7 Best Places in the World to Move to After the 2016 Presidential Election
Looking For a New Country to Call Home?
Does the thought of either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump becoming president give you the heebee-jeebies? Neither candidate in the 2016 presidential election is particularly spectacular, although one may terrify you more than the other.
While there’s always talk about moving to another country if so-and-so is elected, where would you actually go? We’ve rounded up some of the world’s best cities to live in if you’re ready to revoke your citizenship come the results on November 8.
1. Vancouver, BC, Canada
While most Americans joke about moving to Canada during a particularly volatile election, it’s actually a legitimate choice if you pick the right city. Between all the major metropolitan areas in Canada, Vancouver is number one in terms of diversity, quality of living and natural beauty.
Some of the most beautiful parks and gardens are located in Vancouver along with Pacific Coast beaches. It’s also one of the warmer and wetter cities in Canada, making it comparable to American cities like San Francisco, Portland and Seattle.
If you’re serious about becoming a canuck, you can determine your eligibility on their government’s website.
2. Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
With an average temperature of 77 degrees Fahrenheit year round, Puerto Vallarta is a top contender for American expats. Similar to Hawaii in terms of latitude and climate, this Mexican beach town is about half the cost of living with much more old world charm.
Known for its palm tree-dotted beaches, vibrant nightlife and popular water sport activities, Puerto Vallarta is a subtropical paradise where you can easily party every night if you so desire. Mexico has a pretty generous Temporary Resident Visa program that allows you to live there for up to four years, provided you have the funds or work prospects to sustain yourself.
That’s just enough time to escape from American politics until a better candidate is voted into office. Make sure you look into how to get a visa before you start planning, though!
3. Las Terrenas, Dominican Republic
A popular expat destination for retirees, Las Terrenas is a little beach town in northeast Dominican Republic. Primarily a tourism center due to its white sandy beaches and somewhat isolated locale, there are a number of local businesses run by foreigners who came for a visit and decided to stay.
Besides going to the beach, there’s tons of shopping, and outdoor activities such as hiking up to the Cascada El Limón, a waterfall about 30 minutes from Las Terrenas. The Dominican Republic recently put a fast track residency system in place that allows people who invest in businesses or property to become residents and even citizens in as little as one year.
4. Amsterdam, Netherlands
While Amsterdam has become famous all over the world for its liberal drug policies, there’s more to life there than buying hash at a coffee shop. In fact, Amsterdam is liberal on almost all fronts, including their means of transit.
Year after year, the city is ranked as one of the most bike-friendly cities in the entire world. It’s also one of the safest cities in the world, as found by The Economist’s Safe Cities Index in 2015.
Amsterdam has one of the lowest unemployment rates in Europe, so having a set of highly sought after skills can greatly improve your chances of getting a work permit. The Dutch are also known for their egalitarian lifestyle and are perfectly comfortable speaking English in most settings.
5. Munich, Germany
One of the most popular tourist destinations in Germany, Munich has tons to offer for Americans looking to resettle there. There are a number of beautiful cultural landmarks such as the Gothic medieval Frauenkirche and a variety of castles and museums perfect for spending the day at.
Beer lovers especially will have no problem deciding on Munich as their new home. Germany’s Oktoberfest started here and the famously free beer festival is the largest in the world.
The rules of immigration are slightly stricter in Germany since the Syrian refugee crisis, but generally pretty friendly to American expats. Foreign nationals must have basic German language skills and a residence title unless you qualify as an ethnic German.
6. Auckland, New Zealand
One of New Zealand’s largest cities and an excellent alternative to living in the USA, Auckland boasts many of the same luxuries as the States without all the hassle and hurry. While cost of living is relatively the same there, compared to major cities in the US, it’s actually much less.
New Zealand also boasts free healthcare for those who hold a work visa valid for two years or more. Auckland in particular has a rich cultural heritage due to the mixture of European and aboriginal traditions.
There’s always something to do whether you feel like exploring the island’s volcanoes, dining at award winning restaurants, or visiting one of their premiere Pacific Island art galleries.
7. Chiang Mai, Thailand
An incredibly beautiful destination whether to visit or live, Chiang Mai, Thailand has attracted so many expats already, they have their own social club. Full of intricate temples, shrines and medieval monasteries, Chiang Mai is relatively peaceful although it’s considered the northern capital of the country.
Aside from typical city happenings, there are a number of amazing outdoorsy activities in the area such as rain forest ziplining and visiting elephant sanctuaries. With an incredibly low cost of living, it’s no wonder Thailand has been a favorite among American retirees for decades.
Upon holding a non-immigrant visa for at least three years, you can apply to become a permanent resident provided you meet one of the categories outlined by the Thai foreign embassy.