Well, I’ve finally reached that point in my life which I’ve been dreading for the past 4 years: post-grad. I’ve only ever had one plan for what I would do once I finish college and that is to live abroad. My greatest life ambition at the moment is to find myself working however many odd jobs it takes to eat and sleep in a foreign location that is culturally stimulating. I am incredibly privileged to have the adequate education, capital and passport it takes to have the option of going to almost any country to settle and find work. It’s an incredibly scary time in my life, but it’s also exhilarating because I feel like I have the world at my feet. And sure I occasionally envy my friends who have already landed lucrative salaried jobs in the grownup world, but then I remind myself that I’m not the one chained to a desk and I feel a lot better—check in to see how smug I’m feeling a few years down the road during my quarter-life crisis.
When deciding where to live, I only have a few basic requisites: a relatively cheap standard of living, i.e. cheap drinks, lots of good looking people and a bumping social scene, which I think most other 20-somethings would find favorable to live in as well. Despite that degree we painstakingly busted ass to get, for most recent college grads our most marketable skills are along the lines of speaking English, making drinks and waiting tables. But if you’re going to hustle you might as well hustle in a new, foreign country right? Keeping these things in mind, here are a few exciting and promising options for your next home that awaits you in a faraway land.
I only ever hear good things about Berlin. People tell me it’s edgy, it’s hipster, the nightlife never ends and it’s cheap. An apartment in the city center ranges from 400 to 700 euros and groceries are also less than you would imagine. The job market for expats doesn’t seem bad either as I know a couple of Cal grads who found work in Berlin immediately after graduating—one as a content writer for an English publication and the other as an architecture intern. Berlin seems to be having a heyday at the moment so go join in on the excitement in one of Europe’s most stimulating capitols.
Mexico City D.F., Mexico
My best friend in Madrid is from Mexico City and she always tells me that for the equivalent of 5 euros, in D.F. I could drink enough until I’m passed out face down in the streets. There aren’t enough people who tell me about how much I would love D.F. due to my undying love for tequila, good looking Latinos and preference for speaking Mexican rather than Castilian Spanish (no mames wuey!). In Mexico City you’re looking at $1.95 to $2.75 beers (in USD) at restaurants, less than $10 cab rides and a three-bedroom apartment for around $1500. I hear the bar scene and nightlife there is lively, not to mention the many music festivals around Mexico that take place on beaches in neighboring provinces. For those Americans who spent all their lives only hearing about our neighboring country in the south without ever visiting it, it’s time to pack up your bags and go see how the other half lives!
Panama City, Panama
Moving to the metropolitan capital at the tip of Central America sounds like a dream right now. With one of the most robust economies in the hemisphere and a lively expat community to reach out to, Panama City seems like a unique, favorable destination for young nomads looking for a place to explore. Along with cheap food and drinks, there seems to be a need for teachers and English instructors with more demand than supply. With lots of bright-colored beaches and tropical temperatures, who wouldn’t want to spend their post-grad years here?
I’ve always had a number of friends who frequently travel back and forth to Taipei and they always talk about how much fun it is to party there, how cheap the delicious night market food is as well as how incredibly hot it gets, if you don’t mind the heat. Taipei is a bustling international city with low living costs and an incredible nightlife. You’re looking at $400-800 for a one-bedroom apartment in the city center with pretty good chances of getting a teaching job simply as a native speaker with no previous experience. So what are you waiting for? Get on up and go find yourself in one of Asia’s most modern and sensational metropolitan cities.