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Last Updated: Friday, 1 February 2008, 08:56 GMT
Britons 'keener to retire abroad'
Spanish bowling club
The British weather was cited as a reason for leaving

The number of people who will retire abroad is set to rise to 3.3million by 2050, a survey has suggested.

The strongest reason for leaving is to find a better quality of life, followed by the standard and cost of living in the UK.

Nine in ten of expats surveyed said they had a better quality of life and six out of ten did not plan to return.

Canada was rated the best country to emigrate to, followed by New Zealand and Portugal.

The survey predicts by 2025, 1.8 million Brits could spend their later years abroad, which may increase to 3.3 million by 2050.

The survey found the majority of expats surveyed, 55%, were unhappy with many aspects of their life in the UK, but the attraction of a life abroad was citied as a stronger reason to leave.

Homesick

Over three quarters, 76%, of respondents said they feel homesick some or all of the time, missing family and friends, traditions and culture and the British sense of humour.

One in five expats said their sense of being British has diminished, suggesting that expats begin to feel less British the longer they have been living out of the UK.

Canada scored first place with a mean score of 63.95 out of 80, with high rankings for housing, the natural environment and the availability of consumer goods.

Dave Isley, from NatWest international personal banking who commissioned the survey, said: "There are a number of different reasons why people relocate abroad, to be nearer to family and friends, to start a new job, or as the study demonstrates, to increase their quality of life. This is only likely to increase in the future."

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