The economy of Mauritius has seen significant progress over the previous decades making it a preferred location not only for doing business, but also for relocation to Mauritius. Whether looking how to move and relocate to Mauritius, retire in Mauritius, or simply invest in a property and spend the winters in the sun, Mauritius offers some rare and exciting opportunities. Equally, if you are looking to relocate your business to Mauritius, we at TBI can help ensure a seamless and smooth process throughout to make the transition as stress-free and painless as possible.
We assist with everything that someone might want when relocating to Mauritius. This starts with preliminary advice and permits, to finding accommodation, setting up companies, purchasing businesses and setting up bank accounts and full concierge services to name but a few. We have tried to address below a few of the main questions that are being asked of us. For the latest changes in the budget that affect expats please read our blog article here.
Popular questions that are being asked
- How can I relocate to Mauritius?
- How much money do you need to immigrate to Mauritius?
- Is it a good idea to move to Mauritius?
- How can I get permanent residency in Mauritius?
- What is a good salary in Mauritius?
- Is living in Mauritius expensive
- Can I buy a house in Mauritius
- What language is spoken in Mauritius
- Where do most expats live in Mauritius
- Is Mauritius a nice place to live
- How long does it take to get residency in Mauritius
- What is the basic salary in Mauritius
- How can I retire in Mauritius
- Why relocate to Mauritius for your business activities
- What you need to know and how to proceed to relocate to Mauritius?
- How to find office space in Mauritius?
- Where to start when moving to Mauritius?
- What are the benefits of immigration to Mauritius?
1 – How can I relocate to Mauritius?
The starting point of relocation are the permits and visas. Without these, you cannot come for more than an extended holiday, so this is always our starting point. The Permit, Visas, Immigration and Citizenship page takes you through this element in detail. In short, you will either need an Occupation permit that enables you to work and live in Mauritius, or a residence permit that enables you to live in Mauritius. Bear in mind that you can work remotely or globally whilst retired or on a premium visa. You can also, without a right to work in Mauritius, invest in Mauritius, invest in real estate, or a Mauritian company, as long as you avoid getting remuneration from a local company.
2 – How much money do you need to immigrate to Mauritius?
Mauritius as a destination caters for everyone but there is no set requirements for relocation to Mauritius. Although food and certain costs are expensive, such as cars and electricity, one can have a very nice quality of life living a very simple life. There is free healthcare and education, (although almost no expats use them), accommodation can be cheap, and costs are relatively low in comparison to Europe. For most expats wanting a high quality of life, then it is not the cheapest destination. You will need to buy a car, get health insurance, household insurance, car insurance amongst all the usual expenses of arriving in a new country and moving house. If you are going to have residency by investment then this will be a minimum investment requirement of USD 375,000.
Our view is that for a 4-person family, (2 children), paying for both children in private international school, a 3-bedroom villa in a nice complex in the North in Grand Baie, will need approximately MUR 100,000 to 200,000 per month to live a good but not extravagant life. This would not include the purchasing of a car. Fortunately, the EDB has done a far more scientific and formal assessment of all the costs in Mauritius found usefully in a PDF version here. Relocation to Mauritius, like anywhere, is a significant decision and you need to make sure that it suits you requirements.
3 – Is it a good idea to move to Mauritius?
In our view, Mauritius is a wonderful place to relocate to, a safe and stable place to bring up children or retire. It has a high quality of life due to the temperature and the proximity to a beach wherever you live. It however is not for everyone and we would always suggest that you come to try it out. Many commit too much to property investment or relocate their business here before being sure. The Premium Visa gives flexibility to visit and try out relocation to Mauritius. Don’t commit to a 2-year contract on a property in the West of Mauritius for example if you do not know Mauritius well enough and have not visited before. There are plenty of great business opportunities here as well as it being a fantastic location for a happy, sunny, outdoors life.
4 – How can I get permanent residency in Mauritius
The main way of getting a permanent residency permit is to have an existing occupation permit. or residence permit. You then must satisfy the criteria for that specific permit for the 3 years prior to converting it into a permanent residence permit. The permanent residence permit is gone through in detail in the Permit, Visas, Immigration and Citizenship page. In short, the permit is now for 20 years instead of 10 years. Each occupation permit holder can apply if the conditions are satisfied. In addition to these, anyone investing USD 375,000 or more in certain qualifying fields will also get a permanent residence permit.
5 – What is a good salary in Mauritius?
For an expat to work in Mauritius on a salary, they will necessarily be paid a minimum of MUR 60,000, although in some fields it is as low as MUR 30,000 per month. These are the minimum thresholds to get an occupation permit as a professional. A ‘good salary’ is a very relative concept. We would recommend looking at question 2 above for an approximate assessment of the monthly outgoings.
6 – Is living in Mauritius expensive?
Relocation to Mauritius is not cheap. Similar to the answer above, it is all relative. In comparison to Dubai, London and Paris, it is very good value. In comparison to much of Africa, it is very expensive. Setting up a company is relatively cheap. Getting a permenant residence through investment in real estate is only USD 375,000. Buying a car is approximately twice the price of the UK for example.
International schools are very cheap in comparison to other expat destinations such as Singapore and Hong Kong. They are however expensive we are told in comparison to SA. Much therefore depends on your country of origin. You will need to get private medical insurance when here. Local medical cover is not too expensive but using a global policy is much more expensive. We answer in question 2 above what we perceive to be the costs of living per month for an expat family, but the range can be much higher or lower depending on your lifestyle.
7 – Can I buy a house in Mauritius?
In short, yes, you can buy real estate in Mauritius. Non-citizens can only buy in certain developments which are set out in detail at the Real Estate page. The types of developments that you would need to be looking at are the Property Development Scheme, Smart Cities and Ground plus 2 developments. There are still some older developments that are licensed as IRS or RES developments. Relocation to Mauritius can happen before or after you buy a property although some investment opportunities are only available if have a permit. If you spend more than USD 375,000 then you will also get permanent residence for the investor and their dependent family. This also allows the permit holder to work without needing a separate occupation permit.
8 – What language is spoken in Mauritius?
Most Mauritians are tri-lingual, speaking English, French and Creole. The official language and the one used in Parliament and court is English. Business in Mauritius is mainly conducted in French although English will always be used for foreigners when required. Creole is spoken at home by the majority of Mauritians.
9 – Where do most expats live in Mauritius?
Most expats live in the West or the North. Some expats, who are less worried about the sun and sea do live in the centre, but there is normally an overriding reason that they choose this such as marrying a Mauritian whose family is there. It is our view that if you don’t live on the coast, Mauritius feels very small for expats.
The North – The North of Mauritius is full of energy. It has beautiful beaches, a plethora of restaurants, the best nightlife on the island and lots of activities. What people refer to as the North is a relatively large, meandering coastline. You can get a tranquil and calm existence the further from Grand Baie you go. Grand Baie is where the tourists and the Mauritians come to enjoy themselves, whether for shopping, the cinema or to party. Everything is open relatively late, and you have a full choice of restaurants, schools, offices, accommodation, and medical facilities to name but a few.
West – The Southwest is stunningly beautiful thanks to the striking mountains next to the coast. It is relatively calm and ordered developments, commercial and residential complexes, and a relaxed outdoor vibe throughout. There is far less choice for doing activities or services, for example less schools. The heat in the summer due to the mountains blocking the wind is unbearable at times matched only by the painful commute out of the West.
10 – Is Mauritius a nice place to live?
Mauritius is a wonderful place to live striking a unique balance of quality of life and business opportunity in Africa. Relocation to Mauritius will not be for everyone. Most people that move here however enjoy the island lifestyle, friendly people, and fantastic fiscal and tax incentives. There are great opportunities to get residency in Mauritius, purchase real estate and set up a company with very few limitations. It is a very safe place to live which is particularly popular with expats from South Africa. All these factors combine to make Mauritius a great choice to relocate to or at least keep as a second residency.
11 – How long does it take to get residency in Mauritius?
It will take approximately 4 – 6 weeks to get an approval in principle from the Economic Development Board for an occupation permit. It generally takes at least 3 years on an occupation permit whilst achieving certain fiscal criteria to apply for a permanent residency permit. There is more detail in the Permits and Visas page on the site.
If you are getting a permit through property investment, then you will need to wait a few weeks to set up the company to purchase if you require one. You will then apply for permission from the EDB to buy property as a non-citizen from the EDB, 4-8 weeks. You will then sign the sales deed. After a few more hurdles, you will wait another 4-8 weeks after a further application to the EDB for permanent residence once you own the property.
12 – What is the basic salary in Mauritius?
The minimum wage in Mauritius is around MUR 10,000 per month. An expat has a minimum threshold to work as a professional in Mauritius which is MUR 30,000 to 60,000 per month depending on the sector but generally expat wages are significantly more than this. The expat salaries are very high in comparison to the average Mauritian wage. In Mauritius most employees receive a 13th month bonus in December.
13 – How can I retire in Mauritius?
The precise residence permit needed is the Retired non-citizen residence permit and it is one of the easiest ways of getting residence in Mauritius. There simply needs to be an average of USD 1,500 per month transferred into a Mauritius bank account and the applicant must be at least 50 years old or more. There is a lot of focus by developers and the Government to make Mauritius a dream retirement destination. They offer tax holidays, specialist medical facilities and lots of Senior Living accommodation throughout the island.
One can still invest locally and have global income coming in whilst living in Mauritius as a retired non-citizen. Mauritius is safe, stable, and there is still a genuine respect for elders in Mauritius which makes for a perfect retirement destination. You will need to think carefully about health and medical insurance when coming over.
14 – Why relocate to Mauritius for your business activities?
Mauritius ranks 1st in Africa for almost all business indices. It is a very easy jurisdiction to set up a company with 100% foreign ownership. One can do business here with relatively few hurdles. Foreigners can set up companies and bank accounts in Mauritius without coming here. The corporation tax is low, there is no exchange control for transfer of capital and gains to the country of residence of the shareholders. There is no capital gains tax or tax on dividends. There are numerous specialist schemes that give 5-10 year tax holidays or greatly reduced corporation tax. Examples include the Investment Dealer Licence, Family Offices and Fund Management amongst many others.
There are numerous bilateral treaties, both double taxation treaties and Investment Promotion and Protection Agreements. These give greater investment access into Africa in particular, affording minimised withholding taxes and extra protection. There are also several regional treaties such as SADC and COMESA. These give Mauritius an edge when it comes to the African Continent.
15 – What you need to know, and how to proceed to relocate to Mauritius!
There is necessarily a little repetition, but we would suggest thinking about things in this order:
Which visa, residence permit or occupation permit do you need? If you aren’t retired, will you set up a company, be employed by someone else, be able to work remotely? All these factors will influence your choice.
Do you need to set up a company or find a job? You will really need to understand Mauritius, the licences and permits and where the opportunities are especially if you are thinking of trading locally.
Pets and Children
As anyone knows, both children and pets are time-consuming and for relocation you need to think far in advance. Pets require early rabies jabs amongst other criteria months before leaving. For many schools you will need to reserve school places well in advance for your children.
Location and accommodation
Are you going to buy or rent? Do you need a short-term rental whilst viewing the long-term rentals when you are here? Will you commit before you see the property? Will it be the North or the West? More and more foreigners are buying properties off plan without visiting the site or the developer.
There are countless considerations, but you will need to choose where in Mauritius to live, which moving company, import permits, international driving permits, which local agents for property, business permits and company formation, buying a car, insurance (medical, house, car, life etc.)
16 – How to find office Space in Mauritius
There are a couple of search engines that cover all property including commercial property and offices. Offices in Grand Baie are being built continually, as are offices in Tamarin. Most of the office space in Mauritius is in Ebene and Port Louis. If your business will require you to meet people on the island a lot, or it requires you to have many local employees, then you may want to look to the centre. If you can avoid the commute and painful traffic to the centre and have a small local office, there are plenty of good options in the North and the West.
17 – Where to start when moving to Mauritius?
The starting point of relocating to Mauritius is your permits or visas. There are a number of options which we clearly lay out in the Permit, Visas, Immigration and Citizenship page and the following article in our blog.
In addition to the occupation permits and residence permits laid out in the link and question 1 above, there is the Premium Visa. This allows someone to relocate to Mauritius quickly and with minimal requirements as long as they don’t earn money locally. For those retired or working remotely that fancy a change in lifestyle for a year or two, this can work well. This article on our blog list all of the requirements of the Premium Visa.
18 – What are the benefits of immigration to Mauritius?
Mauritius is a premium business destination attracting investors, entrepreneurs and professionals from all around the world. Most Mauritians are multi-lingual, with French and English spoken to a high level. The benefits of moving permanently to Mauritius include the following:
One can live next to the beach, have sun all year long, whilst having sturdy financial and banking institutions, low tax, low costs, no exchange controls, state-of-the-art offices and facilities, whilst being just 6 hours from Singapore, India, Dubai and Africa.
Investing in the correct property here can give you residence for life for you and your spouse and even your dependent children and your parents.
Mauritius is a financial hub and is a party to many regional treaties, and it has established close trade links with the UK, India, the United States, China the Middle East and most African countries.
The pro-business policies set down by their government also offers people willing to relocate the opportunities and scope they need to explore different opportunities.
One can retire here, and still have different business interests around the world.
The taxation policies are highly favourable for foreign investors and professionals offering them a competitive workplace.
In case you want to register your new business, you will go through a procedure which is can be very simple and quick.
The financial sector of this country is well-established and well-structured making it a suitable market for investment. The banks here are also well-aligned with modern banking systems.
A primary focus during the economic growth of Mauritius was attracting foreign capital which has led to the formulation of investor-friendly rules and regulations making it a hub for a variety of business activities.
The moderate climatic conditions and exotic locations also make it a preferable choice for relocation and immigration.
Mauritius provides business start-ups with a perfect environment for setting up and succeeding further.
Relocation to Mauritius Services include:
- Application and Processing of visa
- Applications for occupation, business or work permits
- Support before, during and after relocation
- Help in searching for a villa, apartment, family home or office locality
- Management of logistics
- Providing networking opportunities
- Notarisation and Certification
- Orientation Services and concierge services
- Granting Power of attorney
- Legal Assistance
- Company formation
- Real estate services
- Outsourcing services
Why work with TBI Mauritius?
Our skilled team of consultants and professionals will guide you to the most appropriate strategy, help you compile all the necessary documentation for the application of all the permits, both residential and for an occupation permit if you are looking to work here. We can also assist with the Premium Visa and finding the right location for you based on whether you like the energy of the North or the tranquillity of the West, help you settle in and meet people, and be a part of the happy foreign and local communities when you relocate to Mauritius. TBI frequently helps its clients to invest in Mauritian properties to live in or for investment purposes. We are used to clients from all over the world with a recent focus on South Africa.
There can be several reasons for moving to this African Island such as for business setup, job opportunities, retirement or for tax mitigation to name a few. The Republic of Mauritius offers a perfect combination of luxurious resorts, business opportunities and a stable economy making it an exciting destination for immigration. People from across the globe are relocating to Mauritius every single day, and we provide them with all the help they need during the process.
What TBI Business Advisors can do for you
- We will have a Zoom/ Teams call or email exchange to understand your requirements.
- We will advise on the appropriate permit or visa for coming to Mauritius.
- A detailed proposal will be sent with clear costs, timeframes and explanations.
- We will assemble the documents and make the application on your behalf.
- We can assist with setting up companies if you are an investor or just creating a business here.
- Need help finding and purchasing property and setting up of an entity to purchase through, we will help!
- We can assist with relocation tasks such as helping with schools, accommodation, insurance, choosing locations.
- The directors can act as Commissioner for Oaths.
- We can assist with other business advice and can bring in law firms as and when required.
While every effort is made to ensure that the information given is accurate, the information on this site does not contain legal, tax or any other professional advice. We accept no responsibility or liability due to any information or representation, whether accurate or not, relied upon in the contents. It is an information guide to provide the reader with a useful general, but basic understanding of the different considerations. You must seek local legal, tax or other professional advice before relying on the contents of this site.