These Are The Countries Expat Americans Move To The Most

The U.S. government does not keep track of how many citizens live abroad and where. Various non-government agencies and think-tanks provide some data. The following list is based on the latest numbers made available by the Migration Policy Institute.


877,000 Americans

The number is 1 million, according to the State Department. It's close to home, the weather is almost always warm and perfect, it's much cheaper, and the language is not hard to learn. Why not move to Mexico? Retiring there is certainly popular. There are many wonderful beaches and mountain range, making for magnificent natural scenery with resort cities, farmland, plantations, palm trees and much more.


343,000 Americans

It's not as easy as you think to move to Canada, but it's one of two obvious choices for people who want to stay close to home. During the election campaign, keyword searches originating in the U.S. show that a lot of people are looking to move to live and work there. Searches that include the word "Canada" shot up 58 percent, going from 19,693 in 2015 to 30,296 through October 2016. Canada is a real gift for everyone who loves parks and recreations activities.

The United Kingdom

212,000 Americans

Heritage and history underpin Britain's appeal but many don't venture beyond the capital, missing the natural and cultural splendors of the rest of the country and of Scotland and Wales. With the local currency losing a third of its value after Brexit, it's become cheaper for American to travel and shop there. The U.K. still has a high standard of living. Get ready to eat a lot of delicious fish and chip.

Puerto Rico

165,000 Americans

Puerto Rico is a Commonwealth of the U.S., so going there is like going to another state. One more bonus is that you don't go through customs. People working and living there don't pay the same taxes as those on the mainland; they pay much less. The island is a popular destination for romantic getawaysadventure and nightlife. There are also miles of low-cost ocean front property.


138,000 Americans

This popular destination for international tourists is also popular place for American to settle. Germany has a very high standard of living. Generally, it costs more for the same amount of housing space you have in the U.S., especially in the larger cities. Germany has an excellent rail and airline network that can take you anywhere. You may not need a car at all.


111,000 Americans

Ask almost anyone who's been and they'll tell you Australia is easily one of the most thrilling and adventurous countries in the world. From opportunities to see and interact with some of the world's most unique and fascinating species and backcountry beach camping to big wave surfing, every day can be different. Aussies have a new and improved healthcare system and generally high standard of living. Australia made the Top 10 in the World Happiness Index for 2017.


79,000 Americans

The U.S. and Israel have always been close and it's no surprise that many Americans have moved there. It's one of the countries where people live a long and happy live, despite the constant stressful situations. The longevity has been caused in part by optimism. In Israel you will learn that there's more to life than consumerism.

South Korea

69,000 Americans

The country is a round-the-clock wonder, a haven for food-lovers and site full of history and stunning architecture. Set between four guardian mountains, Seoul is a soulful city with a pulse that's almost palpable. Should you care to venture out and explore more of the country, the public transit system is efficient. The number of expats will probably increase after the Winter Games this year as more people learn about how wonderful South Korea is.


54,000 Americans

People are physically active, and the weather often helps with that. Winters are not too harsh, which would prevent many from keeping up with the lifestyle. A famous paradox is that the French eat a lot of cheese but have low rates of heart diseaseResearchers claim it has to do with the metabolism of cheese. Cheese reduces bad cholesterol, when compared to butter with the same fat content. A key factor in the French diet is small portions.


54,000 Americans

Who wouldn't want to live in a place where almost all food is absolutely exquisite and delicious? Other reasons also matter. The standard of living has increased for everybody and most people are able to afford better food and do things that make them happy. Several important Sardinian principles include: Putting family first, celebrating elders, walking more to stay fit as they get older and laughing with friends.


50,000 Americans

There are more than 58,000 Japanese citizens who are older than 100, making the country the world's leader for people who live over 80. All the credit for the longevity (these are the secrets) is given to a predominantly healthy diet, which includes a lot of fish, rice, tofu, soy, vegetables, and small portions. People there go on morning walks (you can get in shape just by walking), take dance lessons or teach karate. They stay active.


46,000 Americans

Bangladesh has it all –palaces, beaches, jungles, mosquitoes and air pollution in mega cities, just like all over the world. Streets are bustling with life and the unique Asian culture mesmerizes tourists and expats alike. Nestled between India and Burma, Bangladesh's climate is a hot and tropical. Kids are given the option of receiving their education in English or Bangla.


40,000 Americans

The Spanish locals speak is a bit different than what American are used to hearing, but it's just as beautiful. Spain is a country that has everything and suits everyone. Spain is not just siestas; more young people are becoming entrepreneurs; rent and utilities are actually affordable; and the country has one of the most comprehensive health care systems in Europe.


38,000 Americans

The Swiss are some of the happiest people on the planet and they also enjoy one of the most thriving economies in the world. Who wouldn't want to live in such environment (especially when you add chocolate)? The people are rich, the government is stable, which means little or no conflict, and the healthcare system is regarded as one of the best in the world.


36,000 Americans

The Philippines offer a lot of adventures if you are looking for thrilling and diverse ways to spend the days. Go swimming in many of the pristine beaches and cool down by hiking through underground caves. Go trekking in Luzon, diving in Mindoro, surfing crazy waves on the island of Samar. The islands are perfect for retirees – the pace of life in the provinces is slow and leisurely.


31,000 Americans

Ireland is often referred to as one of the most beautiful countries in the world, mostly because of its breathtaking national parks.  The country gets a lot of rain throughout the year which helps farmers grow delicious produce, making The Emerald Isle a big exporter. Other reasons to live there include the beer, art festivals and culture.


27,000 Americans

Most Americans who move to China are of Chinese descent. The country is still going through a social and economic boom. A lot of money is being invested into the infrastructure of the country and businesses. Expatriates are offered salaries that are much higher than those of the locals and the low tax rates on offer mean that quite often expats who are based in China have a higher standard of living than they previously enjoyed in their home country, according to Expat Info Desk.

The Netherlands

27,000 Americans

The Netherlands is one of the most fun-filled countries in the world. It boats a huge array of museums (1,250), galleries and concert halls to visit, and have produced such talents as Rembrandt, van Gogh and Vermeer. Also, there are 30 sports stadiums where all kinds of competitions are held. Outdoor lovers enjoy 58 amusement, animal and water parks. Amsterdam, the capital, has been named one of the best cities for millennials. It's clean, it's beautiful, people are nice, and the standard of living is high.


23,000 Americans

Everybody has heard of the Greek Islands; and if you have seen them in person or in photos, then you know why so many people move there. In addition to that Greece is on the list of countries where people tend to live longer. Locals stay relaxed. They take naps, don't hurry too much, and keep an avid social life. They eat healthy too – mostly home-grown vegetables – and a lot of olive oil.


20,000 Americans

Sweden is among the safest countries in the world. Nature lovers will probably appreciate it more than others. The Scandinavian country's arctic and subarctic north is a wonderland of sparsely populated forest, lakes, rivers and mountains. The work-life balance is one thing the country is famous for, as well as the nice treatment of the workforce. Social services provide parental leave and vacation time, days off when the kids are sick and free health care.


17,000 Americans

Singapore has often been used as an example of how to build a prosperous nation. The city-state's economy is strong, thus its healthcare system is very efficient.



Norway ranked the happiest country in the world for 2017. It is one of the safest and most peaceful countries in the world, and it's full of adventure. Also, last but not least, it is well-known for incredible Northern Lights displays.