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Retiring Abroad: International Living - The World's Best Places to Retire 2017 list

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The World's Best Places to Retire 2017

The New Year has arrived and with it comes the 2017 International Living “World’s Best Places to Retire” list.  Every year, this publication uses a variety of categories to rank various countries around the world based on the factors that matter most to retirees looking to move to a retirement haven.  Keep in mind that this is a publication targeted to the US, though most of the information would similarly apply to Canadians.

In this year’s ranking, the all-around winner is Mexico, although what makes 2017’s list interesting is that the top three countries are within 0.2 points of each other.  So you could almost say it was really a three way tie between Mexico, Panama and Ecuador.  All three would be idyllic places to retire.

An interesting item to note about Mexico (with a total score of 90.9) is that it ranked very high in both the areas of Entertainment & Amenities (97) and Buying & Renting (94).  In fact, the country scored quite high in all categories, the lowest score being 88 in Benefits & Discounts and Healthy Lifestyle.

Panama (which was last year’s winner), received a total score of 90.8.  The highest scoring areas here were Benefits & Discounts (100) and Visas & Residence (96).  The lowest score was Cost of Living, at a still-respectable 82.

Ecuador received a total score of 90.7.  This country received high marks for Climate (100), Benefits & Discounts (99) and Buying & Renting (97).  The lowest scores were Visas & Residence (82) and Cost of Living (83).

All three of these countries would be fantastic for another reason as well – ease of access for Canadians.  It is always important to be able to be able to fly home to Canada for family and friends, and South America tends to be reasonably accessible for travel to and from North America.  However, for those looking for a great choice that is further away from Canada, here are two more exciting locales to consider.

If Asia is your dream location, the highest country on the ranking is Malaysia, coming is sixth place with a total score of 87.0.  This country scored high in Healthcare, Entertainment & Amenities and “Fitting In”.

If Europe is more to your liking, the top ranking country there was Spain in seventh place, scoring in at 84.8.  The highest categories for Spain were Infrastructure, Healthy Lifestyle and Entertainment & Amenities.

For the full list and lots of information on each of the top 10 countries, please click here.