The dream of living and working abroad has never been more achievable. But not all professions offer the same opportunities across all countries. If you’re looking to take your work overseas, it’s good to have an idea of which countries have demand for your job role and where you can expect to find a competitive salary before you jet off.
Discover the best-paid jobs you can work while travelling the world, and how much you can expect to earn along the way.
It’s a common misconception among expats, that the salary they can expect overseas will be much lower than at home. In reality though, some of the best countries to live as an expat also boast much higher salaries for certain careers than offered in the UK, giving you a better standard of living and more options to live the lifestyle you want.
According to a recent survey by InterNations, about one-third of working expats (33%) have a gross yearly income ranging from £40,000 to £80,000. Four in nine (44%) make £40,000 or less, while 23% make more than £80,000.
And this isn’t only for expats with jobs based with overseas companies. With the world of remote working being more accessible than ever, opportunities for digital nomads to build careers overseas have grown hugely in recent years.
In fact, of those expats working abroad, 17% found a job on their own, while 15% were recruited internationally and 13% were sent by an employer. More than 1 in 10 overseas workers are freelance or self-employed.
There are an increasing number of countries offering digital nomad visas. These allow individual expats to live and work in the country for a set period of time. Countries with the longest stay period include:
Visa validity period (months)
*Digital nomad visas in Spain are renewable
We take a closer look at some of the highest paying jobs for expats, and which countries are offering the best salaries.
Careers in finance can be found all over the world, with many banks and financial service companies holding an international presence. Expats who can show an understanding of the global economy, or demonstrate expertise of local economy in a foreign market are set to be in high demand as more businesses look to expand overseas.
The world’s leading financial centres tend to be big cities, and in 2022 included: New York, London, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Singapore.
Expats searching for roles as a Financial Advisor can expect the best salary in these five countries:
Country with highest salary for a Financial Advisor
Marketing is a global language. Whatever industry you work in, marketing will usually have a part to play.
As an expat living and working abroad, joining a marketing company with international links can make you an invaluable asset, providing a first-hand understanding of new markets and insights into local cultures.
Careers in marketing span everything from account management and client relations, to advertising and social media. Here are the top paying countries for Social Media Management:
Country with highest salary for Social Media Management
With a reliable internet connection and the right expertise, web developers can establish a career from anywhere in the world.
As a nomadic developer, you’ll need to find a company who are either happy for you to work abroad, have international offices, or start picking up contract work.
Web development is a skilled profession and tends to demand a relatively high salary across the board. Here are the five OECD countries offering the best salaries for web developers:
Country with highest salary for Web Development
According to IBISWorld, around 90% of graphic designers are freelance. This means with the right tools, a sturdy internet connection and stand-out portfolio, you can build your graphic design career from anywhere in the world.
Salaries for freelance graphic designers vary greatly depending your experience and hours worked.
Country with highest salary for Graphic Design
There are an estimated 250,000 native English speakers working as foreign language tutors abroad. Many work in local schools, or as private tutors. However, since the pandemic there is also a huge online demand for English tutors, allowing expats to offer remote teaching from anywhere in the world.
Teaching is a popular career choice among expats, with around 12% of people working abroad choosing jobs in education.
Here are the OECD countries offering the highest salary for expat teachers:
Country with highest salary for a Teacher
Making a living as a copywriter is easily done on the move. Every company needs copywriters to advertise, communicate with their customers and create a professional online presence.
Professional qualifications in copywriting, content strategy, and SEO can strengthen your skillset further and help you stand out from the crowd.
Here are the top paying OECD countries for jobs in copywriting:
Country with highest salary for Copywriting
Nursing is one of the most high-demand jobs for expats, with many countries facing a critical shortage of healthcare workers.
Israel, New Zealand and Norway are among those countries currently offering great opportunities for expat nurses and healthcare professionals abroad.
Expats nurses can expect the highest salary working in these OECD countries:
Country with highest salary for Nursing
Hospitality and tourism offer great opportunities for expats living and working abroad. From bar work and hotel-based roles, to careers with the local tourist board – no matter your experience, you’re sure to find a steady stream of income.
Salaries in tourism and hospitality vary depending on your role and experience. To give you an idea, these five countries offer waiters and waitresses the best salaries:
Country with highest salary for Waiters
Wherever you chose to live and work, go with total peace of mind
With the world of work more digital than ever, there’s never been a better time to take your work on the road.
Wherever you decide to move, just make sure you have the confidence of international health insurance – it can give you cover in multiple countries. At William Russell, we have been providing worldwide health cover for 30 years. Speak to us today to find out more about how international health insurance could support you.
Looking for international health insurance?Learn more about our plans
All country and job salary data compiled using Glassdoor, figures correct as of 07/12/21