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How much do i need
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  1. #1
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    Hello All,

    Im thinking of moving to Thailand. I went on holidays for a few weeks and loved everything about the place and i have to go back....i have to.

    I was thinking of moving there for 3 months, maybe more and then return to work back home for a few months and go back to Thailand again for a few more months.

    The only thing im not sure about is how much ill need. When i was on holiday i lived like a king and spent a fortune, but i know i cant do this if im to live there long term.

    Im not too pushed on where i go as long as its down south, i loved Phuket, but i heard koi samui is nice too, any suggestions. Im met a girl over there and ive planned to meet up with her over there so how much would i need to have a comfortable living. I was thinking of a nice condo, nothing too fancy and maybe just going out on the weekends for a few beers, nothing mad. Ill drink Thai beer and eat Thai food to keep the bills low. Ill be paying for the accommodation and the food and drink for both of us.

    What do you think would be an adequate amount to live comfortably per month and are there any hidden costs i might not be thinking of???

    Also for the condo would it be easy to find somewhere with broadband access and would this be much extra. I used to do a bit of freelance web design and im going to do it while im in Thailand to earn an extra few pound, so fast internet access would be extremely important. I dont want to go to a internet cafe as i would have to drag along alot of paperwork etc

    And while were on the subject of working, what way would i be fixed working from home in Thailand, how would i get a work permit, usually you would need a letter from a Thai company but i would be working for myself. Can i just say im self employed and will be earning 45,000 baht a month to get the 1 year permit (I havent a clue what i will be earning as i only used to do the freelance web design part time, maybe earning an average of 100 euro a week)
    Or maybe i should say nothing and work on the quiet or are the authorities likely to find out. The last thing i want to happen is if i get thrown out of the country or worse, blacklisted.

    I would really appreciate any guides on this. I understand that living costs vary per person but i just want a general guide from someone whos living in Thailand now, i.e i spend 5,000 baht for food for myself per month, 2,000 on transport per month, 10,000 on drink, 2,000 on laundry etc etc
    Something like that would be very helpful.

    Very lastly, what is the peak season dates and does prices of condos cost much more during these times and is it the same for food and drink and living cost prices???

    Thanks and i hope to see Thailand very soon.

  2. #2
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    Actually, it looks very much like you know what kind of costs you will be expecting already.

    Besides accomodation costs i live all right on 10,000 baht per month, however if you decided to live it up on say Koh Samui the cost of living and the obvious temptation to party-it-up often could send your bills soaring.

    If your gonna do freelance web design then i can imagine that your business with foreign customers over the Internet hasn't much to do with the authorities. Don't worry much about that.
    Just dont go sticking up any big signs or the likes as that will mean 'an actual locally based company'.

    I think it's capital of 2 million Baht in capital to set up your own business and then lots and lots of paperwork so if your not into that then there's no way you are going to get a work permit on your own.

    Reading from what you write I'd be looking at around 30,000 Baht per month.

    Anything else then do ask.
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  3. #3
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    Just to add to what Steve said, you won't be able to apply for a work permit to do what you are suggesting. There are strong limitations about what a foreigner can and cannot do here. It is not that simple. You would have to be employed by a company who can show that you are more experienced than a local Thai person. In your case, you seem to want to work for yourself. As your customers seem to be abroad and they are paying money to you in your foreign bank account then there is no reason for you to apply for a work permit. Maybe people come here on extended holidays and bring their "work" with them.

    However, if you later decide to settle down here, then you will have to consider to set up a company. That way you will be legal and you can apply for your own work permit. To set up the company you need a minimum of 2 million baht in assets (in my case I used my house) and 7 shareholders. These can be silent partners who you get to sign a blank share transfer form. If you want to go down this road then make sure you get a good lawyer.

    The cost of living has been going up a lot lately. It is very difficult to put a price on monthly bills as each person is different. If you go to eat at a noodle stall then it will cost you 20-25 baht each. If you go to a restaurant then it can easily be ten times more. If you go on a local bus it can be 10 baht. Go by taxi everywhere and it can be ten times more! See what I mean?

    Some hidden extras to look for in a condo are electricty, water and phone bills. If you are not careful, these can double your monthly rent!

    Broadband Internet by True starts from 590 baht. But as it is so popular lots of people complain. I pay just over 1000 baht per month for a faster connection by CS Loxinfo. Never had a problem. There is an online application form and they came within 2-3 days.

    If you want any specific costs then please let us know.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Ill be paying for the accommodation and the food and drink for both of us.
    I made my money by being very tight, and I'm very proud of the fact I don't need to put up with the drudgery of work any more, as I never let my self become the exploited financial member in a relationship.
    Let your self be exploited by a Thai woman by paying for her, will not earn you her respect, you will just be her Job. Make shore she contributes to the basic costs of living, and that will give your self a better life style. Remember woman asked for there equality 30 years ago, and that means equal financial commitment, don't let woman become hypocrites by only wanting equality when it suits them selves.

  5. #5
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    Thanks Lads, some geat info there. I had pretty much budgeted for around the 30,000 baht mark and because ill be with a thai girl she'll know the cheaper places to eat and where to get the bus etc, something i probably wouldnt figure out on my own.

    Richard, would there be any problem getting the broadband installed in any old condo, or should i check with them first if the condo is fixed up for broadband access. The last thing i want is to be stuck in a condo with a lease and find they cant install broadband. 1000 baht is very reasonable for the month, im paying 2500 baht here in Ireland and i rather pay the small bit extra to get a reliable connection.

    If i get a 3 month visa (assuming they are easy to get) and want to stay longer, where is the nearest place from Phuket to travel to get it renewed and would that be costly. Also do you have to renew every month after that or every 3 months.

    I didnt realise that Koi Samui was expensive, has anyone any suggestions of a nice place to stay down south, maybe Krabi. I just want somewhere thats not too expensive, thats pleasant but yet somewhere where theres something to do during the day and a few good pubs for music on the weekend.

    Richard you also mentioned hidden extra's in condo's. Is there condo's that come with a set rate and if not what can i expect to pay roughly per month for electricity and water. Would phone bills be amounting to much, i wouldnt really be ringing many people in Thailand and i would use a international call card on my mobile for ringing home. Im sure she'd be ringing friends and family every now and then. Or when you say phone bills do you mean a rental fee.

    I was hoping to spend between 7,000 and 10,000. I dont need a palace just something nice with air conditioning and modern looking. What can i expect in a condo, is there kitchens, en suite bedroom, living area, thats all id need. It would be ideal to have a small office room but i could easily set that up in the living room, Just a laptop and some files.

    Also do they come furnished with washing machines,pots and pans, couch, chairs and tables, fridge etc....even thinking about it i wouldnt neccessarily need a kitchen or washing machine, i could send my clothes to a laundry and eat out at a noodle stand or restaurant for little or nothing.

    I agree with Paul on the women should pay for themselves but i think in Thailand its nearly impossible to know if they love you or your money, so ill just look after her living costs and tell her i cant afford to pay for the life saving operation for her dad and the motorbike for her sister etc etc..... i havent got any of these stories yet but im sure a few might pop up, at the end of the day were probably using eachother a bit but shes a nice girl and well have a good time. If it dosent work out im sure there'll be plenty more waiting in line to use me but as long as im having fun who gives a shit!!

    Thanks a million for all the help lads

  6. #6
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    Just a quick reply. Does anyone know of a good site to find condo accommodation in Thailand. Alot of the ones i found through google were expensive starting at 12,000 or 15,000 per month......... i cant believe i just said that was expensive, i wouldnt rent a bike shed in Ireland for that!!!

  7. #7
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    Well Paddy:

    The best website for finding accommodation on the Net is of course targetting Thais and thus that means that the site with all its accommodation for rent is in Thai language. Have a Thai go through the site with you.

    www.pantip.com

    The best magazines too are all in Thai language just like 'Land and Home'. Most of the English language guides with accommodation for rent are the upper-class abodes.

    Most foreigners therefore have to play it word for mouth or just walk around for a couple of days on end looking for the best and cheapest gaff.

    Living in Koh Samui, you'll be off down to Penang in Malaysia every three months for a new visa.

    Krabi has developed a darned lot and is just as expensive as Samui these days only a bit cheaper.

    Unless its unfurnished you arent going to find a place with a kitchen, separate bedroom, air-conditioning etc... for 7,000 unless its somewhere like on the outskirts of Bangkok in the middle of nowhere.

    Youve probably envisaged more than is actually plausible. In Bkk say and i'd say Samui too a basic air-con room with mods and cons will set you back 5,000 and thats before bills

    On Samui you'll just have to look around for a place. Perhaps your best bet would be to rent a house and if you are planning on staying quite a while i'd advise you buy your own furniture. Thats because there is a huge difference in price between furnished and unfurnished gaffs.

    I never actually lived on Samui, so i'll quote Bkk as an example. A nice furnished condo with a bedroom, TV, fridge and en-suite kitchen will cost in the region of say 8,000+ and thats certainly not downtown.
    Then if you are looking for an unfurnished condo with no aircondition, i mean nothing but a kitchen area and a bedroom, you will be paying 3,000+. And of course your bill will be far cheaper too. The flashier the gaff the more the owner charges for the water and phone rate etc..

    Anything else do ask, Richard's a busy guy so if he's not around to answer im sure me or and another regular will be able to help you out.
    www.thai-blogs.com - Stories and Photos about Life in Thailand
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Unless its unfurnished you arent going to find a place with a kitchen, separate bedroom, air-conditioning etc... for 7,000 unless its somewhere like on the outskirts of Bangkok in the middle of nowhere.
    Thanks again for all the help. I think im pretty much decided on Phuket, with koi samui and krabi being a little on the pricey side. Maybe Phuket is too but i dont want to go somewhere dead quiet so Phuket will do fine.

    So could you imagine me getting a nice condo for 8,000 - 10,000 with nothing fancy. I wouldnt even need a seperate bedroom or kitchen because i could eat out. As long as it was well kept and clean with air conditioning it would do me. Then what do you think a place that would cost 8,000 - 10,000 would cost me on bills, a rough estimate would be helpful and as i said i would be using the phone very little, except for the broadband obviosuly(i take it broadband is just a 1 time fee like in Ireland and you can spend as long as you want on line).

    I wouldnt really consider buying furniture because im only going to stay for between 3-6 months the first time, and then maybe come home and work for 6 months and return again. Would there be much hassle in getting an apartment for 3 months or is it mostly minimum yearly contracts? Also with broadband access would that be a minimum 12 month contract aswell and what would happen if i just paid it for 3 and left?

    Lastly, is it hard to get a 3 month visa or easy get one?

    Thanks a mill for all your help

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (phuketpaddy @ Aug. 24 2005,23:08)]
    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Richard, would there be any problem getting the broadband installed in any old condo, or should i check with them first if the condo is fixed up for broadband access.
    There are two major telephone companies in Thailand. It is a pain buy you not only have to have the right one but you also need to be in the right area. I use CS Loxinfo and they are OK with TOT. Other broadband people se TA. On their web sites you type in your telephone number to see if it is possible to use their service. It is possible that some apartments might have broadband included but that could be expensive.

    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]If i get a 3 month visa (assuming they are easy to get) and want to stay longer, where is the nearest place from Phuket to travel to get it renewed and would that be costly. Also do you have to renew every month after that or every 3 months.
    Go down to Penang in Malaysia. Lots of people are doing it and you will have no problem in finding a "tour" company that will take you door to door if you like. They are getting quite strict with visas these days and there is no guarantee they will keep giving you 3 month visas every time you enter the country.

    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ] Is there condo's that come with a set rate and if not what can i expect to pay roughly per month for electricity and water. Would phone bills be amounting to much, i wouldnt really be ringing many people in Thailand and i would use a international call card on my mobile for ringing home. Im sure she'd be ringing friends and family every now and then. Or when you say phone bills do you mean a rental fee.
    I doubt it. It is the utilities and bills like these where they make their money. I have never lived in an aprtment as I have my own house, but I believe phone calls would be 5 baht instead of 3 baht. That kind of thing. Also, you need to watch out that they don't limit your time. I believe someone was complaining before that the place they lived kept disconnecting them and it started getting expensive to use the internet.

    I cannot really help you with the other questions. There are web sites, if you use google, which might help you. If there is a specific place you are interested in and you cannot get information from the web site then let us know and we will give them a ring for you.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]i.e i spend 5,000 baht for food for myself per month, 2,000 on transport per month, 10,000 on drink, 2,000 on laundry etc etc
    Something like that would be very helpful.
    Some such samplings of people on a teacher's salary around the country...

    http://www.ajarn.com/Banter/costofliving.htm


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