The sense of “wellbeing” appears to be a strong incentive for digital nomads to move to Greece, according to an HSBC survey released recently.
More specifically, reported by Forbes, the annual HSBC “Expat Explorer” study conducted on over 20,000 expats around the world ranked Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand, the UAE and Channel Islands, Guernsey and Jersey as places they would consider moving to citing the lifestyle, economy and future prospects as reasons.
The study also found that 80 percent of remote workers are not planning on going anywhere soon opting instead to stay in their host country for the next 12 months at least. Only 7 percent said they were planning to move.
According to Forbes, there is an increasing interest among remote workers for Mediterranean countries with more digital nomads considering the idea of moving there motivated by the good quality of life.
“Wellbeing was also a clear factor,” said Cameron Senior, interim head of HSBC Expat. “When we asked if they expected improvements to their physical health and mental wellbeing in the next 12 months, Mediterranean countries scored well.”
Spain, Cyprus and Portugal scored highest for quality of life while Greece topped the ranking in terms of “wellbeing,” followed by Spain, Portugal and Turkey.
The study goes on to reveal a growing demand for co-working and co-living spaces, which is up 10-fold since last year. The Forbes report refers to Greek Escape, a co-working and co-living property on the island of Crete, which is winning over remote workers thanks to its warm climate.
Greece, in the meantime, has introduced incentives in efforts to attract digital nomads. Last month, the government launched a 12-month visa allowing digital nomads from non-EU countries to stay for a year. So far, approximately 3,000 people have applied. It has also introduced a 50 percent income tax cut for EU residents moving their tax residency to the country. Through the scheme, authorities are aiming to keep digital nomads and their businesses in Greece in an attempt to make up for the extensive ‘brain drain’ during the country’s debt crisis.
Greek authorities estimate that 100,000 digital nomads working and living in the country for six months of the year would boost the economy by 1.6 billion euros through taxes and local spending.
However, the country still has a long way to go. A recent study ranked Athens 63rd on a list of 100 destinations identified by remote workers.