Living among sociable locals makes life easier for expats – but where are the world’s friendliest countries?
A new survey reveals that the warmest welcome is in Mexico, where it’s not just the weather that’s hot but the attitude of the locals as well.
Nine out of 10 expats responding to a survey by the Internations global network said they were happy with life in general in Mexico.
That might not seem an overwhelming figure, but when the global average to the question is just 57%, that’s almost double the welcome elsewhere.
Mexico voted best by expats
The survey revealed 77% of expats regard Mexico as friendly, 82% made new friends easily and 40% felt that they could not be happier.
“Expats in Mexico not only find it the easiest place in the world to make friends, they are also happiest with their life in general,” said the report.
Bahrain took the second spot, with three out of four expats living there agreeing the locals were friendly and the country is somewhere to easily put down roots.
A massive 88% of expats gave locals the thumbs up for friendliness.
Serbia was a surprise third, with 73% of expats agreeing Mexicans were friendly, 79% slipped easily into making local friends and 71% are happy with life in general
And the world’s unfriendliest countries for expats are…
The poll also disclosed the countries where expats feel the least welcome.
Kuwait has sat at the bottom of the list for four years and remains propping up the 68 country table again.
Some expats voice anti-expat sentiment from Kuwaitis, while 46% of expats in the country felt negative vibes from locals, which was almost three times the global average of 16%.
Other unfriendly countries were Sweden and Denmark, but Internations views them as a lot more friendly than Kuwait.
“Those living in these countries are also below-average happy with their life in general,” observed the report.
Top 10 world’s friendliest countries
- Costa Rica
It’s worth noting that several of the friendliest countries are places where Americans tend to retire – such as Mexico, Ecuador and Costa Rica – which could suggest the data is skewed towards the opinions of US expats.