17 Countries To Live In That Are So Cheap You Don’t Need to Work

The US is known for its tedious work culture, particularly caused by the need to keep up with high costs of living. If you’re tired of those long days at the office or constant worries about bills, here are 17 countries that are cheap and safe for you to move to.


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Apart from being the cheapest Western European country, US News ranks Portugal as the 14th safest country in the world. It’s a safe, cost-friendly option for singles and families who still want to enjoy the excellent standard of living in the West.


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Malta is a country in the south of Europe that is a favorite vacation spot for many. It’s so expat-friendly that Americans can visit for 90 days without a visa. Rental costs are about half of what you’ll pay in the US, and the cost of living here is said to be about 20% cheaper than what you’re used to.


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Malaysia is one of the cheapest options on our list—so cheap, Wise says you need only $5,840 to live there for a year. Of course, this will be very conservative living, but it’s still good for people who wish to reduce annual spending by 90%. Just stay away from the eastside to avoid petty crimes.


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Like Malaysia, Indonesia is another Southeast Asian country that’ll save you a chunk of what you spend in the US. With rent coming at only $450 per month, Indonesia allows you to save over 60% on your cost of living. Bali, Seminyak, and Jakarta are great places for expats in Indonesia, but just be prepared for some heavy traffic.


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There’s a lot of luxury in France that’ll make you reluctant to live there to save money. However, the country is about half as cheap as the US (or even cheaper). While Forbes says the average American spends $3,600 per month, expect to spend only $1,400 in France.


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As a single person, you’ll only spend an average of $750 per month in Spain, one of the most developed countries in the world. Alongside the wonderful climate here, there are many cultural attractions to explore, and the capital, Madrid, is where you’ll find most Americans living.


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In Ecuador, you get to save about half of your yearly income and even up to 80% of your rent in the US without worrying about security or amenities. It’s a beautiful coastal country for people who love beaches, and you’ll find the most comfort in Cuenca City and Puerto Lopez.

Costa Rica

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With only an estimated $1,000 per month, you can live relatively more comfortably in Costa Rica than in the US. Now, this isn’t the best part. Costa Rica has one of the best healthcare systems in the world. This means you have access to excellent healthcare for a fraction of the cost in the US.


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Our neighbors to the south give you an easy and quick way out of the US. The cost of living in Mexico goes as low as $600 per month, and this will cover your rent, utilities, dining, and transportation. It’s an awesome option if you’re a digital nomad, and it’s also one of the top three places that Americans move to.


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This one’s for people approaching the end of their careers. USNews includes Panama in its list of the best cheap places for Americans to retire in the world. The cost of living here is under $1,000 a month, and you get some of the best infrastructure and amenities to go with it. Caribbean locations are also close by, so a beachside vacation wouldn’t cost much.


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If it’s the taxes in the US that drive you nuts, then it may be time to say hello to Colombia. Apart from its lower cost of living, the OECD reports that the South American country has the lowest average tax rates of its 38 member countries (the US included).


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Another country in Southeast Asia that will catch your fancy is the Philippines. You’ll only need about $550 to live as a single person here, and you’ll also appreciate the warm, comfortable weather a lot. It’s sunny 90% of the year and has a friendly culture to go with it.


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Thailand is a popular vacation spot for American tourists and one of the cheapest to live in on our list. The cost of living for a single person is estimated to be only $560 per month, and healthcare here is also excellent. Get world-class private care for only a fraction of the price in the US.


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Vietnam is one of the best countries you can move to today. Apart from monthly costs being between $500 and $1000, you get to live in a safe, low-crime country. There are also many beautiful scenes and restaurants to explore.


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With monthly costs at an average of $870 per month, you can cut your spending by half. Greece is an excellent location for individuals who want to live a calm, Mediterranean lifestyle and explore historical sites. Tax here is also favorable, as you pay only 5% of your personal income.


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Bulgaria is an excellent choice for American digital nomads who want to live in Europe. You only spend an average of $620 per month. However, there’s a catch. You may find it hard to communicate with the locals, as less than a quarter speak English.

South Africa

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Our last country and only African feature is South Africa. With only $550 per month for a single person, you have a relatively safe environment to live in, especially if you intend to move from another African country. You can easily avoid being a victim of crime when you live in places like Cape Town, Johannesburg, and Bloemfontein.

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