A lot of people are moving abroad today for a whole host of different reasons. Did you know I moved to Jamaica just a few months ago? I mentioned it in my last blog post! Perhaps you’re moving due to COVID19, you’re taking on a new job opportunity, or simply wanting more from life. However, when moving abroad, the big decision you need to make is deciding where to move to. There are plenty of options for you to consider, and Egypt is one of these, but is it the right one?
Is Egypt A Good Choice For Expats?
You would be forgiven for thinking that Egypt was an exceptional choice. After all, you have the amazing culture and history of the country, as well as the rolling deserts and the beautiful landscape. However, these are qualities that make Egypt a great place to visit as a tourist, but they do not necessarily make Egypt the best place in the world to relocate to.
If you have no choice but to relocate to Egypt because of work commitments, don’t let this worry you. There are lots of great things about Egypt, but there are also a number of different things that you need to be wary about, and that is why doing your research first is always critical.
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Egypt hasn’t done so well in the Expat Explorer survey
‘Expat Explorer’ is an annual survey conducted by HSBC. It assesses 36 countries based on expat life. Everything from adapting to the local weather to the quality of childcare is considered. For the likes of Switzerland and Bahrain, the survey offered a glowing report. However, one country that didn’t fare so well is Egypt who found itself at the wrong end of the table in 34th place, which turned out to be last place because of some joint positions.
Now, we must stress that this survey is not the be-all and end-all. It is a very good reference for anyone who wants to know more about expat life across the world. However, it does have some drawbacks, including the fact that not all countries are covered. Plus, we all want different things from life and look for different things as ex-pats!
So, why didn’t Egypt do so well?
There is only one place to begin, and this is with the negativity surrounding raising children in Egypt. When it comes to the cost of education available to children, Egypt actually came in at top place for satisfaction with the prices. The same can be said for the cost of childcare as well, with Egypt also performing high in regards to this. However, it seems that the low prices come at a big cost, since Egypt ranked bottom out of all of the countries concerning the following – children being more rounded and confident, better quality of life for kids, health and wellbeing of children, access to better education, quality of education and quality of childcare.
The picture isn’t much greater when it comes to the economy either. The large majority of those interviewed stated that they were not satisfied with the host economy. Moreover, Egypt ranked 32nd in the table in regard to personal disposable income and 31st for household income.
Overall living experience
The overall experience of living in Egypt was also criticized. There were some positives, with the country ranking relatively high in regards to learning the local language and adapting to the local weather. Apart from this, the outlook was rather gloomy, with Egypt coming in at last place in regards to satisfaction with all of the following – diet, commute to work, opportunities for travel, working environment, work/life balance, integrating into the community, feeling welcome at work, local shops and markets, local food, local culture, and the environment.
Health care was also negatively marked as well, with expat health insurance certainly advised for anyone that moves to the country. It is advisable to make sure that you take out a comprehensive life health insurance policy that is going to cover everything. This should include everything from dental care to medications, hearing aid care, and much more. By going down this route, you are going to make sure you have access to all of the best healthcare specialists and that you do not end up compromising your well-being. The network of private doctors is much better.
All in all, it is clear to see that overall satisfaction with life in Egypt for expats is negative and of course, the political upheaval of recent times won’t have helped the situation. Nevertheless, there are indeed those that enjoy life in the country. Extensive research is advised before making the big move.
With all my love,