Considering Expatriation

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tmosley
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Considering Expatriation

So, I've been thinking lately about expatriation.  Now I am thinking that if Ron Paul does not take the nomination and the White House, then I will start getting ready to leave.  In the meantime, I am working on "planting a flag" as Simon Black says.

I am thinking about establishing a secondary household abroad for now, perhaps as a "vacation home" at first, then spend more time there until I can get residency.  Maybe start a business or so.  There are many places where one can do this fairly cheaply.

Anyone else considered getting out of the country as a means of bug out?  If so, have you acted on it?  Tell us of your experiences abroad.

Edited by admin on 11/08/2014 - 06:06
donpaulo
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we moved over 8 years

we moved over 8 years ago.

Living in central Japan has been an eye opening experience but very thankful we made the move.

I have done a modicum of property searching in Malaysia, Thailand and recently in China.

Its a minefield.

I would recommend doing a search on expat forums for the country that interests you.

With the neo cons and their wars robbing the tax payers there was little point in staying in the USA from my perspective. The govt was bankrupt long before Obama ever took office, he simply made things worse.

saigongold
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Moved to Vietnam 5 years ago,

Moved to Vietnam 5 years ago, best move ever, no tax, no mortgage, no rent, private medical and free private schooling at International School.

We can save thousands each month and stack well, living abroad is a no brainier...Asia is where it will be happening in 10 years

tmosley
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I have been examining nations

I have been examining nations with free economic zones, as I am still young, and will want to work.  I'm thinking I might be able to replicate my current income abroad, maybe even much more, considering that these types of places exist, and you don't pay ANY taxes there.  They seem to be very expensive areas, for the most part, but one can live outside and have the business located there.

I am ordering some books on life in places that interest me.  Have been reading up for a while, and the more I read, the more I like the idea, and the more I realize just how little there is holding me here.  Most of my life is with my family, which will come with me, and on the internet, which is accessible anywhere.  I would be sad to leave my job, but I think I have found someone capable of replacing me (which concerns me because of the importance of the work here).

As it stands, I am planning to "look before I leap", and go on a long "vacation" there, where I will meet with locals, perhaps chat up some local officials and lawyers and see what is what.  If I like what I see, I plan to rent for the first year, so I can find a nice place to buy for the "local" price (rather than the "white foreigner" price).

My head is spinning with ideas for businesses--things I can't do in the US.  

I am surprised at how excited I have become at the prospect.

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Everyone in my family except

Everyone in my family except for my wife has dual citizenship with another country - and for her pathways are relatively easy thanks to my mine.  We could easily expatriate should we ever feel the need.  

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@saigongold - Vietnam

What are the complications living in a communist regime?  How do you get free schooling for your kids?  I would love to know more about how you made the move, the challenges you had in settling in, initial living issues......  Thanks in advance for sharing....

@tmosley - miss seeing you around..... you bring a great mind to the table!

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tmosley
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Oh, I wouldn't be leaving the

Oh, I wouldn't be leaving the internet.  Great thing about the internet, you can get there from anywhere!

Also, I don't think Vietnam is communist any more (I think that is the regime you are talking about).  They are more like China.  A friend of mine is Vietnamese and recently went back for the first time since the war.  Said things were booming over there.  Went back again a year later and came back with a wife.  Nice girl who is trained in IT.

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We actually visited Vietnam

We actually visited Vietnam last year for New Years and it was a fantastic time. Saigon was wonderful and the French food was to die for and cheap as all get out.

In my limited experience I think the Vietnamese government may be communist but in name only.

There is a govt monopoly on gasoline or at least I didn't see any alternatives available but that wouldn't be exclusive to Vietnam.

I agree with the OP in that Vietnam is a fantastic opportunity. If I had to leave Japan Vietnam would be very high on my short list.

If I had to choose, I would probably select Malaysia because of its use of English and its western banking system, however Indonesia looks to be a real gem. After all the farther off the beaten path the greater the challenge right ?

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Great Thread

Have been thinking about this for a while...it's very tough to know where to go.  I am also young, but my current job isn't tied to the internet, so I would definitely need to find work.  Will be regularly checking back to see everyone's advice. 

Tmos - what are some of the books you'll be looking most closely at? 

Mike7.62
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Ex pat

Here's a good read on Argentina

www.caseyresearch.com/cdd

I like Casey's recommendation that you keep your assets in one country, have your citizenship in a second, and your residence in a third. Mobility is your friend if that's the lifestyle that you've  chosen. The downside of becoming an ex pat is that you will ALWAYS be an outsider. Outsider's usually get hurt when things go to $hit, as they are easy targets, especially if your country of origin is perceived to be the source of problems.

tmosley
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Absolutely do NOT go to

Absolutely do NOT go to Argentina.  They have elected a hard core socialist into the executive, who is likely to be another Chavez.  They are headed straight down the road back to 2000.  You don't want to be a foreigner trapped there when they decide who is to blame for all their problems.

As to the books I am looking at, there is a nice website with info on expatriation to numerous locations, which has ebooks on each: http://ebooks.escapeartist.com/index.php

Mike7.62
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ex pat

I'm not going anywhere. I was just pointing out a good article on Argentina, and your concerns have been discussed in the article. Personally, I've been around the world a couple of times and seen and lived in enough TWS's to last my lifetime. I wouldn't mind having a vacation house somewhere other than the US, but permanent residence? No thanks. The encroachment of Leviathan is worldwide in scope, and thinking you can run away from it is foolhardy. All you do is trade one set of oppressors for another, and the set for which you trade may be worse, especially as an outsider. Visit, yes. Permanent residence, no. YMMV.

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I would keep it in the

I would keep it in the perspective that Casey et al are in the business of selling argentina to investors.  There are Argentina expat blogs, groups and lists you can join if you want to know more.

Do you know any Argentinians ? I think if you ask around you might be surprised. I discovered an old college friend married a lady from BA and a high school acquaintance is from Cordoba. Both paint a rather bleak picture and love being in the US.  Then again they are from Argentina and are in effect painting the opposite picture.

While Salta Argentina appears to be a nice place to live there are alternatives. Kunming, for example comes to mind, although I haven't been there (YET).  Kunming also has the added benefit of being China's Gold Exchange.

I agree with the sentiment that traveling and being used to NOT being home is a skill just like any other and needs to be practiced and refined. Its one thing to have a vacation of restaurants and excursions, its another entirely to be on the road for 6 months on a budget, living out of a suitcase and shopping from the supermarket and cooking ones own food. For example this can easily be done in Thailand, a good buddy of mine has been doing this for 8 years now.

My short list of place to visit include; Kunming, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Myanmar. This is based upon cost of living, weather and quality of life conclusions which need to be sampled before I include them in my final decision matrix.

My short list of places worth living include; Malaysia, Thailand, with Vietnam requiring more study on visas, cost of doing business etc. Singapore is also a viable option but the cost of purchase probably removes from consideration unless you are sitting on a pile of cash and need some "diversification".

I also briefly considered Ecuador and Peru, although the distance from Japan puts them lower down my list of viable options. Were I in North America they would be higher on the list.

saigongold
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Wife landed a job in an

Wife landed a job in an International School after applying online, landed the job and as an expat the package is pretty standard, free private schooling at International School, Housing, Flights, Private Medical, tax paid and more importantly for us...4 months paid holidays. We love to travel and VN is a great base to do so, currently Chinese NY so as I type I am relaxing in a villa by the pool in Thailand. Chuc Mung Nam Moi....Happy new Year of the Dragon today, thanks for the holiday Vietnamese government!

We have just signed new contracts, sold everythin we had, put i all in PM,'s and spread that between a few countries, we will never return to the UK, our life is too enjoyale now....once you are in International Schools teaching that's really you set up for life.

Vietnamese at great, we teach the Billionaires of society's kids, and Korean/Jap kids, the kids love to learn and parents are very supportive and kind. Vietnam is an amazing county, a little frustrating at times but our son is growing up and having an amazing start in life, I dont know many 15mth old babies that have had 12 overseas trips!

In the UK all my wife got was shit from the kids, 8yr olds carrying knives and parents who dont give a shit about anything, opposite here, it's Chinese New Year and the time for gifts, diamond earrings, $$$, and 5* hotel vouchers were among some of the presets from parents to show their appreciation. They want to do well here and I can really see VN having a booming economy in 20 years or so.

I started working doing TEFL, studying now for my Bachelor Teaching and will also next year be in a position to get the same contract as my wife. living here enables us to set ourselves up for retirement and explore some new cultures.

Hanoi is very communist, the south not so much, bars open 24hrs, loads of expat restaurants, bars, high end hotels etc..

no challenges at all, other than the crazy motorbikes and traffic ( 7 accidents in 4 years) other than the odd bribe to the police when the pull me over for bein white we get on just fine here. we do a lot of charity work especially kids who are dumped by their parents, love visiting them at the Pagoda Orphanages and teaching them English for free, brings a smile to our faces for days.

VISA... Not an issue, $1000 will get you a 3yr residents card, $100 if you have a BA Degree.

,

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@ donpaolo

donpaolo,

I'm aware of CR's reason for talking up Argentina, but it is an interesting place, which is why I included the link, and which does address some of the concerns people have. I was more interested on their take on international diversification IRT assets.

Yes, I have spoken with people who live there, as half of my wife's family went there when they emigrated from Italy. Her side went to New York. I still maintain that permanent relocation to one area is only trading one set of oppressors for another, as governments around the world are becoming increasingly intrusive, and being an outsider without strong local ties such as family in difficult circumstances is to have a target placed on your back, especially if you're perceived to have any material wealth. Just my $.02, FWIW.

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agreed about the target mike

agreed about the target mike which is one of the reasons I think Thailand is a far better choice. Malaysia is a no brainer but has a significantly higher cost of living, perhaps its because I am already in Asia...

regardless, I find the idea of selling the community you invested in as a solution to what ails you is a false flag. I had read some of the Casey Argent articles before and came to the same conclusion. I heartily agree about the INTL diversification issues.

Having Argentinans in the family must make for some interesting conversation.

donpaulo
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Thanks for sharing SG. I had

Thanks for sharing SG. I had come to conclusion that in Vietnam as long as one was willing to open ones wallet to "solve" a problem, the costs would not be prohibitive. I had some Visa issues while in Siem Reap Cambodia but a couple of 20s solved that snag rather quickly.

The traffic in Saigon is an issue for sure. My wife was unable to cross the intersection near the intl trade and shopping center. When I suggested that Saigon might be worth another visit she cringed, so I told her that perhaps a car service would solve her pedestrian issues.

It would seem that traffic noise is also an issue, then again I was in a tourist zone, but it was very loud all the time. While I am sure that other neighborhoods are quieter it does bring up the issue of sharing the road conditions such as they are.

Its not a fatal flaw but one that bears further study for me to really consider it. Riding a bike in Thailand was also an eye opener for sure but the traffic did occasionally stop whereas in Saigon it didn't appear to ever fully stop :) Plus during rush hour they rode their Vespas on the sidewalks !  I thought it was really funny, but my wife had major issues with it.

Can you comment on the prevailing noise ?

I would also like to know what the average electric bill is per month during the hot season, the cost of a weeks food at the supermarket and if you have hired help in the house.

How did you handle the drivers license ?

saigongold wrote:
Wife landed a job in an International School after applying online, landed the job and as an expat the package is pretty standard, free private schooling at International School, Housing, Flights, Private Medical, tax paid and more importantly for us...4 months paid holidays. We love to travel and VN is a great base to do so, currently Chinese NY so as I type I am relaxing in a villa by the pool in Thailand. Chuc Mung Nam Moi....Happy new Year of the Dragon today, thanks for the holiday Vietnamese government! We have just signed new contracts, sold everythin we had, put i all in PM,'s and spread that between a few countries, we will never return to the UK, our life is too enjoyale now....once you are in International Schools teaching that's really you set up for life. Vietnamese at great, we teach the Billionaires of society's kids, and Korean/Jap kids, the kids love to learn and parents are very supportive and kind. Vietnam is an amazing county, a little frustrating at times but our son is growing up and having an amazing start in life, I dont know many 15mth old babies that have had 12 overseas trips! In the UK all my wife got was shit from the kids, 8yr olds carrying knives and parents who dont give a shit about anything, opposite here, it's Chinese New Year and the time for gifts, diamond earrings, $$$, and 5* hotel vouchers were among some of the presets from parents to show their appreciation. They want to do well here and I can really see VN having a booming economy in 20 years or so. I started working doing TEFL, studying now for my Bachelor Teaching and will also next year be in a position to get the same contract as my wife. living here enables us to set ourselves up for retirement and explore some new cultures. Hanoi is very communist, the south not so much, bars open 24hrs, loads of expat restaurants, bars, high end hotels etc.. no challenges at all, other than the crazy motorbikes and traffic ( 7 accidents in 4 years) other than the odd bribe to the police when the pull me over for bein white we get on just fine here. we do a lot of charity work especially kids who are dumped by their parents, love visiting them at the Pagoda Orphanages and teaching them English for free, brings a smile to our faces for days. VISA... Not an issue, $1000 will get you a 3yr residents card, $100 if you have a BA Degree. ,
punchbowl
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SE asia

Travelled extensively through the countries of SE Asia except for Vietnam.  Was surprised to hear no one mention the Phillippines.  If I was able to at this point expatriate it would be to the island of Palawan specifically. 

Heard great things about south america too -- Ecuador.  But have no first hand experience.

donpaulo
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I know a couple of people who

I know a couple of people who lived there who said that PI was great on the expense side of the ledger sheet but that safety and rules were a complete joke.

While I haven't been to PI I found the personal safety issue to be a total writeoff so I hadn't considered it.

Punch if you can make a logical argument about how Palawan is safe I am all ears

punchbowl wrote:

Travelled extensively through the countries of SE Asia except for Vietnam.  Was surprised to hear no one mention the Phillippines.  If I was able to at this point expatriate it would be to the island of Palawan specifically. 

Heard great things about south america too -- Ecuador.  But have no first hand experience.

saigongold
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donpaulo wrote:Thanks for

donpaulo wrote:

Thanks for sharing SG. I had come to conclusion that in Vietnam as long as one was willing to open ones wallet to "solve" a problem, the costs would not be prohibitive. I had some Visa issues while in Siem Reap Cambodia but a couple of 20s solved that snag rather quickly.

The traffic in Saigon is an issue for sure. My wife was unable to cross the intersection near the intl trade and shopping center. When I suggested that Saigon might be worth another visit she cringed, so I told her that perhaps a car service would solve her pedestrian issues.

It would seem that traffic noise is also an issue, then again I was in a tourist zone, but it was very loud all the time. While I am sure that other neighborhoods are quieter it does bring up the issue of sharing the road conditions such as they are.

Its not a fatal flaw but one that bears further study for me to really consider it. Riding a bike in Thailand was also an eye opener for sure but the traffic did occasionally stop whereas in Saigon it didn't appear to ever fully stop :) Plus during rush hour they rode their Vespas on the sidewalks !  I thought it was really funny, but my wife had major issues with it.

Can you comment on the prevailing noise ?

I would also like to know what the average electric bill is per month during the hot season, the cost of a weeks food at the supermarket and if you have hired help in the house.

How did you handle the drivers license ?

we live in a neighborhood called The Crescent in an area called Phu My Hung, google I and you will see it is nothing like the Centre, very quiet, modern and luxurious shopping malls... and peaceful lots of parks and rivers and no noise...We pay $1000 a month (school pays) for a luxury 3 bed apartment, 180m2, pool, gym etc. That's. A lot, we used to pay $600 and pocket the rest but when we had a baby upgraded. it is certainly not like the tourist centre of Pham Ngu Lao, although that's only 15mins by bike, 40 mins taxi.

http://www.phumyhung.com.vn/eng/index.php

we have a nanny, 5 days a week, 8hrs a day, we pay DOUBLE the going rate, $300 a month, most pay $150 but I am not a tight fucker like lots of expats and like to treat the lady who looks after our pride and joy well! Electric is $60 a month, we eat out most evenings as its cheaper than cooking, $5 for a good meal. Supermarkets is 50% cheaper than UK, fresh fruit and veg about 70% cheaper. My wife loves the spas, $30 gets her a haircut, massage, pedicure, facial and foot massage for about 5hrs by western trained staff. She never wants to leave here...

Again with the licence money talks, I paid $60 for a bribe not to take the stupid test and just get my licence.

donpaulo
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looks like a nice place. How

looks like a nice place. How is the water pressure during peak usage ?

the license bribe sounds like it was well worth it. A buddy did a similar thing in Shanghai. I wish I could do that here in Japan, then again with the cost of living its probably not worth it.

One of the great things about living in Japan is that its safe. I have done some stupid shyte like leave my wallet at the cinema. It was returned the next day with the cash still inside. After the 3-11 earthquake tsunami there wasn't any looting, people calmly lined up to take a bus or eat a bowl of soup. At the time I moved here I didn't put much importance on that aspect but its really been a wonderful experience.

The cost of living is out to lunch but as a foreigner you can own property and get a loan which was a very interesting experience. The nuclear issue has me re-evaluating things...

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