• By: Allen Brown

Five Countries You Can Call Home With Ease as an Expat

With the cost of living skyrocketing in Canada, it’s no wonder that young people are looking for places to move to that offer a better life experience, cheaper cost of living, proximity to adventure, or a nicer view. 

The average Canadian is heavily taxed and endures beyond reasonable wait times for essential services from our overstretched public services. Leaving Canada is a rational choice if you’re smart about it and pick the right place to start a new life as an expat. 

While everybody has their dream destination, most people will never be able to move to the beaches of Tahiti or the Maldives for financial, logistical, or visa reasons. However, if you are looking for a year away, here are some of the best places for expats that you may have yet to consider.


The Emerald Isle is a place that many people probably wouldn’t consider moving to, especially a remote island off the coast of Ireland. While there are around 30 islands that the Irish government wants to repopulate, the native Irish haven’t been sold by the promising life of peace and quiet offered by such locations. The Irish government now provides up to 70,000 Euros to anyone who moves into an abandoned property and restores it. 

It is now possible to turn an old home into a dream home where you can live away from the world but close enough that the attractions and culture of cities like Dublin, Limerick, or Cork are just a couple of hours away. This option will appeal to many. 


Albania is a hidden gem of the Balkan peninsula. Located between Montenegro and Greece while also bordering Kosovo and North Macedonia, it’s on the beautiful Dalmatian coast that has made Croatia so famous while being so cheap it’s hard to believe. The standard costs for a single person are USD 579 a month, and rents are 80.2 percent lower than in the United States. 

The country’s capital, Tirana, is a hustle and bustle place that feels like a big city, with lots to do, including excellent museums, a wide variety of restaurants, and great shopping options. While Tirana is a great place to look for a city dweller, you can easily buy property in the country as a foreigner. If you ever dreamed of getting a beach house but thought that was out of grasp, Albania is the place for you. Its coastal towns like Vlorë and Durres offer cheap waterfront properties that often go for under USD 150,000. 


If you’re under 40, Italy’s Calabria region may be your place. As in Ireland, the government is trying to repopulate the southern regions by encouraging young entrepreneurs to come and open new businesses. The Italian government will grant 30,000 Euros if your residency application is approved. Living in this historic region can provide an idyllic and historical background near both the mountains and the sea. And just think of the local food and wine. Life doesn’t get much better. 

Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a country in Latin America without the problems of stability that often accompany other Middle and South American countries. The tiny nation has a large expat community that attracts investors and explorers alike. With excellent health care, natural wonders everywhere, a great beach culture, and some of the friendliest people anywhere in the world, the land of Pura Vida is a place you should consider. Although Costa Rica is more in line with North America’s cost of living, the safety and serenity have made it an easy choice for the over 120,00 Americans and Canadians who have made it their new home. 


Ecuador is a fantastic country to look at if leaving Canada behind for a more laid-back lifestyle is what you’re looking for. Unlike the other four countries on the list, Ecuador may be better suited to somebody who wants to retire. Life is slow in this tiny country, and the low wages yet relatively high quality of living mean that you can make it work even if you have a very humble pension. The city of Cuenca in the highlands attracts a large amount of expats and is a UNESCO World Heritage site, but the beaches and biodiversity of Ecuador ensure that you can find a place to live you’ll enjoy, so long as you’re not looking for snow! 


These are the five countries that offer a more affordable and fulfilling lifestyle than Canada. Each of these has its own unique attractions, from stunning landscapes to rich cultural experiences. Expats who are looking for a change of pace and a lower cost of living may find that these countries are ideal places to call home.