Are you a diligent US-based worker who’s tired of watching inflation wipe out what little wage gains you’ve managed to scrape together over the past few years? Well, if you’re looking for a pay boost, but don’t want to go through all the trouble of finding another better-paying job, Bloomberg has a suggestion: Try moving to Singapore.


According to HSBC’s annual Expat Explorer, 45% of expats reported earning more money working abroad than they did working in the US. For the average expat, moving abroad boosted their pay by 21%, with the highest-paying jobs found in the US, Singapore and Hong Kong.


Expats living in Switzerland, notorious for its high cost of living, reported an annual income boost totaling $61,000. Salaries averaged $203,000 per year, twice the global level. 


Meanwhile, Singapore was ranked best place to live and work for a fourth straight year, ahead of New Zealand, Germany and Canada, while Switzerland (probably because of the high cost of living mentioned above) ranked eighth.

“Singapore packs everything a budding expat could want into one of the world’s smallest territories,” said John Goddard, head of HSBC Expat.

Sweden won first place in the ‘family’ category, while New Zealand, Spain and Taiwan led the ‘experience’ category.

If moving abroad has always been a personal dream, then HSBC can name myriad benefits – both financial and familial – that often accompany expat status. However, the report had its blemishes. For example, the survey of 22,318 people showed that women often trailed behind men in terms of the level of benefit they experienced. For example, relocating only boosted a woman’s income by 27%, compared with 47% for men (apparently, HSBC found, the fabled wealth gap exists outside the confines of the US).

But the bank also found several justifications for this that had nothing to do with women being paid less for doing the same exact job. Just half the women surveyed worked full time, and the average level of education was lower for women than for men.

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