Retirement Rankings

Overall Ranking

Quality of Life

Integration and Acceptance

Economics

10th

94.24 pts

4th

94.36 pts

11th

67.69 pts

12th

61.45 pts

Category Rankings

Weather

9th


Healthcare
1st


Flight Distance

10th

Security

8th


Migrant's Acceptance

8th


English Proficiency

13th

Cost of Living

12th


Tax Optimization

3rd

Country Population: 64,856,217

Weather

In France, the climate varies significantly across different regions, offering a diverse weather experience throughout the country.

In Paris and the Île-de-France region, the climate is generally cool, with average temperatures ranging from 4.5 °C (40 °F) in January to 20.5 °C (69 °F) in July. The city experiences a moderate amount of rainfall, about 640 mm (25 inches) annually, and enjoys less than 1,700 hours of sunshine per year​.

Moving to the eastern regions, like Lorraine and Alsace, the climate is moderately continental, characterized by cold winters with potential snowfalls and warm, sometimes sultry, summers. For example, in Strasbourg, temperatures vary from 2.5 °C (36.5 °F) in January to 20.5 °C (69 °F) in July, with an annual precipitation of 665 mm (26 inches)​.

The south of France, particularly areas like Bordeaux and Toulouse, enjoys a milder and sunnier climate, often influenced by the Mediterranean, with average temperatures in Bordeaux ranging from 7 °C (45 °F) in January to 22 °C (71.5 °F) in August. However, this region is not immune to occasional cool and rainy days or the hot air invasions from Spain during summer​.

Overall, France offers a range of weather patterns, from the cooler, rainy north to the warmer, sunnier south, providing a unique experience in each region throughout the year.

Healthcare

In France, the healthcare system is universally acclaimed, funded through taxation, and offers one of the world’s highest healthcare standards. Most residents opt for additional “mutuelle” insurance to cover the portion of healthcare costs not covered by the state, enhancing their medical care access and comfort.

Expatriates have a place in this system too. Since a significant policy change in 2016, expats residing in France for over three months with plans to stay permanently can apply for public health coverage under the Protection Universelle Maladie (PUMA) system. However, navigating this process involves substantial paperwork and adherence to specific eligibility criteria, especially for those who have not been in the country for more than five years and are under the retirement age of 65.

For comprehensive coverage, many expats and US citizens in France choose international health insurance plans. These plans provide extensive global coverage, including access to a broader range of healthcare facilities and professionals in France, often with more expedited services compared to the public system. The cost of health insurance for expatriates can vary based on several factors, including the individual’s age and the specifics of the chosen policy. On average, health insurance for one person in France is around $ 45 USD per month, but this can differ depending on the policy’s coverage level​.

All retirees are eligible for L’Assurance Maladie after a three-month waiting period. However, during these initial three months, and to fulfill visa requirements, private health insurance coverage is mandatory.

Flight duration

The flight duration from New York to Paris is generally between 7 hours and 7 hours 35 minutes, depending on the airline and specific flight route. The average ticket prices for non-stop flights usually range between $600 and $700​.

The duration of a direct flight from Miami to Paris typically ranges from around 9 to 11 hours, depending on factors such as the specific airline, route, and any layovers. As for the range of prices as a general guideline, economy class tickets can range from approximately $500 to $1500 or more. On the return journey from Paris to San Francisco, flights generally take 11 to 13 hours and the prices are similar.

Security

france

Overall, France offers a secure environment for expatriates, supported by a well-established infrastructure and community networks to facilitate newcomers’ adaptation. The US State Department classifies France as a Level 2 destination, advising travelers to exercise caution due to potential civil unrest and terrorist threats. Furthermore, France’s ranking of 67th among 163 countries in the Global Peace Index underscores its relative stability and peaceful atmosphere.

While France maintains robust overall security, ongoing vigilance is advisable, particularly in crowded public spaces and tourist hubs where the risk of incidents may be heightened. Despite these cautions, France remains a favored and generally safe destination for expatriates and tourists alike, with efficient law enforcement agencies and emergency response systems contributing to its overall security.

Migrants’ acceptance

France, ranked 46th globally in the Gallup Migrants Acceptance Index and 14th within Europe, presents a complex picture of migrant and expat acceptance. This positioning indicates a level of openness but also points to areas needing improvement, particularly in integration practices. The 2023 Expat Insider survey sheds light on one such area, revealing that migrants in France often struggle with the language barrier, a critical aspect of their integration journey.

English proficiency

In the last decade, English proficiency in France has seen an increase, particularly in the Paris area. While France is ranked 43rd out of 113 countries in the EF English Proficiency Index with a score of 531, above the global average of 493, it ranks 30th out of 34 in Europe. This suggests that while France’s English proficiency is above the global norm, it lags behind many European countries. However, the notable improvement in English proficiency, especially in Paris, indicates a positive trend towards better English language skills, aligning with the demands of globalization and international interactions.  

Cost of living

The cost of living comparison between New York, NY, and Paris indicates significant differences across various categories. Consumer prices in New York are 34.0% higher than in Paris, excluding rent. When including rent, consumer prices in New York soar to 70.2% higher than those in Paris. Specifically, rent prices in New York are notably higher, at 142.7% above those in Paris. Dining out also costs more in New York, with restaurant prices 42.1% higher than in Paris. Grocery shopping in New York will also see a higher expenditure, with prices 26.4% higher than in Paris.

In a comparison of living costs between Paris and New York, NY, housing and dining stand out for their stark price differences. Renting a 1-bedroom apartment in the city center of New York costs $4,189.81, which is 179.0% higher than Paris’s $1,501.76. Dining out also leans heavily in favor of Paris, with a mid-range restaurant meal for two costing $80.33 in Paris versus $130.00 in New York, a 61.8% increase. Groceries follow a similar trend; for example, a loaf of fresh white bread is $1.67 in Paris but jumps to $4.30 in New York. These figures highlight the significant cost disparities residents and visitors face in these two renowned cities.

Tax Optimization

tax

In France, there isn’t a unique tax regime tailored for retired expats; instead, their tax obligations are determined by their residency status and global income. Retired expats become tax residents if they spend over 183 days a year in France, or if their primary home or activity is in France, making them liable to report and pay taxes on worldwide income, including pensions and retirement funds. The double taxation treaty between France and the US helps prevent dual taxation, with specifics such as US social security being taxable only in the US, but it’s essential for retirees to understand how this treaty applies to their circumstances to navigate their fiscal responsibilities in France effectively.