Home Best places to retire abroad in 2021

Best places to retire abroad in 2021

Posted by on February 9th, 2021.

Now that 2020 is behind us, the coronavirus vaccine is the tantalising light at the end of the tunnel for us to start looking to the future and making plans.

So many of us had plans that were put on hold last year because of uncertainty, upheaval, and restrictions.

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, some British people pushed ahead with their plans and joined the Brexit rush to popular European destinations despite the coronavirus pandemic.

But if you did postpone your overseas retirement plans, or you’ve felt inspired during lockdown to retire abroad in 2021, we’ve selected some of the best places to retire abroad in 2021 that offer something different.


Canada for its Quality of Life, Healthcare and Political Stability

Canada has always been hugely popular destination for Brits as one of the best places to retire abroad.

Already, a whopping 31% of Canada’s 37.5 million people are of British origin. But Canada could about to become even more appealing.

News reports at the end of 2020 showed that the UK and Canada had secured a rollover trade deal, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson lauding the agreement, calling it a “fantastic agreement which secure transatlantic trade with one of our closest allies.”

These close trade ties between the two countries will likely improve relations between the UK and Canada.

Aside from politics connections, Canadians have been recognised as one of the world’s most welcoming communities, making Canada a perfect choice for retirement.

General living expenses are also much lower than in many other developed countries, despite being within the top twenty places to live in the world, according to the Human Development Report commissioned by the United Nations.

Cost of living is well balanced against quality of life in Canada, while healthcare facilities are also of a high standard.

So, with its political stability, reliability, and welcoming culture, Canada may be one of the best countries to retire to in 2021.


New Zealand for its ‘Good Economic Momentum’ and Natural Wonders

It’s been well publicised that New Zealand managed the Covid-19 pandemic well in 2020.

Prime Minister Jacinda Arden has been celebrated as a model leader, combining professionalism and warmth to lead her nation through times of great stress.

The outlook for New Zealand’s economy, too, looks better than most.

Tony Alexander, an analyst at Stuff NZ, commented:

“Courtesy of good control of the Covid-19 outbreak in New Zealand, high flexibility in our economy, good economic momentum heading into the shock, and the many other insulating factors…, [New Zealand’s] economy is bouncing back.”

Again, like Canada, New Zealand is a relatively safe and prosperous place to retire post-Covid-19 pandemic and post-Brexit.

New Zealand also boasts an excellent quality of life well suited to retirees. For instance, NZ Prime Minister Jacinda Arden has recently further emphasised wellbeing over budget in the years to come.

Of course, the English-speaking country offers the obvious benefit of language, with 33% of all UK expats choosing to live in either New Zealand or Australia, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Aesthetically, New Zealand is second to none, boasting diversity from formidable glaciers to golden sandy beaches, and vast plains to subtropical forests.

HSBC also lists New Zealand as eighth in the World Happiness Report, and seventh in the Social Progress Index.


Spain for its Laidback Lifestyle and Culturally Rich Cities

An eternal expat favourite, Spain is never too obvious to include in a list for 2021. 41% of British expats in Spain are 65 or over, making it one of the top choices for retirees. In fact, it has the highest density of British pensioners anywhere in the EU.

And with good reason, according to several surveys Spain offers a significantly high quality of life, with the HSBC expat explorer ranking it highly for physical and mental wellbeing as well as a healthy work-life balance.

And then there’s the weather, culture, food, and terrain.

Marsha Scarbrough over at International Living explains:

‘Spain’s diverse geography and climate offer many options from seaside living to mountain retreats to pastoral farms to exciting, culture-packed cities.

‘Many of its historic buildings remain intact. Its castles, Moorish palaces, cathedrals, and Modernist architecture assure that cultural richness is ever-present.’

Spain is the jewel of the Mediterranean and this status will remain largely unaffected as the pandemic, fingers crossed, retreats in 2021.


Singapore for Something Different in the Garden City

Now for a less obvious retirement location – the Republic of Singapore. Why? A young country that only gained its independence in 1965, Singapore has fast become a global centre for business over the past few decades.

Nonetheless, its urban culture and big city lifestyle is fast appealing to retirees looking for a change of pace. That said, Singapore is relatively small with only 5.8 million population, making it easy to get to know.

Also, Singapore calls itself the Garden City meaning there are the great escapes, such as the Gardens by the Bay, a fantastic rainforest zoo, and Merlion Park, home of an impressive 70-ton sculpture fountain.

Quality of life is also extremely high and is only matched by its unique and picturesque environment.

While Singapore is usually chosen as a financial centre and for expats looking to work, there are means of obtaining a permanent resident permit.

Also, Singapore is famous throughout Asia for its excellent medical system. However, it is worth looking into private health insurance as Singapore does not offer free social security services to expats.

So, if you’re looking for something a little different, Singapore should be high on your list.


As the rollout of Covid-19 vaccines picks up pace, taking to the air and retiring abroad could be in sight later in the year. Despite the inevitable economic setbacks caused by the pandemic, the world is on a relative fast-track recovery with hopes of a vaccine.

All the countries above will again be open for business, and if you’re thinking of retiring, Canada, Spain, Singapore, and New Zealand are undoubtedly some of the best and most impressive places to live in 2021.

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