Monday, February 20, 2012

International Living - Best Places for 2012

The New Year has begun and all of the lists for the best places to live and retire are being updated as I write this post.

With all the Doom and Gloom on CNN one might think the whole world is falling apart but that's the image the media want to continually beat into our brains - it's not reality. While politicians harp on the "post American World' and how even mentioning the phrase is somehow considered unpatriotic, the reality is we are moving into the Post American Era and that's not because the U.S. is some how worse than it is because the rest of the world is finally catching up. And that's a good thing! The Post American World is not about America falling but about the rise of everyone else. Just look around the world - new, modern cities are being built and old ones completely remodeled to American standards. Capital is being invested into adding more entertainment facilities, into improving small towns, into expanding airports, and into making comfortable living that much easier for those who desire to pursue a life abroad. The biggest news that 2012 is bringing to such individuals is that living somewhere far from America is becoming cheaper and easier. More accurately stated, the best places are going out of their way to make life in their area more affordable and more comfortable. Take Panama and their Pensionado Program whereby ex-pats can retire to Panama and enjoy an extensive list of retiree benefits the same as if they were born there.

Buenos Aires, the Paris of South America

In 2012 one place that sets the bar for living internationally is Buenos Aires, "the Paris of South America". The people are friendly, the weather is beautiful and the city is humming - constantly alive with culture, music and entertainment. For those looking to continue life immersed in the hustle and bustle of the world, Buenos Aires is definitely a great place to consider when thinking of moving abroad. The living in this city, as in any other, is pricey as compared to surrounding small towns. However, if one can survive in Boston, New York or Los Angeles then Buenos Aires will be no trouble at all.

Hong Kong - Where East is Become West

Another city on top of the list of most desired places to live abroad in 2012 is Hong Kong. Yes, the culture is dramatically different from that of Western Europe, but almost every there now speaks English and there is a dramatic move towards Westernization throughout Asia. The city is extremely safe for its size, there is constantly something to do and some place to go. Eastern Asia is always a quick flight or boat trip away for exploration.

The Most Affordable Places to Live in Europe

Austria has continually been ranked as one of the best places to set up a new home. This may be because of its clean environment, peaceful living, beautiful nature, and intriguing history and culture. Specifically the capitol city of Austria, Vienna, has been listed as one of the most affordable places to live in Europe with the highest quality of living of any city in the surrounding areas.

Down-Under for the Healthiest Lifestyle

As for as standard of living goes, New Zealand has continually beat out a large number of competitors on the "best place for living abroad" lists. The affordable living and some of the healthiest food supplies of any country on the planet, New Zealand continues to be an inspiration for all other places. Not to mention the record low crime, great school systems and beautiful country side, all of which make the island one of the most desired places to live in the entire world.

Still The Best Place to Retire

For those looking for best places to retire, a look at Panama is certainly warranted. Panama remains one of the most affordable and laid back places to live in retirement, thanks in no small part to the Pensionado Program mentioned above. The area has been deemed the winner of International Living magazine's Annual Global Retirement Index for six years in a row. And this is just one of the many accredited organizations that have listed Panama as the top place to retire. Editors note - be sure to see the post below for a great free video about this year's hottest Top Retirement Destinations.

So, if you're tired of Doom and Gloom - tired of cynical politicians who are concerned with nothing but their own power maybe it's time you considered a new Life Overseas - maybe 2012 is your time for International Living.

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