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Canada a Solid All-Rounder in Survey of Best Countries for Expats

Canada came in a solid 16th place in a survey of the best countries in the world for expats, as the U.S. and U.K. plummeted down the list compiled by the Expat Insider.

Canada a Solid All-Rounder in Survey of Best Countries for Expats
The Gulf country of Bahrain was a surprise at the top of the list, with expats giving it high marks as a place to raise a family and work, and for making foreigners feel welcome. The result was particularly remarkable given other Gulf nations – including Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Qatar – were all in the bottom 10 of the 65 countries ranked.

The presidential election and Brexit vote means the U.S. and U.K. are being perceived as unfriendly to foreigners and lacking political stability, two key factors in the survey.


 Best and Worst Countries for Expats

Top 10 Bottom 10
1 Bahrain 65 Greece
2 Costa Rica 64 Kuwait
3 Mexico 63 Nigeria
4 Taiwan 62 Brazil
5 Portugal 61 Saudi Arabia
6 New Zealand 60 Italy
7 Malta 59 Ukraine
8 Colombia 58 Qatar
9 Singapore 57 India
10 Spain 56 Turkey
16 Canada 54 United Kingdom
    43 United States

Source: Expat Insider 2017


Other factors including high health and child care costs saw the U.S. drop to 45 out of 65 countries in the 2017 list, down 17 places on 2016. The major factor behind the U.K.’s 21-place slide to 54th in the list was high housing costs.

The comprehensive survey asked questions of 13,000 expats of 166 nationalities. They are some of the most mobile people in the world, including high-level executives, skilled workers and international students. InterNations, organization behind the Expat Insider survey, has a network of 2.8 million registered expats, although research suggests there are 50 million worldwide.

Canada scored highly on quality of life, ranking 13th in the survey. The 7th position for safety and security was Canada’s highest in any category.

Key for Canada was that it scored solid results in a range of categories, suggesting that it caters for the full range of expat needs. Of those asked, 45 per cent said that while they moved to Canada on a temporary basis, they were considering staying for ever.


Notable High Scores For Canada

  • Quality of life 13th
  • Health and wellbeing 13th
  • Safety and security 7th
  • Feeling welcome 15th
  • Friendliness 14th
  • Language 19th
  • Working abroad 16th
  • Job and career 22nd
  • Family life 23rd
  • Availability of childcare and education 21st
  • Quality of education 13th
  • Family well-being 14th

The report had some glowing feedback on the friendliness of Canada’s people, although respondents were less impressed with the weather.

“Canada offers a clear environment and plenty of leisure activities – the majority (52 per cent) rates the latter as excellent,” the report reads.

“However, responders are less happy with the country’s cold climate. 31 per cent of expats give Canada’s climate a negative rating.”


An Expat Describes Canada….

“Canadians are the most wonderful people … We feel like we are able to work hard to achieve our best for ourselves and our children and contribute to society.”


Despite not enjoying the cold winters, many expats found the people they met here more than made up for it.

The report reads: “Luckily, the welcome expats receive in Canada is less frosty than the weather. Over four in five respondents (81%) regard the attitude towards foreign residents as friendly: nearly twice the global average describes it as very friendly.

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