For the second year in a row, Singapore takes the top spot in HSBC’s Expat Explorer country league table. Expatriates in Singapore enjoy some of the world’s best financial rewards and career opportunities, while benefiting from an excellent quality of life and a safe, family-friendly environment.
More than three in five (62%) expats in Singapore say it is a good place to progress their career, with the same proportion seeing their earnings rise after moving to the country (compared with 43% and 42% respectively of expats globally). The average annual income for expats in Singapore is USD139,000 (compared with USD97,000 across the world), while nearly a quarter (23%) earn more than USD200,000 (more than twice the global expat average of 11%).
Overall, 66% of expats agree that Singapore offers a better quality of life than their home country (compared to 52% of expats globally), while three quarters (75%) say the quality of education in Singapore is better than at home, the highest proportion in the world (global average 43%).
Now in its ninth year, Expat Explorer is the largest and one of the longest running surveys of expats, with 26,871 respondents sharing their views on life abroad including careers, financial wellbeing, quality of life and ease of settling for children.
The 2016 Expat Explorer report also reveals:
Millennials are drawn to expat life to find more purpose in their careers
Nearly a quarter (22%) of expats aged 18-34 moved abroad to find more purpose in their career. This compares to 14% of those aged 34-54 and only 7% of those aged 55 and over. Millennials are also the most likely to embrace expat life in search of a new challenge: more than two in five (43%) say this, compared with 38% of those aged 34-54 and only 30% of those aged 55 and over. Millennials are finding the purpose they seek, with almost half (49%) reporting that they are more fulfilled at work than they were in their home country.
Expat life accelerates progress towards financial goals
Far from slowing progress towards their longer term financial goals, expats find many are fast tracked by life abroad. Around two in five expats say that moving abroad has accelerated their progress towards saving for retirement (40%) or towards buying a property (41%), compared to around one in five (20% and 19% respectively) whose move abroad has slowed their progress towards these financial goals. Almost a third (29%) of expats say living abroad has helped them to save towards their children’s education more quickly, compared to only 15% who say it has slowed them down.
The top expat destinations for economics, experience and family are:
Dean Blackburn, Head of HSBC Expat, comments:
“Expats consistently tell us that moving abroad has helped them achieve their ambitions and long-term financial goals, from getting access to better education for their children to buying property or saving more for retirement. Most expats also find that their quality of life has improved since making the move – and that they are integrating well with the local people and culture.”