RETIRING IN SRI LANKA
Sri Lanka is a richly diverse country offering large cities like Colombo to the more quiet and relaxed Negombo, Galle or Kandy and regions with beautiful white sand beaches to those with mountain forests. All only few hours apart. This combined with the amazing food, the inexpencive cost of living and friendly, mostly English speaking locals attracts more and more seniors to flock to Sri Lanka because their pensions can go a long way there.
HOW TO RETIRE IN SRI LANKA:
Regardless if your are looking into an all year round stay in Sri Lanka or just a warm haven for the winter months, we recommend that you come first as a tourist, if you haven't been to Sri Lanka before.
The most obvious benefit to retiring in Sri Lanka is that it is cheap, but do not forget that it is an Asian country with a different climate and culture. So you should be able to answer for yourself first … Do I like Sri Lanka?
If you have been here on a Sri Lankan holiday then you obviously know the answer. If you are basing your entire choice of Sri Lanka based on Internet, blogs and media then you should ensure that your expectations are as realistic as possible.
RETIREMENT OPTIONS SRI LANKA:
Depending on your retirement plan you can either apply for a 3 month tourist visa at the Sri Lankan Embassy in your home country or go straight for the 12 month retirement visa. A Tourist Visa is suitable for people who want to send only few months in the sun over the winter. While you can rent/lease property on a Sri Lankan Tourist Visa, it's still difficult to open a local bank account and/or subscribe to local services. Not to mention that you have to physically leave the country after 3 months for 24 hours to get a new entry visa.
The better option is a renewable 12 month retirement visa which comes under different names (aka My Dream Home Visa Program), with basically the same requirements:
US$ 15.000 in a fixed deposit account in an approved any bank in Sri Lanka together with a monthly remittance of US$ 1.500+. For spouse and dependent child add US$ 750+ monthly remittance into a Sri Lankan savings or current account. The Retirement Visa is a residence visa type that can be renewed within Sri Lanka and gives you all legal citizen rights except the right to work and/or vote.
BEST PLACES TO RETIRE TO IN SRI LANKA:
The best regions for foreigners to live in Sri Lanka is between Negombo and Matara on the West- or South Coast. Especially in the beach resort town of Negombo you can find gated communities that specialize in long-term rentals for expats and retirees. The short distance to major supermarkets, private & government hospitals, the international airport and the capital city of Colombo gives Negombo a competitive edge over the locations further down south. Active retirees will find plenty of outdoor activities from swimming, diving, sailing to mountain biking, kayaking and whitewater rafting. Retirees in Sri Lanka will find plenty to be happy about. From the great weather to the focus on wellness to the interesting culture and amazing food, it’s definitely an exotic choice. Exotic as it is, the many international retirees there, means you’ll be in good company.
FINDING A PLACE TO LIVE IN SRI LANKA:
Accommodation is very affordable in Sri Lanka, especially outside the major tourist hubs. To find a suitable home might be a challenge, though. Many are Sri Lankan Real Estate Agents are great, but (and this is a generalization), many also do not comprehend or understand what you are used to or how strongly you might want what you say you want. Countless people who want to entertain and desire a Western kitchen are shown place after place with a traditional wood-fire outhouse. Their ability to understand your demands for a property to qualify as something you want to view is not great. You can look online and find many amazing places available to rent only to find out when you call that they have been rented already, or that they will be available in a month, but then have the existing tenant stay on. People and many Sri Lakan agents tend to just leave their property listings on websites, which can make searching on your own a frustrating experience.
10 reasons why to retire in Sri Lanka
We have compiled for you the 10 best reasons on why to retire to Sri Lanka. This, together with our Sri Lanka Experts advice, will help your retirement planning.find out more
Sri Lanka is a beautiful, exotic destination in the Indian Ocean full of culture, nature, wildlife, and smiling faces with the locals are some of the friendliest people in the world.find out more