Expat Survey: 85% of Expats in Italy Report Being Happy There
Summary: Our recent survey of expatriates found that 85% of expats in Italy love their experience living in the Mediterranean nation.
Expats in Italy generously reported their opinions and shared their insights about living abroad in our 2021 Best Places to Live Survey.
Overall, 85% of Expats, Retirees and Global Nomads in Italy are extremely or very satisfied with the quality of the expat experience in their city. That is 15% HIGHER than the global average of 70%.
When asked about their entertainment options (movies, concerts, museums, etc.), 55% of expats, retirees and nomads reported that they were either Extremely Satisfied (50%) or Very Satisfied (25%).
Surprisingly, only 57% of respondents indicated that they were either Extremely Satisfied (43%) or Very Satisfied (14%). Another 29% reported being Moderately Satisfied.
However, respondents were also asked about Local Grocery Shopping options, and 80% of respondents said they were either Extremely Satisfied (67%) or Very Satisfied (13%), and 93% were either Extremely Satisfied (60%) or Very Satisfied (33%) with the local fresh food. Satisfaction with fresh food options is 15% above the global average.
When asked about the quality of their local water, 93% of expats globally reported being either Extremely Satisfied (73%) or Very Satisfied (20%).
Overall, only 57% of expats in Italy reported being either Extremely Satisfied or Very Satisfied with their social life, and 50% said that they were either Extremely Satisfied or Very Satisfied with making friends locally.
Direct Quotes From Expats in Italy
"People are friendly and helpful but the language barrier is a huge hindrance. Being in a small city there is not that many activities for interaction."
"Many opportunities are available to meet people. It depends on the person. Speaking the local language is beneficial."
"Italy would not be Italy without the warm-hearted Italians. Although Florentines can be reserved they are used to tourists and most make their money from them and so basic socialization is easy (with some language skills and big smiles)."
"I like the people, the general way of life, wine and dine, the arts, the transport facilities and that I am not far from other cities or towns."
"Beautiful location on the Adriatic and easy to get to airport or train. Very inexpensive compared to USA. Good food and healthcare. Prefer Europe to the United States as quality of life much better."
"I love the area, the location allows you to live outside a city but within 20 minutes of the city, the sea, and the skiing. The people are kind and the food is fantastic. The problem, with Italy in general, is it is hard to get mortgages or loans, even for natives. The banking system is very flawed."
About the Author
Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.
Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.
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- 2023 Guide to Living in Italy
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- More Advice about Retiring in Italy