Edition 1453
09 December 2017
Edition: 1453

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Portugal among top ten countries in the world to retire

in News · 07-01-2016 12:46:00 · 10 Comments

Portugal has been elected as one of the top ten countries in the world in which to retire, one of only two European countries to do so. Overall, researchers selected 23 countries worldwide as being the best for retirees, with Portugal placed at number 10.

Portugal among top ten countries in the world to retire

International Living having been seeking out the best retirement destinations for the past 35 years, and this year found that Portugal is worthy of the long-standing view that it is one of the best places in the world to retire.
In compiling its rankings, International Living looks at climate, cost of living, retiree discounts, infrastructure, accessibility of healthcare to compile their Annual Global Retirement Index and say they look specifically at the best opportunities worldwide for retirement living.
Editors at International Living compile, weigh, rank, and rate a series of criteria including cost of living, infrastructure, healthcare, fitting in, real estate, special benefits and climate for an assessment based on real-world data gathered on the ground.
In singling out Portugal, International Living explains that as “one of the smallest countries in Europe, Portugal is one of Europe’s best-kept secrets. Many fall in love with this little country due to its near flawless weather, abundance of golf and water sports, and superb fresh food.”
Placed just behind Spain in the rankings at number ten, researchers explain the relatively low cost of living here is also a big draw for those who choose to live in Portugal, compared with other European nations, goods and services are still bargains. It adds that “the locals are warm and welcoming to foreigners making living here very enjoyable.”
The report on Portugal continues by arguing that “if your dream European retreat includes golden sand beaches, almond groves, picturesque castles, and little frontier towns on wooded hilltops then Portugal is the place for you. Slumbering abbeys, pilgrim shrines, and ancient castle towns are dotted inland while traditional fishing towns of narrow alleys and old houses stand proudly on the coast.”
It also makes reference to relatively affordable property, highlighting the value for money deals currently available along the Silver Coast or the Alentejo.
Researchers also found that living in Portugal is relatively affordable compared to its European counterparts, making reference to the below average joint cost of utilities, the price of coffee or a dish of the day.
The International Living Retirement Index is topped by Panama, followed by Ecuador, Mexico and Costa Rica.

Comments

What is an S1 , mentioned by MS, and how do you register for healthcare?
by George Moffat from Algarve on 09-01-2016 09:15:00
We have lived in Portugal for about 20 months. However we are from the U. S. The requirements for us are very different than from the U.K. If you have already turned 7o you can't get private health insurance. We do qualify for some subsidized health care through the public facilities. However we had to prove we had one year of private health care insurance for the first year. I think it is now 4 months. We tried Panama before choosing Portugal. Do all you immigration papers in the States before you come. Work with the appropriate consulate. I find International Living publications very wrong. I would not trust what they say. Panama is lovely but way too expensive for us. You really need to speak Spanish fairly well or it is a lot more difficult. Learning Portuguese is difficult but it is "to easy" to get by without it. We are starting our lessons again the end of this month. We are trying to do this as a courtesy to our lovely host country.
by Bren from Algarve on 09-01-2016 12:39:00
Portugal's health service struggles in the economic difficulties that affect the whole country but the people and the care is as good as you could get anywhere.
However, there are some significant differences. When my wife was on Zolendronic Acid (for secondary bone cancer) it could be administered in a Portuguese hospital but, that treatment didn't really work too well so she was put onto a new medication called Denosumab (a monoclonal antibody) which is just one injection every four weeks. It has made a significant difference.
Denosumab isn't funded by the Portuguese health service and as a result we have to be in England to receive it. As you can imagine that puts a cramp on our plan to spend more time in our Portuguese home. I would imagine that the financial straits of the Portuguese economy will lead to these anomalies and I would expect such differences to exist. Portugal already spends much less than the UK per capita on health so it’s a bit odd that the new government sees the restoration of bank holidays as a priority over health spending.
For those with a connection still in the UK and a UK address they can always pop back for stuff that you can’t get done in Portugal, perhaps the best of both worlds?
by David Allen from UK on 09-01-2016 12:34:00
Portugal's health service struggles in the economic difficulties that affect the whole country but the people and the care is as good as you could get anywhere.
However, there are some significant differences. When my wife was on Zolendronic Acid (for secondary bone cancer) it could be administered in a Portuguese hospital but, that treatment didn't really work too well so she was put onto a new medication called Denosumab (a monoclonal antibody) which is just one injection every four weeks. It has made a significant difference.
Denosumab isn't funded by the Portuguese health service and as a result we have to be in England to receive it. As you can imagine that puts a cramp on our plan to spend more time in our Portuguese home. I would imagine that the financial straits of the Portuguese economy will lead to these anomalies and I would expect such differences to exist. Portugal already spends much less than the UK per capita on health so it’s a bit odd that the new government sees the restoration of bank holidays as a priority over health spending.
For those with a connection still in the UK and a UK address they can always pop back for stuff that you can’t get done in Portugal, perhaps the best of both worlds?
by David Allen from UK on 09-01-2016 11:30:00
Don't believe IL for best retirement locations. I just left Panama after 8 years there and moved to Portugal. IL is misleading regarding Panama and most likely being paid to put Panama at the top of the list. Portugal is much, much nicer and cheaper than Panama. Panama stopped being a good place to retire to a number of years ago and people are leaving due to the high costs and locals ripping the expats off.
by Nancy from Madeira on 08-01-2016 09:01:00
B James from UK should not worry about the health service in Portugal. I retired here last year and had first hand experience of the Health Service. it was excellent in every way..accommodation, healthcare, Nursing, Communication. The important thing is to register for an S1 before moving and as soon you arrive register for healthcare in Portugal. Like everywhere it depends on the location, but unfortunately I have experienced the UK NHS three times in the last four years, and it does not compare in any way to the excellent service here. Don't believe all you see on the TV or in the media. Reading about the UK from here is just as bad. Or worse!!
by MS from Other on 08-01-2016 04:26:00
I retired to Portugal from the UK. I have just been diagnosed with cancer and the treatment by the Portuguese health service has been 5 star, far superior to the Uk. Do not b elieve all you read, check it out. Come to Portugal you will love it and the people are second to non!
by B arrie from Porto on 08-01-2016 03:06:00
Anything from International Living is marketing crap. Portugal has many benefits but promoting IL as a source of information is pure baloney. IL has slanted info and incorrect info and is usually wrong in order to sell their services to retirees. They don't have researchers, they have some local people trying to sell articles and services. Please do your readers a favor and stop allowing marketing/sales PR to be passed off as credible news.
by Zigbaum from Other on 08-01-2016 02:59:00
Replying to B James's comment above:
But do you think it is any less chaotic than many parts of the UK where the by now well-known 'post-code lottery' syndrome poliferates...not to mention the appalling and completely out-of-date junior doctors are still being treated? Don't know where you are getting your info from, but I can tell you that I have been under treatment in the Portuguese system for some years now and, whilst there can be frustrations, especially with the bureaucracy, I am confident that I have been treated pretty much as well as I would have been in the UK. Furthermore, if I were to opt for private treatment it would be a fraction of the cost in the UK! Opinions vary of course, but you have to make sure you have the correct facts. R. Hilton
by Robin from Beiras on 08-01-2016 02:48:00
I was planning to retire to Portugal but have been put off by Portugal's chaotic state health service. The reports about what was happening over Christmas are very worrying.
by B James from UK on 08-01-2016 10:52:00

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Edition 1453
09 December 2017
Edition: 1453

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

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