Working in Bangkok
Monthly Earnings 30,000
Q1. How much do you earn from teaching per month?
I work at a private school and my full-time salary is 25K plus I get a 5,000 baht housing allowance.
Q2. How much of that can you realistically save per month?
Basically nothing. I always send all of my money back home to the Philippines.
Q3. How much do you pay for your accommodation and what do you live in exactly (house, apartment, condo)?
I lived in an apartment for 3,500 baht before and it was all good until some crazy drunken man kept knocking on our door for no reason. I had to move out as soon as possible because he was really creepy and scared the hell out of me. I am now renting a 6,000 baht room in a condominium near to my school.
Q4. What do you spend a month on the following things?
My school is very near to where I live. 1,000 baht would be more than enough.
b) Utility bills
I used to pay 1,000 baht for water and electricity in my old apartment. I haven't had my first bill in this condominium that I just moved to. Hopefully, it will be around the same range. For internet and phone bills, I pay around 1,000 baht per month.
c) Food - both restaurants and supermarket shopping
I love cooking Filipino dishes so always end up cooking by myself. If I eat out, it will probably be once or twice a month with my boyfriend and that would usually cost about 2,000 baht.
d) Nightlife and drinking
I don't do this.
e) Books, computers
Q5. How would you summarize your standard of living in one sentence?
Compared to back home, my cost of living here is much more cheaper. I can live comfortably here.
Q6. What do you consider to be a real 'bargain' here?
Thais are really friendly and helpful. Cost of living is cheap. It is also so much safer compared to the streets of Manila.
Q7. In your opinion, how much money does anyone need to earn here in order to survive?
I have a lot of Filipino friends who earn 20,000 baht and below and they can still live well and even send money home. I believe it really depends on your chosen lifestyle. If you know how to handle your income well, no salary is not enough to survive.
Phil's analysis and comment
I always say that an apartment building is only ever as good as your neighbors that live there. And it's a fact that the lower your rent, the more chance you have of assholes moving in next door.
I lived in a nice apartment building on Rama 9 Road for three years. I never heard a peep out of my next-door-neighbors and I was very happy there. That all changed overnight when a huge American guy and his girlfriend moved in and every Friday and Saturday night without fail, they would go out to a club and get drunk, return home in the small hours of the morning and have the most terrible fights. I would cower under the bedclothes while the paper-thin dividing wall shook around me. I checked out within the month.
I notice Cassafina doesn't spend any money on nightlife / going out. In fact most of the Filipino teachers I ever worked with would often get together with other Filipinos and sit around and chat in someone's apartment. I guess that's the advantage of having a tight-knit community compared to most Westerners, who tend to remain more isolated.