How countries & territories compare


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All Findings

Improving children's health and wellbeing overseas

New Zealand reinforces its heavyweight status this year with a second-place position for families thanks to some of the same benefits that the adults report.

Many expats arrive here with their children's horizons already firmly in mind. More than twice as many expats in New Zealand than globally say they decided to move here so their children could experience life abroad – the highest proportion of anywhere in the world.

Meanwhile, France has jumped an impressive 10 places to 3rd since 2017. In a nation where 87% of expats speak the local language and 39% say it's important to learn in order to fit in, the well-established benefits of raising children who are fluent or bilingual also come into play here.


of expats living in France speak the local language.

In fact, almost twice as many expats here get support including language courses for their dependents through work than in the rest of the world.

Yet again, families love France for their children's quality of life (73%), the quality of the childcare and education (51% and 50%) and, above all, their health and wellbeing. In France, 64% of expats believe it's better than at home.

But no territory has improved as much as Ireland. Up 20 places in the family league table for 2018 from below average to 7th in one leap, this performance was the biggest gain across any of our league table measures this year.

An extraordinary 85% of families who have moved to Ireland say their children's quality of life is better, 66% say their children's health is better and 56% say the quality of the education is better than in their home territory.


of expats living in Ireland say their children's quality of life has improved.

There are other unexpected changes too. This year Russia is up eight places to 14th, Germany is down 5 places to 8th for families and even Australia has slipped six places to 15th. South Africa has fallen 11 places and the biggest loser for families – the Philippines – is down 13 places from a top ten spot to 18th.

Japan now trails the rest of the league table with a 10 place drop since 2017 to 31st

The expat life doesn't get more personal or important than when it comes to deciding how to raise your children and what your family priorities should be. Only 10% of expat parents across the world set out so their children could experience life abroad but 32% stay overseas for that reason.

That's despite the fact that raising a child in their host territory is usually more expensive than at home.

This shift in focus alone shows how important the expat way of life becomes - for both their present circumstances and future benefits.

Managing your money as an expat: some things to consider - and how we could help.

Things to consider

The 2018 Expat Explorer survey is a global survey completed by 22,318 expats across the world. The research was conducted online by YouGov in March and April 2018. League tables are calculated using responses to 27 of the questions asked in the research. A minimum sample of 100 expat respondents including at least 30 expat parents is required for a country to be included in the league tables.

About HSBC Expat

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Expat Explorer collects key findings from countries around the world.

Use the dropdown menus above to add or remove criteria and see which findings from 2018 are most relevant to you, or use our league table to see how countries compare.

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