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Monthly Wrap: Our top 5 countries to retire to in 2022

currency-newsMonthly Wrap: Our top 5 countries to retire to in 2022
After living in the UK throughout their working lives, many Brits look for a change as they reach retirement. Change can come in many different forms, but one huge transformation can be the place known as home.

If you are considering relocating abroad for your retirement next year, you may want to check out our list of the top countries for retirees in 2022.


Spain has been a British retirement hotspot for many years because of the hot weather and idyllic landscape. Despite large numbers of retired British expats seen exiting the country since the start of Brexit, the country is still a firm favourite. Spain offers a fairly straightforward visa system with numerous types of visas available – from the Golden Visa programme to the Non-Lucrative Visa.

Not only is Spain a lot cheaper than the UK, the country also boasts the 7th best healthcare system in the world, according to the World Healthcare Organisation (WHO), which British retirees can access by filling out an S1 Form.


There are numerous reasons why a Brit may decide to retire across the channel.

Rent is, on average, 19.2% lower than UK, and the standard of properties are greater when a similar amount of money is spent. For example, £100,000 in Kent will provide a 1 bedroom flat within a Retirement Development under a Leasehold tenure, whereas €112,000 in France will secure a three-bedroom country house.

To apply for a Retirement Visa in the post-Brexit climate, British retirees must prove a monthly income of €1200 (£1013.99) and should complete the S1 Form for healthcare to be provided by the UK.


Thailand has become the hotspot for young travellers, however Malaysia has many of the same attractions – phenomenal beaches, untouched rainforests and innovative cities – without the numbers of tourists.

Alongside this, Malaysia is considerably cheaper than the UK for both rent – on average, 68.08% lower – and cost of living – on average 45.64% lower.

For British retirees, Malaysia offers 10 years of residency through the ‘My 2nd Home Visa’ (MM2H) allowing free entry back into the country without the need to report immigration papers each year.


Presenting a seaside city with modern architecture, crystal blue water and located near the US, Panama is a newly popular retiree destination.

Panama welcomes retirees through the Pensionado Visa which is available to anyone who has a life-long pension and proof of a monthly income. This visa also offers certain benefits: 30% off travel fares; 50% off entertainment; 15% off loans made in your name, and more.

This is in addition to the already low cost of living that is 24.41% cheaper than the UK and the 0% tax on foreign earned income – this includes pensions and other resources.


Portugal’s colourful landscape has attracted Britons to become the second-largest nationality in the country.

The Portuguese Golden Visa provides great flexibility to retirees; by investing in the country, an individual will earn 5 years of residency. Another option is the D7 Residence Permit. This allows an individual to live in Portugal and travel freely within the EU.

Portugal also offers the Non-Habitual Residency (NHR). This will see retirees benefit from only 10% taxes instead of the country’s usually high taxes, ranging from 14.5% to 48%.

Considering your currency options

If you are seriously considering retiring abroad in the next year, then you might want to see if Currencies Direct can help you to save money when transferring your pension abroad.

Not only do we offer competitive exchange rates, we also don’t tact on any additional transfer fees, like most high street banks, this can result in considerable savings over a year when making regular transfers.

In addition to this we can also allow you to automate your monthly pension transfer, meaning you can spend more time enjoying your retirement!
Currencies Direct

Currencies Direct

Currencies Direct is one of Europe's leading non-bank providers of currency exchange and international payment services. Since we were formed in 1996, we've maintained our focus on providing innovative foreign exchange and international currency transfer services to corporations of all sizes, online sellers and private individuals. We have also expanded our services to provide dynamic and pioneering "business to business" solutions to help companies, tier 2/3 banks and other non-bank financial institutions to process their international payments. Our headquarters are in the City of London (United Kingdom) and we have operations in continental Europe, Africa, Asia, and the United States. Currencies Direct is jointly owned by private equity firms Palamon Capital Partners and Corsair Capital.

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