Eager for adventure, aware of the good-value opportunities overseas, and unwilling to "settle down" just yet, broad-minded retirees (and younger folks, too) are making the world their playground, reports InternationalLiving.com.
Rather than settle in one place abroad, they're traveling the world – exploring one nation at a time. Done right, this vagabond lifestyle costs less than staying home. A new report from InternationalLiving.com explains why this roving lifestyle appeals and how it's done.
A diverse selection of international gadabouts reveal how they find the right rental accommodation, how to take flights, train journeys and cruises for less, and how to shop like a local—all without compromising on comfort.
Though they are diverse in background, the expats interviewed for InternationalLiving.com's report all have certain things in common: They want to step out of the rat race early, make the most of their time, meet new people, learn new things…and savor life in exotic surrounds.
Canadians Yvonne and Michael Bauche lived in countries all over Central America for months at a time and found their monthly expenses half of what they spent at home in Canada. One way they cut their costs was by housesitting, they say.
"Many of the expats living this globetrotting lifestyle are on a long-term search for the perfect retirement locale. They aren't in a hurry, or on a schedule. They throw the net wide, visiting dozens of countries and many places within each," says InternationalLiving.com's executive editor Jennifer Stevens. "They gradually narrow down the contenders to those few locales that have really captured their hearts, while hitting everything on their bucket lists along the way."
Anyone can do the same. Spend two months in Paris, six weeks in Portugal, then try Latin America. Start with the beaches of Belize, move south to the mountains of Ecuador.
"Beyond the adventure, the true beauty of this way of life is the flexibility," Stevens says. "A roving retirement like this can be as fast- or slow-paced as you like. Having discovered an enchanting Italian hilltop town, you can linger. If a place appeals, stay longer…if not, move on."
Lynne and Tim Martin have lived in nine countries—including France three times—since 2011, when they sold their comfortable California house, put a few small treasures in storage, and kissed their daughters and grandchildren goodbye.
"Being home-free and traveling costs us no more than a stationary California lifestyle. We have no home maintenance, taxes, or tenants to worry about, yet we continue to draw exactly the same stipend from our portfolio as we did before. Even additional expenses, such as international health insurance and annual trips to see our family and friends, do not tip the budget scale," says Lynne.
The full report on expats enjoying their retirement on the road, including tips on how to get started, which appeared in the November edition of International Living magazine, can be read here: Living Internationally Expats Enjoy Roving Retirement.