The cost of moving from South Africa to Mauritius

Mauritius has been one of the famous countries in African for its unique beauty. People travel here a lot to have fun, work, or live permanently, mostly because of the terms and conditions as easy for them all. Despite being an island nation in the Indian Ocean, Mauritius is a paradise on earth, having beautiful white sandy beaches, reefs, mountains, and national parks, among other natural attractions. Most foreigners have been visiting Mauritius for holidays. But today they travel to the country for many more purposes than just having fun. The main reason for this change is that the government has made it easy for them to move to Mauritius, work, and make an investment.

Also, the country acts as a great connection for South Africans who want to move to Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and Australia.

There are numerous reasons for foreigners to move to Mauritius for whatever reasons.

However, before you embark on this adventurous endeavor, get to learn more about migrating, living, working, investing, and, most importantly, the cost of living in the country.

Immigration to Mauritius from South Africa

The proximity between south African and Mauritius is quite favorable for travelers, as a flight takes approximately 5 hours only.

And while traveling to most countries, you will need a visa; south Africans do not need a visa to move to Mauritius as long as they stay for a maximum of 90 days.

To stay for more than 90 days in the country, every citizen exempted from the tourist visa will need extra permits, as explained below.

To live and work in Mauritius, you need to obtain a work and residence permit, of which, after three years, you will be eligible to apply for a permanent residence permit.

With a permanent residence, you can stay in the country for ten years.

If you want to study in the country, you need a study visa, which you apply for after approval of your admission to a Mauritian institution.

Applying for any travel document is quite straight forward, and as long as you fulfill all the requirements, approval for your visa will be like a walk in the park.

Apart from working, you invest and attain permanent residence, and all you need is enough money to start your business.

Here are three avenues in which you can invest to attain that residence permit.

Occupation permit:

An occupation permit combines both work and residence permit.

You can acquire by making an investment of $100,000 towards any qualifying business activity in Mauritius.

In recent legislation, the investment amount has been reduced to $50,000, making it more affordable for all.

Residence permit:

A foreigner can acquire a residence permit by investing in a residential property under the PDS investment scheme.

The investment made must be $500,000 or more. Permanent resident scheme: If a foreigner invests more than $500,000 towards the PRIF investment scheme, they are eligible to attain permanent residence, which lasts for ten years.

The good thing is that an investor can include their spouse and children who are minors. For legal dependents above the age of 18, the investor must add $100,000 for every member included.

Mauritius is becoming a second home for most South Africans. Once they manage to make these investments, they can enjoy other benefits of living in the country. For instance, access to education, health services, and tax benefits, among many others.

For any foreigners who are skeptical about investing $500,000, try to move to Mauritius using a residence permit under the retirement program for 50 and over, occupation permit, or work permit and have a taste of life in the country.

If it suits you right, apply for a permanent residence permit after three years instead of renewing your current permit.

Note:

Once you decide to permanently relocate to the country, set your records right with the South African revenue service (SARS). The tax authority will determine your tax status for living and working abroad. Follow the financial emigration process, and eventually, you will be free from being a tax resident in the country.


Living in Mauritius Pros and Cons

The rainbow island is a suitable option for everyone in different ways, as explained through these cons and pros of living in Mauritius.

Pros of Living in Mauritius:

Affordable, attractive, and profitable investments

As stated earlier, foreign nationals are allowed to move to Mauritius and invest.

In the process, they will acquire essential permits to enter and live comfortably in the country.


Tax benefits

Mauritius has one of the best and most flexible tax systems. The corporate tax rate stands at 15%.

Residents are exempted from paying income tax for earnings up to $15,000 per year. The country’s tax rates are quite low compared to other African countries.

Any income earned abroad is not taxed by the Mauritius Tax Authority as long as it does not enter the country. Other tax benefits include no tax on capital gains, no withholding tax, and no tax on dividends.

VAT is capped at 15%.

And export activities are exempt from this tax, while new companies in some sectors enjoy a tax holiday of eight years to encourage growth and success of the same.

The country has signed free trade agreements under SADC, COMESA, and CECPA.

All these tax benefits are attracting more and more people who want to move to Mauritius.

They all come with a dependable financial sense.


Exposure

Attaining residence in Mauritius comes with a great connectivity factor, whereby one can move easily to other countries such as Europe, UK, and Australia. It becomes easy to plan trips to different destinations across the world. With a permanent residence, you can apply for citizenship and a passport in the future.

Once you attain the documents, you can travel to more than 100 countries without a visa.


Fun and numerous outdoor activities

Mauritius is an ideal destination for both winter and summer holidays. The climate is good, and the beaches are not only many but also beautiful. Being a destination for many people across the globe, expect to experience and learn about different cultures.

The country has also archived their cultural, historical, culinary, and artistic treasure for you to come and see. And for those who love hiking, biking, or simply going for nature walks, Mauritius tropical mountains and national parks will not disappoint.


Employment opportunities

The employment rate in the country is quite encouraging, and the job market is still thriving. There are numerous recruitment agencies in both countries. All you need is to register with some of these to help you secure a job and move to Mauritius.

The employment rate in the country is quite encouraging, and the job market is still thriving. There are numerous recruitment agencies in both countries. All you need is to register with some of these to help you secure a job and move to Mauritius.

And while most people speak in French, English is also widely spoken, making it easier to secure a job and live comfortably.

Also, Mauritian people are friendly people. And the crime is quite low, giving you more reasons to head there as an expat.

Other benefits:

  • Mauritius citizens and permanent residents do not need to pay for education and healthcare since it is free of charge. The quality of education and health facilities are quite good, and there are international schools to cater to expats living there.
  • Any person who possesses a UK driving license or international driving permit can drive in Mauritius for four weeks.
  • Mauritius is diversified when it comes to religious matters. While the majority practice Hinduism, Christianity, and Islamic religions are also available.

Cons of Living in Mauritius:

Mauritius is a small island, and for South Africans, this can be unsatisfying having lived in a huge country. The only good thing is that Mauritius’ topography comes with a sense of space. It may feel like it is larger than it is in reality.


Almost everything on this island is imported, which makes goods expensive and also limited. For instance, food, toiletries, cleaning materials, and accommodation are quite expensive. However, when friends and family visit, you can inform them to deliver the things you need.


Buying Property in Mauritius as A South African

South Africans can indeed move to Mauritius and invest in real estate. Property investment falls into three categories, namely; house, villa, or apartment. The price for each depends on the facilities offered and the location. Investing in property is one of the best ways to gain entry into the country as long as you can afford it.

Previously an investor would have paid $500,000 for a property, but the investment has been reduced to $375,000. This makes it cheaper for them to obtain permanent residence. You can acquire this property through a lease agreement of 99 years or as a freehold.

The government recently lowered the minimum investment requirement for an immigrant to acquire an occupation permit to $50,000 from $100,000.

The new regulations allow an investor to bring a spouse and parents as dependents. The spouse is not required to obtain a work permit for them to start working in the country.

Foreign nationals are allowed to buy properties under the Integrated Resort Scheme (IRS), Property Development Scheme (PDS), and Real Estate Schemes (RES).

With an occupation permit, these foreigners are now allowed to invest in land measuring 2100 sqm for residential use. These are some of the reasons why most people choose Mauritius for work, investment, or even retirement.

Life in Mauritius

Every person planning to move to a new country must consider the cost of relocating and that of living.

The cost of living is higher than most countries in the Indian Ocean but lower by 28% compared to the UK.

The good thing is that people can earn a good living from adequate employment and investment opportunities.

The tax benefits are also an added advantage since both residents and citizens are not burdened with hefty income taxes. When it comes to groceries and other household items, expect to pay 30 percent more than what you paid in your country.

And while education quality is good here, the price is also too high — approximately double.

Renting a house, for instance, an apartment, two, or three bedrooms in the city costs about $2,500 every month — this is quite high compared to the price back home.

Also, dining out is very expensive — do not be surprised if dinner for two costs nearly $100 with a bottle of wine taking almost half of this amount.

If you think of buying a car in Mauritius, be prepared to part with a huge chunk of money. The reason for this is high import fees for vehicles.

Finally, while we live in a digital era, internet connection in Mauritius is not something to be proud of at all. It is both expensive and slow.

The cost of moving to Mauritius from South Africa will be more expensive than what they are used to.

However, if you earn more money than what you were getting back home, whether, through employment or investment, the cost of living will be manageable.

Working in Mauritius

Mauritius is continuously growing economically in all sectors, and for this reason, the country is welcoming foreign talents and skills. You can apply for a job when still residing in your country and once you get one, let your future employer apply for your work permit.

Some people rely on their tourist visas to seek employment in Mauritius, which is a good option for them.

However, you will need to exit the country and only come back to start working when your work permit is approved.

The good news is that the job market, both online and offline, is huge.

Some of the industries you should consider to increase your chances include information and communication, technology and innovation, and tourism.

Remember

That jobs in car-rental services and water sports businesses are not allowed for foreigners.

For you to be eligible to work in the country, your employer must justify their decision to hire a foreigner instead of a Mauritian citizen.

This means that having skills and experience lacking in the country is an added advantage for you to easily land a good job and move to Mauritius.

Salaries for expats are high compared to other African countries but also lower than European, Australian, and North American standards.

For instance, non-managerial jobs pay less than $900 per month. The standard working time is eight hours per day. But you will get compensation based on your agreement with the employer if you work overtime or on holidays.

Labor laws are enforced by the Employment Rights Act of 2008. According to labor laws, foreign employees should get similar compensation to everyone else in a similar position.

Remuneration is Mauritian rupees. Tax laws are also friendly in the country, and both citizens and residents are not paying taxes on incomes. When they pay, the tax rate is lower compared to other countries in Africa.

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Should you require further information.


This might also interest you:

How to get a residence permit in Mauritius

The reasons to invest in Mauritius

Work permit in Mauritius: everything you need to know

How to start a business in Mauritius?

What are the best businesses to do in Mauritius?

How to get Mauritius citizenship?

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Buying property in Mauritius as a South African

My name is Steven. After 11 years of doing business, I established 13 companies in 8 countries on 4 continents. Now I’m about to open another one in the heart of Africa. About me

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