Your browser (Internet Explorer 7 or lower) is out of date. It has known security flaws and may not display all features of this and other websites. Learn how to update your browser.

X

Top Ten Countries With The Best Sunshine

Great weather and varied leisure options keep expats satisfied with their life abroad. Greece, Portugal, Spain, Costa Rica, Uganda, South Africa, Malta, Mexico, Cyprus and Kenya are the countries with the best weather, according to more than 90 percent of expats living there. Up to 89 percent of expats in the top 10 destinations with the best weather are happy with their life in general, compared to 78 percent globally. Expats in Portugal, Spain, South Africa, Mexico, Costa Rica and malta are particularly fond of available leisure activities.

Expats living in the top 10 countries ideal for a sunny escape moved there for many different reasons: in the majority of these destinations, the search for a better quality of life was named as the top reason, while expats in others moved primarily for love, for their partner's job or education, or because they were sent abroad by their employer.

However, there is one thing that all ten countries have in common: at least three-quarters considered the climate and weather to be a potential benefit prior to moving, it seems like they were not disappointed, as the latest Expat Insider survey reveals. Based on the insights of close to 13,000 expats from 188 countries and territories in the annual survey, InterNations, the world's largest network for people who live and work abroad, compiled a so-far unpublished ranking of the destinations with the best weather around the world, according to expats.

1. Greece

Satisfied with weather: 96%
Happy with life: 74%
Moved for a better quality of life: 15%
Overall, Greece ranks last in the latest Expat Insider survey, yet the country’s sunny skies appear to brighten expats’ spirits: not a single respondent had anything negative to say about the climate and weather! A British expat states they enjoy “the safe and friendly outdoor lifestyle in beautiful surrounding”. Additionally, more than three-quarters (77%) appreciate the great quality of the environment.

2. Portugal

Satisfied with weather: 97%
Happy with life: 89%
Moved for a better quality of life: 28%
Expats in Portugal can make the most out of the country’s excellent weather: they are significantly more likely to work part time (37%) than the global average (17%) and only spend about 33 hours per week at work (vs. 40.7 h globally). In their free time, they seem to have plenty of options to keep themselves busy, as more than nine in ten (92%) are satisfied with the available leisure activities — the highest share within the top 10 countries for a sunny escape.

3. Spain

Satisfied with weather: 96%
Happy with life: 89%
Moved for a better quality of life: 26%
Close to four in five expats living in Spain (79%) are satisfied with the quality of environment such as water and air quality and an even higher share is happy with the available leisure activities (89%). A Canadian expat particularly enjoys “the culture of outdoor enjoyment at the beach, sea and in the mountains”.

4. Costa Rica

Satisfied with weather: 98%
Happy with life: 86%
Moved for a better quality of life: 31%
In addition to the great weather, expats in Costa Rica are satisfied with the quality of the environment(91%) — out of the featured countries, only Portugal (94%) receives better ratings for this factor.Moreover, expats enjoy the country’s peacefulness (93%) and the local’s friendly attitude (87%) — a US American appreciates the “freedom to live a peaceful, happy life, surrounded by kind people”.

5. Uganda

Satisfied with weather: 93%
Happy with life: 76%
Moved for a better quality of life: 2%
Most expats moving to Uganda cite work-related reasons (55%), be it their own or their partner’s job, and only 77 percent considered the weather to be a potential benefit prior to their move — this is the smallest share among the top 10 countries for a sunny escape. However, once they arrive, expats enjoy the “wonderful climate on the equator and the amazing people,” as a South African expat mentions.

6. South Africa

Satisfied with weather: 93%
Happy with life: 74%
Moved for a better quality of life: 10%
Expat life in South Africa can be worrisome under the sunny skies, as only 38 percent find the country peaceful, which is the lowest share out of the top 10 countries. However, close to three-quarters still state to be generally happy (74% vs. 78% global). Maybe it is the high satisfaction with the available leisure options that makes life in South Africa enjoyable (89%), which is well above the global average (73%).

7. Malta

Satisfied with weather: 93%
Happy with life: 88%
Moved for a better quality of life: 27%
Ranking 2nd out of 65 countries in terms of work-life balance, expats in Malta seem to have lots of time to enjoy the sun. In fact, a Polish expat particularly values the “laid back attitude and weather” in the country. Maybe that is the reason why 37 percent of expats felt at home nearly right away, which is close to twice the global average (19%) and the highest share among the top 10 countries for a sunny escape.

8. Mexico

Satisfied with weather: 93%
Happy with life: 89%
Moved for a better quality of life: 14%
Mexico remains a consistent favorite among expats, ranking within the top 5 destinations for expats in general since 2014. In addition to the great weather, 87 percent of expats are happy with the available leisure options. An Irish expat especially likes the “relaxed living, with almost continuous sunshine” — maybe that is one of the reasons why Mexico ranks 1st out of 65 destinations for personal happiness.

9. Cyprus

Satisfied with weather: 91%
Happy with life: 78%
Moved for a better quality of life: 32%
More than one in ten expats (11%) moved to Cyprus to retire, which is the largest share among these ten countries. “Life is generally easy here,” states a British expat. In addition to the great weather, the majority (91%) enjoys how peaceful the country is. However, only 64 percent are satisfied with the available leisure activities, compared to 73 percent globally.

10. Kenya

Satisfied with weather: 91%
Happy with life: 79%
Moved for a better quality of life: 1%
Exactly three in five expats (60%) moved to Kenya for work-related reasons (including their partner’s job). Working the longest hours out of the top 10 countries (46.5 h/week), it seems like they do not have a lot of time to enjoy the great climate. Additionally, more than two in five (41%) are unsatisfied
with the quality of the environment — a US American expat specifically mentions “air pollution” to be an issue.

www.internations.org/expat-insider