• BirdForum is the net's largest birding community, dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE!

    You are most welcome to register for an account, which allows you to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Living at old age (1 Viewer)

albatross02

Well-known member
The way the cost of living is calculated is extremely misleading. Many so-called cheap tropical countries are very expensive to live at the standard and safety level of Europe. Very many things must be imported and are extremely expensive, and one pays extra e.g. for house security or reliable internet which are taken for granted in Europe. A medical care or cultural offer at a certain level could simply not exist. It is not compensated by cheap street food, a t-shirt or a wooden cottage.

A good advice: in any case, before moving abroad, don't go just to a beach or a city centre. Go to a local medical clinic and a hospital, walk around, thinking whether you would dare to be treated there.

Nevertheless, one can move to e.g. Malaysia or Thailand or Costa Rica for 10-20 years, after one retires and before health really deteriorates. Keep an option of spending your final years in Germany, preferably in the outskirts of a big metropoly, so you have the benefit of a lower rent and calmness but short distance to services of the city.

I expect that Asia might overtake Europe in a standard of living in the next decades, but it might go together with rising costs, and an expat might not benefit from e.g. growth of the local industry.
Maybe before go abroad 1 year test living.
In Doi Luang Chiang Dao ( North Thailand ) area I met one Britain which change living place each year.
But I think sometime must come the final decision for living place.
 

albatross02

Well-known member
These things are nice to dream about but probably much less nice in reality. Some of the countries mentioned are always hot and humid. That is OK for a few weeks but do you really want to live in such a climate for a long time? I know some people might, but it wears you down. I lived/ worked in Taiwan for 4 years and really enjoyed my time there, but I much prefer a temperate climate and not immediately having the sweat streaming across my back within the first 100 metres that I step outside.
...
I made a list of killer criteria and priorities


Criteria
Prio ( 1- 3 )
Bewertung ( 1- 5 )
Killerkriterium
Residential Visa possible​
1​
x​
Health service​
1​
x​
Heavy Noise disturbing​
1​
x​
Industrial disturbing​
1​
x​
Traffic disturbing​
1​
x​
good bicycle network​
1​
x​
bird watching spots​
1​
x​
nice landscape with forest nearby​
1​
x​
No weather extremes​
1​
x​
No climate extremes​
1​
x​
sun ours per day​
2​
mountain hikes​
2​
coast with clear water​
2​
public transport network​
3​
reachable via train​
3​
reachable via plane​
2​
living costs​
2​
live costs​
2​
contactability of domestic people​
2​
language learnability​
3​
reachalibility of national parcs​
2​
people with same interesting on site​
2​
political stability​
2​
 

albatross02

Well-known member
:D Yes, there is a thing I called birdophobia, akin to hydrophobia. Getting accustomed and bored with birds, even rare and interesting ones. But I think Albatross02 knows it by now. Our capacity to search for new things exceeds any one natural place.

I moved between countries with good birds and countries not-so rich in birds, and one quickly get accustomed to the local birds. I lived in a coastal area, with flocks of thousands of migratory birds around, with real possibility of vagrants coming, and sometimes felt bored about birding.
I Think one of most difficult point is to find out how good is the health system.
Best is the experience of different people which serious get ill there.
Munich has excellent health system. But there is only possible to rent privat flats. The owner can increase price for 15 % every 3 years and even can finish contract if he need the flat by his own.
Other smaller town has also flats of cooperative companies. but this town has much less health service.
No idea how is in Bulgaria e.g. Sandanski.
 

Nutcracker

Stop Brexit!
:D Yes, there is a thing I called birdophobia, akin to hydrophobia. Getting accustomed and bored with birds, even rare and interesting ones. But I think Albatross02 knows it by now. Our capacity to search for new things exceeds any one natural place.

I moved between countries with good birds and countries not-so rich in birds, and one quickly get accustomed to the local birds. I lived in a coastal area, with flocks of thousands of migratory birds around, with real possibility of vagrants coming, and sometimes felt bored about birding.
I'm guessing that even countries with very long lists like Colombia, the diversity at any one site is not so high as you might expect from the size of the national list - it is just that the individual species have small ranges, and to see a very large number of species you have to travel to each and every separate river valley?
 

njlarsen

Gallery Moderator
Opus Editor
Supporter
Barbados
I'm guessing that even countries with very long lists like Colombia, the diversity at any one site is not so high as you might expect from the size of the national list - it is just that the individual species have small ranges, and to see a very large number of species you have to travel to each and every separate river valley?
This is true but only to some extent. In a country with much fewer species total like Costa Rica, there are still many locations with a bird list above 400 and some with above 500 species. It will take time to know them all.
Having said that I certainly hope there is money for travel also after I retire. Nothing beats visiting new places.
Niels
 

kb57

Well-known member
Europe
I'm guessing that even countries with very long lists like Colombia, the diversity at any one site is not so high as you might expect from the size of the national list - it is just that the individual species have small ranges, and to see a very large number of species you have to travel to each and every separate river valley?
I think you have to factor in the difficulties of birding evergreen forest habitat too - in a day at Bio-Andina cloud forest above Bogota, coupled with lower elevation hummingbird feeders I managed a total of 33 species, helped by a top Colombian bird guide, using MP3 files to lure out skulkers. You could beat that at Gosforth Park NR!
 

THE_FERN

Well-known member
Paraguay doesn't really cut it if you want a temperate climate or mountains (well there's Ybytyruzu). The German- dominated areas are quite well developed, at the risk of reduced biodiversity. Private health care is ok but you need to have a recommendation. Public is non-existent. If you were interested in P- you might consider adjacent parts of Misiones, Argentina, where biodiversity's greater and better preserved (they kicked out all the Guarani) although it's likely to be quite a bit more expensive.

What about Colombia? One gambles it'll remain stable of course: a bigger punt than Panama or Costa Rica. Americans are buying up land on the north Caribbean coast as they can see the potential. Minca already has a sizeable expat community AFAIK.

Property in Cuenca is (super) expensive I think: perhaps reasonable if you just rent outside the historic centre. Somewhat uglier, but also close to mountains is Loja. Uglier probably means cheaper. Americans seem to like this southern area of Ecuador.

Caraz in Peru is reasonably civilised and used to tourists. The scenery is some of the most beautiful in the country and you've Inca finches: what's not to like?
 

kb57

Well-known member
Europe
I think we're in danger of getting carried away with the delights of neotropical birding here and forgetting some of Deiter's other criteria, like moderate climate and low crime.
The importance of the latter shouldn't be underestimated as you get older. Almost exactly two years ago one of a couple of guys attempted to trip me up from behind in Brussels Midi metro station, presumably to try and rob me. I was coming back on my own late in the evening from having a meal and a couple of drinks with friends, which made me a potential target. As it happened it was the other guy who ended up on his back on the ground; I ran up the escalator to the main station level, and thence safely back to my hotel. I was just turned 61 at the time, and physically fit - at 71 or 81 the story would probably not end so happily. And this is in 'safe' old Europe, albeit in a particular location known for street crime.
I understand Medellin has an expat community (mostly American?); in my very limited experience of the city it appears to have a good climate, a lot warmer than Bogota but not sticky hot like the river valleys, and a good public transport system to get around. But I'm not sure there are many prime birding sites in and around the city, and some that are appear to come with health warnings. If you want to be safer, there are gated communities in the hills above Bogota, and I believe also in Panama - but where is the pleasure in feeling you have to wall yourself off from the outside world?
If you want an equable climate, oceanic temperate is probably the way to go - the Azores perhaps if it's not too expensive to rent (?) - otherwise for Dieter I keep returning to the two places I've seriously considered - western Ireland or northern Portuguese mainland.
 

YuShan

Well-known member
One other thing to keep in mind is that history has shown that it can be quite dangerous when you are an ethnic minority that is perceived to be rich. You'll be a prime target of populist policies or worse when things turn sour. With the worldwide debt supercycle coming to an end, I see grim economic conditions in the decade ahead and that can be a breeding ground for resentment against wealthy ethnic minorities "that don't belong here".
 

albatross02

Well-known member
This is true but only to some extent. In a country with much fewer species total like Costa Rica, there are still many locations with a bird list above 400 and some with above 500 species. It will take time to know them all.
Having said that I certainly hope there is money for travel also after I retire. Nothing beats visiting new places.
Niels
I have defined 362 different birds defined in Germany.
Per year 280 is a very good value.
 

albatross02

Well-known member
One other thing to keep in mind is that history has shown that it can be quite dangerous when you are an ethnic minority that is perceived to be rich. You'll be a prime target of populist policies or worse when things turn sour. With the worldwide debt supercycle coming to an end, I see grim economic conditions in the decade ahead and that can be a breeding ground for resentment against wealthy ethnic minorities "that don't belong here".
In some countries are mixed looking like Chile or Argentine. In other they people see from 1 km that Europeans are foreigners.
 

THE_FERN

Well-known member
Apart from Paraguay, I'd argue that all the places I mentioned in #30 fit the criteria... ...It's true that FARC were in control in Santa Marta around 10 years ago, but all the American investment is testament to the stability and tranquility of the area now. I never felt at risk in any of these places.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top