On my recent trip to Thailand, there was this nagging feeling that I had throughout the trip through both Bangkok and Phuket…
Which is, even if I had 10, 25, maybe even 50 million dollars in my bank account, my life wouldn’t be that much “better”.
Let me explain.
Simply put, no matter how much money you have, until a certain point, you are still going to be subject to the blazing heat, insane traffic jams, and everything else that comes with living in Bangkok. There is no way around it—until perhaps you reach a point where you have a private helicopter that can just carry you from building to building.
Otherwise, you’re still dealing with walking in 100 degrees and 100% humidity to the SkyTrain, still sitting in traffic if you want to avoid that, and there’s no way around it.
Simply put, I now completely understand why the digital nomads go there and try to live on just a grand or so a month. It’s doable. You can find a decent spot at a decent price, as long as it’s reasonably close to a SkyTrain stop, it’s doable.
Food is cheap everywhere.
(Obviously, the more cash flow you have the hotter/high quality Thai girls you can theoretically date.)
The difference between having $2,000 a month to spend on expenses and $10,000 would be minimal, too. I went out for every meal, did all the stuff I wanted to do, and I would say it would be really, really difficult for me to spend more than $5,000/month in a place like Bangkok.
I’d have to go out and drink hard. Often.
Anyways, the real point of all this is that I’m really glad I went to Southeast Asia, because it really just helped me to reaffirm my decision to live in Europe. Don’t get me wrong. I liked Thailand. I’d certainly go back (but would go to many other places first). There is no doubt in my mind though that I would never live there, though. Most of you know I don’t care much for the beach, having lived there for so many years. And Bangkok was just too hot, too polluted, and just not my cup of tea. Again, I actually did like it. Just wouldn’t live there.
A lot of people really like Thai food, myself included.
But I have to say…I did get very tired of it after a week or so, to the point where I didn’t mind going to some tourist traps in Phuket for a pizza or a burger.
There’s only so many different ways you can make Pad Thai, I suppose.
I also kept insisting they make all the food “Thai Spicy” for me, but save for one Tom Yum soup at Mama Jin’s in Phuket, I was a bit disappointed in the infamous spicy Thai food.
Sometime this week, perhaps tomorrow, I’ll tell you about my trips around the mountains on my little rented Honda scooter…
Until then though.
Alex Bkk says
I live in Bangkok. It is a misconception that is it a cheap place. It`s more expensive then most EE capitals (I`m from Bucharest btw) if you want to have a decent life here.
– a decent condo w/ view in central area is min 1000 EUR/M
– street food is cheap sure, but a good (import) steak in a restaurant is ~600 THB (~20 EUR)
– drink in fancy club/sky bar is ~300THB + tip (~10 EUR )
This is not crazy expensive by any means, but it`s not cheap either.. you do however get better value for your money here then in Europe, especially in terms of service.. also there is nothing in a first world class city that you couldn`t find in Bkk (except for fat angry feminists maybe ;)).
And, there are no broke “digital nomads” living here.. they all flock to cheaper places in Thailand like Chiang Mai or the islands.
That’s what I thought about BKK too. Not expensive, but certainly not cheap, unless you’re cool with eating street food every day.
Thanks for commenting!