Best overseas locations for single expats

Published:  17 Nov at 6 PM
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Expat surveys suggest a good proportion of those looking to emigrate are single, but few articles give advice on the best locations for a successful singles lifestyle.

More often than not, articles giving advice to potential expats concentrate on relocation packages, jobs, best international schools and private heathcare facilities. As a result, even although as many as half of the total number of expats living overseas are single, it’s rare to find pages of advice about the best places to enjoy the single life.

A recent survey of USA expatriates suggests that increasing numbers of single US nationals are leaving the home country and heading south to warmer and less controversial climes. The list includes divorcees, those who’ve never married, widows and widowers and those who have remained single by choice rather than by lack of opportunity.

Although there’s no hard data giving exact numbers, it’s estimated some 47 per cent of those who relocate come into the singles category. A top choice for many is Mexico, mostly for its closeness to the USA and its use of American English. Communities exist all over the country, with the Riviera Maya on the Yucatan Peninsula one of the most favoured spots.

Ecuador’s many attractions include a low cost of living, interesting indigenous culture and concentrations of singles in cities such as Cuenca, Quito and the coastal retorts of Manta and Salinas. Singles in Costa Rica are scattered around the entire country, but the towns in the Central Valley region around San Jose are favourites, as is the beach town of Tamarindo.

Panama is ‘US expat lite’ as it uses the American dollar and has a sizeable, ready-made US expat community due to the Panama Canal. Going solo might well become even more popular in the future, as uncertainties over the next US president’s behaviour increase.

European and especially UK expats tend to favour Spain, Italy, France and Portugal, although adventurous singles are turning up in more northern states such as the Ukraine and other former Russian colonies. Widowers and older divorcees head for South East Asia, with Thailand and the Philippines especial favourites due to the likelihood their single status may soon change via marriage to a younger woman.
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