Natwest Publishes British Expat Quality Of Life Survey

By Editorial 12 August, 2013

A survey of British expatriate opinions and attitudes on lifestyle, employment and financial status has ranked Australia as the number one destination for British expats, and revealed that UK expats in Europe are increasingly looking to return home.

According to the NatWest International Personal Banking Quality of Life Report, 80 percent of respondents overall say they are enjoying a better quality of life abroad, and out of those who have moved abroad permanently, 71 percent feel their work/life balance is good to excellent and 86 percent believe their standard of living is excellent. However, 63 percent of respondents in Europe are currently considering returning to the UK, due to falling property prices, austerity, and job insecurity.

The survey is the sixth commissioned by Natwest IBP. Over the past five years, the rankings have been topped by Australia, Canada and New Zealand, although the UAE has now displaced New Zealand in third place. Among expats in Australia, 71 percent of respondents have purchased a property in the country, against a global expat average of 33 percent. Further, 92 percent say that the overall lifestyle keeps them in the country, with the weather cited among the top five considerations for 84 percent of respondents. Almost three quarters (73 percent) also say that living in Australia has improved their health.

Seventy-four percent of UK expats in Australia featured in the survey are in professional/managerial occupations, while 19 percent are self-employed professionals and 28 percent are in clerical positions.

Dave Isley, Head of NatWest IBP, was quoted as saying that "continual sunshine coupled with a strong economic stability make Australia the perfect destination for Brits to set up home. Factors such as an efficient health care system, low crime rates, a clean environment, good education, civic engagement, and a longer-than-average life expectancy also factored in the high scoring."

The survey shows that 92 percent of respondents who move to the UAE regard themselves as being in the country temporarily, and that 96 percent of those in UAE, Hong Kong, China and Singapore on a temporary basis have large disposable incomes. Contrasting the popularity of Singapore and the UAE with Europe, Isley added that "it seems expats are willing to adjust their lifestyle in exchange for a stronger economy and better job opportunities."

The survey was undertaken during April and May by the Center for Future Studies, which is affiliated with Kent University in the UK and which has worked with national and international companies, not-for-profit organizations, government departments and agencies. Respondents were emailed invitations to participate and recruited through expat websites, and there was a prize draw to encourage participation. Assessment indicators included: availability of consumer goods, entertainment, food, law enforcement, public transport, sanitation, housing, public services, leisure and culture, schools and education, financial confidence, healthcare provision, retirement facilities, weather, financial factors and the natural environment.

Tags: Expatriates | Expats | Working Abroad | Welfare | Work | Working Abroad | Lifestyle | Lifestyle | Working Abroad |


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