Cost of living in Thailand

Expats can experience convenience and modern luxuries, while enjoying a sensible cost of living in Thailand that is cheaper than in other destinations around the world.

It should be noted, however, that due to the low rate of urbanisation, the cost of living can be quite different from one region to another. The most expensive areas are undoubtedly the main expat areas in Bangkok, and the touristic hubs of Phuket and Kho Samui; while in the more rural regions, prices can easily be two to three times cheaper.


Cost of accommodation in Thailand

Prices for accommodation vary throughout the country, depending in great part on location. The luxurious houses in Phuket or Kho Samui can have costly monthly rental rates, the large condos or serviced apartments in Bangkok are even more expensive, they sometimes cost THB 90,000 or more a month.

Transportation costs in Thailand

Whether for a bus fare for a weekend holiday to the beach or a cab ride, transportation costs are among the best bargains in Thailand.

The cheapest way to travel long distances is to use a bus or minivan. Trains are a little bit more expensive, but while being slower than buses, they offer greater cabin comfort and a sleeper option for night trips.

Travelling costs within the city are between low and moderate. Expats could make use of relatively cheap taxis or save even more using the city’s convenient public transport options, especially during rush-hour, such as the Skytrain or Subway. The prices differ depending on the distance travelled and whether the bus is air-conditioned.

Finally, to avoid an uncomfortable long walk on a hot day, motorbikes, tuk-tuks and specially designed pick-up trucks (saongteao) can provide transport to a person's destination for a minimal fee, depending on the distance travelled.

Cost of schooling in Thailand

Expats who move to Thailand with children wish to send them to an international school. Located almost entirely in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and Phuket, international schools are recognised for their high standards of education and impressive campuses. However, these schools are expensive, even in Thailand.

Tuition at a top-tier international school can easily cost THB 500,000 a year. Some schools may offer tuition for significantly cheaper; however, the quality of education is often not as good.

Cost of food in Thailand

There is an impressive variety of restaurants and street food booths. A quick snack from a street stall selling BBQ chicken or pork on sticks, a papaya salad, or other Thai delicacies cost just THB 20 and sometimes less.

There are also restaurants for expat in the main cities or on the islands. They offer multiple meals options on their menu for reasonable prices, while hotels are known for providing good international buffets that are generally more expensive.

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