The Gen Xers’ expatriation movement is already well under way.
Though the oldest Generation Xer is now 50 to 54 (depending on the date cutoffs given), the Gen X population is growing and are hot on the heels of the baby boomer generation exiting North America seeking a better life abroad.
The Baby Boomers, Gen Xers, Gen Ys, and Millennia’s are familiar terms that reflect popular beliefs of significant differences among employee generations. Demographers, historians, and commentators use beginning birth dates ranging from early 1960’s to the early 1980s to define Generation X (wikipedia.org). Generation X is most likely to work and live internationally with their spouse and/or children. Expat Generation X are more ‘internationally minded’ than the preceding generations.
Gen Xers’ are the ones going abroad, adjusting to different cultures, they have an adventurous heart and willing to forfeit stability (that baby boomer crave) for a chance to explore new opportunities. Given the continuous trends for globalization, expatriates of the 20th century differ in many ways from the ones of the 21st century.
Expat Generation X (early 1960’s to early 1980’s) are people that are close to reaching the peak of their careers and are the largest generation of working expatriates today. Gen X expats are highly educated, motivated and are ready and eager to jump at the chance to work, live and play abroad.
Generation X is more willing (than boomers) to re-invent themselves abroad. The first wave of boomers exiting North America were not doing so to re-invent themselves. From the early 2,000’s to 2008 baby boomers flooding into Costa Rica didn’t think they were risking their security when investing in real estate for a second home, or income property, they were expanding their portfolios. Here we are post U.S. housing plunge and the global economic crunch, and the baby boomer that is now buying in Costa Rica is doing to so out of a “necessity” – they are looking at living abroad as way to outlive their nest egg.
The Gen Xers have at the least 15 years to retirement, and in many cases do not see a viable end game in North America. According to Forbes, many Gen X and baby boomers may need to downgrade their lifestyle in retirement. High debt, low assets are dragging down boomers and Gen X.
According to a report by Pew Charitable Trusts baby boomers may be “the last group on track to retire with enough savings to maintain their financial security through their golden years.” the study finds. But the next generations are struggling — especially Generation X.
In a recent TCRN poll of North Americans interested in moving to Costa Rica, just over 40 % were Gen Xers. The following question from the poll was the most telling in terms of mindset of those looking to live abroad in Costa Rica (percentages are rounded):
Why do you want to live abroad?
a) Less stress – 14%
b) Affordable lifestyle – 46%
c) Better opportunities – 32%
d) Other reason – 8%
Lack of an affordable lifestyle and opportunity in America are key driving factors for a majority of those seeking a life abroad.
It seems that the wave of baby boomers that have been exiting North America in search of affordable living here in Costa Rica have the Gen Xers closely following on their heels.
According to a report called “Counting the Uncountable: Overseas Americans,” published on the Migration Policy Institute web, up to 6.8 million Americans live in another country, either on a temporary basis or permanently.
In Costa Rica, the number of actual expats living here is reported to be somewhere between 20,000 and 50,000 – however as many as 200,000 are here living temporarily trying to build a better life.
Whether you are looking to partially retire, develop a business or diversify your income with quality of life in Costa Rica make sure you connect with those in the know. Daniel Yepez (LinkedIn) is considered a leading expert in Business Consulting and International Living. Mr. Yepez is an avid entrepreneur and lectures at the Costa Rica National University UNA. The right partner in your overseas life ventures can fast track you, saving you valuable time and money through country insights.