It may have come in at 19th place last year, but it seems that Bahrain is now a new favourite amongst expats settling overseas. A survey conducted by networking site InterNations has revealed that the small country has scored high marks for most of the 13,000 expats who participated, representing 166 nationalities and 188 territories across the board.
A total of six categories were examined by the survey, namely: quality of life; ease of settling in; working abroad; family life; personal finance; and the cost of living index. Situated in the Persian Gulf, Bahrain has been described by expats as a beautiful melting pot of many different cultures, with many noting that the local Bahrainis are friendly and welcoming to foreigners.
A bonus for most respondents was that aside from their native Arabic mother tongue, many local Bahrainis also speak English, making it easy for foreigners to communicate and settle in the country. It’s also worth noting that a quarter of respondents said they felt at home right away despite never having lived abroad before.
Bahrain has also topped the list for areas such as job and career, work-life balance and family life, but for those looking for more sociable options, Costa Rica is the place for you. Coming it at second place, the sunny country has ranked the highest in the Finding friends subcategory, besides performing well in other categories of quality of life, ease of settling in and family life.
Mexico makes an appearance at the top of the list again, this time at third place, thanks to the ease of settling in, personal finance and cost of living in the country. However, it failed to perform as well in terms of safety, healthcare and quality of life, which is where Portugal, Taiwan and Spain has excelled.
The results also reveal some trends amongst the top 10 best expat destinations: they all happen to be sun-soaked countries in warmer climates, bursting with culture. It should come as no surprise, then, that Singapore has made it on the list, coming in just before Spain at 9th position.