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Planning Retirement Online

The best place to retire in the world: the Algarve.

It has been coming for some time, it must be said. Europe’s leading beach destination – World Travel Awards. 2nd best place to retire overseas – The Telegraph. 7th friendliest nation in the world (among 140 surveyed) – CNN. World’s leading Golf Destination – WTA.

And now: Algarve, Portugal: Best Place in the World to Retire.

The 2014 Retire Overseas Index, which has just been published, sees the Algarve ranked ahead of 21 global locations including places such as Abruzzo in Italy, Barcelona in Spain, Istria in Croatia, Pau in France, Chiang Mai in Thailand, Istanbul in Turkey, Ambergris Caye in Belize, and Puerto Vallarta in Mexico.

The ranking was compiled using 12 criteria. Portugal scored top marks in several categories: it received an A for its sizeable 100,000 expat community which allowed new arrivals to integrate faster; an A for Environment, an A for (lack of) crime; A for infrastructure, a recognition that EU money was actually spent on something tangible; an A for Residency and of course an A for climate – no surprise there!

Surprisingly for many, but not us, it was awarded an A for Entertainment. In this popular location you can see a World Premiere of a musical, enjoy jazz, fado, youth orchestras or ballet, year-round, play a tennis tournament most weekends and among the 42 golf courses that grace the Algarve, there will be at least one that will match your favourite anywhere in the world.

Health and Real Estate ranked as A-. Taxes ranked as a B but the potential of the Non Habitual Residency programme, which allows many new resident foreigners to earn pensions tax-free for 10 years, and to bring forward pension payments tax-free, was probably underestimated. And the Algarve’s lone C was earned in the English Spoken category, not because few people speak English in the region but because Portuguese as a language is considered very difficult for a foreigner to learn.

Kathleen Peddicord, publisher of Live and Invest Overseas, the report’s publisher, states for Forbes of the Algarve and Portugal in general, “it’s the most affordable option in Europe for retirees”. But as she points out, “retiring part-time overseas can also be a good idea”. She encourages those wishing to retire to a new location to do so for a trial period before making a final decision.

Service-based solutions such as those run by, are changing the landscape for new and potential retirees, providing a way to experience the lifestyle and the region’s many advantages (and any challenges) prior to taking the plunge. Luis da Silva, Founder and Managing Director, has been actively involved as a local correspondent for publications such as the Overseas Retirement Letter, emphasises the “many benefits and advantages of life in the region.”

Contact, call 0208 144 7558 for more information or e-mail

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