In a study that has its flip side, Portugal has been voted as the best country in the world for expats.
Expat Insider’s InterNations survey found that foreigners living outside their home countries put Portugal at the top when it comes to quality of life.
Around 83% of those questioned “considered it easy to become assimilated in Portugal” and feel at home here.
Answers cited the friendliness of the local people (putting Portugal in third place in this particular category), leisure options (taking second place), the chance of finding personal happiness (also putting Portugal as ‘2nd best place for this in the world’), health and well-being (7th position) and security (8th).
But there is another side to being a foreigner in Portugal: the side where you haven’t arrived with pots of money, or a regular solid pension – and you need to work for a living.
This is when quality of life can dip slightly: in the sub-section on “personal finances”, Portugal ranks only in 15th place, and “is not considered one of the best places to work”. In that category, the country sinks to 35th place.
Also underwhelming is the positioning for “perspective and career satisfaction”. Says the study, Portugal ranks 44th in the world in this category, 35th in terms of “economic and work safety” and 20th when it comes to the ‘relation between work and leisure’.
Family life too isn’t considered ideal. Expats, ranking the country in 18th position, say they love the Portuguese ‘positive attitude towards children’ but “lament the lack of spaces for them in creches”.
This year’s survey brings to mind the ‘old joke’ about ‘how to make a small fortune in Portugal’. Answer: arrive with a big one!