“Cyprus in your heart” is the beautiful tourism slogan of this mesmerizing island. Living in Cyprus is magnificent and has the potential to make your life better in many ways.
Are you a retiree, asking yourself “Is Cyprus a good place to retire?” Or are you an entrepreneur, digital nomad or business owner considering going beyond a Cyprus holiday and set up your business in Cyprus?
Then look no further. In this blog article by Immigration Explorer, discover everything about living in Cyprus and the Mediterranean Lifestyle. Don’t forget to check our website for more monthly articles on everything around investment immigration.
You have also come to the right place if you are seeking Cyprus expat news. Or if you are relocating to Cyprus and seeking job opportunities. Also continue reading, if you are a traveler, contemplating the best place for a family holiday or solo relaxation in Cyprus.
1. Great Location and Vibrant History
To begin with, the main language and cultural heritage in Cyprus are Greek. Learning a few practical terms will make it easy for you to find your way around and make new friends. Most of the people in Cyprus are young, educated, and often fluent in other languages as well. English is spoken by almost everyone (approximately 90%) in Cyprus while other languages such as Russian, French, or German are also prevalent.
The Republic of Cyprus, also known as the Jewel of the Mediterranean, is the 3rd largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. Cyprus has been an influential tourist destination in the Mediterranean for several years now.
As a visitor, expat or retiree you will get to know a historic and fascinating culture. Its strategic location has led to its occupation and colonization by a large number of ancient civilizations, all of which have left permanent marks.
Standing at the crossroads of three continents (Europe, Asia, Africa), Cyprus embraced these ancient cultures for thousands of years, making it a culturally and historically vibrant island today.
EU & Human Development Index
Cyprus is a sovereign nation and joined the European Union (EU) in 2004 and is a member of the Eurozone since 2008. The Republic holds an advanced, high-income economy and a very high Human Development Index. It is one of the safest countries in the world!
The island, as well as the capital city of Nicosia, is divided into two parts: the Northern part which is occupied by the Turks and Greek south. However, the Republic of Cyprus is internationally (except Turkey) recognized as one single independent state.
Cyprus is the island of the goddess of love Aphrodite, or Venus as she is known in the Roman culture. According to legend, she rose from the sea just outside Paphos. This place connects myth and astronomy: as Cypriot nights are often very clear, you can clearly see the planet, Venus. In Paphos, you will also come across authentic relics from the past as well as an archeological site that dates back to the 4th century BC.
Tinally, the remains of ancient palaces and tombs gave this town the status of a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Cyprus is also one of the top 10 wreck diving sites in the world.
2. Sunny Weather
Cyprus awaits you with its pleasant Mediterranean climate – real summers and mild winters. Imagine a place with 340 days of sunshine per year and beaches that stretch for miles. This is the essence of living in Cyprus.
Summers typically last for seven months, from April until the end of October. On the coastal areas, the average daytime temperature is around 32ᵒ C. Nighttime temperatures can vary between 13ᵒ C and 24ᵒ C. Summer is not only hot but also very dry. In the cities, however, temperatures are higher in summer and colder in winter.
At the same time, the summer sun in Cyprus can be very powerful. While most people soak up the rays, it is advisable to wear sunscreen as well as protective gear (clothing, hats, and sunglasses).
During winter, the average daytime temperature usually goes down to 16ᵒ C with nighttime temperatures as low as 9ᵒ C. Nevertheless, you will see sunny days all through the year. Between November and March, rain showers are frequent.
3. Gorgeous Nature
Cypriots are very proud of the fact that in their country, you can go skiing and take a dip in the ocean on the same day. Between January and March expats enjoy traveling to the mountains of Troodos for skiing followed by a refreshing swim in the ocean.
If you are tired of beautiful sandy beaches and crystal clear water, explore other parts of Cyprus and its gorgeous nature. From salt lakes in Limassol and Larnaca to pine forests and waterfalls. The island’s nature is versatile and breathtaking.
Likewise, you can go hiking in one of the 100 well-mapped nature trails and explore the rich fauna and flora. Cyprus also has 5 official camping sites and 40 different picnic sites. Spend time in nature with your loved ones and relax.
4. Relaxed Lifestyle and Delicious Foods
The stress-free lifestyle in Cyprus and the Mediterranean atmosphere makes it a popular tourist destination and Europe’s top spot for expats, business professionals, and retirees from all over the world. The island’s laid-back lifestyle and little pollution make it one of the healthiest and most relaxing countries to live in.
You surely have heard of the Mediterranean diet. It’s a healthy and versatile cuisine. One of the first Greek phrases you should learn is “siga siga”. This means “slowly slowly”. You will hear this mantra many times a day. It not only applies to Mediterranean food but life in general. No rush!
The fabulous Cypriot food should be enjoyed slowly, with friends and family. Cypriot food is similar to Greek cuisine with Lebanese and Turkish influences. The most famous dish is Meze. This is an abbreviation of “Mezedes”, which means “little delicacies”. Meze is mixed snacks similar to antipasti or tapas. Other traditional Cypriot foods include souvlakia (grilled meat kebabs), fried halloumi cheese, olives, pitta bread, artichokes, chickpeas and rabbit stew (stifado).
To sum it up, living in Cyprus is easy, fun and versatile. The high quality of life and the country’s relaxed place make it an ideal place for retirees, business owners, vacationers, and expats seeking a better work-life balance. If you are seeking entertainment, then Nicosia, Limassol, Larnaca, Paphos and Famagusta offer movies, arcades, bowling and more.
5. Affordable Cost of Living
Only very few things are expensive. Most goods and commodities are average priced compared to the rest of Europe. Moreover, daily groceries usually are between 10 to 20% cheaper than in Northern Europe.
Cheap, in particular, are local seasonal fruits, water, electricity, services around the house, and alcohol. Competitively expensive are internet access, milk products, electronics, clothes, and electricity (AC in the summer and heating in the winter).
According to statistics, the cost of living in Cyprus is about 25% cheaper than the European average. With the money earned abroad, most expats enjoy a higher purchasing power in Cyprus. More than 100,000 foreigners – expats, retirees, entrepreneurs, business owners, digital nomads – live in Cyprus. That’s about 10% of the island’s 1.2 million population.
Most expats are from the EU (Greece, UK), the Philippines, Russia, and China. Most foreigners live in the capital of Nicosia. Paphos, Larnaca, Limassol, and Famagusta are also home to thousands of expats. If you choose to live in the capital Nicosia – the city has it all. It is modern, historic, practical, and diverse – it has everything you need to build a fantastic lifestyle for you and your family. Besides, there are also many houses to buy in Limassol Cyprus as well as in the other big cities and more quiet villages.
6. Excellent Healthcare
If you are considering relocating to Cyprus, you will be happy to hear about the cutting edge healthcare in Cyprus, which is on par with international standards. The medical system on the island is highly advanced, even resulting in an industry of medical tourism. And the population of Cyprus is considered one of the healthiest in the Mediterranean area.
Cyprus has many benefits: fees and prices for treatments and other services are comparatively low, English is spoken and understood all across the island, and the exposure to the Mediterranean climate can itself be healing. Patients from all over the world value Cypriot health care.
Cyprus has state-of-the-art healthcare facilities. Recently, several new, specialized clinics for treatments that previously had to be performed abroad, opened. Even complex operations, such as open-heart surgery, are now available in Cyprus. There are plenty of doctors, clinics, and hospitals in Cyprus and its large expat-friendly municipalities.
Public or Private?
You can choose between public and private healthcare institutions. Both are of similar quality and complement each other. Allianz Worldwide Care homepage offers a search engine for medical services in Cyprus. Besides, emergency treatment at government hospitals is free of charge for everyone, including foreigners.
Short-term visitors from EU countries who have a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) are also entitled to free essential care in public institutions. Basic healthcare services in public clinics are free of charge or offered for low fees to selected groups of Cypriot citizens and EU nationals with permanent residence status. Further information is provided by the Ministry of Health.
In June 2019, an improved National Healthcare Systems “NHS” was launched. Healthcare beneficiaries – citizens and tax residents – will be able to access primary care services for free. This includes doctor visits, buying medicine, laboratory and other examinations. This new system will be fully operational in June 2020.
British expats are entitled to state healthcare even if they do not contribute to the Cypriot social security system, as long as they meet certain criteria. Learn more on the official UK government site.
The rate of epidemics and infectious diseases on the island has been consistently low for many years. Foreigners entering the country aren’t required to get any vaccinations.
If you need to visit a doctor or a clinic and rely on public transport, here’s what you should know: the public transportation infrastructure still has room for improvement. The island does not have any kind of railway system. The public transportation options are limited to buses. In fact, they are largely available and operate in a national intercity network. Check Cyprus by Bus for useful information on bus routes in the main regions of the country.
7. High Safety
At the same time, Cyprus is one of the safest European countries to live in. The crime rate across this island is very low, with the occasional report of petty theft as it is the case in other cities as well. However, travelers are advised to keep their passports, money, and valuables in a safe place. Female travelers should apply the usual precautionary measures that they would in any other foreign country.
This island is a great place to raise children. Kids can play outdoors without their parents having to worry about them. Of course, adults should keep an eye on their little ones to prevent any accidents and injuries.
8. Favorable tax and financial regulations
Cyprus is a great place to be for business and leisure. The corporate income tax rate is at a competitive 12.5%, the work-force is well educated and the business environment is friendly in general.
There are also individual tax incentives for managers who are being relocated to Cyprus by their companies. This also applies to people who move to Cyprus on their own, including retirees. In 2018, the rules for Cyprus tax resident under the so-called Non-Domicile or “Non-Dom” status have become even more favorable. Internationally generated income from interest and investment, for example from stock trading, is not taxable in Cyprus. The country guarantees this program for the next 17 years.
Tax Residents & Non-Dom Status
According to the law, anyone who spends over 60 days (2 months) per year in Cyprus is entitled to become a tax resident or Non-Dom. This makes it a very attractive place for digital nomads.
Expats and investors looking to buy luxury homes are attracted to incentives offered by the government. In fact, this includes tax breaks, title deeds at half the price, and the opportunity to get an EU Passport.
The process of purchasing property in Cyprus can take some time. This is mainly because of the mandatory application you have to make to the Council of Ministers. However, the process is quite straightforward and easy, as long as you find an agency to help you with the documentation.
Living in Cyprus with Immigration Explorer
To sum it up, retirees, entrepreneurs, travelers, expats, and medical tourists value our services to buy a dream home or office space. Here’s how Immigration Explorer will make your dream of living in Cyprus come true:
- Advantages for Retirees
- Retiring in Cyprus is an exciting and smart opportunity. Immigration Explorer is here to help you with the relocation process – whether you plan to retire to Cyprus from the UK or any other country. Ample sunshine and warm temperatures await you!
- Advantages for Entrepreneurs
- For business owners, digital nomads and millennial entrepreneurs Cyprus offers favorable tax and financial regulations. Entrepreneurs value a comfortable lifestyle and worldwide access to Cyprus. Many also consider buying an apartment or an office space as an investment. Are you wondering how to buy an apartment or how to buy a house in Cyprus? Immigration Explorer is here to help!
- Advantages for Expats
- Do you dream about emigrating to another country? Cyprus is a short flight away from major destinations in Europe. For expat jobs, Cyprus is a great place, as well as for housing opportunities. Its excellent location in the EU makes it an ideal spot to live and work. Cyprus is a melting pot and hotspot for influences from Greece, Turkey, and many other countries. The Mediterranean lifestyle welcomes you!
- Advantages for Medical Tourists
- With its prime health care, Cyprus is increasingly popular as an EU medical tourism destination. We are happy to organize the best visit for you! This includes finding the best treatment clinic, hospital, or center for your needs, flight and accommodation booking, and organizing tours and trips in the area for your recovery time.
Contact Immigration Explorer today to learn more and for your personalized offer.