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Singapore, Tokyo, Kobe, Yokohama, Osaka voted top Asian cities for expats

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@Salus

According to http://www.mercer.com/qualityofliving

Asia Top 5 Cities

1 Singapore (25th globally) 2 Tokyo, Japan (43rd globally) 3 Kobe, Japan (47th globally) 4 Yokohoma, Japan (49th globally) 5 Osaka, Japan (57th globally)

Interestingly the same numbers appear under the URL: http://www.mercer.com/articles/quality-of-living-survey-report-2011

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Tokyo is actually pretty English-friendly, especially their subway and commuter rail systems. Station signs are in both Japanese and English, and in-train announcements are in both Japanese and English, too.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Sendai & Morioka get my vote. The girls here in Tohoku are gorgeous. What else matters?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Living in Kobe City for 12 years, so I would put that top of my list. My favourite city here.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Really need an edit feature on this site

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Singapore is the best big city I've been to but New York and Rio de Janeiro are the most fun.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Someone forgot about Fukushima and contaminated ground water in all the Japanese cities voted.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Worldwide, Vienna, Zurich and Auckland were named as the best places to live, wow my old home town came in third !!

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Singapore is nice but too hot (its nice at the moment though). Still prefer my time in tokyo to SGP. Woner where HK came?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

For extra credit, which one of the cities is not like the others?

Chubbiness, HK real estate bubble and giant caste of maltreated domestic servants that by law must live with their employers, plus ever eroding freedoms (it is China remember) might have pushed down its favorability.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Publishing this sort of news this way seems rather useless to me. "Best city for expatriates"… What does that mean, if then other cities turn out better for 'living'…? Expatriates of where? Tokyo? In reference to what somebody, to live in a city, would value political stability of the city as the first factor of judgment…? I find it a bit silly.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

I love to live in Singapore with my kids. Yokohama was great too.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

singapore has become a lot more expensive of late. Rentals, food, alcohol all pretty dear. and other form of entertainment have gone through the roof. roppongi Hills is surely a nicer place for a well-heeled gaijin expat.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

I'm curious how Singapore rates as a place for retirement for expats. I'm guessing other Asian countries might be a better option.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Looking forward to spending some of my years in Penang, Malaysia. Because I don't like the coming Japanese 55% tax rate for some odd reason.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Singapore really? Many says it's boring and stressful. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=140PM1KgfEU

Singapore is actually quite boring. You can do it in a day as a tourist but living there may be nice as the public transport is convenient and you can find a gazillion restaurants. I heard cars cost an arm and a leg though. Can someone verify this?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@Raymond Chuang this is in most major Japanese Cities. Kobe yaaj!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

TorafusuTorasanFeb. 20, 2014 - 11:32AM JST

For extra credit, which one of the cities is not like the others?

Chubbiness, HK real estate bubble and giant caste of maltreated domestic servants that by law must live with their employers, plus ever eroding freedoms (it is China remember) might have pushed down its favorability.

Agree with what you said. HK is going to worst since "hand over" in 1997.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

i wonder why tokyo is down so far on the global list? western expats don't know how to use chopsticks? but seriously, i think tokyo is top 10 in the world.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Singapore really? Many says it's boring and stressful. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=140PM1KgfEU

roberto60FEB. 20, 2014 - 04:21PM JST japan,japan,japan the best

Excuse me, we're talking about cities here.

Peter PayneFEB. 20, 2014 - 08:21PM JST Looking forward to spending some of my years in Penang, Malaysia. Because I don't like the coming Japanese 55% tax rate for some odd reason.

Are you sure about that? Well, you know what they say "Malaysia truly Asia" when it comes to crime rates. So be very wary. http://www.valuewalk.com/2013/11/malaysia-among-the-most-dangerous-countries/

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

I thought Fukuoka used to too the Asia list. Maybe it was for most livable? Anyway, I miss it. I'd love to move back.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Singapore really? Many says it's boring

The survey doesn't take into account if a place is "boring". It takes into account LIVING conditions for expats, to be more specific, expat businessmen in living their lives conducting international business. It is not meant for regular travelers or even regular folks moving to one of these locations.

This is the same group that releases the world's most expensive city reports, again geared towards expatriot businessmen not "regular folks". Tokyo ranks near the top 3 because they tally the cost of a taxi ride from Narita to Central Tokyo, ingoring the fact that most people either take the train or the bus.

The polls are not meant for regular people, so it is meaningless to me or you and most people other than the elite business traveler.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Major Western European and North American cities ranked higher than 43rd place globally.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Would like to know how Tokyo's doing worldwide!

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

i agree. i lived in HK for a year and didn't like it much. SGP at the moment and it is pretty cool (both as a place and weather at the moment). Still miss tokyo like crazy though....... maybe because i had to leave miss tokyo behind?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

japan,japan,japan the best

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

What? Baghdad one of the worst places to live? Really? I thought it was a peaceful little town and absolutely the safest place to be on earth! Yeah right! Of courses it's not going to be safe there. How did it even manage to get mentioned? Anyway, I love Singapore but yeah, really, really hot! Okinawa in my opinion is safer than Tokyo.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Paris was ranked 27th....

It's a joke.

Expatriates of where?

Of Paris..."said Emmanuel Rivere of Mercer France." And they call it expatriation too when they move to another ward.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Must admit I do love Tokyo very much. Going back again in May which I can't wait for!

Currently studying Japanese in the UK but looking to move to Tokyo with my Japanese partner in the very near future, can I just ask anyone who lives in Tokyo/Japan already how easy it is to find a language school to learn more/become fluent? Also, would I be allowed to study without working straight away? I would be moving on a marriage visa.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

I lived in HK for 1 year, was a good exp but with the high pollution level ( mind you not as high as Beijing or Shanghai for ex.) , high rents as well risks of bird flu coming from China, it became difficult to stay longer. I visited Tokyo, seems a better city to live there ( not a lot of pollution, english in Metro, people's politeness, quality and safety of food , etc).

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Singapore really? Many says it's boring

Depends what you're into, probably. Obviously it's failed to produce much in the way of sporting excellence in the manner of somewhere like NZ, a country with a similar-sized population, or cultural innovation high and low - great films, great literature, great music (like say, Ireland) - or distinctive architecture, or a vibrant intellectual scene - but that's the flip side of a few things that many Singaporeans and especially their government say they like and intend to retain: social and ethnic harmony, intellectual conformity, political stability, and a compliant populace. If you keep your expectations well within Singaporean limits - shopping, eating, education/work, television - and clearly, many people do, it ought to be bags of fun.

Not entirely my cup of tea though. No oomph.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

"Singapore really? Many says it's boring and stressful."

I don't get the "boring" claim. Is it worse, than say Nagoya or Cleveland or Leeds?

I've had expat friends there over the years who have active and interesting lifestyles, weekends at the beach, evenings in the alfresco bars and restaurants, vacations in Vietnam or Thailand (90 minutes away). Personally, I love how you can swim at a clean sandy beach 20 minutes from downtown all year round.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

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