If you could retire anywhere in the world, where would you choose? Before you answer, think about what’s important to you for retirement. If quality health care, a reasonable cost of living, good climate, plenty to see and do, great food and wine, and friendly people are the things that tick all of your 'must have' boxes, then Portugal should be at the top of your list! And you won’t be alone.
Portugal earned the number one spot on International Living‘s Annual Global Retirement Index, and Live and Invest Overseas (LIO) put Portugal at the top of its '10 Best Places to Retire Overseas in 2020.' (Plus, the country’s Algarve and Cascais regions took the number one and two spots on LIO’s “10 Best Places to Live Overseas in 2020” survey, as well!)
So, why all the fuss about Portugal? We took a deep dive to find out.Portugal is one of the most popular spots in Europe
For the third year running, Portugal won the prestigious title of Europe’s Leading Tourism Destination at the World Travel Awards 2019. The country won a cornucopia of accolades, including Lisbon for Best City Break Destination in Europe and Best European Cruise Port; the Algarve as Europe’s Leading Beach Destination; and Madeira as Europe’s Leading Island Destination. There’s a perfect beach for every day of the year
With more than 600 miles of sun-kissed sandy coastline and one of the best climates in Western Europe, a beach day is always on the agenda in Portugal! Plus, more than 350 Portuguese beaches fly Blue Flags, the coveted award given to beaches recognized for outstanding water quality and cleanliness. That means you’re almost always assured a spectacular beach outing, even from the city. And the weather is so lovely here year-round, it’s one of the best off-season travel destinations as well!You’ll get great value for your money
If you have income (earned, investment, or retirement) in U.S. dollars, it goes further in Portugal right now than it has in many years. The cost of living in Portugal is among the lowest in Western Europe, on average 30% lower than in any other country in the region. According to LIO, a couple could live in Portugal comfortably but modestly on a budget of as little as 1,300 euros per month and could live large with a budget of 2,000 euros per month. (That’s around $1,400 and $2,400 in U.S. currency respectively.) It’s alright even if you don’t speak Portuguese
According to International Living, locals generally make a sincere effort to make visitors and expats feel welcome, and although it helps if you try to speak at least a little Portuguese, in urban areas such as Porto, Lisbon and the multinational expat region of the Algarve, English works just fine.Portuguese food and wine are fantastic
The abundance of sunny days, the long stretches of coastline and access to the Atlantic Ocean, and the unique microclimates of Portugal have all worked together to create a fabulous cuisine culture that guarantees you’ll always be well-fed while you’re in the country. Even the top spots are still affordable! Fresh seafood, especially whole grilled sardines in season, succulent ham, wonderful fresh dairy cheeses, and sweet pasteis de nata tarts are all amazing options. And the fabulous, and bargain-priced wines are created in equally fabulous vineyards which rank quite high on the list of the most gorgeous wineries in the world.The health-care system is one of the best in the world
Portuguese health care is international-standard, ranked by WHO as the 12th-best system among UN-member countries (out of 190). Even better: Public health care in Portugal is available to legal foreign residents as long as you’re registered with your local medical center.
Sold on Portugal? Instead of simply daydreaming, how about considering your retirement plans before simply packing up and moving away there someday!