Over our years of living abroad, we've talked to more than a few people who have a secret fear. It's a fear shared by people just beginning to think about retiring or working abroad and by folks who have already made the move. The secret fear is this ... what if I fail?
We've all heard stories about people retiring and moving to some far-flung place in a tropical paradise for pennies. But are there really places where people can live the good life for less than half of what it would cost in the US? Is it really possible?
Upon arriving in Brazil, I commenced upon a second and simpler life. I quickly immersed myself in teaching English, exercising, studying Portuguese, and building a new circle of friends. I did not miss my old life, or my old stuff.
I recently returned to Ecuador from a two-week spell in the U.S. and I'm still processing the experience. It was fabulous to see family again and connect with co-workers, but my time there was not quite as I expected.
Retirees can now live so long -- and stretch their money so far -- that with the right strategies they can look forward to two or three more fun and productive phases of life after traditional retirement.
Two-and-a-half years ago, Peg Fairbairn and April Hess moved, together, from Texas to Panama. Here's their story, in their own words...
If you've ever been to Mexico, you've probably visited some of its beautiful beaches. But there's a lot more to Mexico than beaches, and if you've never been there or if you are afraid to visit for one reason or another, you are missing out.
Each morning I wake to a symphony of songbirds and roosters. Somehow, my wife, Nancy, usually sleeps through this, but for me it's the start of another relaxed day in retirement -- in Thailand.
For tourists, Nicaragua is an absolute bargain. The super low cost of everything attracts backpackers, of course, but it also attracts others looking for a high-quality vacation at a bargain price. The country now boasts legitimately four-star hotels that charge nothing like four-star prices.
If you were judging happiness strictly by what you heard (if anything) about any of these countries on the evening news or could find in rankings of national wealth, you'd probably think that people who live there are some of the most impoverished and dissatisfied on the planet.
Do you want to travel and sample different retirement lifestyles, but have a limited budget? Housesitting may be your answer. Our first housesit was three years ago. Since then we have lived rent-free in Tuscan farmhouses, French vineyards, Spanish casitas and luxury Costa Rican villas.
Panama has been recognized for more than a decade as one of the world's top choices for retirement. This is truer today than ever, for all the reasons you've likely read about.
Thanks to a soaring dollar and a collapsing euro, retirement in Europe is a more affordable and therefore a more realistic idea than it's been in nearly two decades. In particular, one usually overlooked corner of Europe deserves your attention right now.
As we write this, in March of 2015, the economy is improving in the U.S. The dollar is stronger than ever. That means now is the time to take those powerful dollars abroad ... especially to regions where the dollar buys more today than ever before.
Lynn Ann Snellman and her husband Tony DiPiazza's lifestyle in Belize is very different to what they knew back in Okemos, Michigan. 'Our main reason for leaving was the weather. We crave warmth and sunshine. Here in Belize we are thrilled to enjoy an outdoor lifestyle year-round,' says Lynn.
One of Europe's most historic outposts, the archipelago of Malta is today also one of this region's top emerging retirement havens. If your dream is retirement on the Med, you may not have considered Malta, but you should.