Working in Bangkok (Sukhumvit)

Monthly Earnings 400,000

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

The basic salary is 400K baht after tax, then I get a nice 2-bed serviced apartment which should rent for 60K but is in my package, plus return business flights to the UK, medical insurance, transport, annual bonus and free food at school, which is such a saving tool.

Q2. How much money can you save each month?

250K a month

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

As part of my package, I get a two-bed serviced apartment in a very nice building in the center of town.

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


School provides a driver for work transport, so I only spend on transport for weekend trips and holidays. Regular weekend private transfers to Hua Hin or Pattaya means probably 10-12K a month.

Utility bills

Included in my package at the service apartment.

Food - both restaurants and supermarket shopping

The food at school is great and I eat well every day there. Maybe 500-1K a night on dinner with a drink so 20-30K a month.

Nightlife and drinking

I'm not a beer snob so happily drink local lagers. Often go out on a Friday and Saturday at maybe 3K a time so 20-30K a month.

Books, computers

I buy books for the kindle app maybe once a month and update with a new tablet and laptop when needs demand. Across the year averaged out to probably be 3-4K a month.

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

Incredibly fortunate to live in this amazing city with the package I have. I have a high standard of living and am luckily saving enough to be planning an early retirement.

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

The school free meals are a great bonus. Local standard beers are also well priced. The real bargain continues to be 5* hotels coming in at 100-150 quid a night. You just can't knock that value and service when you look at what that money would get you back in London.

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

When I first arrived 20 years ago I got by on 70k a month and still saved. So survival on the bare minimum in the middle of Bangkok is possible probably still on 60-80K a month and to make the experience worthwhile.

Phil's analysis and comment

There will be plenty of teachers reading this and asking if it's for real but of course these packages do exist, or at least I think they do. I tell you what John, even 70K twenty years ago was very decent money. Not sure that you've ever had to 'survive', Perhaps we need one of those 30K a month surveys now to bring things back down to reality?

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