Steve

Working in Trang

Monthly Earnings 30,000

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

30,000bt. 1 job. Maths Teacher, Government School, Trang. Could do more but too lazy, I value my free time too much.

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

10,000bt saved every month

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

2,000bt small fan room with a shower/toilet, TV (8 Thai channels) and a nice jungle view.

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

Transportation

1000bt on fuel for the 'chopper' I bought last month for 57,000bt (from savings from this job). (1000bt = 1000km enough for big cruises)

Utility bills

100bt (water + elec) only

Food - both restaurants and supermarket shopping

3000-5000bt

Nightlife and drinking

12,000-14,000bt for all my entertainment.

Books, computers

Nowt, swap books. School has internet.

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

My standard of living is excellent - way better than it was in the NE of England. I read a lot during school nights when I'm not chilling out in Trang's bars. I do what I like at weekends/holidays. I often go on long motorbike cruises through the beautiful countryside so rural Thais can stare at me. I like to chill out in Krabi (beaches) and Phuket (birds) now and then since Trang has no "Hellllooooooo hansum man" phenomena.

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

Food, Beer and cigarettes. You can sit in a Mama n Papa shop with your mates and drink big bottles of Archa beer @ 33bt. 300bt will give you a 2 day hangover (that's the cheapest way unless you like LaoCao). Regular bars are about 70bt big Leo. However, spending a lot of time in Samui/Phuket etc will blow your 30K/month within minutes (Ao Nang, Krabi = small Tiger 100bt WTF?).

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

15000bt and you would lead an OK life here although you probably would wind up a single dude even if you looked like Tom Cruise.

Phil's analysis and comment

Steve seems happy enough. I bet when he's out on the open road on his chopper, with the wind in his hair, looking for the next watering hole, he must think he's died and gone to Heaven. Can you keep that kind of lifestyle going forever? I doubt it. The small fan room for 2,000 baht a month sends shivers down my spine. I don't care how glorious your view of the jungle is, surely you can't live like that for more than a year or two. I think eventually you'll crave more in the way of creature comforts. But for the time being, Steve's probably a young man on one big adventure. Why not go for it? I always appreciate a man who values his spare time above work.


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