The opportunity to take home a bigger paycheck at the end of each month sounds appealing to just about anyone. For some people, knowing they will have to move abroad to earn more money is a dream come true, but others remain sceptical about making the big move overseas a reality.

According to the Expat Insider 2017 Report, 41% of expats chose to relocate because of their careers or their partners, whether it is by choice or out of need. To put this into perspective, InterNations surveyed a total of 12,519 expats, representing 166 nationalities, living in 188 countries across the globe.

All 12,519 expats were asked to compare their current income to the income they would earn at home, for a similar if not the same job role. Find out below where expats are earning more money than they would at home, and how it has affected their personal finances below:


Bahrain is a nation made up of over 30 islands in the Arabian Gulf and has been at the heart of major trading routes since ancient times. It is also one of the first states in the gulf to discover oil and have built a refinery. Currently, Bahrain ranks third in the working abroad index, thanks to a great job and career rating and the work/life balance the country offers. 70% of expats living in Bahrain are under the impression that their income is much higher than what they would earn at home. 41% of these believe their income is considerably higher than at home. Compared to the global working average of 44.3 hours a week at work, 93% of expats in Bahrain are only required to work 42.9 hours a week – 1.4 hours less!


Kuwait is situated on the northern coast of Eastern Arabia at the top of the Persian Gulf. It has a population of over 4.2 million people, of which more than half are expatriates. Kuwait’s oil reserves first discovered in 1935 are now amongst the ten largest in the world, ranking at number six. Just like expats in Bahrain, 70% of expats in Kuwait believe their income is more than what they would earn in a similar job role at home. The majority of expats in Kuwait have moved from India, the Philippines and other countries with low incomes. Despite this, income here is still seen as somewhat low. Just 62% of expats have a disposable income of less than £44,300.


Salaries earnt in Qatar are fairly high. A majority of people who move to Qatar to take on a more senior position receive better pay and no taxation. The expat community in Qatar is very welcoming too. Despite the cost of living being high, a third of expats have a disposable household income of £88,680 on average, even though more than half of expats in Qatar found the cost of housing unaffordable. Even so, 76% of expats believe that their income is higher than what they would earn in a similar job role back home – 46% of which say it’s a lot higher!


Switzerland is one of the best expat countries in the world. The country is home to some of the highest living standards and most multilingual population. More than 77% of expats living in Switzerland believe their income is higher than what they would earn in a similar, if not the same, job role back home. However, 17% of expats in Switzerland are still unhappy with their financial situation due to the extreme cost of living.


Moving to Luxembourg is an attractive option for those seeking to move overseas. Despite being a small European country situated near Belgium, France and Germany, Luxembourg surpasses the likes of Singapore, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia in regards to where you can earn more money as an expat than you would at home. Although 23% of expats in Luxembourg think their disposable household income is insufficient to cover what they need on a day-to-day basis, 76% of expats working there believe they earn more than they would at home. As the second-richest country in the world with an annual gross domestic product average of £59,942, it’s a vibrant city like no other!

Santa Fe makes moving abroad easy. We provide full support to people looking to relocate overseas from the UK. For more advice and information, please contact us today.

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