How Is Uruguay For Retirees?

5 min read

How Is Uruguay For Retirees?

After dedicating years of your life to hard work, the moment to retire has finally arrived. You've been eagerly anticipating this new chapter, picturing a sea of choices and the freedom to live life on your own terms.

However, as you approach the threshold of retirement, it's natural to face thoughts of uncertainty. You might wonder: Will my hard-earned money be enough to support the retirement lifestyle I desire? Will these golden years truly live up to the dreams I've nurtured?

The prospect of retirement can indeed be overwhelming, particularly when faced with the escalating cost of living in your home country. Thankfully, today I’ll present you with a haven where your dreams of a fulfilling retirement can become a reality: Uruguay. 

This little-known treasure is not just another common retirement option, but it is a hidden gem in South America for living your best retirement. It’s definitely a gem that boasts gastronomic delights, affordable healthcare, organic food, breathtaking landscapes and everything in between. Also, it’s got its own retirement visa to make the most of your retirement years. If you want to know why Uruguay is an excellent place to retire, let’s begin.


Punta del Este, Uruguay /  With a vibrant nightlife or retreats in lush nature, Uruguay has something for everyone

Punta del Este, Uruguay


In Uruguay, retirement is an adventure with a vast range of options. Colonia del Sacramento delights with its historic charm and laid-back pace, while Punta del Este offers a glamorous coastal playground. Montevideo, the capital, blends old-world charm with modern liveliness. Rocha invites nature enthusiasts to its pristine beaches and lush forests, and Salto beckons with its thermal oasis and affordable luxuries. Whether you crave history, relaxation, vibrant nightlife, nature retreats, or cultural fusion, Uruguay has it all. 

Each region showcases a distinct character and allure, catering to your unique preferences and desires. From coastal towns to energetic cities, the country offers many experiences for your dream retirement. You can explore captivating cities and discover the perfect spot to make your golden years truly extraordinary. Uruguay awaits expats and retirees with open arms, ready to welcome you into its vibrant and diverse tapestry of retirement possibilities. There’s more to Uruguay than its beautiful landscapes.


Related content: Why Uruguay Is One Of The Best Countries For A Sustainable Lifestyle


Montevideo, Uruguay / Uruguay offers high quality organic food at an affordable price, your dollars or pounds will give you a peaceful and healthy life

Montevideo, Uruguay


As a soon-to-be retiree, one of your main concerns is your financial position. You might have assets, a decent pension and passive income, but it’s equally important to live your golden years on your own terms. 

In fact, many retirees in Western countries struggle financially because they’ve got low pensions, so they need to be careful with how they spend their money. Uruguay is a perfect example of a country with a low cost of living, so you don’t need to worry about making ends meet. Your dollars, euros or pounds will go a long way. 

Also, while you’ll spend less on daily necessities, you’re not compromising on quality. Food in many Western countries is inundated with chemicals, and if you want to go organic, you need to pay a high price.

On the contrary, Uruguay offers high-quality organic food for an affordable price. In terms of healthcare, Uruguay is affordable too. Not only can you protect your health by indulging in organic food, but also by having access to an excellent healthcare system. For around $60 a month, you can get a mutualist (in Spanish, mutualista), a private healthcare plan. This grants you access to a vast array of specialists. Each private hospital offering this scheme has a particular set of rules, mostly regarding the type of people they can take care of. 


Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay / Unlike countries like Mexico, you do not need a trust or foundation to acquire properties, you can hold properties directly in your name

Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay


As a retiree, your health is one of your main priorities. Eating wholesome food and having excellent health insurance is excellent. Now, if you want to go one step further, you must consider having a lifestyle filled with activities to maintain your health. 

Health is a habit, and by living in Uruguay, you’ll have access to many activities to keep you fit while keeping the doctor away. You can indulge in thermal springs and spa retreats in Salto or simply explore the country’s lush greenery and breathtaking coastlines in Rocha. If you’re into other leisure activities, such as festivals and cultural events, you can have a good time in Montevideo and Punta del Este.



Whether you are looking to rent or purchase a house, in Uruguay, you can find high-quality properties at a bargain price compared to most Western countries. 

It’s important to note that, unlike other countries like Mexico, you can acquire and retain real estate directly under your name. There’s no need for any trust, foundation or corporation to get a property in Uruguay. If you’re a real estate investor, you can navigate the Uruguayan marketplace to either rent or purchase and improve your portfolio. Depending on your property, you might need to consider other expenses, such as property taxes or common expenses.


Related content: How Expats Can Utilize Uruguay's Political System


Piriapolis, Uruguay / With a favorable tax regime and a differentiated and accessible lifestyle, the Uruguay retirement visa is practically a golden ticket

Piriapolis, Uruguay


Uruguay’s cutting-edge infrastructure is proof of its commitment to economic growth and trade. Strategically located between two major economies, Brazil and Argentina, Uruguay is a commercial hub that boasts an excellent transport system. 

Montevideo serves as a maritime and fluvial port that connects the country with Argentina and the Atlantic Ocean, facilitating commercial exchange. Uruguay is a vital nexus for land and sea transportation between MERCOSUR nations. 

Uruguay’s airports are also sensational transportation hubs, offering international flights. The main airports are the Carrasco International Airport of Montevideo and apitán de Corbeta Carlos A. Curbelo Airport of Punta del Este. The country's extensive highway and rail network are also a statement of connectivity, facilitating domestic and international trade, travel and transportation.

Last but surely not least, let’s check Uruguay's energy and telecommunications system. This country boasts well-developed digital telecommunications, with 90% of the population having Internet access. On the other hand, the country’s energy mix is a combination of wind, hydroelectric, biomass and fossil fuels. 



If the previous sections have not convinced you that Uruguay is one of the top retirement destinations on the planet, you must check its retirement visa. It’s accessible (it takes around a week to get) and will grant you lots of perks as a foreigner. Let’s check the eligibility requirements:

  • Proven monthly income of at least $1,500 USD (certificate of income from the institution that pays your retirement or pension);

  • Clean criminal record;

  • Documentation confirming ownership or lease of the property where you plan to live in Uruguay;

  • Good Conduct Certificate issued by the police authorities in your country of birth;

  • Legalized and translated birth certificate and, if applicable, marriage certificate into Spanish are required documents for obtaining a Uruguay Retirement Visa;

  • Medical certificate from a licensed Uruguayan doctor;


Upon getting the visa, you get a wide range of benefits: 

  • Tax-free foreign-sourced pension or income thanks to Uruguay’s territorial tax system;

  • Import of household goods and personal belongings from abroad without paying customs duties, taxes, or related charges;

  • Import of personal vehicle to Uruguay duty-free;

  • Exemption from paying taxes and customs duties within the first six months of obtaining permanent residence;

  • Access to the Uruguayan Healthcare System;

  • Potential Citizenship. Married couples can apply after three years of residency, while single foreigners must wait five years. Plus, Uruguay allows double citizenship.

Uruguay's retirement visa is a true gold ticket to an exceptional retirement. In conjunction with all the lifestyle benefits you get, your money will go a long way thanks to a favourable tax regime that even facilitates your relocation to this South American gem.


Related content: The Basics Of How To Get A Second Passport Or A Second Residency


Ramirez beach in Montevideo, Uruguay / Uruguay stands out as an important trade and transport center in the MERCOSUR area and in the world, a unique jewel for retirees and expats who want a comfortable and rewarding lifestyle

Ramirez beach in Montevideo, Uruguay


Uruguay is a destination that should be on any aspiring expat retiree’s radar. Given its wealth of benefits, retirees can live a fulfilling and comfortable lifestyle that caters to their needs. 

Its diverse cities and landscapes make the country a destination for adventure. Whether you’re into the beach, mountainous or city environment, Uruguay has something for you. Also, the low cost of living comprises affordable daily necessities, healthcare and even housing, ensuring a comfortable standard of living without breaking the bank.

In terms of infrastructure, Uruguay stands tall as a major trade and transportation hub in the MERCOSUR zone and globally. Lastly, the retirement visa is the cherry on top that grants retirees a smooth relocation and tax-free income thanks to the country’s reasonable tax regime. From duty-free imports to tax-free foreign-sourced income, retirees can get the benefits of this visa within a week. Uruguay emerges as a unique gem for retirees in South America, welcoming retirees with open arms. 


Offshore Report On Growing And Protecting Your Wealth Abroad



I help my clients to move offshore for freedom, privacy and autonomy by focusing on the immigration, legal, and tax issues that you will face when becoming an expat. If you would like to work one-on-one with me on getting out of your home country (or setting up a Plan-B location), then read this important letter and fill in an application form to become a Private Client. My fees are not cheap; however, I can assure you that when you work with a professional firm like ours, the results will be worth it.



If you want the best intel from the expat world, including profitable offshore opportunities, little-known tax-saving strategies, and hard-won insights on immigration, passports, and Plan-B residencies, all delivered to your inbox every single week, then join our daily correspondence, EMS Pulse. Currently enjoyed by over 37,000 expats and expat-hopefuls worldwide. Fill in the form below to join our newsletter free:


Mikkel Thorup

Written by Mikkel Thorup

Mikkel Thorup is the world’s most sought-after expat consultant. He focuses on helping high-net-worth private clients to legally mitigate tax liabilities, obtain a second residency and citizenship, and assemble a portfolio of foreign investments including international real estate, timber plantations, agricultural land and other hard-money tangible assets. Mikkel is the Founder and CEO at Expat Money®, a private consulting firm started in 2017. He hosts the popular weekly podcast, the Expat Money Show, and wrote the definitive #1-Best Selling book Expat Secrets - How To Pay Zero Taxes, Live Overseas And Make Giant Piles Of Money, and his second book: Expats Guide On Moving To Mexico.

Recent Posts

Complete Guide To The Best Visas To Move To Paraguay

Complete Guide To The Best Visas To Move To Paraguay

Imagine a country that provides stunning landscapes, a unique blend of cultures and compelling investment opportunities for expats. If Paraguay...

Continue Reading
Essential Guide On Colombian Visas For Expats

Essential Guide On Colombian Visas For Expats

Colombia is where sun-soaked beaches meet lush rainforests, vibrant cities pulse with energy, and visitors seek adventure-filled lives. These days,...

Continue Reading
World War 3: Where Will Be Safe In A Global Conflict?

World War 3: Where Will Be Safe In A Global Conflict?

Have you ever wondered where you'd be safe if the unthinkable happened? If those headlines of escalating tensions, border conflicts, and arms races...

Continue Reading