The cost of living in South East Asia will obviously vary a lot depending on the city you decide to check out. A general rule of thumb is that you can live on $1,000 per month at the time of writing this. We’ll do a little comparison about the different areas and the price ranges. This is actually a touchy subject because there are a lot of folks that say $1,000 per month is way too little and there are a lot of people that say it’s way too much. This is just a guide for MOST people. Sure, you’re going to have your thrifty shoppers that don’t want any luxury and you’re going to have those who have to have a ton of luxury. We’ll talk about that too thought just so we don’t offend anyone.
Most of us have spent more time in Thailand than anywhere else for four reasons. The first two reasons are the cost of living, the third reason is the girls, and the fourth is the food. For the girls, we recommend joining a dating site and it makes it easy. Check out our Thai Friendly review if you’re interested in the ladies here (you wouldn’t be on this site if not). You can definitely live in Thailand for under $800 and still be somewhat comfortable. I’ve actually seen people doing it on $500 a month but I wouldn’t wish that terrible existence on anyone. So what does $800 per month get you? Here’s a breakdown of what you can do with this amount of money but we’ll also throw in a few other options.
Apartment – $300
You can get a studio apartment almost anywhere in Thailand for this price, including electricity and internet. The only place this may be hard to find would be in Bangkok or good locations in the south such as near the beach in Phuket. However, you can definitely find them for this price in these cities. You can even find them for half of this price in cities like Chiang Mai or Udon Thani. These will generally be basic apartments that are set up like a hotel room and usually without a proper kitchen.
Food – $200
Great food for as little as $1 a meal. Most of us from Western countries are going to want to a little more meat than what they offer at this price so sometimes you have to eat two meals. If you are on a budget you can absolutely eat for less than $200 per month.
Transportation – $90
You can rent a motorbike in most cities in Thailand for $90 per month or less if you know where to go. It helps a ton in the more touristy areas if you can speak a bit of Thai to negotiate the price but nevertheless, you should be able to find it for $90 either way.
Getting setup with a phone in Thailand is quite simple and cheap. For $20 you can get a phone number with minutes and data. You will almost never need the phone number because everyone uses Line here. The 6gb of data for this price will go a long ways as well because there are a lot of places with WiFi.
Entertainment – $200
This is the part that will be majorly lacking on this $800 per month budget. A big beer is $2.50 at a bar and $1.50 at 7-Eleven. If you don’t drink at all then the $200 per month may actually be okay. A lot of entertainment options in Thailand are quite cheap or even free. Go stroll around the park, fishing, jog, play sports, meet new friends, or go swimming. Most of these will be free so you can save a lot of money and occupy your time that way. Oil massages are usually less that $10 for an hour but this doesn’t include any extras. Depending on what kind of extra you get it can range from $10 to $40. The $10 option is usually enough to satisfy you because these girls have great hand skills. Get a Thai girlfriend that’s educated and has a job and you won’t have to spend much money on girls either. You can find these hot Thai girls on one of a few different dating sites. It’s pretty close but as of now we prefer the ThaiCupid. You can check out our ThaiCupid review and make that decision yourself. I’ve lived in Thailand for years now and have had a lot of success with online dating and want to help you guys do the same now.
So this is how you can live comfortably on $800 per month but what about the luxuries that we mentioned? I honestly think it would be hard to spend any more than $2,000 per month in Thailand unless you were just being reckless. If you plan to go out and be a degenerate then just get a normal apartment for $300 per month and spend $1,000 per month on drinks and women. You’re still easily under the $2,000 per month threshold. If you’re someone that wants luxury but not into paying for women, then you can spend $1,000 per month on a really nice apartment and $500 on entertainment and you’re still under the threshold here as well.