11 Best Countries for American Expats to Live Abroad

best countries for americans expats

These days, more and more Americans are considering a move abroad.

And it’s no wonder why—with rising costs of living, stagnant wages, and increasing political polarization, the grass is looking greener on the other side of the pond (or border).

But with so many countries to choose from, where should you go?

To help narrow things down, I’ve compiled a list of the 11 best countries for Americans who want to live abroad . Trust me, you won’t be disappointed by any of these picks!


Machu Picchu Peru

If you love nature, culture, and food, Peru is the perfect place for you.

With its stunning Andean mountain scenery, centuries-old ruins, and mouthwatering cuisine, Peru has something for everyone.

And did I mention that it’s incredibly affordable? You can easily live comfortably for less than $1,000 per month.


kangaroo in Australia

If you’re looking for an adventure, look no further than Australia.

This vast country has everything from rainforests to eerie deserts, not to mention some of the most beautiful coastlines in the world.

And with its friendly locals and laid-back lifestyle, Australia is the perfect place to call home.

The quality of life Down Under is high, and there are plenty of opportunities for employment and adventure.

The cost of living can be a bit high in some parts of Australia, but overall it’s still relatively affordable compared to places like New York City or San Francisco.

Just beware of the spiders and giant insects, though.


Morocco building

Morocco is the perfect place if you’re looking for a truly immersive cultural experience.

From its bustling cities to its beautiful desert landscapes, Morocco has something for everyone. And with its rich history and vibrant culture, you’ll never find yourself bored or without something new to learn.

But be sure to brush up on your Arabic before you go.


Canada Vancouver City Buildings

Canadians are known for being some of the nicest people in the world, and the country itself is beautiful too.

It’s also a great place to live if you’re looking for stable employment and a good quality of life.

The cost of living in Canada is relatively affordable, and there are plenty of opportunities to pursue your passions and interests.

Plus, Canada has Universal Health Care, so you’ll never have to worry about getting sick or injured and not being able to afford treatment.


11 Best Countries for American Expats to Live Abroad 2

This European country has everything an American could want: fantastic food, beautiful architecture, rich culture, and more!

The cost of living can be a bit pricey in some parts of France, but overall it’s still relatively affordable compared to other developed countries like England or Switzerland.

Plus, there are plenty of opportunities available for employment and adventure in France, so you’ll never get bored living here!


First time in Spain

Spain is an excellent option if you’re looking for a more laid-back lifestyle.

Its relaxed Mediterranean pace is a refreshing change from the fast-paced rat race of American life.

And with its diverse landscape—from sun-soaked beaches to snow-capped mountains—you’ll never get bored.

Oh, and did I mention the food? Tapas anyone?


Albufeira Beach Portugal

If you’re looking for a European country that’s a little cheaper than some of the more prominent names (I’m looking at you, France and Italy), Portugal is a great option.

The cost of living here is very reasonable, especially when compared to other Western European countries.

And Portugal has tons to offer in terms of culture and history. Lisbon, the capital city, is especially beautiful—definitely worth a visit even if you don’t plan on moving there permanently.


Osaka Japan Colorful Signs

Japan is a fascinating country with a rich culture and history. It’s also an incredibly safe and clean country, which can be appealing to anyone tired of living in a city plagued by crime or pollution.

And although Japanese can be difficult to learn, many people find that the effort is well worth it once they’ve made progress in mastering the language.

South Korea

South Korea Kimono

South Korea is another great option for Americans looking for a taste of Asian culture without having to learn a completely new language.

English is widely spoken in South Korea, which makes it easy to get by without speaking any Korean.

Additionally, the cost of living in South Korea is relatively low, and there are plenty of opportunities for Americans to find work teaching English.


Singapore Cityscape Shot with DJI Mavic Air Drone
Singapore night cityscape shot with the DJI Mavic Air

This island city-state is one of the most developed countries in the world and boasts a very high quality of life.

English is one of the official languages here, so there’s no need to learn a new language, and American culture is prevalent.

Singapore is also safe, clean, and has excellent public transportation.


Streets of Thailand
Typical life on the streets of Thailand

Last but not least is Thailand. If you’re looking for sun, sand, and sea (not to mention delicious food), Thailand is the place for you.

With its sandy beaches, clear turquoise waters, and lush jungle landscapes, Thailand is a paradise on earth. Just be sure to pack your mosquito repellent!

Live Abroad for Americans FAQs

How do I choose the right country to live in?

There is no perfect country to live in, but there are some that come close. Factors you may want to consider when making your decision include the cost of living, climate, quality of life, security, and access to healthcare and education.

Some countries that rank high on most expat surveys include Norway, Switzerland, Canada, Sweden, and Australia.

If you’re looking for a more affordable option, countries like Thailand and Mexico also have a lot to offer expats.

Whichever country you choose, be sure to do your research and ask plenty of questions before making the move.

What are the cost of living considerations when moving abroad?

There are a lot of cost of living considerations to think about when moving abroad.

Housing, health care, and taxes are some of the biggest expenses, but transportation and prices for things can also be a big factor.

Housing is usually the biggest expense when moving abroad.

Prices for apartments or houses can vary quite a bit from country to country, so it’s important to do your research ahead of time.

Health care is another significant expense, especially if you’re not covered by insurance in your new country.

Many countries have universal healthcare systems, but the quality and availability of healthcare can vary significantly from one country to another.

Taxes can also be a considerable expense when moving abroad. Income taxes and property taxes can vary significantly depending on where you’re living, so it’s essential to consider the tax implications.

Finally, prices for things like food and clothing can add up over time. Different countries have different standards of living and affordability, so it’s important to make sure that your budget is reasonable before committing to a move abroad.

Taking all of these costs into account will help ensure that your move abroad is the best decision for you and your family.

What are the benefits of living abroad?

There are many benefits to living abroad, including gaining a new perspective, learning about other cultures, and improving your language skills.

Living in a foreign country can also be a great way to network and meet new people.

It can also be a fun and challenging way to learn about yourself and grow as a person. You may also find that you’re more open-minded and adaptable after living in a foreign country.

What are the cultural differences I need to be aware of when moving abroad?

As an American, there are certain cultural norms that I’m used to.

For example, in the US, it’s common to greet someone with a handshake, make small talk when you’re waiting in line, and tip service workers.

However, when I moved to Japan, I quickly realized that these behaviors weren’t always appreciated.

In Japan, it’s considered rude to be too forward with strangers, and people generally prefer not to make small talk.

Of course, tipping is not customary and may even be seen as an insult.

So, if you relocate to Japan, make sure to do your research and learn about the local customs so that you can avoid any cultural missteps.

How can I make the transition to living abroad?

Making the transition to living abroad can be a daunting task, but with careful planning and preparation, you can make it a smooth process. Here are a few tips to help get you started:


  1. Do your research. Before making the move, take the time to learn as much as you can about your new country and culture. This will help make the transition easier and smoother once you arrive.


  1. Make a list of things you need to do before moving. Don’t wait until the last minute to start packing or making arrangements for your move. By having a plan in place, you’ll be less stressed and more organized when it comes time to relocate.


  1. Get involved in the expat community. Joining clubs and organizations can help expats to connect with other people who have gone through the same struggles. From language classes to sporting leagues, there are plenty of activities and events available to get involved in.

Final Thoughts

Americans living abroad

When it comes time to choose a country to relocate to permanently, there are endless factors to consider—from the cost of living to the quality of life.

Take your pick! These are all great countries that would be perfect for Americans looking to live abroad.

So what are you waiting for? Start packing your bags—your new life awaits.

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