Top 10 Locales for VA Retirement Overseas

Top 10 Locales for VA Retirement Overseas

Are you a veteran wanting to retire? Whether you see yourself in the peaceful countryside or a lively urban setting, you have plenty of options within U.S. or overseas.

In case you plan to retire within U.S., it might be a smart choice to buy a new home. Wouldn’t it be best to spend remaining days in a beautiful new home? But if you would like to settle overseas, check out our list of countries compared on the basis of GPI and living cost.

Before We Begin

The Global Peace Index or GPI is a numbering system that estimates the peacefulness of countries worldwide. As a point of reference, veterans looking into retiring overseas should know that the United States ranks number 121 out of 163 countries.

Anything ranking higher is considered more peaceful than the U.S. Countries are only extremely unrested when they drop below the late 140s.

The following countries are listed based on their balance between GPI and the cost of living.

  1. Malaysia

GPI: 20

The cost of living is intensely low. You can eat very well for a month in Malaysia for just 200 USD. Renting a 1-bedroom apartment in Malaysia costs $300 a month. They also offer high-quality healthcare at a comparatively low price. As an added bonus, most of the locals speak English.

  1. Portugal

GPI: 3

For a one-bedroom apartment in the center of a big city, it costs around $700 a month. The more rural, the cheaper it gets. Buying a home has a similar mortgage to the monthly rent.

Portugal has made it easier than other European countries to become an ex-pat resident. All you need to do is provide your information such as income, passports, health insurance, and a background check.

  1. Poland

GPI: 29

Applying for residency in Poland is pretty simple. They need proof of income, passports, and other documentation.

Also, you can live comfortably in Poland with 100,000 USD of savings. Poland is very affordable, especially if you choose the rural scene.

  1. Spain

GPI: 38

Over 12% of the population in Spain is ex-patriot. Large cities like Madrid offer cheap travel to other Eurozone destinations.

Although Spain took a recent downturn in the economy, it may make it easier to retire. You can live frugally on 20,000 USD a year. And 25,000 USD is a comfortable one.

Costa del Sol is the standard choice for ex-pat retirement. However, just a little north of that, Costal Blanca is far cheaper. Or you could retire inland in a small town, also cutting prices more.

  1. Japan

GPI: 9

Local ingredients and foods are pretty cheap. A local restaurant will charge around $8 for a one-person meal.

At the most, rent and utilities are about 1000 USD for a 40 square meter apartment in Tokyo. Monthly phone payments are between 18 and 56 USD. Internet prices range from 23 - 40 USD.

If you want to furnish your apartment cheaply, the 100-yen shops (100 yen = 0.96 USD) sell kitchen appliances and furniture; they are practically a Japanese dollar store.

In other words, if you eat like the locals and spend frugally, living in Japan can be relatively inexpensive.

  1. Thailand

GPI: 114

If you want to retire here, there are some salary or savings requirements. Either you need to earn 2,000 USD a month or have 25,000 USD in savings in a Thai bank. There are no current safety warnings for entering Thailand. Violent crime is rare, but the political climate is tough, especially in the south.

Only 2,100 USD per month is comfortable to live in Thailand for two people.

  1. Philippines

GPI: 129

The Philippines has no issues with you collecting your social security as a resident in their country. Unfortunately, you cannot own land in the Philippines if you are not a citizen, but you can buy a house on leased land (like a condo). So long as the land you own a house on does not belong to you, it is acceptable.

However, you must obtain the correct visas and permits to become a non-citizen resident of the Philippines.

It has a low cost of living, low-priced healthcare, and plenty of discounts for those above the age of sixty.

  1. Saudi Arabia

GPI: 128

Living expenses are similar to those in western society. Rent for a one-room apartment ranges between 250 and 400 USD. However, groceries cost less than typically found in the United States. Retirement is not always straightforward to get in Saudi Arabia. Ex-pat residents usually need to have some kind of work there.

  1. Columbia

GPI: 140

Columbia has a low cost of living. While it used to be a Level 3 ranking by the U.S. State Department, it has moved to a Level 2, which simply suggests commonsense precautions. Similar to how you would behave in a major city.

  1. Germany

GPI: 16

Compared to big cities in the U.S.A. like Chicago and New York, Berlin is not expensive. The farther from the cities, the less expensive it is. But English becomes less prevalent. It would be good to learn some German before retiring here. It also has excellent healthcare, but this high-quality care comes with an equally high price.

In Conclusion

Regardless of where you decide to retire, utilize practical measures for safety: lock doors, don't give your credit card number out.

Also, live within your means. Do not live like you are on vacation. Learn where are the local shops. Follow their example. Otherwise, you will find yourself without enough money very fast.

Before making a life-changing decision, do your homework. What does the country require for your residency? Would it be helpful to learn their language first?

Always enter a country with mindfulness and be prepared.