Are you planning on coming to Cyprus on a student visa, work visa, or even considering applying for a Permanent Residency or Citizenship in this country? If so, then you must have a brief knowledge of the pros and cons of living in Cyprus.
Hey, everyone. Welcome to the Europetutor community. My name is Aashish and today in this article I will walk you through the advantages and disadvantages of living in Cyprus. Please read till the end without skipping a single sentence to have a better understanding of Cyprus.
I have lived in Cyprus for more than 2 years now and I believe I know the inside out of living in Cyprus.
Before we start with this article I suggest your click here to read in detail about the country of Cyprus, which will help you understand this article even better.
Analysis from the personal experience
I have found that living in Cyprus is quite challenging for international students. As there are fewer job opportunities, students couldn’t earn enough to live a quality life in Cyprus. The basic salary for international students in Cyprus is 5 Euro per hour, and legally they are only allowed to work for 20 hours per week. With that money, they can barely pay their rent.
A similar scenario goes for the housemaids in Cyprus too. Even though they get a salary every month, their life is kind of being controlled by their employers. They can’t go out when they want, and they have to report almost everything to their employers. So it’s kind of prison life for them but a well-facilitated one. On the bright side, they have a roof over their head, and they don’t have to face any issues with clothing and fooding cause their employers take care of them.
If we talk about other people who have come to Cyprus on a working visa, life is hard for them too. Salaries for non-Cypriots are relatively low in almost every field and sector in Cyprus. They have a job. They are professionals, but they would have earned more money in other European countries compared to Cyprus.
Does that mean living in Cyprus is bad?
Well, not necessarily. Every country has its benefits and drawbacks. Cyprus has its own too. According to my experience, if you have a good amount of money with you, living in Cyprus won’t be that hard for you.
On that note, let’s talk about living in Cyprus “pros and cons”.
Pros of Living in Cyprus
Cyprus is a great country to live in. Hands down, even before I start writing this article, I can say there will be more benefits to living in Cyprus than drawbacks. Here are 18 advantages of living in Cyprus.
Cyprus is a country in the European Union
You know, when I was a kid I used to think that Europe is a huge single country. LOL.
If you are from Asia, chances are you might have thought that too. If you did, please me know in the comment section below so that I would know that I wasn’t the only idiot who thought so :).
I used to think so because I had always heard people talking similarly about it.
There was this middle-aged man in my town who always used to boast about how handsomely he was living in Europe. He always used to say, “Someday I be in Germany, and the next day I am in Poland. Again the very next day, I go to Switzerland for business.”
When he talked like that, I thought all these places might be cities inside Europe, as he could easily travel from one place to another.
I was just a kid. My brain wasn’t at that level to extrapolate the reality from the data I was fed.
When you are in Europe, you get to travel to other European countries without having any issues with visas and documentation.
Guess which country is in the European Union too?
The Republic of Cyprus.
Yes, you guessed it totally right.
Cyprus joined the European Union on 1st May 2004. Since then, Cyprus has been actively following and participating in every rule and law raised by the European Union.
When the European Union sets some rules, it applies to Cyprus too.
So basically, some rules in Cyprus match with the law in Germany, France, Netherlands, or any other European country, for that matter.
Cyprus has all the facilities that one can get in any of the European Counties.
To sum up, living in Cyprus gives you the experience of living in Europe. I wish my country was in Europe too. If you were wondering, I am from Nepal.
You can buy Permanent Residency and Citizenship in Cyprus
Did you know that Cyprus has investment programs where you can buy permanent residency or citizenship by investing in real estate?
To be honest, I didn’t know this until I came to Cyprus. Well, the investment programs aren’t cheap, so not everyone can afford them. But if you have a ton load of money, it will be much easier for you.
I don’t know much about this business, but there are a lot of great consultants in Cyprus who deal in this department.
You will be needing assistance from Lawyers, Auditors, Chartered Accountants, Bankers, and many more professionals.
I believe you would need around 2.2 Million Euros if you want to become a Citizen of Cyprus and around 300,000 Euros if you want to buy a Permanent Residency.
Cyprus is unique in its offering of citizenship within just 6 months of such an investment. No need to live and wait for 10-16 years to apply for citizenship. Pay the money and become a Cypriot within a year.
When you acquire Cyprus citizenship by investment, you and your family can enjoy the full citizenship benefits for life, which can be passed on to future generations too.
It’s one of the major advantages of living in Cyprus for rich people.
Pros of Living in Cyprus: Low Corporate Tax Rate
The corporate tax, also known as company tax, is defined as the tax imposed on a company’s net income by the government.
Every Company has to pay corporate tax to the government all over the world. But the tax rate varies from country to country.
In the case of Cyprus, the Corporate Income Tax Rate is only 12%.
Some of the countries in the world have a Corporate Tax Rate of over 50%.
Because Cyprus has a low Corporate Tax Rate, foreign investors tend to have their business set here rather than in other European Countries.
Related article: Road Tax in Cyprus
The majority of Cypriots speak English
Personally, I would never go and live in a place where English isn’t widely spoken cause I definitely wouldn’t have a great time there.
But in the case of Cyprus, it’s not like that.
People are educated here. Kids are taught English beginning from kindergarten.
Cyprus is good friends with the UK. I believe that’s one of the reasons why so many Cypriot students go to the UK to study.
People are friendly here. As most of them speak English, it gets easier to adapt to things in Cyprus.
Be it Shops, Malls, Markets, Restaurants, or even small areas; you will always find people there to communicate in English.
Along with the English Language, there are a lot of people who speak Russian too. If you know Russian, you would definitely have a great time around Restaurants, Beaches, and Malls.
The Greek Language isn’t necessary, but having knowledge of fundamental Greek is recommended.
Pros of Living in Cyprus: The cost of Living is affordable
It doesn’t matter if you are a student, a housemaid, an employee in a big company, or even a millionaire; the cost of living in Cyrus is comparatively low for everyone.
- Room rents are cheap if you adjust with your friends.
- Flats and houses are sold at an affordable price.
- Groceries are cheap.
- Transportation is manageable.
- Utility bills are low.
The costs of accommodation, communications, education, and healthcare are all fairly low and, for the most part, they are of good quality.
I suggest you click here to read about the cost of living in Cyprus.
Cyprus has warm weather throughout the year
Cyprus has one of the warmest climates and warmest winters in the Mediterranean part of the European Union.
The weather in Cyprus is very summer-like for at least 7 months a year. Starting from April until the end of October, you will experience Cyprus’s summer weather.
Even the coolest months aren’t that cold. Snow is possible only in the Troodos mountains in the central part of the island. Rain occurs mainly in winter, with summer being usually dry.
Days are warmer even though mornings and nights are a bit chilly. If you like warm weather, then Cyprus is definitely the place for you to live.
Pros of Living in Cyprus: Cyprus is Safe to live
People who have lived in multiple European Countries have found Cyprus one of Europe’s safest countries.
The crime rate here is very low. Families with kids feel safe living in Cyprus. This island is a great place to raise children. The overall environment all over the country is generally safe and secure.
Even though there have been some serious crimes in the past, the criminals were arrested quickly.
Geographically, Cyprus is a small country. There aren’t many places here for criminals to hide. Be it a day or night, you will always generally feel safe, even walking alone in the streets.
Standard Quality of Life
I have been to a few other European countries as well as some countries in the Middle East, but I have never found any country that matches the quality of life compared to Cyprus.
I mean, honestly, people live their life to the fullest in Cyprus. The majority of them work 5 days a week and 6/7 hours a day. They prefer to spend more time with family and friends.
Yes, less work means it will take more time to finish it, but people don’t worry about “it” that much in Cyprus. They take the work part slow so that they could enjoy their spare time qualitatively.
Cyprus has a relaxed pace of life. The people in Cyprus are influenced by the Mediterranean culture of the area and enjoy taking it easy and capitalizing on plenty of opportunities for relaxation.
Cyprus is a less populated, unpolluted country
Based on the Worldometer elaboration of the latest United Nations data, the Republic of Cyprus’s current population is 1,227,562 as of Saturday, October 8, 2022 (Today).
1.22 Million is not that huge of a population, is it? Most of the biggest cities in the world have a population of more than that.
We are not only talking about a city here. We are talking about the whole country’s population.
When there is less population, there certainly will be less pollution. Also, Cyprus isn’t home to many heavy industries and factories. As a result, the air, water, and land are all free of industrial pollution.
Drainage System in Cyprus is better, so you barely get to see sewage on the roads.
People don’t throw garbage here and there. Rules are strict, so people don’t pollute the environment.
The air and water in Cyprus are clean. I guess one of the Pros of living in Cyprus is “breathing the fresh air and drinking the clean water”.
Pros of Living in Cyprus: Great Culture and Heritage
Cyprus is rich in Culture and heritage. Cyprus occupies an important role in Greek mythology, being the birthplace of Aphrodite and Adonis. According to Greek Mythology, Aphrodite was the goddess of love and beauty, whereas Adonis was the goddess Aphrodite’s mortal lover and both of them were born in Cyprus.
The whole city of Paphos is a UNESCO world heritage site. Not just a building, not just a field, but the whole city. Paphos Archaeological Park covers most of the ancient Greek and Roman Cities and is a UNESCO World Heritage site for its ancient ruins.
The Tombs of the Kings is situated in Paphos, Cyprus. It has a significant historical value, and it is also a cultural heritage site.
An interesting fact about this is, no king has ever been buried there, but the aristocrats and high officials were buried even though it’s called the Tombs of the Kings.
The majority of the Tombs date back to the 4th Century BC, and they are carved out of solid rocks.
Here are some more advantages of living in Cyprus:
- The Beaches of Cyprus are consistently voted among the best beaches in Europe. The water is clean, blue, and beautiful.
- Legal and financial procedures in Cyprus are similar to those in the UK.
- Cyprus is a top-rated destination amongst English expats, and there are plenty of expat communities here. Over 20% of the island’s population is made up of foreigners.
- Health Care facilities in Cyprus are excellent. For those who are permanent residents on the island, basic healthcare is free through paid taxes. The public hospitals on the island are highly rated.
- Cyprus uses the Euro as currency.
- If you like sightseeing, Cyprus has some gorgeous views.
- High-Speed Internet connection.
- Friendly people
Cons of Living in Cyprus
As we discussed above, every country has its good things as well as drawbacks. Living in Cyprus has disadvantages too.
Here we have 10 disadvantages of living in Cyprus.
Cons of Living in Cyprus: Personal income tax rates in Cyprus are higher
Even though the corporate tax rate is only 12% in Cyprus, the personal income tax rates go up to 35%.
It gets very difficult to achieve a European lifestyle in Cyprus for people who earn a basic salary.
Life in Cyprus would be much better for middle-class families if only the government lowered the personal income tax.
Cyprus isn’t in a Schengen Zone
Despite being in the European Union, Cyprus hasn’t been able to join the Schengen zone yet.
Because Cyprus isn’t a Schengen country, it is very difficult for people with ordinary passports to visit other European countries from Cyprus.
When will Cyprus join the Schengen Zone?
Nobody knows. Every year it comes on the news that it will join that particular year, but it has never happened.
Will it never join? No, it has to join.
It’s the rules of the European Union. Once Cyprus meets all the criteria, it will be eligible to join the Schengen join. It’s just that nobody knows when that will happen.
Cons of Living in Cyprus: Limited Transportation Options
As we all know, Cyprus is an island; it is only accessible for tourists, and visitors to come by plane or ship.
The majority of travelers who want to visit Europe often end their journey after coming to Greece. Because if they wanted to come to Cyprus, they would have to take a plane or a ship.
Not every tourist can afford a plane ticket. Also, the flights are also limited. So Cyprus being an island is one of the disadvantages of living in Cyprus.
Cyprus doesn’t have a railway system. If you want to travel between cities, you will either have to take a public bus or hire a cab. If you don’t have your own vehicle, you will find it difficult to travel within Cyprus.
Disadvantages of Living in Cyprus: Salaries are low in Cyprus
Compared to other European countries, salaries in Cyprus are relatively low. Non-Cypriots and Non-Europeans usually get 5 Euro per hour as a salary for a part-time job.
Even with a full-time job, if the company isn’t looking after your food and accommodation, it would be very hard for you to save any money.
The cost of living in Cyprus is low. Yes, we talked about that. But, if you don’t even get a salary to rent a flat, then things would just go south for you.
Cyprus’ employment pay is very low, so do not expect to get a high-paid job there. The pay to work in a hotel as a receptionist is approximately about 650-700 Euros per month.
Drawbacks of Living in Cyprus: Summer is very hot
We discussed above as Cyprus has consistent warm weather throughout the year. The one disadvantage of being that it, sometimes it gets too hot.
Sometimes the temperature consistently rises more than 40-degree celsius. On August 1st, 2020, the highest recorded temperature was 45.6°C.
Well, that’s hot. I was there, and I felt it. If you don’t like the hot temperature at all, then Cyprus isn’t a place for you to live. It gives your a feeling like you are living in a country in the Middle East and not in Europe.
Cons of Living in Cyprus: Fewer job opportunities
Cyprus doesn’t have big-branded companies. They don’t even have industries and factories to produce basic goods. They import almost everything from other countries.
The major income of Cyprus is from the Tourism sector and Agriculture. Just that.
How many people will you hire to clean a table at a restaurant or work on a potato farm? Not many, I guess.
As there are fewer job sectors, there are fewer job opportunities.
Bad driving practice
Cypriots usually don’t want to take public transportation. Cyprus is heavily dependent on privately owned vehicles.
They have to take their car even if they are just going a couple of blocks down. This results in chaotic traffic jams during rush hour and leads to accidents.
Public transportation in Cyprus is mainly only used by international students, tourists, housemaids, and middle-class employees.
Cyprus is still back in technology and digitalization
Most of the government sectors in Cyprus don’t even have an online platform for people to visit. Things have to be done manually by being physically present at the offices.
Internet connections are also slow and unstable. They are better than what they were 5 years ago, but still, they need improvement.
In this age of the internet and modern technology, companies are still using flyers and banners to promote their products. That’s because the majority of their audience isn’t on the internet.
Cons of Living in Cyprus: Majority of Old Age Cypriots are Racist
Cyprus is filled with older people. I don’t know where the youth is, but oh boy, too many older people everywhere.
Mainly older adults are traditional, and they think conservatively. Racism starts with them, and it just grows.
Mainly people from Asia and Africa have to be the ones to get discriminated against.
Even the drivers on public transportation are racist. The cashier in the supermarket is racist. The people working in government sectors are racist.
I am not saying all of them are racist, but indeed the majority of them are.
Not many shopping options
Cyprus does not have a wide variety of stores and shopping options. There are a few but most of them are foreign brand shops. As a result, the costs of basic items are also higher. It’s hard to buy electronics and clothing in Cyprus as they are imported from other countries and a normal earning person can’t afford them.
You just read the pros and cons of living in Cyprus. What do you think?
Did I miss any points? Please let me know in the comment section below.
To understand Cyprus better, I suggest you continue reading the following articles.