The Time is Now!

Exchange Rates, Expat Taxes, and Setting Your Sights on Winter Travel

This article was published in the Escape Artist Weekly Newsletter on June 29, 2018. If you would like to subscribe to the newsletter, please click here.

Hello Readers,

Welcome back to our weekly round-up. As the work week ends, let’s take a look at what has been happening around the world and with Escape Artist lately. This week, I found some stories that overseas business owners will want to hear, as well as those who live or are thinking of living in Abu Dhabi.

If you are thinking about starting a business abroad, we have a collection of the best cities for millennial entrepreneurs. I’ve also found some hefty deals for your next winter vacation in Europe, and you will find some great news in regards to global exchange rates while we introduce you to an old friend who can help you utilize them.

As always, the newest Escape Artist content can be found at the end of this newsletter. This week, we feature articles with some travel suggestions and info on what you can do with your self-directed IRA.


Ready to Start Your Own Business?

At Escape Artist, we love the idea of the digital nomad. The new wave of millennials exploring the world while working on their own is growing, and it is set to become the new normal. In fact, a study has shown that half of all millennials would consider working abroad.

GoCompare has released a new study that lays out the best cities around the world for young people to start their businesses.

At the top of this list is the tech-savvy city of Tallinn, Estonia, where learning technology is encouraged at an early age. It also has a low cost of living compared to other European destinations. Canadian cities like Vancouver, Ottawa, Montreal, and Toronto were all featured in the top ten.

Auckland and Wellington in New Zealand made it into the top three with how easy it is to do business in the country.

Other places include Singapore, London, Boston, and the Silicon Valley in California.

Here is the top 10 list:

  1. Estonia
  2. Toronto, Canada
  3. New Zealand
  4. Singapore
  5. London, UK
  6. Montreal, Canada
  7. Vancouver, Canada
  8. Silicon Valley, U.S.
  9. Ottawa, Canada
  10. Boston, MA, U.S.


The Time is Now!

This week, Escape Artist’s own Tyler Sorce brought us the latest news on global exchange rates and what that could mean for you. According to the article, as of mid-June, the U.S. dollar-to-euro exchange rate is looking very good for those looking to make purchases in Europe.

With that being said, he also discusses one of the leaders in non-bank exchange services, Moneycorp. With their services, you can make overseas money transfers in order to start a business, pay employees, purchase real estate, and so much more.

Read more if you want to learn about the great services offered by Moneycorp, such as forward contracts, stop loss, and beyond!


Expat Business Owners Get Ready for a New Tax

Americans who own business overseas should prepare for a new tax that began late last year – what they are calling the transition tax. The levy calls for a 15.5% tax on foreign earnings that are being held in cash and cash equivalents, and 8% on other earnings. This applies to shareholders of foreign corporations as well as American small business owners based in a different country.

The goal of the tax is to repatriate money made offshore. It is holding large corporations accountable to pay their taxes on cash held overseas.

For those who fear having to pay the tax, the IRS has implemented a payment plan that gives the taxpayers the option to pay in installments over the course of eight years.


It Might Be Time to Move

Expats living in Abu Dhabi will soon face a rent tax increase after the Abu Dhabi Executive Council approved the plan in May.

Initially, the tax was at 3%, first announced in 2016 – but after this change has passed, the fee would increase to 5% for all spaces other than residential villas, which will be raised to 7.5%.

If you are not fond of this increase and need a new place to live, or if you are just looking for a new country to call home, Escape Artist has all the best resources to point you in the right direction. Your first step should be to check out our “Live” webpage where you will find everything you need to know about living abroad.


Are You Ready for Winter?

For those of you who have your summer plans set but are still looking to fill your winter goals, Icelandair is ready for you. For the months of November and December, this airline will be dropping prices to several European destinations.Consumer Resource Guide

If that doesn’t sound appealing enough, many of the trips will include a 24-hour layover in Iceland, which means two trips in one!

Some flights are priced at just $95 in each direction, if you pack lightly of course. Most of the flights are around $300 each for a round trip, which is great compared to the $850 they usually average.

If you’re interested, you need to act fast. The deal won’t last long!


Thank you for reading this week’s round-up! If you’re interested in learning what it’s like to become an expat, don’t hesitate to ask some questions. At Escape Artist, we aim to ensure that your travels abroad run as smoothly as they can.

Whether you are planning on living, working, retiring, or investing overseas, Escape Artist can help you every step of the way. Don’t forget to check out the eBook store for the 2018 Expat Tax Guide and our wonderful country guides!  

For more information on what’s going on in the international scene, check out some of this week’s newest articles!


P.S. Do you have questions about how to live abroad and what the experience is like? Are you looking for international investment opportunities? Want to meet like-minded people who are in the same boat as you? Come hang out with other EA readers and the Escape Artist staff! We will be hosting an event this year and can’t wait to meet you!

Click here to find out more information and to stay in the loop on locations and dates! It’s important that this event be exactly what YOU want – no alternate agenda or product pitches! This is about answering YOUR questions!

In order for the event to be a success, take a second to fill out this survey. By sending us your thoughts, you can tailor the event to your specific overseas needs. We will also be supplying a 10% discount during registration to everyone that filled out the survey to make the event possible!

See you there!

Always Strike While the Iron is Hot: Global Exchange Rates

We are fast approaching the best rate for exchanging U.S. dollars to euros this year.

As of June 19th, the exchange rate is at 1.1570. A positively performing U.S. economy, coupled with rising interest rates, has aided the dollar in recent months.

To put this in perspective, let’s say you are thinking about purchasing a €200k property at the current exchange rate of 1.1570. Right now, the cost would be around $231,400 USD.

Rewind a few months ago to Feb 19th, when the exchange rate was 1.2420, and that same property would have cost you…

Read more…

You Can Take Your Self-Directed IRA Offshore

There are traditional IRAs, and then there are self-directed IRAs. Both have their perks, but it’s likely that one type appeals more to your own personal situation than the other. The traditional IRA is one that is held at a brokerage firm. You’ve probably heard of a few of them, like Charles Schwab, Merrill Edge, or TD Ameritrade. This brokerage will offer you terms for the investments you can purchase through them, and those investments are usually within the category of stocks and bonds. They take a small percentage of what you put in for managing your account and offer you a certain percentage as well. Then, there are self-directed IRAs.

When making use of the self-directed version of the IRA, you choose your…

Read more…

Why Self-Directed IRAs are Sometimes the Better Option

When planning your IRA for retirement, some types of investment methods can work better for you than others, but do you know which is which? Most commonly, people choose to invest in a Roth, or traditional, IRA. With this investment method, you can partner with a bank or brokerage firm to choose between different stocks, bonds, and mutual funds. These and exchange-traded funds and certificates of deposit are all that make up the most common types of IRAs for retirement savings. This investment method appeals most to those who haven’t been too involved with the variety of other investment vehicles that are out there, and they may not be as comfortable or knowledgeable as they’d want to be to get involved with them now.

The self-directed IRA appeals to those who are, or who have been, involved more with…

Read more…

5 Latin American Vacation Ideas for Your Family in 2018

Europe is usually where families are headed in the summer months. This is Europe’s busy season, after all. Not everyone can head out that far, though. So, what if you want to take a nice, relaxing vacation with the family while spending a little less time and/or money by staying a bit closer to home? Don’t rule out Latin American vacation destinations. There’s a reason why so many people choose to retire to Latin America when it’s all said and done. The culture and the slower way of life really stick with you. Having said that, here are 5 great places to take your family on vacation this summer:

  1. Mexico

Think Cancun or Cozumel. These destinations are popular, and that’s because they have a lot to offer vacationers. Lots of time in the sun, snorkeling, and…

Read more…

Top Travel Destinations for Summer 2018

It’s time to start planning summer vacations! This is a great year for travel (pretty much any year is), and there are some surprising and not-so-surprising popular travel destinations on this year’s list. Of course, summer is Europe’s busy season, so you know many of these top spots will be there, but if you’re brainstorming for ideas on the best places to visit this summer, here is a list of the most popular ones based on what is trending right now!

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

When you think of Abu Dhabi, you probably think of a flashy and wealthy city rich on…

Read more…

This article was published in the Escape Artist Weekly Newsletter on June 29, 2018. If you would like to subscribe to the newsletter, please click here.