All this assumes that one’s needs involve being in the EU. I don’t think that’s necessarily true for a lot of people.
All this also assumes that citizenship is a requirement. I don’t think that’s necessarily true for a lot of people either. Maybe it’s desirable, but residence, the ability to be somewhere else, might well be enough.
The choice does not have to be the best choice, merely one sufficient to the need. “out” may well be more important than “where exactly”.
Costa Rica is inexpensive and will get you citizenship eventually, just after a long time and with some work.
Argentina has been mentioned.
The Caribbean CBIs all get you a passport for what are mostly low relative pricepoints. Greece, Spain and Italy get you PR. Maybe no passport, but maybe you don’t really need one. Maybe combine a Caribbean CBI and a Spain PR.
Panama welcomes many countries.
Canada obviously if you can fit the profile and don’t mind moving.
Montenegro has something.
Not sure about Latvia.
Turkey is still an option.
France is an option if you can learn to speak French really well.
Mexico is an option for many.
There are a ton of options, it just depends on your situation as to what options might be available to you.
For us, this is 100% about the EU passport (British, devastated by Brexit and the loss of our EU citizenship). The Portuguese GV is by far the best option in EU without needing to move there, the price, and not needing to give up your existing passport.
One important point that rarely gets discussed on this (or any other) forum is the restrictions that most countries with universal healthcare have with regards to potential immigrants with chronic health problems, such as rheumatoid arthritis. My wife has this condition, but it is well controlled by existing medications. Unfortunately, this is still a deal-breaker for immigration to most countries (incl. Canada, New Zealand, etc). Any medical condition that could POTENTIALLY cost a country above a certain (relatively small) amount of money to treat over a person’s lifetime is an automatic “STOP. DO NOT PASS GO.”
From what I was able to determine, Portugal is one of the few (only?) countries that doesn’t impose such a burden on potential immigrants.
This is something nobody who supports universal healthcare in the US is really talking about. Pretty much all countries that offer this have very strong immigration controls. For the US to offer universal healthcare, we would need to tighten up certain areas of immigration policy (or lack thereof.)
Once you have the PT passport, you would be able to get healthcare anywhere in the EU, right? Or at least move somewhere else and get it there?
Au contraire, I would say that, based on the number of US people actually boots-on-ground, both from stats and from looking around, both Mexico and CR are very, very popular with people from the US, and I don’t mean tourists.
Again, it’s all dependent on your perspective and needs/desires. I am applying a very broad filter as it is a big world and many people here are not from the US.
I find Costa Rica quite attractive and that would have been my second alternative, not another EU country. A CR citizen can go to the EU and is unlikely ever to be kept out. Absolutely no one in the world is going to think badly of someone with a CR passport. Again, it’s a question of your goals, and what a “step up” is, and whether or not you needed a “step up”. I’d like living in CR well enough I think, despite the various pitfalls. Great ceviche, friendly people, universal healthcare at a basic level, nice beaches, Western goods easily purchasable and JCI hospitals available in San Jose/Escazu, a government and people unlikely to tolerate authoritarianism. Frankly, what with the property mess in PT at the moment, earlier this year we almost pivoted and started building on our land in CR and started residency proceedings and put PT on the “someday” list. But that is me.