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The best 25 places to retire have been revealed

Thursday, January 8, 2015

View of the countryside

If you're considering spending your retirement years in sunnier climes, it can be difficult to choose the best country to settle in. As with anything, trends seem to emerge when it comes to the favourite location for Brits who want to retire abroad.

Spain was a favourite for a while, but it has recently been knocked off the top spot of the best places to retire. In fact, it is not even in the top five in terms of the best places for expats settle, according to InternationalLiving.com's Annual Global Retirement Index.

The top five places for Brits to retire, according to the index, are Ecuador, Panama, Mexico, Malaysia and Costa Rica. However, Spain is still the favourite European location and comes sixth in the list of the best 25 countries. The UK failed to appear in the list at all.

To create the list of great places to retire, the index looks at eight separate factors. These include property prices, benefits for expats, the cost of living, how easy it is to fit in, entertainment and amenities, climate, road quality and healthcare systems. These are judged by experts who live in the countries to give a fair representation.

These factors are deemed to be among the most important when it comes to choosing another country to retire and are used to give an accurate and varied view of each of the locations. Between all eight of these categories, countries receive a mark out of 100.

Ecuador, the country to come in first place, was scored at 92.7 points, with property costs, expat discounts on flights, utilities offered by the government, public transportation and climate all scoring very high.

It seems that although housing prices have increased recently in the South American location, properties are still incredibly cheap; offering great value for money.

Second place on the list was given to Panama, which was commended for its Pensionado visa. This is available to any expats who have a lifetime pension with a value of more than $1,000 (around £250).

Not only does the visa offer discounts on medical services, it also provides deals on electricity bills, air travel, entertainment, meals and phone bills; making the country a great place to settle for retirees.

Other countries that scored high on the list were Malta, Colombia and Portugal, with Thailand coming in tenth place as the top Asian destination.

Read more about the favourite 25 countries to retire to.

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