Expat South Africa News

Latest 10 news items tagged South Africa

15 Jul at 6 PM 2014

Skipton offer expat buy to let mortgages on selected UK properties

Skipton International, the offshore Channel Islands base of the well-known high street building society, is now offering expat mortgages on UK buy-to-let properties. Including UK buy-to-let options in expat pension planning has traditionally been tricky for those requiring mortgages, but the recent rise in UK property prices has encouraged a few offshore banks to offer the service. Skipton is the latest to jump on board with its plan for UK citizens living and working overseas. The scheme is available to native UK citizens only,...
17 Jun at 6 PM 2014

Insurers misleading relatives on funeral and repatriation travel cover

Bereaved home country families of expats dying overseas are being forced to pay for funerals or repatriation of their loved one due to health insurers’ confusing jargon. The bodies of around 90 per cent of British citizens who die abroad are repatriated for funerals, with the total costs running up to £17,000. Even when travel or health insurance has been taken out, bereaved families are finding that unclear wording, exclusions and confusing small print in the policies is barring them from claiming. Many insurance companies have...
11 Jun at 6 PM 2014

US FATCA disclosures to affect financial and personal privacy for international expats

The controversial US FATCA tax-avoidance scheme, due to come into effect next month, will not only affect USA citizens, but also international customers of US banks. According to FATCA rulings, all international customers of US banks and financial institutions, wherever they are in the world, must provide their personal and financial details to the US tax authority. No matter whether they have no connection to the US in any way, they must fill in Form W-8BEN to prove they are not liable to USA tax. All customers of overseas...
6 Jun at 6 PM 2014

Overseas retirement havens too expensive for UK expats

Retiring overseas has been the dream of many UK citizens, worked for and saved for over many years, but inflation in favourite destinations is now killing the reality for many. Experts are reporting that buying a property overseas and living the good life in retirement is no longer possible for the average British couple due to rapid rises in the cost of living abroad. Specialist relocation companies are now branding expat life as a luxury rather than an affordable reward for a lifetime’s work. The majority of favourite European...
29 May at 6 PM 2014

Philippines immigration officers to get friendship training

Filipino immigration chief Siegfried Mison has released details of his plan to create an enviably pleasant experience for all migrants and other visitors arriving at the country’s air and sea entry points. According to Mison, friendlier, customer-oriented officials will greet new arrivals at airports and seaports with traditional Filipino hospitality. The new programme, Bi CARES is due to go live in June this year. Mison explained to reporters that Bi CARES represents courtesy, accountability, responsibility, efficiency and...
21 May at 6 PM 2014

Qatar new medical centre searching for British health professionals

Literally thousands of experienced expat medical staff are being sought for Doha’s new, state-of-the-art medical centre for women and children. Oil-rich Qatar’s brand new Sidra Medical and Research Centre complex is due to open early in 2015, and will offer ultra-modern heathcare for women and children. Built via an endowment from the Qatar Foundation, it’s expected to become the Middle Eastern hub for its speciality and is even equipped with ‘smart beds’ preventing patients from getting bedsores. The complex will employ...
19 May at 6 PM 2014

Survey shows modern technology aids expat quality of life

A recent survey has shown that a majority of British expats working and living overseas take full advantage of modern technology to improve their work/life balance. NatWest Bank’s Quality of Life survey included UK expats in a number of countries such as the USA, Hong Kong, Canada, the Antipodes, China, South Africa and the UAE. Of those surveyed, 94 per cent confirmed that their workplace efficiency had been improved by recent technological advances. Increased mobility in their working lives as a result of improved IT was...
17 Apr at 6 PM 2014

Strong pound boosts expat spending power in South Africa, Turkey and Thailand

As the pound strengthens along with the recovery in the UK, a newly-introduced online currency index will help travellers and expats to select the countries with the most favourable rates. Fluctuating currency rates are an endless worry for most expats on UK pensions or with investments paying interest in sterling. Over the last year, the winners have been those living in South Africa, Turkey and Thailand, with the strong pound and weakness of local currencies granting them between 20 and 30 per cent more spending power. In...
14 Mar at 6 PM 2014

Plunging currencies encourage Brits to purchase overseas

Strengthened sterling as a result of confidence in the UK economy’s recovery and falling currencies in troubled regions of the world have sent would-be UK expats on a bargain-hunting buying frenzy. Spain and France are at the top of most wish-lists, with the lower end of the Spanish property market still falling and entire abandoned villages on the market for less than a London garage. France’s real estate sector is still underperforming, and Greek property prices fell a further nine per cent last year. Surprise entries to the...
3 Mar at 6 PM 2014

Expat retirees forced back to UK by frozen pension scandal

British pensioners who emigrated to be with grandchildren or for health reasons are being forced to return to the UK because their pensions are frozen in their host countries. An example of the desperate decisions being taken by many elderly Brits who moved abroad to be with loved ones or to take advantage of warmer weather for their healths’ sake is a 90-year old grandmother who moved to Canada in 2001. An IT lecturer during her working life, she made the move to be close to her daughter and grandchildren who’d emigrated a few...