citizen of the world

Become a citizen of the world

What is a citizen of the world?

A citizen of the world does not call any specific country their home, and they have spread their life across many countries.

This sort of international lifestyle comes with a great number of benefits, the most important of which are freedom and safety.

As a citizen of the world, you are free to travel across the globe as you see fit (within limits such as North Korea, obviously), and if one particular nation starts to impede your freedom, you can easily pack your things and move to another one.

This grants you a tremendous amount of safety and flexibility.

Because you have your assets and businesses located in multiple countries, no single country can cut you off from your income.

If a certain country starts to raise taxes, you simply take your business and money elsewhere.

If a certain country gets invaded, invades another, gets into a war or experiences too much civil unrest, you have zero reason to stay in that country, because you’re not tied to it.

You are a citizen of the world, and because no country is your home, every country is – to some extent.

This kind of international lifestyle is not that hard to achieve, nor is it extremely expensive.

You do not need to be rich to be a citizen of the world, you just need to put in some work – and some money, but not nearly as much as you might suspect.

Because I am of the opinion the West is collapsing in front of our very eyes, I consider being a citizen of the world no longer just a “fun option” anymore, I consider it a necessity for every man or woman who values long-term freedom and safety.

Just because you think you are perfectly “fine” in your collapsing Western nation right now, do you really believe this will remain so in the coming decades?

(Most likely you aren’t at the moment, due to high taxes, low personal freedom and so on, but that’s a discussion for another day time.)

I’ve talked about this topic in quite some depth already, spread across multiple articles, and now I’m going to gather their conclusions into a handy overview, showing you the best countries to plant your flags in and give you plenty of options if you want to become a citizen of the world as well.

How to become a citizen of the world?

Becoming a citizen of the world boils down to spreading 6 key aspects (“flags”) of your life across the globe.

These are, in no particular order: residence, citizenship, banking, businesses, geographical sources of income and assets.

The basic idea is to have, for example, legal residence in one country, while you are a citizen of another.

Your businesses are located in yet another, and so is your banking.  

You can read more about this in my Five Flags article.

Most people have all of those aspects/flags in the same nation, which is a huge mistake.

That nation controls them completely.

It can shut down or curtail their source of income, limit their traveling “privileges”, seize their assets, and so on.

And if you think this can’t or won’t happen to you, you are being naively optimistic and not living in the 21st century where governments are becoming more and more authoritarian.

This is especially the case in the US, but Europe, Canada and Australia aren’t that far behind.

If you want to learn more about a specific “flag”, please check out the specific article I’ve written about each component:

Which countries can you utilize for an international lifestyle?

You are free to go live and plant flags wherever you want, but if you just go by gut feeling you might end up disappointed and probably imperiled.

Here are the best countries for each flag, in my opinion:

Residence

Panama

moving to malaysia

Malaysia

moving to belize

Belize

Citizenship

chile

Chile

living in mexico

Mexico

bolivia

Bolivia

Banking

moving to belize

Belize

Panama

The Bahamas

Switzerland

expats in hong kong

Hong Kong

Assets (in general)

moving to belize

Belize

expats in hong kong

Hong Kong

Bahrain

Cayman Islands

moving to malaysia

Malaysia

Assets (Real estate)

Croatia

Mongolia

Keep in mind that this is purely based on real estate investments, nothing else.

Businesses

moving to belize

Belize

Vanuatu

Cayman Islands

The Bahamas

Bermuda

Residence Citizenship Banking Businesses
Armenia
Banking Businesses
Assets Businesses
Colombia
Panama
United Arab Emirates
Paraguay

Geographical source of income

Technically any country would be okay, but I would advise you to take the following into consideration:

  • Never derive 100% of your income from Western nations, for obvious reasons. While it is fine to have a large part of it still coming from that direction, I would implore you to do your best to reduce this dependenc on the West as soon as possible
  • Never get all of your income from the same country, even if it’s a non-Western nation. Target multiple countries across the globe, for optimal safety
  • Aim for income from countries which are richer than the one you are residing in. For example, if you live in relatively expensive Dubai, and you solely target relatively low-income Thailand … you will need to sell a lot of cheaper things to be able to live comfortably. Whereas if you were to live in Thailand and target inhabitants of Dubai, you do not need to sell a lot of things to be able to afford a great lifestyle

Central hubs for citizens of the world

As you may have already noticed from the lists above, several countries make repeated appearances.

This means that they are great for several flags at the same time.

I would advise you to spread them out as much as possible, but there is nothing wrong with, for example, having a bank account in the same country you are residing in – provided you do not keep all your money in that account.

The key to being a successful citizen of the world is redundancy and diversity.

Don’t rely on just one residence, passport, bank account, business or geographical source of income, have multiple.  

These are countries which warrant closer attention, because they obviously do several things right and can offer much to a citizen of the world:

living in paraguayParaguay living in uruguayUruguay living in panamaPanama
Residence
Residence
Residence
Citizenship
Citizenship
Citizenship
Banking
cost to live in colombiaColombia The Bahamas moving to belizeBelize
Residence
Banking
Residence
Citizenship
Businesses
Citizenship
Real Estate
Businesses
living in panamaCayman Islands moving to dubaiUAE (Dubai) expats in hong kongHong Kong
Assets
Residence
Banking
Businesses
Citizenship
Assets
Businesses

As you can see, South and Central America are well-represented.

That’s because this is one area in the world that is not only relatively safe (yes, there are some dangerous nations and countries, but you don’t see me recommending El Salvador, for example, right?), it will almost certainly keep growing economically in the next few decades.

Having residence or citizenship in one of the Mercosur nations means you can freely travel in between them, this is a major bonus as well.

Unfortunately, Southeast Asia isn’t represented well at all, and only Singapore and Hong Kong are marginally decent options.

That being said, keep in mind that the aforementioned list is only for countries which are decent to great at multiple flags, so you can still buy real estate in Vietnam or the Philippines, for example.

Example of a citizen of the world

Let’s end the article with taking a look at how you could realistically structure your life as a citizen of the world.

This is based on my personal preferences, combined with plenty of research.

Residence

I would suggest you have at least 2 to 3 countries where you are a legal resident.

One in Latin America (Paraguay and Uruguay are great options), and one in the “middle” of the world (Dubai and Armenia).

By this I mean you are within close proximity of all continents, so a roughly equal distance from the oceans.

Ideally, you can also score residence in an Asian country, but that unfortunately isn’t easy to do and often comes with plenty of requirements.

Citizenship

Having at least two passports is I think a must, so that you always have at least one back-up in case one of them is no longer a good option.

For example, if you are an American citizen, you have to keep paying taxes on your income, even if you no longer live in the US.

This silly system is fortunately not ubiquitous, so if you aren’t an American chances are you’re fine … right now.

However, as the West continues to collapse and more and more people start to leave, it’s completely possible for more and more nations to implement a system like this. In that case, you might like to have the option to renounce your citizenship to that nation. And that’s where having backup passports comes in.

I would advise a similar pattern as with residence: Have one in the Americas, one in the “middle”, and one in Asia.

If at all possible, avoid overlapping your citizenship with your residence flag, because if you are actively living in a country where you are citizen, you will be faced with plenty of duties, such as taxes, voting, or perhaps even military service.

In the Americas, there are quite a lot of decent options, such as Mexico, Panama, Uruguay, Paraguay, Belize and Colombia.

In Asia, only Singapore is really viable for most people, because in other Asian nations you often need to have some sort of familial bond to its citizens if you want to become one.

The UAE (Dubai specifically) and Armenia are again pretty decent options – however, if you are a European citizen, I would suggest you just keep that passport for the time being.

It gives you great freedom to travel across Europe if you ever desire to do so.

Where you put your businesses and assets is completely up to you, but I would suggest you take a good look at the tax-regimes of each nation.

Some countries are great for having a business because they have no corporate tax (like the Bahamas and Cayman Islands), and the same can be said about capital gains taxes for your assets.

Banking

Avoid putting a lot of money in any one bank account, especially in countries where you are a citizen.

Spread your wealth around, ideally in countries which have a favorable reputation for not sharing your information to their government. I’d suggest Switzerland, The Bahamas, Belize and Singapore.

In summation, this is how your life as a citizen of the world could look like:

  1. Residence: Uruguay and Dubai
  2. Citizenship: Panama, Singapore and your nation of birth (unless you are an American)
  3. Banking: accounts in Switzerland, Belize, the Bahamas and an Asian nation (the Philippines is an option)
  4. Businesses: Belize, Bermuda, the Bahamas
  5. Assets: Cayman Islands, Malaysia, and real estate in Vietnam, Colombia and perhaps an African country
  6. Geographical source of income: Ideally the majority comes from richer non-Western countries, such as South-Korea, China, and the Gulf States. You could also opt to target non-richer countries which are poised to do really well economically in the next few decades, such as Africa, Southeast Asia and Latin America

With such a setup, you are almost guaranteed to be safe and free in an increasingly unfree world.

Don’t procrastinate on this, get started today and become a citizen of the world.

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