficulties in owning property in India, say, is virtually impossible, short of marrying an Indian . And now we have the "Euroworld" threatening draconian measures against all things UK once and if Brexit arrives.
As such I think its probably as well to stay in lovely ole Blighty invest in a a set of VR goggles and enjoy and world of beauty and pleasure unfettered with any travelling or indeed any visa hassles.With the imminent arrival of our 'AI' coded Daleks assistants life can & will only get better.
You wont need any to travel to any beach paradise as it'll all be right here in sterilised, sanitized bucketfuls and all readily recyclable for instant decomposition by the judicious use of UV light. All systems F.A.B. (Please use appropriate and relevent adjective’s to replace the acronym capitals)
andbrown01
7th Aug 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
I don't think its worth it
Billythequiche
7th Aug 2018
4
Thanks for voting!
Absolutely not! Freed from the need to earn a living and bring up a family, we are loving the opportunity to discover the parts of the UK that we never could before. Where we are, just outside Rotherham , S. Yorks., we are a stones throw from the Yorkshire Moors, adjacent to the Black Country and 15 mins from the heart of Sheffield with its theatres and restaurants.
If we had to move, it would be to the West Country, though we doubt the morality of moving somewhere that has not got enough houses for the locals.
Apart from loving the country, we are not asked to sign a cheque before being taken away in an ambulance, we do not live in fear of secret police breaking the door down, and thanks to our free press, excesses in the establishment are usually outed.
Hank999
8th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
Billy! Billy! Billy! Secret police etc. Are you thinking of the Middle East?
Billythequiche
9th Aug 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
No, Africa 40 years ago.
Dezzi
7th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
The biggest issue retiring to another country is the welcoming factor ie. medical facilities, health care; transferring of money and the currency exchange into another country; cost of living, and of course whether there is any animosity from local residents for auslanders (outsiders) coming to live in their country.

If all could be overcome I would definately retire overseas, probably to France, or similar. I don’t think the UK has a great deal to offer now and am wondering, like many people, how Brexit is going to affect us to. There is a much to consider and to look into before packing up and leaving, even with Brexit hanging over us. Government appear to forget its citizens and look after other countries first, or it appears so on reading world news. SIGH! We were once a great country and I hope it returns to one again soon once all is settled with us leaving the EU.
ArchieUK
7th Aug 2018
5
Thanks for voting!
I was told many years ago,

That the grass is always greener at the other side of the hill -------- Until you get there.
Margaret Hart
7th Aug 2018
0
Thanks for voting!
I would have loved to retire to Southern Spain or Northern Italy but my husband wouldn’t. I have asthma, osteo arthritis and usually severe chest infections regularly so a drier warmer climate would do me the world of good. I.can mix easily and would quickly learn the language but my husband like to have things like Craft to do all the time. He also feels the cold but doesn’t suffer because of it so a move abroad for him is out of the question. I love the Italian people and Spain is cheaper than here so either would have suited me.
Munsterlander
7th Aug 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
I have often thought about going to somewhere like Spain or Portugal. Nice climate-good food whats not to like. We would have to take our dogs which may be an issue especially with the type of heatwave they have there at the moment. In many ways maybe best to stay in England and have a few holidays to these places each year.
Hank999
7th Aug 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
I did at one time think about retiring abroad. As a single person, it is a big step. I spoke to someone who had done that and he advised me against it. Two people can do it as long as they face facts and don't see it a one long holiday. If you buy property find out if there are rules governing foreigners. Some friends moved to Cyprus and they did it without much thought. Big mistake, They weren't welcome by the locals or the police. They returned to the UK.
Lionel
8th Aug 2018
3
Thanks for voting!
Hank, I worked in the Republic of Ireland for two years in farming. That was at a time when the country was like England in the '30's, backward and undeveloped. Besides working on farms I taught British farming methods.

A very few years later as a single man, I worked and taught farming in Czech.

Yet during these two excursions I missed the familiar things. Britain may be a mess - when has it been otherwise - but it's home. I'm retired now and living in a small house my second wife and I bought together, in a remote part of Suffolk. Being an East Anglian by birth I'm welcome, quite unlike Ireland and Czech. I've no ambition to go abroad again.

By the way, having read your bio ... I'm nearly stone deaf as well through working in pig houses at feeding time in 130 - 150 dB so, like you, the written word is what I have.

In the very recent past I caused you grief. Hank, I apologise.
Hank999
8th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Lionel, it would take a lot to cause me grief. I do get my knickers in a twist when people make a comment that isn't true or is very prejudiced. For example, I might say I like a certain spice with mash and the answer comes back. You can't do that. When I say why? I get a ridiculous response.such as because you can't. All that has nothing to do with retiring abroad. A friend has just retired to England having lived for most of his life in the far east. he found it a BIG change from the England of his youth, and he misses air conditioning. What has saddened is the way women swear now.
Billythequiche
9th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
You have had an interesting life, if a hard one. I have said before that it would make a fascinating book. When you look around at ''celebrities'' publishing a ghost written auto biography/life story before they had had a life, I am sure yours would be better.
Lionel
9th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Well, Billy, I do so thank you for that compliment but, I have to say, a book isn't in the making.

I count myself as among the most blessed of men; born into a West Norfolk agricultural community an enforced 10 years in Central London was, for me, purgatory. Yet I always knew what I would be - a farm worker. Nothing more but all else was much less. I told the Careers Advice chap at school I wanted to be a monk! There's no career path for that so he left me alone.

Back in the mid - Sixties I read Francis Chichester's biography, the Lonely Sea and Sky. In that he briefly writes of the romance of adventure, a falling in love with the doing and being. So impressed was I that sentiment became my watch word. Supported by a profound faith in God, money has had no attraction for me; enough to live on and some to spare and some to give. Yet I've never been poor. I've never been hungry.

I don't think my life would have any relevance for people today, such is the greed and self interest of the many. Connecting with my step grand children in this regard is nearly impossible. There's just no common ground.

Yes, it's been hard, especially as I'm only 5'3" tall in what was an extremely muscular industry at the time. Today, arthritis has got me - I was too small for what I did.

Yet I loved every moment of it.
Lionel
9th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Hank, I too deplore the way so many women swear at the slightest provocation. Where has the 'nice' gone from our very English way of life? Where are the common courtesies, the deference of a man to a woman; the understanding of an offer of assistance is a sexual advance has become the norm. 30 years ago in North Yorkshire I would often offer a lift, even if it was only in my tractor cab. But, after a pal was accused of rape because he offered a teenaged girl a lift on a rainy day in his tractor cab I no longer do that. I don't know how much you know about tractors but I can assure you the sex act is all but impossible in that confined space. His case was dismissed.

For what it's worth, I'm almost deaf too, caused by working in pig houses at feeding time. The noise has been measured at 130Db. Like you, the written word is vital to me. That's why I like the safe space offered by Surfer's.
Billythequiche
10th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
You were indeed blessed to be able to earn a living doing something you loved, not many can claim that. We are blessed in that our children and grandchildren visit us every week, our wider family (very wide) are always in touch and we spend time together.
I regret that I do not have your absolute faith though I did marry a Methodist Sunday School teacher. I regret more that when people profess a preference for Christian morals and ideals, they are soon subject to criticism and ridicule. This happens even when this is only your lifestyle and you do not seek to impose your views on others.
Lionel
10th Aug 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
Billy, in a day when families are fragmenting, a day when generational values and morality are shifting, you are most blessed in keeping your family together. Long may it last, and pass down the generations. We are so much stronger as a family unit, don't you think?

My second wife, now of 20 years, was a life long Salvation Army lady. But it fell to me to tell her the Army founder, William Booth, was Jewish too! She already knew about me, being a Jewish Christian.

My good lady found the address of the Army's official historian, just a few miles from our then home, and pressured him relentlessly for a definitive answer. In the end he told us, yes, William was indeed a Jewish Christian, but we choose not to make a lot of that fact. Jewishness is so divisive.

Yes, we live in a time when almost anything goes, except a Christian spirituality. It's not new, no surprise. Most of the last 2,000 years have been that way. Even today, I don't know why.

Having worked for so long in the isolated world of farming contact with the outside world was mostly through Methodist Chapels; I loved my time with them. It was through the Methodists that I learned to live out my growing faith rather than make a great, worthless noise about it. But, I've had my share of barracking and abuse, both face to face and online. It is almost expected.

As for imposing my views on others, no, I won't. The life style my wife and I share, and my written words hopefully, sooner or later, testify to something other. Then I'll talk, but only then.

Oddly, a good friend of mine from our shared purgatory in London as teenagers, came from Rotherham. His father was a local preacher in our part of London. My friend, Peter, went on to be an insurance salesman in New Zealand and then became a Methodist Minister there, a role he continues well after retiring.

Take care Billy.

Community Terms & Conditions

Content standards

These content standards apply to any and all material which you contribute to our site (contributions), and to any interactive services associated with it.

You must comply with the spirit of the following standards as well as the letter. The standards apply to each part of any contribution as well as to its whole.

Contributions must:

be accurate (where they state facts); be genuinely held (where they state opinions); and comply with applicable law in the UK and in any country from which they are posted.

Contributions must not:

contain any material which is defamatory of any person; or contain any material which is obscene, offensive, hateful or inflammatory; or promote sexually explicit material; or promote violence; promote discrimination based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age; or infringe any copyright, database right or trade mark of any other person; or be likely to deceive any person; or be made in breach of any legal duty owed to a third party, such as a contractual duty or a duty of confidence; or promote any illegal activity; or be threatening, abuse or invade another’s privacy, or cause annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety; or be likely to harass, upset, embarrass, alarm or annoy any other person; or be used to impersonate any person, or to misrepresent your identity or affiliation with any person; or give the impression that they emanate from us, if this is not the case; or advocate, promote or assist any unlawful act such as (by way of example only) copyright infringement or computer misuse.

Nurturing a safe environment

Our Silversurfers community is designed to foster friendships, based on trust, honesty, integrity and loyalty and is underpinned by these values.

We don't tolerate swearing, and reserve the right to remove any posts which we feel may offend others... let's keep it friendly!