Greece ranked first among 100 countries as the most affordable destination to settle after retirement, according to a survey conducted by the British insurance company REASSURED. The survey revealed that due to the high cost of living in the United Kingdom, many Britons intend to move abroad after their retirement.
Beautiful sun-drenched islands, mind-blowing beaches, diverse landscapes, mouthwatering food and timeless traditions.
The ten most affordable countries list, after Greece, is completed by Portugal in 2nd place, Malta in 3rd place, Italy in 4th place and Spain in 5th.
Reasons why Greece is preferred by UK retirees to relocate
Greece scores high in many categories. The survey focused on six parameters that most retirees take into account when considering the prospect of moving abroad which include:
- the country’s annual level of sunshine
- average life expectancy; cost of living index
- the average cost of accommodation
- average transport cost
- percentage of the total population aged over 65 years.
The Benefits of Retiring in Greece!
Aligned with the soaring numbers of senior expats looking to relocate, Greece has initiated programs to showcase the framework for a perfect reception of every retiree.
During 2020, the Greek government voted for a series of tax benefits, designed to attract foreign investment in the country and boost the real estate market. These benefits are of particular interest to digital “nomads”, or any other citizen interested to relocate and work in Greece, even though his employer can be based outside of Greece.
Also in effect is a legislative measure which is directed towards pensioners from other E.U. countries. Retirees can henceforth transfer their tax residency to Greece and secure low taxation with an annual rate of 7% for revenues acquired outside the country.
This low tax rate is valid for 10 years. Among the conditions to receive this favorable rate is for the interested party to not have been a tax resident of Greece in the past five out of six years, which preceded the relocation of the tax residency in Greece. Also, the country of origin must have signed a tax avoidance treaty with Greece.
The 7% flat tax rate is a tax program for foreign pensioners who decide to live in Greece. You may or may not be an EU-citizen. There is no investment requirement, either. You can just rent or buy a house and take advantage of this program. On the other hand, for non-EU nationals, the Greece Golden Visa program gives exactly that ability to get a residence permit.
Best places to retire in Greece – Top Destinations
Escape the bustle of Athens as you cross the Corinth Canal and set foot in the Peloponnese peninsula. Coastal quiet merges with key historical sites and modern marvels. Mountains, rivers, caves, and castles line the Peloponnese and the exotic beach of Elafonisos, all coming together to create a unique experience, just a short distance from Athens.
Rhodes is one of Greece’s best islands to retire, under the warm weather and sunshine. Rhodes is a large island that offers the ideal climate to enjoy a great retirement. The island is known for its vibrant nightlife, bars, and cafeterias, dramatic scenery, and luxurious cuisine.
The largest island in Greece, Crete offers visitors a broad beach experience, highlighted by mild weather and historical treasures. The landscape changes from vast, white-sand beaches to monasteries, mountain villages, and an enticing urban ambiance.
Syros is a two-hour ferry ride from Athens’ port, making the island easy for seniors to take advantage of uncrowded beaches and quiet resorts a short distance from the main town of Ermoupoli.
Healthcare In Greece (Public – Private)
Greece is the birthplace of western medicine, and has made a huge contribution to the development of the world’s medical system starting with the Father of Medicine “Hippocrates of Kos”.
The Greek Health Care System is a mixed system, with various social insurance funds coexisting with the National Health System. Health care in Greece is provided through national health insurance, although private health care is also an option.
The hospitals in the more metropolitan areas are of excellent standards.
Greece’s health care system was ranked by the World Health Organization as one of the best in the world. Greece’s health care was ranked 14th in overall performance of 191 countries surveyed (above other countries such as Germany and the United Kingdom) and 11th in quality of service in a 2000 report by the WHO. In addition, the health care cost is the lowest among the European Union countries.
Cost of Living in Greece
Living expenses in Greece in comparison to other nations are quite affordable, though it does vary significantly depending on location. The mainland is generally cheaper than the Greek islands when it comes to fuel and certain basic goods. The countryside is cheaper than cities, but there is a much smaller range of products and services.
For example, the cost of living in Greece compared to the UK is 45% cheaper, and the cost of living in Greece vs the USA is nearly 23% cheaper.