George Town, Malaysia has been ranked 3rd best place to retire overseas by Live and Invest Overseas in its 2014 Overseas Index. lI have never heard of this index before they rated Georgetown so high. Anyway, as long as they list us high, we should get to know them. The few key reasons stated: (from PropertyGuru) “George Town is a busy, thriving city with a large expat community that has managed to retain its colonial charm (it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site). It has a total population of around 740,000, which makes it small enough for seniors to make friends and meet people, but big enough to mean that health care services meet international standards and easy availability to goods and services. Moreover, the city is affordable with first world infrastructure, turn-key permanent residency and gorgeous white-sand beaches. Its year-round sunshine and English-speaking locals also make living in George Town easier.”
The above are very good reasons, without any doubt. However, let me tell my reasons if you happen to be a foreigner who is thinking about Malaysia.
1) Language – No, not just the fact that we speak English but also when you are here, you get to learn new languages. People would love to teach you too and really, there’s no end to learning the few words of each dialect or main mother tongues of the melting pot of Malaysia.
2) More treasured – I am not sure why but somehow Malaysians tend to treat foreigners better. For example, myself. When a non local but fellow Malaysian asked me for directions, I would give the directions and then say ‘bye’. If a foreigner asked however, if I happen to be free, I would guide them as far as I could. Hmm…… I think that’s not just me.
3) Georgetown is not just Georgetown. Within less than an hour flight away, you can also be at another UNESCO Geopark site; Langkawi. Within one hour away you can even drop by Singapore for the year-end sale. So, you see, you have the advantage of a great community within Georgetown and also many other friendly towns and cities all around it. Even if you visit just one city every month, you will still not finish visiting all of them.
4) Food, second to none. I do not care where they rank Malaysia in terms of food, some ranked us top 10, some top 5, who cares? You come to Penang and you can never finish all the delicacies. From the really authentic Indian curries to Malay curries and Chinese curries and mind you, none of them tastes the same and yes, just curries alone your choices are already aplenty. Indian fried noodle, Malay’s wet fried hor fun and Chinese’s fried bee noodle, they are all VERY different. I have been to around 20 countries. None of them have these kind of choices within the same type of food!
5) You will not be the first. When you are here, you will be able to get attached to your fellow countrymen quite easily. Just get a good local real estate agency to help you in looking for homes where a lot of expats are staying. Soon enough you will have so many activities that you have to stop some of them instead of trying to join one.
5 reasons is already more than enough. If you still feel that you would like to go for the Number 1 and Number 2 ranked cities instead, sure, all the best. I am very sure they have their own advantages but as far as the many reasons stated by Live and Invest Overseas Index plus the five reasons above, there’s no other place in this world. Reported by someone who has visited nearly 20 countries in the world, stayed in 5 different cities in Malaysia. Yeah, that’s me.
written on 18th Sept 2014
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