How much does it cost to live in Thailand?

How much does it cost to live in Thailand? – that’s a fairy popular question, so I’ve decided to write prices to thing I spend money for while living in Thai.

I suppose that it’s cheap to live in Thailand but then, I guess, “cheap” has different meanings for different people. For me it’s about vegetarian food and a bit of alcohol but for somebody it might mean girls, whiskey, stakes and Harley…

So, no more philosophy, just prices – and everybody can figure out how cheap or expensive Thailand for him or her =)

We spend every month almost the same amount of money for two people (live together).

So, keep in mind that 1 Thai Baht = 0,03 USD (on the 17th of January 2012). Actually, prices in Thai don’t depend on USD rate and fairy stable even when USA or Europe are in deep economic crisis.

Here we go:

04.05.2012-04.06.2012 (Krabi, Thailand)

Total for two we spent 29 653 Baht (968 UDS).

Among them:
9 000 (294 USD) – house rental (livingroom+bedroom, bathroom, balcony, kitchen, WiFi, water, gas, electricity included);

5 346 (175 USD) – transportation:
2 500 – scooter rental;
982 – petroleum (37 Baht/liter +-);
1 024 – visa-run to Malaysian border by buses and ferry;

12 347 (403 USD) – food:
• 2 383 (78 USD) – fruits-vegetables every day + shrimp 2-3 times a week:
apple 5 Baht per unit;
30-50 Baht/kg – mango;
15-20 Baht/kg – rambutans;
15 Baht/kg – watermelon;
25 Baht/kg – tomatoes;
25 Baht/kg – cucumbers;
150-200 Baht/kg – fresh shrimp;
• 425 (14 USD) – cafe:
40 Baht/dish – fried rice with shrimps/chicken;
50 – Pad Thai;
70 – soups;
20 – fruit shakes;
• 7 600 (248 USD) – hypermarkets and Seven-Eleven.
Most expensive things are:
488 and 400 – bottle of wine;
730 – Parmegano cheese (1 kg);
650 – Mozzarella cheese (2 kg);
350 – Olive oil (1 liter);
And prices for products we buy pretty often in Thailand:
32-36 – bread;
13 – yogurt;
37 – sour cream;
37 – cottage cheese;
40 – Thai drinking yogurt (0,5 liter);
87 – milk (2 liter);
42 – palm oil;
25 – Thai beer can;
15-18 – boiled corn;
20 – fried chicken;
35 – flour (1 kg);

2 960 (97 USD) – rest expenses:
300 – massage (don’t forget that it’s for 2 people);
100 – entrance fee to hot springs ;
150 – shampoo;
150 – conditioner;
200 – body lotion aka Body Shop;
540 – Evra plaster;
40 Baht/kg – laundry;
320 – HDMI cabel.

As I’ve already said our living expenses are almost the same every month. Last month we spent 28 860 Bath at Koh Samui (house costed us 7 500 + electricity (530 Baht)), but then visa-run was twice more expensive than from Krabi – 2 048 Baht for two people.

What else? Ah, yeh. Some more prices (for one person now):
400 – bus Phuket – Samui;
60 – bus around Samui;
70 – wonderful sauna at Phuket;
347 – post moto-helmet;
30 – big Ikea plate;
200 – Mascarpone 400 г;
20 – coconut (for free if you are not lazy to clime a palm tree and get it);
60 – ticket to a boat Ao Namao – Ton Sai;
40 – entrance fee to Waterfall #2 at Koh Samui;
504 – laser computer mouse.

That’s it. Hope this post about our living costs will help to understand how much money you need to live in Thailand.

If you haven’t got any accommodation for your next trip booked yet, try it here: Airbnb.
You will get $25 discount for your first booking
and would be able to stay in a nice room or apartment rented from locals and not just in a dorm!  

And if you haven't decided yet where to stay on your next trip - try AirBnb! You can rent a room or a house from locals and that's usually cheaper and cozier that staying in a hotel. Plus, $20 bonus for your fist stay is a nice bonus! Enjoy!

13 thoughts on “How much does it cost to live in Thailand?

  1. You have an interesting and useful site! Thanks for the detailed information.
    Our budget living in Krabi, same. Spend about 30,000 Baht. :)

    • I’m glad u’ve found it useful!

      Are u in Krabi now? I’m here for next several months. Give me to know if u are up for meeting!


      • Yes, we live in Ao Nang now and the next few months. I’d love to meet.

        • Cool! I’ve sent u my phone number.

  2. But what’s the exchange rate then? Referencing to any more common currency is missing here.

    • Hey! thanks =) I’ve amended it. Rate now is in the article.

  3. different people different prices . its good to see how some people think and on what they spend. for my opinion your budget is total splurge …. low budget backpackers with much modest , controled and inteligent consuming , and using , can make for much much less money (so people dont get repulsed and affraid, you dont really need 1000 u$s)

    Thank you Alice for doing this blog .
    Sha Tsang

    • This post is not about how much does it cost to TRAVEL in Thailand but how much does it cost to LIVE in Thailand. But seems that u make no difference. Feel free to live months in the same city with couchsurfing and change places every 4-5 days. I’m crazy fan of CS and use it a lot but not when I settle down somewhere. Use ur money wisely and don´t rent a bike, don´t buy gas for cooking, don´t buy oil and milk – eat every day fried rice in the nearest cafe (better not too far – u have to walk there!) or better plain rice – it’s cheaper.
      Then after 2-3 months of such a lifestyle I guess u get the difference between TRAVEL and LIVE in Thailand, smart budget backpacker! Cheers!

  4. You’re making me dream about Krabi! Was there not long ago. I wish I could have stuck to the nice budget you lay out, I spent wayyy more ;( but if I was to go back, I’d do it on your budget. Great stuff, Alice–thank you for sharing.

    • Haha))) sorry for late respond. Sure, you must go back. Krabi worth it. Though now it’s getting crowded and tons of changes… I think there is just another year or max two left before Krabi would become second Phuket or Pattaya.

      Happy NY eve! Wish you to get back to Krabi this year!

  5. Hi, M looking for a job in krabi island please if u guys have any contact or any opportunity let me now. I am from India having a good experience in cooperate industry.

  6. Hey Alice, thanks for the info. I’m Pondering between Krabi and Chiang mai teaching positions and have a fond love of the ocean. Do you think 30 000B is enough to get by in krabi? up north in small towns i was able to live on 8000 and still paid a 5000 rent but I’m quite a seasoned traveler. I guess what I’m asking is could i settle properly albeit with sacrifices for…. say 15000-20 000 if i tried? I’m also a dive master and ships captain etc if i could part time those :)

    Dude, this info is amaze balls by the way, only real in depth on the web so shot :)

    • Hey Ryan!

      I’m glad stuff I write if useful!

      Well, first of all keep in mind that you probably will teach in Krabi-town and it’s not at the seaside. It’s at least 30 minutes scooter ride, maybe more if you are not a crazy driver.
      What’s about pricing, well, the worst thing is that it’s hard to find cheap small apartment for one person. The cheapest one bedroom house I remember is 7000 baht/month. Plus you have to rent bicycle/scooter because distances are massive and public transportation almost doesn’t exist.
      So, I think you might be fine with 20000 if you are lucky with the apartment but I’m not sure how tough it would be especially after recent revolution and changes as it lead to price increase.

      If you decide to choose Krabi and you want to live closer to the seaside, not in Krabi-town itself, then check a map here: it’s in Russian, but Google translate may help you =) And down, to the end of the article under this link is another map with all main facilities as main stores, beaches, market places, etc – this one is dubbed in English =)

      Good luck!

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