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The 15 Best Places for American Boomers to Retire Abroad

Find the perfect place to retire abroad on a budget, with a great climate, and friendly people.

Retirement is generally viewed as a time for caution and financial conservatism—an era to make a fixed income and limited investments stretch the furthest to finance your post-work years comfortably. But there's no law saying you have to do it in the United States. In fact, retiring abroad could hold some financial advantages, chief among them a lower cost of living. The financial site GoBankingRates recently crunched the numbers on 131 countries and found the 15 best places for American boomers to retire. 


view over river on Berlin skyline with Berlin Cathedral

Cost-of-living index: 62.9

Germany ranked in the moderate 60s for cost of living (on a 1 to 100 scale, with 100 being the most expensive). The grocery cost index was 50.9, the purchasing power index was 107.6 (higher is better), and the average rent was $785. It rated 71.9 for healthcare quality.


The popular Nyhavn area at Copenhagen, Denmark, with a street light and bicycles in front of the colorful houses

Cost-of-living index: 78.6

Your dollar goes pretty far in Denmark, which rated a strong 105 on the purchasing power index. The grocery cost index was 62.4, healthcare quality rated 79.2, and the average rent was $933. 


Toompea hill with tower Pikk Hermann and Russian Orthodox Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, view from the tower of St. Olaf church, Tallinn, Estonia.

Cost-of-living index: 54.8

Despite purchasing power on the low side (61.4 out of 100), grocery costs (42.4) and rent (an average of $518 are also low in Estonia. Healthcare rated a 74.1.


Madrid, Spain cityscape at Calle de Alcala and Gran Via.

Cost-of-living index: 50.6

Rent is moderate in Spain ($715 on average), while grocery costs are low (41) while purchasing power (82.5) and healthcare (77.9) are relatively high. 


Scenic summer panorama of the Market Square (Kauppatori) at the Old Town pier in Helsinki, Finland.

Cost-of-living index: 67.5

A high purchasing power index score (98.8), decent grocery prices (58.2) and healthcare quality (77.1), along with an average rent of $772, might tempt American retirees to discover why Finland is considered the happiest country in the world. 


Parliament building in Budapest, Hungary at sunrise.

Cost-of-living index: 39.2

Your purchasing power in Hungary isn't stellar (53.1), but with prices this low—grocery costs rate 34.8 on a 100-point scale, and the average rent is $368—it doesn't have to be. 


Old town square in Warsaw in a summer day, Poland

Cost-of-living index: 38.6

Poland boasts a low average rent ($536 monthly, compared to $1,794 in the U.S.) and low grocery costs (30.8). Its purchasing power index score was 64 and healthcare quality index 57.6.


Antique building view in Old Town Bucharest city - capital of Romania and Dambrovita river. Bucharest, Romania, Europe.

Cost-of-living index: 37.4

With a purchasing power index of 52.5, grocery cost index of 32, and average rent of $311, Romania has the second-lowest cost of living of the countries on this list. Its healthcare quality index score was 56.5.


Hallstatt, Austria. Mountain village in the Austrian Alps at sunrise.

Cost-of-living index: 66

Your money will stretch well in Austria, which offers some of the highest purchasing power on the list (a score of 91.2). Its grocery cost index score was 58, healthcare quality index 77.2, and average rent is $721.


Scenic beach in Komiza village waterfront, Island of Vis, Croatia,

Cost-of-living index: 46.7

Croatia has more to offer than summer vacation scenery for retirees: An average rent of $406, a purchasing power index score of 56.2, a grocery cost rating of 39.5, and aealthcare quality index score of 63.9.


Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Petronas Towers and KLCC, high-rise building.

Cost-of-living index: 35

Those looking to keep retirement expenses low might do well to look at Malaysia, where the average rent is only $305 and the grocery cost index is 36.7, contributing to the lowest cost of living on this list. Its 70 score for healthcare wasn't the worst, but safety scored a middling 47.1.


Tokyo skyline and Mountain fuji in Japan

Cost-of-living index: 64.6

Japan is one of the top four destinations for retirees, the survey found, driven by a high purchasing power index score of 100.4 and healthcare quality rating of 803. The average rent 

Is $604.


Yellow vintage tram on the street in Lisbon, Portugal.

Cost-of-living index: 45.3

The top three countries begin with Portugal, which offers low grocery costs (36 on a 100-point scale), solid healthcare (71.5 on the index), and an average rent of $703. It also ranked #3 in the world for peacefulness.


Cityscape view on Ljubljanica river canal in Ljubljana old town.

Cost-of-living index: 50.8

Low grocery costs (43.9), decent healthcare (65.3), high public safety, and an average rent of $496—Slovenia makes a strong case as a retirement destination. Only one country ranked higher, the survey found. 

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Czech Republic

Panoramic view above at Charles Bridge Prague Castle and river Vltava Prague Czech Republic.

Cost-of-living index: 48.9

The Czech Republic came in as the best place for boomers to retire abroad, with solid purchasing power (71.8) and healthcare (75.5), low grocery prices (40.7), and an average rent of $640. 

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