The Top 8 Types of Expat in Thailand



Many expats come to Thailand from their home country and then return home. However, there is a select group of expats that haven’t lived in their home country for a long time – and may not go back. Most have lived in several countries prior to coming to Thailand and always consider themselves as an expat in every country. Being worldly, they easily come and adapt to local cultures, they are rarely fazed by strange local customs — they feel they have seen it all before. 


Serial Whiner


Some expats just can’t accept that they are in a different country that has different customs, cultures, costs and ways of doing things. They seem to feel that anything different from the western way of doing things is ridiculous. They complain of the cost of anything, even when it costs much less than their home country. Every observation is accompanied with the words – This is Thailand




Their life is full of wonder and discovery. Everything is new and exciting and they can’t wait to try out new things.  Constantly exploring local culture and learning the local language (although usually badly). For them everything has potential and is worth trying. Nothing is an obstacle, just an opportunity for them to jump into. Often in their twenties, they haven’t lost faith in humanity and can still see the potential in everything. Seen traversing the local clubs, pubs and daytime culture


Gone Native


The expats’ journey has resulted in love, they have found their girl or guy and now call Thailand their home. These expats can be quickly identified as if you ask them why they chose Thailand they immediately mention ” I met this great girl/guy…..” Usually, the Gone Native Expat has been in Thailand for many years, taught English for a few years and some other popular Expat job that many expats easily qualify for. They will speak at least some Thai and love a lot of things about the country



The package tourist


This expat looks at Thailand through the lens of a large fish bowl. Everything is strange an exotic. Many things look unbelievable as if they are in a movie. They can’t speak any Thai and often complain that the local people don’t speak English. Takes them a while to realise that not everywhere is the same as their home country. Every day they see something shocking, which to the locals is just everyday life


English Teacher


From different walks of life and experiences, many expats teach English in Thailand. Teaching English is in high demand in Thailand because the English education in Thai schools is often poor quality. Native English speakers can easily get teaching jobs, that pay enough to survive although not thrive  

That’s one of the easiest jobs to come by for foreigners in Thailand. English Teachers get less in Thailand than many other Asian countries but are attracted to Thailand by the laid-back lifestyle, friendly locals and low cost of living.

Exercise Junky


Often expats that come to Thailand have brought a spouse or plus one With the Expat in full time work, the plus one finds themselves with too much time on their hands. Of course, this time needs to be filled. At first the spouse takes up exercise as a means to get fit. However, with so much time to be filled, exercise takes over the spouse’s life from early in the morning till late at night.  They are easy to spot in Bangkok, as they are heavily tanned and extremely fit. With goals to meet and best times to beat, the spouse has little time to meet their working husband or wife even when they are off work!





A western retirement income can stretch a lot further in Thailand than back in the US, UK etc. Hence tens of thousands of retirees have made Thailand their home. Often here for years, they know the language and have settled into the local culture. Although still hang with similar retiree expats. Not part of the party scene but are here to make the most of the climate and low cost of living 





The 5 Best Reasons for Expats to Retire in Cambodia

If you are looking for an affordable place to retire then Cambodia, has many attractions. Whether it’s the ancient culture and temples such as Angkor Wat or you are drawn by one of Asia’s most open economies, Cambodia continues to attract an increasing number of expats. It is little wonder that internationals visitors to Cambodia are growing by double digits, at 6.2 million in 2018, a 11 percent increase from 2017

Cost of Living

There are few places in Asia, let alone the world where a bottle of Champagne can be bought for $25 and a round of golf with caddie costs just per $65 at a country club. With rents as low as $250 for a one-bedroom apartment in an expat area, in the capital Phnom Penh, retiring expats can live on a budget as low as $1,000. More typically expats budget on $1500 – $2,500 per month. `
Language and currency
English is the second language of choice for many Cambodians, (particularly in the capital and principal tourist destinations), alongside Khmer, the official language of Cambodia. Compared to neighbouring Thailand, English is much more widely spoken, giving Expats an easier opportunity to communicate with the locals.
The U.S. dollar is widely accepted and many prices are displayed in both the local currency and US Dollars, making day to day calculations a lot easier for an incoming expat.

Condominium Purchase

One major benefit for expat retirees in Cambodia is that government policy allows foreigners to buy Condominiums in Cambodia Since April 2010, the Cambodia foreign ownership property law allows foreigners to buy and own Cambodia properties on the 1st floor or higher to a maximum of 70% of any one apartment building. This law does have restrictions, as it does not include the floor and hence an expat cannot own the land. However, expats can own 100% of a freehold condominium in Cambodia.


Angkor wat is Cambodia’s cultural crown jewel and feted as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, on a par with the other ancient world wonders. But the people are one of Cambodia’s main attractions as expats and tourists often mention their love of Cambodia is the positive attitude of the local population towards foreigners. Expats are regularly greeted with an open and welcoming “Khmer smile” throughout the country.

Healthcare Options

Advanced healthcare remains limited in Cambodia though the public healthcare system, which is why expat health insurance is essential. Private hospitals do offer a better quality of care but in many areas the specialists or modern equipment is not available on-site to treat certain medical conditions. In the event of a complicated medical condition, it is recommended to seek treatment outside of Cambodia (e.g. Bangkok in Thailand, Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam or in China or in Singapore), or even request repatriation to your country of origin. Even though healthcare costs are very low in Cambodia, the services offered can be very limited depending on where you are. Expats are advised to check their health insurance plan includes treatment overseas.

A disadvantage of Cambodia….

While safety on the city streets is reasonable, if you wonder into rural areas landmines from decades old conflicts still pose a threat. Caution is advised when travelling away from the main roads in rural communities. Roads accidents whilst lower than neighbouring Thailand, are still high particularly in rural areas, where fast riding youth motorcycles are more common.

If you are looking for an affordable country that is open and welcoming to foreigners then Cambodia has many advantages. Its low cost of living, growing expat community, great golf, reasonable healthcare should put this country on any expat’s list of choices for retirement.

The 5 Best Places for Expats to Live for in Thailand

Chiang Mai: Mountain Views and a Laid-Back Vibe

Thailand’s second city, Chiang Mai still has a laid-back charm. Coupled with mountain views and a city steeped in culture, Chang Mai is a magnet for expats. Chiang Mai is the old capital of the Lanna Kingdom in Thailand’s North. Expats love exploring the old town inside its ancient city walls, and winding. The old Thai culture and City’s easy-going coffee culture with a friendly vibe prove t0 be highly attractive to expat tourists and residents alike. Its supermarkets with western food, gyms, hospitals with English speaking doctors, and international schools provide an ideal infrastructure for the long-term Expat.

Koh Samui: A Tropical Island Paradise

Thailand’s second-largest island is a slow-paced haven, with beaches and bars, to spice up your stay. Koh Samui is an adventure island full of Expat pursuits such as exploring remote beaches by motorbike or sidling down to the old port, and take in the old-world charm of wooden houses. For an expat that wants the night life but also quiet beautiful escapes, then Koh Samui provides the best of both worlds. Although island life can be isolating and travelling to and from the island is expensive.

Bangkok: Modern, Bustling and Low Cost

Thailand’s capital Bangkok, is a modern metropolis which is loved by some expats and hated by others. With some of the Worlds top rated Hotels, a top Asian Finance centre, one of Asia’s Leading Conference destination, Bangkok will always attract business expats. Fall in love with the vibrancy, cheap and delicious street food, friendly locals or get put off with the all year-round humidity and stickiness. But for many the climate is bearable and westerners continue to be attracted to Bangkok by its American Style shopping malls, cinemas, galleries, libraries, bars, restaurants. Not to mention Bangkok’s World Class hospitals, that are medical tourist destinations in themselves.

Hua Hin: Seaside weekend Retreat

Only 3 hours drive, south of Bangkok, Hua Hin, is a popular destination for Thais and Expats at the weekend. In the 1920s, Thailand’s royal family built a summer palace on Hua Hin’s shore, which led to the Thai capital’s elite following suit, establishing vacation homes on the area’s wide, sandy beaches. Quiet during the weekday, this seaside city comes to life with the influx of Bangkok weekenders. Many old stately houses along the beachfront are now converted into chic restaurants, giving an old-world charm to nights out. A a high proportion of expats in Hua Hin are Scandinavian, particularly as Snowbirds, here just for the winter months, attracted by the Golf, Peaceful surroundings and Royal connection.

Phuket: A Pricey Beach Lifestyle with All the Amenities

Phuket is a modern, well-developed island, with World Class amenities including healthcare. There are Western shopping centers, bars, restaurants and the nightlife is great. Phuket Town, on the east of the island, is a Digital Nomad haven as there are fewer tourists than the coastal areas. But the culture is laid back with a historic Chinatown. But for those expats who prefer a faster night lfie then there is Patong. However, Transport is a problem in Phuket as Taxis are expensive and drivers are renowned for cheating. Some expats hire scooters, but the roads are dangerous and Thailand has a very poor road safety record. Certainly, before squeeze the throttle, make sure you have Expat Health Insurance for Thailand.