For many Americans, Bermuda is a popular bolthole. It’s only a two-hour flight or less from the East Coast and the perfect place to relax or work. Over 20% of the population of Bermuda is made up of employed expatriates and if you’re a citizen of the US, you don’t require any kind of visa to enter the beautiful island.
You’re free to experience the laid-back nature of the island. But how long you want to stay affects whether or not you need paper or permission, especially if you’re working on the island. So what’s it like for Americans living in Bermuda?
- Self-Governed Island
- High Standard of Living
- Welcoming Community
- Thriving Economy
- Different Laws and Regulations
- Unique Experiences on the Island
- Subtropical Climate
A major difference you’ll notice when coming to the island from the US is the government style. Bermuda is an internally self-governing British Overseas territory with a parliamentary government.
The Governor of Bermuda is appointed by Her Majesty the Queen on the British Prime Minister's advice. It doesn’t affect you much if you’re coming to work on the island under the new 1-Year Residential Certificate , but it’s important to note.
High Standard of Living
There's no denying that Bermuda enjoys a high standard of living, which relates to the significant international business presence on the island. Although the Bermudian people work hard to earn a living, everyone makes time to relax and embrace the beautiful natural environment.
Bermuda can be compared to popular countries like the US, Canada and also famous European destinations. While it might be more expensive than the likes of other island destinations, the added cost is worth it to experience Bermuda at its finest.
The island’s civilian population is estimated to be around 64,867 and Bermudians are known for being extremely friendly. Their natural charm creates a warm and vibrant backdrop for both expats and tourists.
As of 2019, Bermuda actually holds the highest population of all the British Overseas Territories. Today, most of Bermuda’s residents can proudly trace their roots to British, African, Portuguese and Caribbean bloodlines.
Combining all of these cultures makes Bermuda so popular and welcoming to expats and Americans alike.
Bermuda has had a steady economy since the end of World War II. This is partially due to the island being a must-visit destination for tourists and to the expansion of Bermuda’s international business sector in the early 1990s. Bermuda also uses Bermudian dollars and US dollars interchangeably.
The island has one of the highest per capita incomes in the world, mainly fueled by offshore financial services that have a significant presence in Bermuda’s capital, Hamilton. Tourism accounts for around 28% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), 85% of which is from North America.
Different Laws and Regulations
Although Bermuda is a British colony, it’s a separate legal jurisdiction and has its own laws. While the island is welcoming, it’s also a pretty conservative place. We’ve covered everything you need to know about that in detail here.
The legal drinking age is 18 in Bermuda, unlike the US where in most States it’s 21. Drinking alcohol in public places outside licensed premises isn’t allowed. However, there are plenty of restaurants and bars in which to enjoy a Rum Swizzle.
There are certain real estate laws you’ll need to be clued up on before you can purchase property on the island. You must obtain a license from the Bermuda Government and the approval process can take up to six months, so give yourself enough time for it to be approved. Before you know it, you’ll be relaxing on the pink sandy beaches.
If you aren't Bermudian and you’re interested in buying a slice of paradise for yourself, you can find out more about Bermuda’s real estate laws here.
Unique Experiences on the Island
From renowned top quality golf courses to a vibrant wildlife scene, Bermuda has so much to offer when it comes to finding things to do between working. Golf is a major way of meeting new people on this island as there’s an abundance of clubs for expats to enjoy.
The island is home to some of the most picturesque beaches in the world, including the world famous Horseshoe Bay.
There are also many natural wonders on the island. The spectacular crystal caves and stunning Arboretum are just a few. To help you experience it, here’s the ultimate guide to the parishes and towns in Bermuda and what to do in each of them.
The Cost of Living
If you’re considering moving to Bermuda, then the cost of living is probably one of the most important factors.
Bermudians and expatriate workers do pay the price for living on such a beautiful island. However, it’s worth it to have a foothold in such an attractive location, especially if you’re spending your time working on the island.
About 80% of food in Bermuda is imported, usually from the US. However, there’s plenty of delicious seafood that’s fresh from the ocean.
Although things such as groceries are generally more expensive, other costs such as the cost of activities and transport are like-for-like with the US.
The glorious Bermuda summer typically runs from May to October when temperatures range between 76-82°F, temperate by Caribbean and Florida standards, which many find appealing. Bermuda’s climate is subtropical, so it’s mild in winter, spring and autumn.
These conditions create a perfect backdrop for relaxation, so you can enjoy a round of golf or explore the popular scenic spots around the island.
Bermuda has it all, especially if you’re American and looking for a second home. For more information about what to expect from your venture, we’ve made it easier to know what the island has in store for you.
The Best Bolthole for Americans: Bermuda Is Waiting for You
Sun, pink-sand and a spectacular view from anywhere; it’s no wonder the island has become such a popular destination for a second home. As non-Bermudians can now buy property in Bermuda, retiring here is definitely an option to consider too.
That’s why we created the ultimate guide to moving to Bermuda. From importing valuables to activities you can do once you’re here, we have everything you could possibly need to know. Download your ultimate guide below.