HSBC survey says UAE, Singapore and the US are the best places to become an expatriate
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The UK, France and Jersey lowest-rated destinations for expatriates’ lifestyle while UAE ranks high for ability to earn and save and Brazilian, Irish and Australian expats are the wealthiest, according to a report from HSBC
The UAE came second only to Singapore as the top place to live in the HSBC survey
HSBC Bank International said that the UAE, Singapore and the US are the best locations to be an expat, according to findings of its Expat Explorer survey, the largest international survey of expats ever conducted.
The UAE as been ranked the top destination for expatriates seeking a luxurious lifestyle, beating Australia, the US, Canada and host of European countries. The UAE also came joint second overall as top place to live.
Expat Existence, the first report in The Expat Explorer Series, ranked the top rated places to live based on expats’ living standards, an expat’s ability to earn and save, a country’s popularity (longevity), and the level of luxury experienced.
The Expat Explorer Survey questioned 2,155 expatriates across four continents, examining the opportunities, challenges and difficulties that come with a life away from home. This included how easy expats found it to integrate, how they viewed the changes in their lifestyle, and their children’s experiences in a new country.
Jersey at 15th, the UK at 14th and France at 13th were the lowest rated expat destinations in the survey, scoring low on their levels of luxury and accommodation. Spain and China also rated poorly, ranking 12th and 11th respectively. Australia featured 10th in the survey, scoring highly on levels of luxury, ability to earn and save and accommodation, but scoring lowly for longevity.
The report also investigated whether expats’ lifestyles are more luxurious than the lives they left behind and how long people are choosing to stay living away from home. Countries were rated on a number of categories including access to private healthcare, access to more than one property, ability to own a pool and to employ staff, such as cleaners.
Across the 11 categories of perceived luxuries, on average expats reported an increase in eight of these factors, with employing staff ranked as the highest increase. The UAE was the most luxurious destination, with expats enjoying increases in 10 of the 11 categories, followed by Singapore and India. The UK was ranked the least luxurious with decreases recorded in nine of the 11 luxuries.
The UAE ranked third behind India, Hong Kong and Singapore, joint second, for ability to earn and save. Hong Kong-based expats have the highest salaries in the world, with 49 per cent earning more than $200,000 a year, with the highest paying professions in finance and management. Despite the current economic climate, expats spend more whilst still being able to save. More than half of expats spend more on food, 49 per cent more on shopping and 45 per cent more on socialising in their new country of residence and 58 per cent also invest and save more in their resident country.
Almost three quarters of expats living in Singapore said the quality of their accommodation had improved since moving away from home, the highest amount recorded in the study. This was followed by expats living in the US at 61 per cent and Belgium at 59 per cent. The UK was identified as the most expensive expat location for accommodation, with 85 per cent of expats living in the UK revealing that their living costs had increased. Only 19 per cent of respondents living in the UK stated that the quality of their accommodation had increased. India was the cheapest country, with only 21 per cent of expats living in the country claiming that their costs of accommodation had increased.
Europe is a popular destination overall for its longevity with 82 per cent of expats now living in the Netherlands having been there for three or more years, followed by Germany at 77 per cent and Spain at 76 per cent. Ireland and New Zealand have the greatest percentage of global travellers, with 80 per cent of respondents originally from both countries stating that they had been away from home for longer than three years.
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