By Lola Augustine Brown
If winter’s finally getting to you and you’re thinking of retiring somewhere warmer, you’ll be interested to learn that for the fifth year in a row Mexico has placed first on International Living’s annual list of the world’s top retirement destinations. It’s been among the top 10 for the past 14 years.
Wait…Mexico? What about all the crime? The statement announcing the list acknowledged the country’s reputation and admitted, “there are parts of Mexico we don’t recommend. But,” the release went on, “this is a big country.” As reasons for the recommendation, International Living cited Mexico’s low cost, friendly locals, and “appealing balance of exotic foreign culture and familiar First-World lifestyle.”
In evaluating countries as retirement destinations, International Living looks at cost of living, quality of life, health care, infrastructure, and “bang for your buck” in real estate.
All of the top five countries chosen were places where your high-school Spanish would be a retirement asset: they were (in order after Mexico) Panama, Ecuador, Costa Rica, and Colombia—and Spain and Nicaragua placed seventh and eighth. Malaysia, Portugal, and Malta ranked sixth, ninth, and tenth.
Photo: Thinkstock/Ingram Publishing.