In its 10th consecutive year, the Expat Insider ranked 53 countries. The survey considered various factors, such as quality of life, ease of settling in, personal finance and more. The results reveal that Mexico emerged as the top-ranked expat destination. It solidifies its position as a preferred choice among international residents.

With 90 percent of expats expressing their satisfaction with life south of the border, Mexico shines in personal finance and ease of settling in. However, the issue of personal safety remains a significant concern with 18 percent of expats reporting insecurity.

Spain is second on this year’s list. The country offers expats a remarkable blend of quality of life, leisure options, cultural richness, vibrant nightlife, recreational sports and favorable climate. Panama secures the third spot globally due to its excellent housing options and affordability.

The United States has experienced a considerable decline in its rankings, dropping from 47 to 51. This downward shift is likely to raise concerns among expats regarding the accessibility and cost-effectiveness of commuting within the country.

Making Friends Abroad

The survey also sheds light on the “Nordic paradox,” as Norway finds itself at the bottom of the list. This unexpected ranking highlights the challenges that expats may face in the country. It suggests that Norway might not be the most favorable destination for international residents.

The study further explores the importance of social connections and making friends abroad. The top five countries for finding friends include Panama, Mexico, Kenya, Brazil and the Philippines. These countries also rank bottom ten in the general friendliness of their residents and their attitudes towards foreigners. The friendliest places tend to encourage socialization and foster open-mindedness towards newcomers.

The United States secures the 24 position in terms of local friendliness and the 28 spot for making friends, suggesting a somewhat mixed experience for expats seeking social connections.

In contrast, Kuwait consistently ranks as the least friendly country for expats, maintaining its position at the bottom of the list for the second consecutive year. With only 43 percent of expats expressing contentment with their lives in Kuwait, compared to the global average of 72 percent, the country continues to face significant challenges in attracting and retaining international residents.

You can see the complete survey here.