13th July 2020
There are so many exciting and lucrative destinations for expats around the world but needless to say, due to border closures and travel restrictions imposed in light of Covid-19, the majority of contractors have faced some tough times in recent months with many projects being put on hold. However, things are starting to look brighter as lockdown measures begin to ease. In fact, a number of countries in Europe have already started to welcome travellers and workers again. Undoubtedly, there will be many people eager to get up and running, so, if you’re thinking about your next move, here’s a round up of the best destinations in Europe for contractors post Covid-19 according to a recent analysis by Forbes.
A focus on Europe
While every continent has something spectacular to offer contractors, Europe is particularly well known amongst the expat community for being rich in job opportunities and a great destination for work-life balance. There are a number of official lists, surveys and data reports which compare standards of living in various countries across the world, and unsurprisingly, we’ve seen many European destinations top the list repeatedly. Therefore, it’s no wonder that Europe continues to draw in professionals year after year. The coronavirus pandemic has undoubtedly impacted many across the bloc in terms of employment opportunities. However, despite the disruption that has taken place, Europe is still home to plenty of top destinations for contractors seeking opportunities post Covid-19. But which made the Forbes list?
From the cost of living to the quality of education, there are a number of factors that come into play when expats are seeking opportunities overseas. However, one other attribute that can provide an insight into how much you’ll enjoy working in a destination is the happiness scale. For those that place this high on their list of priorities when looking for their next opportunity, it’s certainly worth considering a move to Finland, which placed first in the World Happiness Report. For those that aren’t familiar with this list, it’s collated from an annual worldwide survey based on information including the Gallup World Poll, which measures aspects such as how satisfied people are with their lives, the social support available, life expectancy, freedom to make choices and more.
At a time of political unrest around the word, it’s also great to see that in Finland, 91% of the people surveyed reported satisfaction with their government and 86% trust the police. Unsurprisingly, Helsinki, the capital city, is regarded as the happiest city in the world.
There are a number of great things associated with Switzerland, such as The Matterhorn, Rolexes and of course chocolate. However, another aspect is that it is famed for is its quality of life. It’s unsurprising then that HSBC placed the nation in the top spot in its list of the “10 Best Countries For Expats To Live.” This particular ranking involved an in-depth study which surveyed 22,000 expats around the world to gather views on life as an expat in a variety of destinations. And if you’re planning to stay in the country for a while, it’ll be reassuring to know that the Swiss healthcare system is considered one of the best in the world and ranked high in several official lists.
However, while Switzerland is highly ranked in a number of top destinations surveys, contractors should also take into consideration the high costs of living in the country. Both Zurich, the country’s financial hotspot and Bern, the capital city, are featured in Mercer’s newly released Cost of Living Survey in which they are both classified as relatively expensive places to live.
For contractors seeking a balance of great expat community, sunny weather and a healthy lifestyle, Spain will be an excellent location for them. There are so many reasons why professionals may be enticed to move to Spain – from its cultural heritage to delicious cuisine and beautiful beaches. However, if you need any more reasons, it has also recently been named the healthiest country in the world, according to Bloomberg’s Global Health Index. The ranking takes into consideration variables such as life expectancy, environmental factors, access to quality health care and more. Spain does well in all of these areas, and Spanish people, in fact, are considered the healthiest in the world with a life expectancy of 83.5 years. So, if you’d like the healthy Spanish lifestyle to rub off on you, why not consider the country for your next project?
Denmark is another destination that provides a wealth of options for contractors seeking opportunities in Europe. There is no shortage of exciting opportunities for those looking to venture out and expats can rest easy knowing that the Danish healthcare system in one of the best in the world. Additionally, Denmark is featured in the top five happiest countries in the world and in the top 10 ‘2020 Best Countries rankings’, which was published by U.S News in partnership with BAV Group.
Top European destinations for contractors post Covid-19: What you must be aware of
While contractors will be eager to jump into their next project after being in lockdown for so long, it’s important to remember that compliance with local tax laws and regulations is imperative no matter where in the world you’re operating. Weighing up the pros and cons of each country in terms of your lifestyle is certainly important, however, failing to comply with local tax regulations and ending up on the wrong side of the law can have severe consequences.
With tax compliance varying across borders, we understand that this can be difficult to stay on top of. This is particularly the case in this challenging climate, where legislative changes are being made frequently and without much notice.
However, despite this, it’s still crucial to get compliance right. Tax crackdowns are continuing around the world and legislations such as the Criminal Finances Act 2017 (CFA) are still in place. Here at 6CATS we have a team of experts that can support you with all of your compliance needs for multiple destinations around the globe. From understanding the restrictions to planning for your next overseas assignment, we’re here to help.
If you’re beginning to plan your next move, why not contact our team of experts today?