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Thailand is arguable the cheapest place on Earth to live well.

While affordable luxury is available, you have the option to live on a very modest budget…thanks to US$1 Pad Thai lunches and US$11-a-night hotels (including breakfast and free Wi-Fi).

One thing to keep in mind: Foreigners can own apartments and condos in Thailand but, unless they go through hoops, not real property.

Click here for information on how to apply for a Thai Retirement Visa.

Essentially, you need

  • THB800,000 / NZ$34,750 / US$26,000 in a Thai Bank; or
  • A monthly income of at least NZ$2,825 / US$21,000; or
  • An annual income plus money in a Thai Bank of at least THB800,000.


Whilst on the SCUBA Dive Liveaboard in Khao Lak, I learnt of the following:

  • The Captain of a Scuba Dive Boat earns about THB12000 / month (THB400 / day)
  • The Boat Boys on the Liveaboards earn about THB6000-9000 / month (THB200-300 / day)
  • Scuba Dive Guides on the Liveaboards earn about 20 Euro / day (THB780 / day)
  • A waiter earns about THB6000 / month (THB200 / day)
  • A nurse in a hospital earns about THB15000 / month (THB500 / day)

It costs THB80-100 for a Large Bottle of Leo in a restaurant.


I met an expat who has been living in Thailand for 15 years. He now works in a Dive Shop in Khao Lak.

He currently pays THB6000 / month for an average 2 bedroom unit inland from the State Highway.

He has just found a modern, 3 bedroom house in the hills inland from the State Highway which he is renting for THB12000 / month in Low Season and THB15000 / month in High Season.


So far, I have not found any GRANDPAcking Retirement Locations in South West Thailand.

When I do, I will let you know and include them in the RETIREMENT REVIEW menu.

Why not REGISTER to stay up to date with our Postings and Retirement Reviews.


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