The Dominican Republic is one of the top choices for American expats in the Caribbean. In fact, roughly 4.5% of its population was born in another country, making it the Caribbean country with the largest foreign-born population.
This number of expats is likely to grow in step with the huge increase in tourism from the U.S. to the Dominican Republic. The nation is working hard to keep up with demand, making huge investments in new resorts and hotels, as well as new flight routes being announced at an impressive rate to make it even more accessible from the U.S.
Below are some of the primary reasons why the Dominican Republic is so popular with American expats.
Friendly Visa Options
One of the biggest deciding factors for those looking to move abroad is the ability to get a visa. Luckily for those who set their sights on the Dominican Republic, there are many routes to becoming a legal resident. This includes a visa intended to allow foreign spouses, children, or parents of permanent residents to live with their relation in the country.
There are also visas for retirees and renters (aimed at digital nomads), investment visas for those wishing to engage with the local economy through business, as well as a special visa for those coming to the nation to work in the tourism sector (management and staff visa). The many visa options available, coupled with their reasonable terms, help to make the Dominican Republic accessible for those wishing to live the Caribbean lifestyle.
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Low Cost Of Living
The cost of living in the Dominican Republic is much lower than in the United States. Many sources claim just $1,200 is enough to live comfortably. This includes rent, groceries, transport, utilities, and entertainment. Outside of the city center, the rent of a 3-bedroom apartment averages less than $500 per month. For utilities, TV, and internet, an expat can expect to pay around $100 per month.
The biggest savings though are found in grocery costs, which are much lower in the Dominican Republic. Many ingredients can be locally sourced, such as eggs, milk, potatoes, and chicken. These are usually much cheaper than in the U.S. For example, a dozen eggs cost, on average, $1.66, and 1 lb. of fresh chicken breast is $2.31 in the Dominican Republic.
Close Proximity To The United States
The Dominican Republics’ close proximity to the United States is a huge bonus for many expats. A flight from Santo Domingo Airport to Miami, Florida takes just 2 hours and 15 minutes. For comparison, a flight from Miami, Florida to Houston, Texas takes 2 hours and 50 minutes. This closeness and the staggering number of daily flights between the two nations means Americans are never cut-off from friends and family back home in case of an emergency.
The Caribbean Lifestyle
Those who flock to the Dominican Republic enjoy the best the Caribbean has to offer. The citizens of the Dominican Republic have a reputation for being open, friendly, and welcoming to foreigners. As well as the fantastic people, the nation has many natural attractions, such as the beautiful beaches and clear turquoise waters present on almost every stretch of coastline. Furthermore, there is no shortage of festivals and cultural events all year long.
The weather is pleasant in the Dominican Republic, avoiding extreme heat and cold with winter temperatures averaging 68–77°F (20–25°C) and summer temperatures averaging 77–81°F (25–27°C). The only downside to the weather here is that the nation sits in the Atlantic hurricane belt and regularly sees extreme storms between August and October.
The Dominican Republic is a top choice for American expats. Few nations can offer as much for the same cost, and the friendly visa terms and positive political relationship with the United States make it an even more attractive choice. There is something here for everyone, from young digital nomads wanting to work from their laptops on the beach to retirees wishing to enjoy a relaxing Caribbean lifestyle after decades of hard work.
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