Retirement Rankings

Overall Ranking

Quality of Life

Integration and Acceptance



94.20 pts


85.73 pts


96.24 pts


50 pts

Category Rankings




Flight Distance




Migrant's Acceptance


Cost of Living


Tax Optimization


Country Population: 26,646,070


Australia’s vast landscape encompasses a variety of climates, with temperature and precipitation patterns varying significantly by region and season. In the northern territories, which include Queensland, the Northern Territory, and parts of Western Australia, a tropical climate dominates, characterized by a wet season from December to February with temperatures often exceeding 30°C (86°F), and a dry season from June to August with milder temperatures ranging from 20°C to 30°C (68°F to 86°F). The southern states like New South Wales, Victoria, and Tasmania experience a temperate climate, with summer temperatures in coastal cities like Sydney and Melbourne typically ranging from 20°C to 30°C (68°F to 86°F), and winter temperatures dropping to 5°C to 15°C (41°F to 59°F), occasionally going below freezing in the highlands where snow is common.

Central Australia, known for its arid and semi-arid climates, experiences extreme temperature variations, with summer temperatures often soaring above 35°C (95°F) and dropping significantly at night. Rainfall in these regions is scarce, contrasting with the northern tropics where the summer monsoon brings significant precipitation, leading to lush landscapes and swollen rivers. Conversely, southern and eastern Australia receive more rainfall during the cooler months, supporting a range of agricultural activities and natural ecosystems. This diversity in weather patterns underscores the importance of regional understanding when planning activities or travel in Australia, ensuring preparedness for the wide range of conditions this expansive country offers.


Australia’s healthcare system is renowned for its efficiency and comprehensive coverage, ranked as the 32nd most efficient by the World Health Organization. The public healthcare system, primarily facilitated through Medicare, offers low-cost or free services to Australian citizens and permanent residents, including medical appointments, certain medications, and hospital care. However, healthcare accessibility varies, with rural and remote areas facing more challenges compared to urban centers.

While public healthcare is robust, about half of Australians opt for private health insurance to access additional services not covered by Medicare, such as dental care, eyeglasses, and ambulance services. Private health insurance is incentivized through policies like the Lifetime Health Cover and the Medicare Levy Surcharge, encouraging early and continuous coverage to alleviate pressure on the public system.

Healthcare insurance costs for expats in Australia aged 65 and above vary widely based on coverage extent and individual health conditions. Basic plans may range from $70 to $140 USD per month, offering essential services with potential restrictions. Mid-range plans, providing broader coverage, can cost between $140 and $280 USD monthly. Comprehensive plans, which include extensive medical services and specialist care, might range from $280 to over $420 USD per month. These costs reflect the increased healthcare needs typically associated with older age groups, making it crucial for expats to carefully evaluate and choose a plan that aligns with their healthcare requirements and budget.

Flight Duration

Flights from major Australian cities like Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane to San Francisco vary in duration and price, with direct flights from Sydney taking approximately 13-15 hours. Several international airlines, including Qantas, United Airlines, and Virgin Australia, service this route, offering both direct and connecting flights. Prices for these flights can range from around $1,000  for an economy seat on a promotional offer to over $5,000 for a business class ticket, depending on the booking time, class, and how far in advance the purchase is made.

Flights from Australia to New York involve longer travel times and usually include at least one stopover, as there are no direct flights. Departing from major cities like Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane, the total journey time typically ranges from about 20 to 24 hours, depending on the duration and location of stopovers. Airlines such as Qantas, American Airlines, and United Airlines offer various routes to New York, often with layovers in cities like Los Angeles or Dallas. Prices for these flights can vary significantly, with economy fares generally starting from around $1,000 to $1,200  if booked in advance or during promotional periods and can go well above $6,000 for business class or more flexible ticket options.



Australia is recognized for its safety and security, reflected by its Level 1 status in the US State Department travel guide, indicating that travelers should exercise normal precautions when visiting. Additionally, Australia’s commitment to peace and security is underscored by its ranking as the 22nd most peaceful country out of 163 nations in the Global Peace Index. This index considers various factors, including societal safety, security, ongoing domestic and international conflict, and militarization. The combination of a proactive approach to national security, effective law enforcement, and a stable political environment contributes to Australia’s reputation as a secure destination for both residents and visitors.

Migrants’ Acceptance

Australia’s welcoming attitude towards expatriates, including those from the United States, is well-documented and reflected in its ranking on the Gallup Migrants Acceptance Survey. In 2017, Australia was positioned 6th globally, showcasing its open and inclusive society. By 2020, it had improved even further, moving up two spots, indicating a growing acceptance and warmth towards migrants. This positive environment is particularly beneficial for US expats who, apart from sharing cultural ties, do not face language barriers due to the common use of English.

Cost of living

The cost-of-living comparison between New York, NY, and Sydney highlights significant differences in consumer prices, rent, restaurant costs, and grocery prices, alongside a slight variance in local purchasing power. Specifically, consumer prices in New York are 33.2% higher than in Sydney when excluding rent. When including rent, the overall consumer prices in New York leap to 53.3% higher than those in Sydney. Rent alone in New York is 84.0% higher compared to Sydney, which is a substantial difference. Dining out in New York will also cost considerably more, with restaurant prices 64.4% higher than in Sydney. Grocery shopping in New York is 26.1% pricier compared to Sydney. Despite these higher living costs, the local purchasing power in New York is only marginally higher by 3.7% compared to Sydney, indicating that the higher income levels in New York only slightly offset its higher living costs.

In a cost-of-living comparison between Sydney and New York, NY, expressed in US dollars, New York stands out as the more expensive city across several categories. Renting a 1-bedroom apartment in the city center of New York costs $4,189.81, compared to Sydney’s $2,218.60, highlighting a significant disparity in housing costs. When it comes to dining, a meal at an inexpensive restaurant in New York is priced at $30.00, while in Sydney, it’s $15.90. Grocery prices also reflect this trend, with a gallon of milk costing $5.91 in New York versus $5.82 in Sydney. These figures underscore New York’s higher living costs compared to Sydney, encompassing essentials like housing, food, and everyday groceries.

Tax Optimization

tax calculator

In Australia, expatriates’ foreign pensions are taxed based on their residency status, with tax residents required to report their worldwide income, including overseas pensions, in their assessable income. Such pensions may be eligible for deductions or offsets, particularly when considering the undeducted purchase price (the portion of the pension that wasn’t claimed as a tax deduction when it was purchased), potentially reducing the taxable amount.

The Double Taxation Agreement between the United States and Australia is designed to prevent the same income from being taxed by both countries, outlining specific rules for various income types, including employment, business profits, and investment income.