Are you looking for a good reason to retire in Belize? Well, Luigi Wewege from Caye International Bank has more than one. In this article, he offers ten excellent reasons for North American retirees to consider moving to Belize.
As the golden years approach, many people dream about retiring to a tropical paradise. A place where the pace of life is slower, the climate pleasant, and the cost of living affordable. Belize fits all these requirements for North Americans seeking a new life. Here, we highlight Belize’s natural beauty, cultural diversity, cost-effectiveness, and expat-friendly policies.
1. Natural Beauty
One reason why Belize attracts retirees is its natural beauty. The Caribbean Sea is great for snorkeling, diving, and fishing. Inland, the rainforests are a paradise for nature enthusiasts.
The beaches and island communities are perfect for a relaxed retirement. Many expats fall in love with the seaside villages and their local communities. For the more adventurous, Belize has hiking, caving, and ancient Mayan ruins to explore.
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2. Cultural Diversity
Belize is a melting pot of cultures and ethnicities. You’ll find Creole, Maya, Mestizo, Garifuna, Mennonite, and Asian communities here. Plus, of course, a growing expatriate population.
Most locals are friendly and welcoming, making it easy for retirees to integrate. Many expats find that coming to Belize enriches their lives. The opportunities for personal growth are another reason to retire in Belize.
3. Low Cost of Living
Its affordability makes Belize stand out as a retirement destination. The cost of living in Belize is lower than in North America. Housing, food, transportation, and healthcare are all relatively affordable. This makes it possible for retirees to live a comfortable life on a modest budget.
Property prices vary across Belize, but there are many affordable options for expats. Renting is also a viable option, with properties available at reasonable rates. Groceries and restaurants are affordable, with plenty of fresh, locally-sourced produce available. Retirees can maintain a healthy and cost effective lifestyle in Belize.
Moreover, Belize’s retirement program, the Qualified Retired Persons (QRP) program, offers extra incentives. It provides tax exemptions on foreign-sourced income, including pensions. Retirees can also import personal belongings and vehicles duty-free. The QRP program further enhances the affordability of retirement in Belize.
Moving to Belize is more than simply getting close to the beautiful weather, the friendly people, and the relaxed pace. Here, @luigiwewege from @CayeIntBank talks about the cost of living in Belize.https://t.co/nAcEMhSqFk
— Central America Living (@VidaAmerica) March 3, 2022
4. Expat-Friendly Policies
Belize has a range of policies and incentives to welcome expats and retirees. If you wish to retire in Belize, the above-mentioned QRP program simplifies the process. It grants residency to those aged 45 or over and provides excellent tax benefits.
There’s a stable government and political environment conducive to foreign investment. This allows retirees the peace of mind that their investments and assets are secure.
Belize also offers medical services at a fraction of the cost in North America. Healthcare professionals speak English, with many trained in the United States or Canada. Belize Medical Associates in Belize City provides a high standard of care.
5. English as the Official Language
English being the official language of Belize is a significant advantage. It eliminates language barriers and simplifies everyday life for many retirees. Communicating, healthcare, and managing legal and financial matters are all more straightforward.
Living in an English-speaking country allows retirees to enjoy the local culture. They can build meaningful relationships and navigate daily activities with ease. This makes Belize attractive for retirees who may not speak another language.
Constantly going to the immigration office each month to renew your visa and pay a hundred bucks to stay in Belize can get old. So why not check out the two most common ways to get Belize residency instead?https://t.co/BA1MlQ8oPB
— Central America Living (@VidaAmerica) February 21, 2023
6. Warm and Sunny Climate
The weather is another reason to retire in Belize. With an average annual temperature of around 84°F (29°C), Belize offers year-round warmth. There are two distinct seasons: the wet season from June to November and the dry season from December to May.
In Belize, retirees can enjoy outdoor activities all year round. For those seeking to escape frigid North American winters, living in Belize is a no brainer.
7. Safety and Stability
Safety and political stability are essential considerations when choosing a retirement destination. Belize has a strong democratic tradition and a stable government. While no place is devoid of crime (and yes, crime is a concern), Belize has areas that are more secure than others. Popular expat communities and tourist areas tend to have lower crime rates. It’s advisable for retirees to research and choose their location with care.
Many retirees find Belize’s tight-knit, friendly communities contribute to a sense of safety. People look out for one another. This fosters an environment where retirees can feel protected and welcomed.
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8. A Variety of Activities
Retirement is a time to enjoy life to the fullest. To that end, Belize offers a wide array of activities and experiences. Birdwatching, hiking, and horseback riding are popular land-based activities. On the coast, the coral reefs provide excellent fishing, diving, and snorkeling. With such diverse offerings, retirees can create a lifestyle to suit their interests.
9. Easy Accessibility
It’s easy to access Belize from North America. Many major cities in the United States and Canada offer direct flights to Belize City. This makes Belize great for retirees wanting to stay close to family and friends back home.
Additionally, the country has a well-developed infrastructure for transportation and communication. Reliable internet is available in most areas, allowing retirees to stay connected.
Boats, cars, taxies, planes, buses, golf carts, and bikes: Here’s how to best get around Belize, both on the mainland and out on the cayes.https://t.co/4uKyy5BQqG
— Central America Living (@VidaAmerica) July 27, 2022
10. A Relaxed Lifestyle
Belize offers a laid-back life for retirees looking to escape the grind of North America. The slower pace of life makes it easy to unwind and enjoy each day to the fullest.
Small communities and the relaxed vibe contribute to a more stress-free existence. With a focus on the outdoors, culture, and quality time, retirees often find their sense of well-being improves in Belize.
Retirement is a time to savor the fruits of your labor and explore new horizons
The low cost of living, climate, and available activities all ensure a wonderful lifestyle. Safety, accessibility, and a relaxed vibe further contribute to Belize’s appeal. Whether you seek adventure, cultural enrichment, or a peaceful and affordable retirement, Belize has it.
Luigi Wewege is the President of Caye International Bank, headquartered on the island of Ambergris Caye, Belize. He is also the published author of The Digital Banking Revolution, now in its third edition.