Top 5 Cheap Retirement Cities in the World

Cheap retirement cities are located throughout the and abroad. Even in today’s tight economy, it is possible to retire and live comfortably in a warm, relaxing locale. Whether you want to stay close to the grandchildren or venture off into parts unknown, retiring in style on a budget can be easier than you think. You just need to know where to look, to be ready for an adventure and to have an open mind.


United States:

Asheville, North Carolina is one of many ¬†low cost ¬†retirement cities in the south and a perpetual favorite of retirees due to its weather and low cost of living. Located in the southeastern portion of the United States, it has mild winters, a must for many retirees.

The area is located in the Smoky Mountains and is next to the Smoky Mountains National Park offering fabulous views and scenic vistas while hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding.

For those who are more interested in city life, Asheville’s got you covered, too. Downtown is a lively and bustling area filled with coffee shops, fine dining, art galleries and shopping. The city even hosts several popular events including Bele Chere, the largest street fair in the Southeast, and the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival, the longest running 3 day folk festival in the United States.


Phoenix, Arizona is also one of the cheap retirement cities and has been a mecca for retirees since the 1930s. The warm desert winters and low humidity lead to year round golfing among other things.

Further south, Tucson is also popular but it can’t compete with the array of activities available in the Phoenix suburban area.

Of particular note is the fact that the area has been hard hit due to the recent economy and houses, especially foreclosures, are abundant. This is unfortunate for some but great news for retirees as a second home can be purchased relatively inexpensively in this warm weather paradise.

Phoenix offers downtown art galleries, architecture in Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West, shopping in Scottsdale, exploring in the Grand Canyon and golf, golf and more golf. Its proximity to Mexico, California and Las Vegas all lead to some great weekend getaways as well.



It may seem unlikely to find cheap retirement cities Canada but Halifax, Nova Scotia may surprise you. This peninsula province is located on the eastern coast of Canada (near Maine in the US) and is surrounded by the Bay of Fundy, the Gulf of St. Lawrence and the Atlantic Ocean.

It may seem cold but, while it is no desert locale like Phoenix, it is mild due to the ocean currents.

Temperatures are mild year round, averaging only 38 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter and 78 degrees in the summer. Retirees that don’t necessarily need it hot will love everything else that Halifax, Nova Scotia has to offer.


Outdoor living is its biggest draw and its best kept secret. Sea kayaking, hiking and biking are everyday adventures in Nova Scotia.

If you need a livelier time, you can head into Halifax, the biggest city around. Check out the historical museum at Pier 21, the art galleries and the fine dining. Just know that Mother Nature is where it’s at here.


In fact, the Bay of Fundy has the most dramatic tides in the world. At low tide the water literally disappears and you can explore the ocean floor. Retirees wanting a simpler and cheaper lifestyle are in for a treat with this little gem.


Costa Rica:

Everyone has heard the buzz about Costa Rica having some of the best, cheap retirement cities in the world but is it true? San Jose, Costa Rica is hopping with retirees who are enjoying every minute of their low cost retirement.

In fact, Costa Rica is home to more Americans per capita outside the United States than any other country so it seems that you would be in good company. The mild climate and low cost of living draw many retirees each year. Living near the major city of San Jose is inexpensive or you could venture closer to the coast and enjoy a view of the Pacific for much less than it would cost you stateside.



For the more adventurous, cheap retirement cities in Thailand have a certain appeal. Thailand can be used as a base to travel throughout Southeast Asia and it is incredibly inexpensive to live. However, just like home, if you choose to live in a major city like Bangkok, it could cost you much more than if you choose a suburban or rural area.

Try planning a few vacations here and researching the area before making any concrete decisions.

If you think outside the box, you can enjoy yourself in some amazingly cheap retirement cities. Explore all your options before you retire.


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