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KL is the World’s Best City for expats, survey finds

KUALA LUMPUR: An InterNations survey has ranked Kuala Lumpur (KL) as the World’s Best City for expatriates in their Expat City Ranking 2021.

KL topped the list of 57 other cities including Malaga (Spain) and Dubai (United Arab Emirates), which took the second and third spots.

The survey, which included a global network of 12,000 online respondents, found that 85% were generally happy living in the Malaysian capital, while 65% found it a breeze to make friends.

“It’s easy to live here, and the people are wonderful,” a KL-based US expat was quoted saying.

This was further echoed in the report as KL also took first place for the ‘Getting Settled Index’, which looked into how welcoming and affordable a city was, as well as the ‘Finance and Housing Index’, which saw 91% respondents agreeing that it was easy to find homes in KL versus the global rate of 60%.

In addition, 74% of respondents found housing affordable, in comparison to the 42% globally.

KL also came first place in the ‘Finance and Housing Index’ in 2020 and has consistently stood in the top three since 2017.

In terms of job and financial security, 78% of respondents said they were comfortable with KL’s living costs, 78% were happy with the quality of healthcare, 72% believed they had a good work-life balance, and 71% were happy with their jobs.

The report also included where expatriates feel the city falls short.

KL took the 41st spot for the ‘Quality of Urban Living Index’, which took into account sub-categories like urban environment (38th), personal safety (42nd), public transportation (47th), as well as mentions of political stability.

This annual survey, which was conducted in January 2021, asked a global network of respondents to look into four main categories: quality of life (healthy environment and internet infrastructure), transition/settling in (language barriers and friendliness of local residents), personal finance (access to affordable health care) and working abroad (such as job security and a stable local economy).

Reference