KUALA LUMPUR: Vive Le Malaisie! Kuala Lumpur expatriates are
giving the thumbs-up to InternationalLiving.com’s annual Global Retirement Index 2014, which ranked Malaysia as the third best country to retire in, after Ecuador and Panama.
Affordability is a big pull factor. Malaysia gives most foreigners a real bang for their buck.
The site stated that a couple could live on US$1,700 (RM5,581) a month in a luxury seaview apartment. Another US$400 (RM1,312) a month could get them a full-time, live-in maid.
St Chaire Catlow, 34, from the Caribbean, who moved here seven years ago with her English businessman husband, agreed.
“The standard of living here is good. Our cost of living in proportion to our income is low and that’s a big plus,” she said.
InternationalLiving.com stated that Malaysian meals cost as low as US$3 (RM10).
“Food is great and cheap. The best part is the variety,” said Stuart Yeomans, 29, a financial consultant from Britain, who has been here for six years.
“I regularly go for great sushi and Malay, Indian, Chinese, Middle Eastern and European food!”
Craig Donald, 57, who has been living here for 12 years, said it was easy to fit in with the locals, despite having a thick Scottish accent.
The survey ranked 24 countries based on expatriate opinions.
InternationalLiving.com also stated that Penang and Kuala Lumpur had “excellent hospitals” and English-speaking physicians.
Yeomans concurred that the healthcare options here were brilliant.
“I would choose Gleneagles or Prince Court over hospitals in the UK any day of the week,” he said.
According to the website, starting a business in Malaysia is relatively hassle-free as there are many expatriates running cafés, yoga studios, restaurants and schools here.
It highlighted the Malaysia My Second Home programme for non-Malaysians to stay in the country on a social visit pass for 10 years.
Not everyone is keeping a tight rein on spending
Pressure from rising costs can escalate violence against children