Happy New Year from Paragon!

2013-new-year relocation

Happy New Year from all of Paragon’s employees around the world! We hope that 2013 is an exciting and prosperous year for you and your family!

What countries have the most economic freedom?

economic freedom heat map relocation

The Heritage Foundation has recently published an interactive map rating the quality of economic freedom for countries around the world based on a number of factors. This map can help you make business decisions at-a-glance of what countries might offer the best opportunity for growth and expansion. In addition, understanding the business environment on the ground might help decide which countries would be the best to send employees to on assignment to maximize the value of the benefits offered.

To use the map click here: 2012 Economic Freedom Heat Map.

Christmas Holiday – Offices Closed

nightbeforechristmas relocation

Paragon’s offices are closed today and tomorrow in observance of the Christmas Holiday.

Mapping the World’s Immigration Trends with Facebook

facebook relocation

We have addressed how social media is effecting the relocation industry on this blog several times. Recently Facebook.com, the leading social networking site, released an interactive map of connections between people in different countries. Some of the connections are pretty interesting. In many instances the most common connections are between people who have immigrated from their previous country to a new country. In addition, as you might expect, many connections are made between countries that do a considerable amount of business together which relates to the relocation industry.

To read about and use Facebook’s World Friendship Interactive Map click here: Mapping the World’s Friendships.

How to beat loneliness during the holidays while on assignment

Happy_Holidays_ relocation
Paragon’s Relocation News site recently published a great article on tips to help employees overcome loneliness while on an International Assignment during the holiday season.

These tips include:
1. Host holiday office parties
2. Post regional events
3. Provide airfare back home for the holidays

To read more of this great article click here: How global transferees can overcome loneliness during the holiday season

What are the most miserable places in the world?

Recently, the website for the magazine the economist published their misery index (below) for the most miserable countries on the planet. Many times we’ve posted on the best places to take a relocation to but perhaps you could use the index below to decide where not to move. Of course this index is a generalization but it might give you an idea about of these countries in general. How miserable is your country?

misery index relocation

Paragon at the BABC San Francisco!

BABC SF Relocation

Paragon will be at the BABC (British-American Business Council) San Francisco Christmas Luncheon. The British-American Business Council (BABC) is the largest transatlantic business network, with 23 chapters and 2,500 member companies based in major business centers throughout North America and the United Kingdom. Join us for some Christmas cheer!



You can find more information and register for the luncheon here: http://babcsf.org/events/2012_BABC_Christmas_Luncheon/

Happy Hanukkah from Paragon!

HappyHanukkah relocation

Happy Hanukkah from everyone at Paragon Relocation!

Paragon at the BAMM Holiday Luncheon!

bay area relocation company


Join Paragon in attending the BAMM (Bay Area Mobility Management) Luncheon tomorrow in San Francisco. This will be a great opportunity to network with other relocation industry professionals. To register please visit: http://baprm.org/index.php.

How much does a Big Mac cost at your McDonald’s? The Big Mac Index

One way to calculate Cost-of-Living (COLA) in a different location when taking a relocation is to simply compare the cost of the Big Mac in that location after currency is converted into your home currency. The Big Mac Index COLA comparison is a good one for simple calculations because McDonald’s are everywhere. The economist.com created the chart below of the Big Mac Index plotting the cost of Big Mac’s around the world.


The Big Mac Index – What’s the price of a Big Mac in…?

The big mac index relocation

How much does a Big Mac cost you? Let us know in the comments here or on Linkedin!

Paragon at the Portland Relocation Council!

portland relocation services


We are going to be at the Portland Relocation Council Winter Meeting next week on the 4th! Join us to hear an update on the relocation industry, real estate and the economic forecast. Visit the site to register: http://www.portlandrelocationcouncil.com/.

Cost of Living Snapshots: Geneva, Switzerland

geneva switzerland cost of living relocation companyCost of living differences are a major issue when considering an international assignment. For an employee to have an equal standard of living in their new location companies will often provide additional compensation based on a formula of the differences in cost between the old and the new location called a “Cost-of-Living Differential”. Today to get a sense of the differences in cost between locations we are going to start a continue a series of posts called “Cost of Living Snapshots” to compare the cost of living in different locations around the world at a glance.

With today’s comparison we analyze Geneva, Switzerland, which is one of the largest cities in Switzerland behind Zurich and is one of Europe’s largest financial centers.

To gather the cost of living data we use, Expatistan.com. Expatistan.com is something we’ve written about in the past. It is a free web-based collaborative tool that lets users enter local prices to compare with other locations around the world.


What does it cost to live in Geneva, Switzerland?

Geneva vs. San Francisco: The overall cost of living in San Francisco, California is 31% less than Geneva, Switzerland. The cost of a pair of 501 Levi’s is 174% more in Geneva than in San Francisco, while cold medicine in Geneva is 44% more than what it costs in San Francisco. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Geneva vs. San Francisco.

Geneva vs. Shenzhen: The overall cost of living in Shenzhen, China is 129% less than Geneva, Switzerland. The cost of a 900 sq. ft. furnished apartment costs 232% more in Geneva than in Shenzhen, while a Volkswagen Golf is 20% less than what it costs in Shenzhen. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Geneva vs. Shenzhen.

Geneva vs. Moscow: The overall cost of living in Moscow, Russia is 57% less than Geneva, Switzerland. The cost of the daily menu in the downtown business district is 137% more in Geneva than in Moscow, while a 40″ flat screen TV is 5% less than what it costs in Moscow. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Geneva vs. Moscow.

Geneva vs. Hong Kong: The overall cost of living in Hong Kong is 11% less than Geneva, Switzerland. The cost of a combo meal at a fast food restaurant is 258% more in Geneva than in Hong Kong, while a liter of milk costs 37% less than what it costs in Hong Kong. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Geneva vs. Hong Kong.

Happy Thanksgiving from Paragon!

happy thanksgiving relocation




Happy Thanksgiving from everyone at Paragon to our customers and clients in the United States. We are so grateful to have the opportunity to provide relocation services for you and your families. Have a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!



Cost of Living Snapshot: Miami, Florida

miami florida relocation company cost of living 300x200 Cost of Living Snapshot: Miami, FloridaCost of living differences are a major issue when considering an international assignment. For an employee to have an equal standard of living in their new location companies will often provide additional compensation based on a formula of the differences in cost between the old and the new location called a “Cost-of-Living Differential”. Today to get a sense of the differences in cost between locations we are going to start a continue a series of posts called “Cost of Living Snapshots” to compare the cost of living in different locations around the world at a glance.

With today’s comparison we analyze Miami, Florida, which is known for beautiful beaches but is also known for being a gateway to Latin America.

To gather the cost of living data we use, Expatistan.com. Expatistan.com is something we’ve written about in the past. It is a free web-based collaborative tool that lets users enter local prices to compare with other locations around the world.


What does it cost to live in Miami, Florida?

Miami vs. San Francisco: The overall cost of living in San Francisco, California is 19% more than Miami, Florida. The cost of a pair of 501 Levi’s is 18% less in Miami than in San Francisco, while cold medicine in Miami is 1% less than what it costs in San Francisco. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Miami vs. San Francisco.

Miami vs. Shenzhen: The overall cost of living in Shenzhen, China is 41% less than Miami, Florida. The cost of a 900 sq. ft. furnished apartment costs 57% more in Miami than in Shenzhen, while a Volkswagen Golf is 40% less than what it costs in Shenzhen. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Miami vs. Shenzhen.

Miami vs. Moscow: The overall cost of living in Moscow, Russia is about the same as Miami, Florida. The cost of the daily menu in the downtown business district is 26% more in Miami than in Moscow, while a 40″ flat screen TV is 18% less than what it costs in Moscow. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Miami vs. Moscow.

Miami vs. Hong Kong: The overall cost of living in Hong Kong is 32% more than Miami, Florida. The cost of a combo meal at a fast food restaurant is 73% more in Miami than in Hong Kong, while a liter of milk costs 13% less than what it costs in Hong Kong. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Miami vs. Hong Kong.

Cost of Living Snapshots: Beijing, China

Beijing cost of living relocation companyCost of living differences are a major issue when considering an international assignment. For an employee to have an equal standard of living in their new location companies will often provide additional compensation based on a formula of the differences in cost between the old and the new location called a “Cost-of-Living Differential”. Today to get a sense of the differences in cost between locations we are going to start a continue a series of posts called “Cost of Living Snapshots” to compare the cost of living in different locations around the world at a glance.

With today’s comparison we analyze Beijing, China, which is the location of the country’s capital and the location of many expats working on assignment.

To gather the cost of living data we use, Expatistan.com. Expatistan.com is something we’ve written about in the past. It is a free web-based collaborative tool that lets users enter local prices to compare with other locations around the world.


What does it cost to live in Beijing, China?

Beijing vs. San Francisco: The overall cost of living in San Francisco, California is 40% more than in Beijing, China. The cost of a pair of 501 Levi’s is 106% more in Beijing than in San Francisco, while cold medicine in Beijing is 61% less than what it costs in San Francisco. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Beijing vs. San Francisco.

Beijing vs. Shenzhen: The overall cost of living in Shenzhen, China is 5% less than Beijing, China. The cost of a 900 sq. ft. furnished apartment costs 69% more in Beijing than in Shenzhen, while a Volkswagen Golf is 28% less than what it costs in Shenzhen. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Beijing vs. Shenzhen.

Beijing vs. Moscow: The overall cost of living in Moscow, Russia is 28% more than Beijing, China. The cost of the daily menu in the downtown business district is 4% more in Beijing than in Moscow, while a 40″ flat screen TV is 20% less than what it costs in Moscow. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Beijing vs. Moscow.

Beijing vs. Hong Kong: The overall cost of living in Hong Kong is 49% more than Beijing, China. The cost of a combo meal at a fast food restaurant is 9% more in Beijing than in Hong Kong, while a liter of milk costs 22% less than what it costs in Hong Kong. Check out the full costs comparison breakdown between Beijing vs. Hong Kong.

Happy Election Day from Paragon!

ElectionLogo2012 - relocation company

Happy Election Day from everyone at Paragon! Today American’s across the United States will vote on Presidential, Senatorial, Local Representative contests in addition to Ballot Measures. There is now many different ways to vote, some people in some states are able to vote early or vote by mail, while many will still vote the traditional way by visiting their local polling place on election day. For many American’s living overseas they vote via absentee ballot. Below we’ve provided some relevant election links and information on how to vote while on an international assignment.


Here are some helpful election links:

Find your polling place and ballot information
CNN.com’s Election Results and News


How do I vote while I’m on an International Assignment?

A fellow international traveler at NomadicMatt.com provides the steps needed to vote while abroad.

Step 1 — Register to vote. If you are already registered to vote, awesome! Head to Step 2. If not, it’s a free and simple process. You can register to vote in person, at the DMV, or by mail. Here is a list of each state’s election office that can give you more information on where to go:

Find Your Local Election Office

If you are already overseas, you will have to print out the forms listed on your state’s election website and mail it to your election office.

Or, you can visit the Federal Voter Assistance Program, complete the voter registration form online and mail it back to them with postage. It’s a much quicker and simpler process.

Good Voting Resource: General Voting Resource from the Federal Government

Step 2 — After you are registered to vote, there are two ways to cast your ballot overseas:

a) You can apply for an overseas ballot via your state’s election office by mailing in a form, having the ballot sent to you, and then mailing it back. A complicated process.

Or you can do it the easy way:

b) Go to the Federal Voter Assistance Program website and do it all online!

Step 3 — Go to FVAP, choose request an absentee ballot and click on the state you are registered to vote in.

Use the step-by-step voting wizard to fill out your information and voting choices. If you are registering to vote via FVAP, you can mail in your registration and ballot at the same time. (You can also just print out the forms and hand write your answers.)

Step 4 — Download and print the PDF forms.

Step 5 — Put your ballot in an envelope, slap some postage on it, and mail it in.

Step 5 — Celebrate the fact you voted!