Working in Bangkok

Monthly Earnings 120,000 baht

Q1. How much do you earn from teaching per month?

I work at an international school and earn 120K a month.

Q2. How much of that can you realistically save per month?

42,000 baht automatically goes into my UK account. I also save an additional 10,000 baht a month through my Thai bank account.

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

I live in a condo in the Asok area of Bangkok and my rent is 50,000 baht a month. I live with my partner who earns roughly the same wage so we split it. It's expensive but 200 sqm with a garden and a well kept pool that I use regularly.

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


I use the BTS every day and it costs me 44 baht to get back from work, as well as the 20 baht motor bike trip to the BTS station. I cab share for the actual journey TO work. All in all, I spend about 2,000 baht a month on travel.

Utility bills

My bills came in at 5,000 baht for the last two months but I have the air-conditioning on all the time. Although I am trying to cut use of air-con down.

Food - both restaurants and supermarket shopping

I'm a veggie which makes street food a little harder to eat. I was spending a lot at Villa Supermarket but have taken to going to Khlong Toey market instead. I spend about 20,000 a month on bills and eating but I eat out quite a lot.

Nightlife and drinking

My nightlife can cost me up to 3000 - 4000 baht per night but I don't go as wild as I used to when I first moved here.

Books, computers

Almost nothing.

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

Coming from London to Bangkok, my life has transformed. I no longer worry about the cost of things and have the money and the time to travel anywhere I like whilst still saving 50,000 baht a month.

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

Taxi fares and state of the art cinemas.

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

There's a difference between 'surviving' and 'living'. To live a good quality life, I'd say 50k but I wouldn't expect to save much on that wage. I wouldn't live in Bangkok if I had to scrimp and save - that's why I left the UK

Phil's analysis and comment

50,000 baht a month rent from a 120K salary! I was about to say 'good heavens Sid! What are you doing?" but of course you read further and see that Sid is only paying half of that. It certainly sounds like a lovely place to live - plenty of space and all the facilities you would expect from paying such a high rental. Savings-wise, a very nice 42,000 baht a month going back to the UK. And with the pound rapidly gaining in value at the moment, Sid's seeing that nest egg appreciate. I'd be interested to know what Sid does with that UK money or how he's got it invested.

If anyone fancies doing a cost of living survey, I've now put the questions on-line to make it easier and quicker for you. Please spare half an hour if you can. 

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