Expat Sark

For those looking for natural beauty, you can’t get much better than the Channel Island Sark. Sark is one of the smallest Channel Islands and one of the least populated islands as well. It should be noted that for those looking for a simple existence, Sark is it. On the island of Sark there are no automobiles; most people get around using bicycles, horse drawn carriages or electric carts. For the most part goods are ferried in from near by Guernsey. Sark has old traditions that have never died; it is still considered one of the last fiefdoms and today continues to have feudal elements blended into its society.

For expats looking to live on Sark, your chances are extremely slim. There are only about 600 full time residents as of 2002 and while you may want to stay for a month or two as a tourist, anything longer is pretty much out of the question unless you meet a resident that you would like to stay with. Like the other Channel Islands, the island of Sark is a British dependency and carries on its own island government.


The climate of Sark is quite similar to the other Channel Islands. Expect mild temperatures, especially when compared to the UK. The average rainfall is only 140 mm annually. There is plenty of sunshine during the year and the summer time. During the winter time it can get quite windy, which can interrupt the islands boat service.


The government of Sark is considered to be one of the last fiefdoms in the world. Sark is a small feudal island that is part of what is called the Bailiwick of Guernsey, a parish of sorts. The government still holds a lot of old laws dating back many centuries and continues feudal practices when it comes to land and inheritance. You can learn more about this unique island at Island of Sark.

For tourists and expats looking to enter the island all that is required is a passport if you are not a UK citizen. Americans are welcomed to stay for a few days, weeks or more. There are several hotels and there is even a campground available for lodging.

Tax System

For those looking to become an expat, you will be pleased to know that there is no income tax, but there are small taxes on capital and property. These tax rates in many ways are similar to those rates in the UK. If you are inheriting property, it is best to talk to an accountant due to the unique laws on the island. It should be noted that there are two banks on the island and that the currency is the British Pound. Guernsey and Jersey currencies are also accepted on the island and are in circulation.

Medical Care

For a small island with a population of only 600, medical services on the island are adequate. Obviously for most procedures you will need to be evacuated off the island, by the help of local ferry ambulances. It should be noted that there is emergency medical assistance 24 hours a day on the island and the island even has its own tractor pulled ambulance. There is a general practioner on the island and this GP is available for normal appointments or if an emergency occurs. It should be noted that there is no dentist on the island.

Real Estate

Sark has some unique real estate laws. It should be known that you can not own land on the island of Sark, you can only lease it. Since this is a feudal island, there are many unique laws concerning land and inheritance and many reach back several hundred years or more. In order to buy or sell a lease on the land, the lease holder must follow the old feudal system and ask the Seigneur for permission.


For those that come to the island for a small or long vacation, the good news is that there are several small shops on the island selling a wide range of goods. While most shops cover the basic necessities, you can also find some unique crafts as well. For those that need more than the basic necessities, you can usually take a ferry to Guernsey.

Cost of Living

For those that are residents of the island, the cost of living is low; due to the fact that you don’t need much to get by. For expats or tourists staying the area, prices can be high especially due to the currency in use (British Pound). However, if you are looking for an island that offers natural beauty, a very slow pace and no automobile traffic, Sark is definitely the island of choice.

Map of Sark