Making the decision to move abroad for work is more than just about career and salary prospects — it can be for a better quality of life.
A core part of quality of living is health and well-being. And according to a benchmark report by InterNations, the world’s largest expat networking group, Finland comes out on top for expats.
An expat is defined as an employee sent abroad on a corporate assignment or classed as a new international hire. This will also mean that the experiences of that certain demographic could significantly differ from a local — especially being away on corporate assignment can entail bonuses, such as relocation stipends for example.
The Expat Insider 2019 report surveyed 20,259 expats, representing 182 nationalities, living in 187 countries or territories. The survey ran from 7 to 28 March. Respondents were asked to score 48 different factors — which fall into 17 subcategories — related to living abroad. Those 17 subcategories are then put into five pillars — Quality of Life, Ease of Settling In, Working Abroad, Family Life, and Personal Finance.
For a place to be ranked, there needs to be a sample size of at least 75 survey participants per destination.
The Quality of Life index is made up of Leisure Options, Health & Well-Being, Safety & Security, Personal Happiness, Travel & Transportation, and Digital Life. Respondents rated factors on a scale from one to seven.
Here is the top 15 country ranking for the health and well-being subcategory:
Finland, the northern European nation, impresses the most with the quality of its environment — 97% of expats in Finland are happy with this factor.
One US expat said “the nature, the attitude towards the environment, and healthy living” in Finland is what made them score the country so highly. Another expat from India said they love the country for “the friendly people and clean environment.”. Affordability of healthcare was also a hit —75% of expats in Finland give this factor a positive rating.
And when it comes to healthcare itself, one Russian expat said “safety, higher quality of living (clean water and air), higher salaries, and better healthcare” made them love living in the Scandinavian country.
While Austria is no where near the top of the overall ranking for being one of the best countries to live in the world as an expat, it did come in second for the health and well-being index.
Some 95% of expats in Austria are generally happy with the quality of the environment compared to the global average of 67%. An expat from India said “the quality of the air and the water is very good in comparison to other developing or developed nations.”