Working in Bangkok

Monthly Earnings 75,000

Q1. How is that income broken down? (full-time salary, private students, on-line teaching, extra work, etc)

75,000 baht is my full-time salary and for that, I teach 24 x 40-minute periods = 16 hours a week. I teach grades 7,8,9 with a total of 300 students. Plus ten marking events per year.

Q2. How much money can you save each month?


Q3. How much do you pay for your accommodation and what do you live in exactly (house, apartment, condo)?

I live in a 43 sqm studio apartment in the Silom area, which cost 16K per month. It's an older lower-grade apartment and has no swimming pool or fancy lobby.

Q4. What do you spend a month on the following things?


A couple of thousand baht a month.

Utility bills

Around 3,700 baht a month. Electric is around 2,500 plus 1,200 for internet and mobile phone.

Food - both restaurants and supermarket shopping

28,000 baht a month.
About 2,500 on two grocery shops a month for basic things like bread, milk, cheese etc. No meat or steaks! It's extra if you have lots of toiletries, cosmetics, lotions etc to buy in a given month. I'll spend about 2,500 baht on a weekend, eating out one night, at the movies, etc. Food delivery is 400-700 baht each time. From Monday to Friday, a basic rice and curry is 200-300 baht a day.

Nightlife and drinking

No nightlife or clubbing. Wine starts at 1,500 baht (62$US) and I can't afford it that often. Maybe at weekends with an evening meal at home.

Books, computers

Nothing. My phone is 7 years old and my computer is 8 years old.

Q5. How would you summarize your standard of living in one sentence?

It's pretty basic. I have one good meal out with friends at the weekend but Monday to Friday is super quiet. One luxury would be a foot massage once a month. I have one good holiday a year and an overseas holiday every 3 or 4 years.

Q6. What do you consider to be a real 'bargain' here?

Taxis are still cheap and also food courts and street food. Talking to my family back home, everything in Bangkok is now at western prices - a bag of groceries, a bar bill, electricity, etc.

Q7. In your opinion, how much money does anyone need to earn here in order to survive?

To survive in Bangkok you need at least 50K a month and that would mean living in a flop apartment and eating meals from 7-11. With a salary of 60,000, you can start to save a bit and go out once a week.

Phil's analysis and comment

28,000 baht is a hell of a food bill Dino! That's getting on for a thousand baht a day. How many takeaways / food deliveries do you have a month? Food and rent are accounting for virtually 60% of your salary. Others may disagree but I think that's quite a cut.

There are a few opinions in your survey I would disagree with. I don't think 50K a month in Bangkok means a flop apartment and meals from 7-11. It won't give you a fantastic standard of living but you could certainly afford an 8-10K rent. And foot massages a luxury? I never have them but aren't they about 150 baht an hour or something?   

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