Working abroad is an exciting opportunity that can help you educate yourself about the world and have new experiences outside your home country. Our working world is becoming more and more global and working overseas is more common than ever. With so many countries and types of jobs available, it can be hard to know where to start if you’re looking for a position.
There are a lot of factors to consider when deciding where you’d like to go. The cost of living, visa requirements and diversity of opportunity all vary significantly from country to country. In order to help you narrow things down, we’ve come up with five of the best countries to work in outside the United States.
South Korea is usually near the top of almost every list ranking destinations to work abroad. There is a high demand for English education in South Korea, the government invests heavily in it. Work benefits are good, and the cost of living is low, so you could save a lot of money spending some time working there. One thing to note is there are significant cultural differences and working hours are generally longer than they are in the United States. Still, with incredible food, great cities like Seoul, and the beauty of nature, it’s hard not to have an unforgettable experience in South Korea.
Germany is an incredible country to live in. It’s modern, diverse, and there’s always something exciting to do. People in Germany also tend to work fewer hours (around 27 per week) than their foreign counterparts. They also boast an efficient healthcare system and ample paid leave. Germany’s work visa program can be a little restrictive, but they do offer an “artist visa” for the purpose of self-employment for freelancers. If you live in a Western country, you can also usually obtain a temporary visa to look for work.
Cambodia is known for its tropical weather and natural beauty, making it a desirable place to spend time. The good news is it’s extremely accessible for foreigners looking for long-term working visas. The cost of living is also low, so you’ll be able to save some of your money. The most common forms of work for foreigners are teaching English, business, or working for an NGO.
Expats consistently recommend The Netherlands, citing work-life balance as a primary reason. The Netherlands recruits foreign entrepreneurs and invests to help foreigners invest in businesses or start their own. The Netherlands is also known for having a high quality of life. It’s important to note that most jobs available to ex-pats in The Netherlands require an advanced degree, though there are programs that can help those who can start a new small business or contribute meaningfully to an existing one.
Ecuador is one of the most unique countries in Latin America. It has beautiful geographic diversity, bordering the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The climate is more varied than some other countries in the Southern hemisphere, but it is generally warm and pleasant. As in many Latin American countries, the cost of living is low, but the economy is strong, as is the healthcare system. It’s one of the best places for freelancers to work, the “professional” visa only requires $400 in income per year and a bachelor’s degree. With plenty of nature, unique cities like Quito (which sits on the slope of a volcano) and unique culture, Ecuador is a fantastic place for ex-pats to explore.
With so many options, spending time working abroad appears intimidating to many, but it’s far more common now than ever, and these five countries are a great place to start your search. If you’re looking to lower your expenses and start to save money, places like Cambodia and Ecuador provide incredible beauty in addition to a surplus of paid work combined with a low cost of living.
The Netherlands and Germany offer some of the best quality of life in the world, and opportunities are often high-paying, though sometimes the visa process can be more restrictive and require an advanced degree. Some Westerners feel culture shock moving to South Korea, but it boasts a booming economy and excellent food and culture. No matter what you’re looking for, there’s a place out there for you to explore and develop your skills outside your home country.