When asked about living in Thailand and why it is that you choose this part of the world to spend your days, you’ll no doubt be aware that pretty much everyone, man or woman, will assume that you are there for nefarious activities with the ladies of the night. It’s often a fair presumption and I’m not going to deny that Thai girls, be they sex-workers or regular ladies, are a breath of fresh air for any single man that has left his youth behind him.
The dating game in the west is a largely disappointing affair once you reach middle-age and discover that most of the desirable ladies are already in relationships and that most of the women who are available are either halfway insane (wearing their ‘issues’ like a badge of honour) or totally deluded by a somewhat feminist media.
I’ve heard many amusing tales from western men about their frustrated attempts to woo some fairly average women, in terms of appearance, only to discover that those women are waiting to be whisked off their feet by the winner of a punch-up between Hugh Grant and Colin Firth! When you are living in Thailand these romantic frustrations are unthinkable, and yes, that is certainly one of the main attractions for emigrating there – let’s be under no illusion about that.
However, it really does need to be pointed out that there are many more reasons for moving to Thailand than simply the ease of arranging romantic liaisons with beautiful exotic ladies, and I want to draw your attention to the other big reasons on this page. I’m leaving out any specific description of Thai girls in this section of the site because that’s pretty much the main focus of the rest of my site…
The really cheap cost of living in Thailand is a biggie for most expats and whilst the land of smiles is not quite as cheap as it once was, it remains a real bargain compared to most places in the west. It is true that exchange rates have worsened for most western currencies in recent years, but your money still goes a long way once you figure out which things to buy and which to avoid.
If you intend to eat western food for example then you’ll find that living in Thailand comes with some expenses that are actually a lot higher than they are back home – simple things like a tin of baked beans can cost as much as 4 times the price that you’ll be used to, but as time goes by you’ll naturally start to adjust your preferences by substituting cheap local products into your life. Discovering these new things is all a part of the fun, and the money that you save can always be used for more entertaining pursuits.
The single biggest cost that you’ll need to pay for, or at least the biggest necessity that you‘ll need to pay for, is your accommodation. In this regard living in Thailand is no different than any other place but you’ll find that, whatever your budget is, you’ll be able afford a virtual palace compared to what your money would get you back home.
Depending on your preferences you may want to purchase a property of your own, my section about Thailand Property Investment will give you some good advice on that. I recommend renting initially, it’s cheap and easy and it’ll give you time to decide whether or not you want to put down some more permanent roots at a later date.
On the other hand you might want to look into property investment from a money-making perspective, developing countries like Thailand do offer fantastic opportunities for long-term capital growth and my eBook will help you to decide if this is right for you.
Overall, the cost of living in Thailand is very low considering that it is a country with quite a good infrastructure, good healthcare options, a low crime rate and so on. I won’t bother listing any actual figures here as they can easily go out of date and, in any case, there’s a better solution. You can get lots of current cost comparisons between Thailand and your own country by clicking here.
To enjoy the climate in a tropical country like Thailand you’ll need to be a fan of hot weather. I know that hot weather is not to everyone’s taste and if you don’t care for it then you’re probably not going to enjoy Thailand very much. The best place for you would probably be Chiang Mai in the north, it is set in a mountainous region and the higher altitudes there do make quite a difference – you might even find some days of the year to be a bit cold!
For sun-worshipers, living in Thailand is hard to beat. Most places enjoy year round temperatures at or around 30C during the day, and even overnight they only fall to the mid-20s. You can go out at night at any time of the year wearing shorts, t-shirt and flip-flops and you’ll be perfectly warm. Virtually all of the accommodation options that you’ll have will come with air-conditioning, so cooling down indoors is no problem.
There are, generally speaking, 3 seasons in Thailand with regard to the climate. Mid-November through to mid-March is the best time; there’s very little rain and the humidity level is at its lowest. It works out well if you’re from a cold northern hemisphere country because these are the worst months of the year back home, meaning that a winter holiday in Thailand can be had at just the right time to enjoy the best of the Thai weather. The months from mid-March to mid-July is the hot season. Temperatures are only a little higher but the humidity at that time makes it feel a lot hotter. Mid-July to mid-November is the wet season, and I mean real wet! Floods are very common and I’ve even seen a chap swimming down a main road on his way to the beach before! Even the wet season has its good days though, check out the picture above, it was taken right in the middle of September!
The nightlife in Thailand is without parallel. It is world famous for good reasons and if you are the sort of person that enjoys a drink, loud music, lots of neon and a party atmosphere then you can’t do much better then head off to Thailand. Admittedly, when you’re living in Thailand you probably won’t want to be out partying every night as you might do if you’re were on holiday, but the good thing about it is that it’s constant. Every night of the week is good if you’re in one of the holiday destinations, Pattaya being my recommendation, so you can expect a really good night whenever you feel up to it.
The beer bars are a lot of fun and you can find all sorts of different venues catering to just about anything you could want. There are quiet bars for a bit of lazy people-watching, live sports bars, live music bars, gogo bars, discotheques, bar/restaurants, rooftop bars and so on. The best thing about it all is that it combines with the warm climate, cheap prices, Thai girls and fun loving culture in a way that just feels really good.
The last thing I’ll say about the nightlife is that you’ll feel completely relaxed about going out alone. Back in the west you wouldn’t even consider hitting the town for a night out by yourself – you’d look and feel like you don’t have a friend in the world! This is an important point to make because, if you are past your 20s, you probably won’t have too many single friends in the west that will be able to meet up with you… for some reason western wives and girlfriends can be quite adamant about stopping their men from traveling to Thailand! Seriously, don’t worry about this at all, going out alone is not at all unusual and the majority of the western men living in Thailand do it all the time.
Thai food is spicy, very spicy, and if you like that then you’ll be delighted with the culinary options. Thailand is world renowned for the quality of its food and deservedly so. There’s a lot to discover too, it’s not just about spices and restaurants, there’s some really tasty street-food offerings and the range of fruit and vegetables that you see is enormous – almost all of it will be unrecognisable to you and it comes ripe and fresh every day.
It’s not just the Thai food that’s delicious either, most areas of Thailand have eateries that cater to tastes from all over the world, and the best restaurants know how to cook it to perfection. I did mention in the cost of living section above that western food isn’t cheap, but it isn’t completely unaffordable either. Restaurant prices are still cheaper than you find in the UK. The best Sunday-roast I’ve ever eaten was at the Huntsman pub in Bangkok, beneath the Landmark hotel. I’ve forgotten the price, I think it was about 700 baht, but it was an all-you-can-eat carvery including deserts… I’ve never eaten so much… my mouth is watering just thinking about it!
I’ve given details of Thai dating culture already, but obviously there's much more to discover than that. The regular festivals, the smiling faces, the laid-back fun-loving attitudes of the Thai people all come together to give you something that’s truly unique. If you are looking for a new adventure in your life away from the rat-race back home then living in Thailand might be just what you’re looking for. You can lead a stress-free lifestyle on pristine beaches (Phuket being my recommendation for beaches) and really unwind away from the social pressures and responsibilities that sometimes come with living in your native land.
It’s not all a bed of roses though; living in Thailand is not the same as having a couple of weeks there and you might find that some of the things that first appealed to you as being quirky start to irritate you after a time. Power-cuts are not infrequent in some places, and things just don’t work like they do in the west. Even simple things like laundry shops can cause problems – I’ve had clothes come back torn, stained, or even with a bad smell! All you can do in these situations is take it on the chin, complaining is a waste of time and don’t even think about compensation.
If you are the sort of person who can handle things going completely off-plan from time to time, and you can just relax and adopt a carefree attitude to life, good things will come your way. After an extended period of living in Thailand you’ll start to dread the idea of ever having to return home to the rat-race, the high pressure lifestyle, the political correctness, and the nanny-state nonsense back in the west. Don’t let that happen to you! If you do ever make the move to Thailand, make sure that your finances are up to it and that things like inflation and exchange rate movements can easily be dealt with. Do that and you can happily spend the rest of your days in the land of smiles...
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