Many people, especially the newly retired or those with a job that allows them to work from anywhere, think about relocating to a relatively inexpensive country compared to their home country. For people in North America, this might include certain Southeast Asian or Eastern European countries. However, according to experts such as Vincent Barletta, Portugal is an often overlooked location that boasts a high quality of life, beautiful scenery, and low cost of living. Here are some tips and tricks for residing in Portugal for $1,000 per month.
Talk to Others
It is helpful to talk to others who moved to another country due to its lower cost of living. Ask them about their experiences and how they complete such tasks as making a budget and saving for emergencies. Residents of Portugal are also a good authority to talk to since many of them live on around $1,000 or less per month, as the minimum social security payment is just above the equivalent of $700 per month in Portugal.
Locals are good resources regarding the best places to shop for food and other necessities and what to do for fun when your budget allows. Getting to know someone with whom you can share resources is also beneficial to saving money.
Look Outside of the Cities
Like in most countries, the major cities of Portugal tend to be more expensive places to live. While moving to a city such as Porto or Lisbon might be tempting to experience their shopping and nightlife, your money will go further in a smaller town. If you enjoy cities, look for a village with a train station or easy access to those more populated areas. As someone who appreciates culture, Vincent Barletta knows how important it is to balance living costs with access to places like libraries and museums.
Consider Ditching the Car
One thing that might give Americans moving to Europe some sticker shock is the price of gas. Fortunately, it is easier to do without a car in many places in Europe than it is to do so in the United States. For example, a quick search on Google Maps will show you that it takes even less time to go from Lisbon to Porto by train than by car.
An author and professor, Vincent Barletta, teaches Comparative Literature and Iberian and Latin American Cultures at Stanford University in California. Barletta has an affinity for learning languages and can speak Portuguese and Spanish as well as English. He taught English as a Second Language while serving in the Peace Corps. He previously served as an assistant professor for the University of Colorado at Boulder’s Department of Spanish and Portuguese.