Thinking about retiring in Roatan? Find out how to retire on tiny Roatan in the Bay Islands in our guide.

How to Retire in Roatan – The Ultimate Guide

Have you been thinking about retiring in the Caribbean? Is your heart set on the tiny western Caribbean island of Roatan? We put together this guide for readers looking to retire in Roatan.

The guide covers all aspects of retiring on this idyllic tropical island, from the advantages of a lower cost of living and better quality of life to how you can find homes for sale in Roatan and condos for sale in Roatan suitable for your retirement in the sunshine.

Discover how to retire in Roatan in our guide

Discover how to retire in Roatan in our guide


Can I Retire in Roatan?
Benefits – Why Retire in Roatan?
How Much Does it Cost to Retire in Roatan?
Buying Real Estate for Your Retirement & Applying for Residency
Where are the Best Places to Retire in Roatan?
Find Out More About Retiring in Roatan

Can I Retire in Roatan?

Citizens of the USA, Canada, the EU and the UK are permitted to enter Roatan without a visa. Overseas visitors typically receive a 30 day visit entry stamp upon arrival which can be extended for up to 90 days by application to an Immigration Office. So non-residents can generally spend the winter in Roatan without too much hassle. However, foreign nationals who would like to live full-time in Roatan need to apply for a residence permit via one of several visa options. In the case of financially secure retirees, a Pensioner (‘Pensionado) or Retiree (‘Rentista’) visa provide routes to permanent residency in Roatan.

Pensionado / Rentista Visa – Overview

Roatan’s Pensionado and Rentista visas allow financially secure retirees who meet the criteria and apply in accordance with the application process to become full-time residents of Roatan and import a vehicle and a container of personal items duty-free.

Pensionado / Rentista Visa – Requirements

To qualify for a Pensionado visa, an applicant and spouse must be able to demonstrate a combined minimum monthly income of $1,500 for life from Social Security, a pension or a similar guaranteed source.

In the case of a Rentista visa, applicants must be able to demonstrate a minimum monthly income of at least $2,500 from an investment such as a rental property.

Pensionado / Rentista Visa – How to Apply

We would advise all applicants to seek the advice of a local, reputable attorney to assist with the application process.

Residence permits are issued by the Honduran Secretary of Justice (Secretaria de Gobernación y Justicia) in the capital Tegucigalpa, typically within 6 to 9 months.

Benefits – Why Retire in Roatan?

Roatan is a dream retirement destination. Only 32 square miles in size, the island is the largest of the Bay Islands which lie off the coast of Honduras in the western Caribbean. While located just 40 miles from Honduras, Roatan is a world away from the mainland. Small, welcoming and laidback, the charming and unspoiled island is carpeted in tropical greenery and fringed by stunning white sand beaches.

Besides natural beauty, the island also offers plenty of activities for a fun-filled retirement, such as a good selection of beach bars and restaurants, the 18-hole championship Black Pearl Golf Course at Pristine Bay and watersports ranging from kayaking and deep sea fishing to snorkelling and diving on colourfeel reefs which are just minutes off shore by boat.

Life is uncomplicated here too. Roatan is easy to get to via direct flights to Juan Manuel Gálvez International Airport from the USA, Canada, and Central and South America. Internet and cellphone services are reliable and, unlike Spanish-speaking mainland Honduras, English is the tiny island’s lingua franca which makes life particularly easy for retirees from North America.

How Much Does it Cost to Retire in Roatan?

While Roatan offers retirees a high quality of life, the cost of living compares very favourably to North America and other islands in the Caribbean.

Certain items such as electricity and imported food products are expensive, but the overall cost of living is relatively low.

For those looking to purchase property, real estate in Roatan is comparatively affordable with property prices generally lower than many other islands in the region.

Buying Real Estate for Your Retirement & Applying for Residency

To become resident in Roatan there is no requirement for individuals to purchase property – It is also possible to rent.

For those looking to buy there is a wide selection of property available on the island (from affordable to luxury) including newly built villas and condos in beachfront resorts to houses nestled in the lush hills offering panoramic views across the island and out to the crystal clear waters of the sea.

To discover property for sale, browse Roatan real estate on our website.

For more detail on applying for residency and the purchase process, please see our guide to buying property in Roatan.

Where are the Best Places to Retire in Roatan?

Where are the best places to retire in Roatan? Well, that very much depends on your personal preferences.

Beach lovers, look no further than the West Bay area which is renowned for its world-class white sand beach and calm turquoise waters.

For those looking to be in the heart of the action, the buzzy West End Village area (which is approximately 10 minutes from West Bay) is a popular choice, offering a wide selection of lively restaurants, shops, nightlife, amenities and services practically on your doorstep.

To get away from it all, the quiet residential community of Palmetto Bay is perfect for enjoying an unhurried life by the beach.

For those who prefer the convenience of resort living, be sure to take a look at Pristine Bay, Infinity Bay and Lawson Rock in Sandy Bay.

Find out More About Retiring in Roatan

Would you like to find out more about retiring in Roatan or perhaps you would you like to browse property for sale which would be suitable for your retirement?

We would be delighted to help. You can explore Roatan real estate on our website or contact 7th Heaven Properties, the Luxury Caribbean Property Specialist, to begin your property search and to discuss your options in more detail.