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Poland and Hungary drop drastically in expat satisfaction survey


Krakow, Poland – Poland and Hungary have dropped to the bottom end of a global ranking looking at the best and worst destinations for expats.

Launched in 2014, the Internations Expat Insider ranking ranks over 50 countries across the globe according to expats’ satisfaction level and based on multiple criteria (including quality of life, ease of settling in, work opportunities and cost of living). This year, more than 12,000 expats representing over 170 different nationalities took part in the global poll. A total of 59 countries were included in the 2021 report.

Taiwan, Mexico and Costa Rica best destinations for expats in 2021

In 2021, expats have crowned Taiwan, Mexico and Costa Rica as the best countries to start a new life abroad, followed by Malaysia, Portugal, New Zealand, Australia, Ecuador, Canada and Vietnam.

China comes 22nd, ahead of countries such as France (25th), the United States (34th), Germany (36th), the U.K. (45th), Japan (54th) and Russia (56th).

The three worst places in the world for expats, according to the survey, are Kuwait, Italy and South Africa.

Czech Republic: High quality of life, a problem with friendliness

Zooming in on Central Europe, the Czech Republic managed to secure a spot in the top 15 with a highly commendable satisfaction level of 83%, moving up three spots compared to last year but still unable to reach its score of two years ago, when it made the top 10.

The Czech Republic ranks high in the quality of life (including leisure options, personal happiness, travel and transportation, health and well-being) and working abroad categories (third worldwide in the latter).

On a less positive note, it comes only at the 49th place in the “ease of settling in” category, with foreign expats expressing difficulties in the friendliness of locals, the ability to find friends and to feel at home.

Poland and Hungary see significant drop in ranking

Poland (43rd, -7 positions compared to last year) and Hungary (48th, -13 places) trail well behind, experiencing an important drop in the ranking year-on-year.

Like their Czech neighbours, both countries are at the bottom end of the ranking for the ease of settling in and friendliness of the population, while performing moderately well in the quality of life category (38th and 39th, respectively).

Hungary and Poland achieve their best score in the “cost of living” (8th and 12th worldwide, respectively) category, while Poland is additionally seen as a rather attractive place to work abroad for expats (23rd worldwide), well ahead of Hungary (39th).