Monthly Cost of Living in Thailand Compared to the West
It’s an open secret: life is more affordable in Thailand than in the West. Almost anything you can think of will cost much less in Thailand as opposed to countries like the US, UK, or Australia, unless you are buying products imported from the west. Read on to find out how the monthly cost of living in Thailand compares to the West.
Rent and Utilities
Living in Thailand will save you substantial amounts of rent. For instance, an average apartment in the city center within Thailand can cost slightly above $400, although in the West a similar apartment would cost well over $1000. When renting outside the city center, you can pay up to half this amount in both Thailand and the West.
Utilities such as electricity, water, heating, garbage collection, prepaid phone services, and Internet will collectively cost less than $100 a month in Thailand.
In the West, the same services will cost you more than $200 a month.
Transport is significantly cheaper in Thailand than in a country like US. For instance, if you were to get a monthly pass on Bangkok’s train system, you would pay about $30, but in the US, a similar pass would cost about $70.
Common Household Goods
Common household goods such as milk, bread, eggs, fruits, water, chicken meat, rice, and so forth are common expenses for a typical household. Even without going into details on each specific product, the enormous difference in the consumer price index between Thailand and Western countries indicates how much cheaper household goods are cheaper in Thailand.
Generally, you will spend about $200 a month on household goods in Thailand, which means that in the West, you would have to spend at least $400 a month.
Food in Restaurants
Eating out in Thailand is a very common practice, even among locals. However, it is a well-known fact that food in Thailand is quite inexpensive. There are many street dishes sold for less than a dollar. If you were to eat a meal in an average restaurant three times a week, you would have to spend about $50 every month in Thailand and more than $150 a month in a western country such as the US.
Entertainment costs between Thailand and the US are largely similar. The average cost of wine, and beer (domestic and imported) are about the same. For instance, on average, wine is more expensive in Thailand, but beer is cheaper. Entertainment expenses will obviously vary from individual to individual, but the costs will be largely similar in both Thailand and a western country.
If you move into Thailand and want to maintain the same taste in fashion, you will have to pay much more, for instance, buying Nike shoes and Levi jeans, or shopping from Western chain stores such as H&M. However, if you do not buy clothes with Western origin, you will definitely spend much less.
The difference between the monthly cost of living in Thailand and the West is staggering. In general, rent and utilities, transport, household goods, and eating out will cost about $800 a month. The same lifestyle will cost about $2000 a month in the West. Obviously, the amount spent per month can drop to even around $500 a month in Thailand if you are willing to rent outside the city center in addition to other cutbacks.
Nevertheless, life in Thailand will definitely cost you much less than a similar life in the West.