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Expat Survival Guide - Thailand

An introduction from the Patrician....

First of all, to even talk about this I have to ascertain that an expat in Thailand can be anyone that has made this unique country his base or home while either retired or remaining working.

If you fall into the latter category you are in the minority of people (as a rule).
However this will be written with the expat in mind.

The information, pictures and story's have been built up the hard way. That is to say one of our roving observers sending us the data for processing. You won't really find this in most internet resources and it's made a OTRT a few enemies on the road to building this website up. The time, effort and money invested into being an expat in Thailand doesn't always come cheaply, however on this website we believe in presenting the observations and experiences freely. Which is why there's no charges or paypal requests for access to certain sections of OTRT.

Now the title 'survival' will seem somewhat misleading to some. It's not so much to do with physical survival, although this will be lightly covered. It concerns more your day-to-day survival in keeping on track with the ways and means of Thailand that may seem completely hostile to the outsider at first.

What you won't find in these survival sections is exactly where are the best-kept-secrets, places to go for super-great deals etc. We've had to find this out the hard way in Thailand, and that's how you should too.

All the best on your Thailand adventures, this is the Patrician signing off...

Arrival in Thailand.


Your first port of call for almost any expat is Bangkok -  The City of Angels.
The best thing for you to do, assuming your accomodation is sorted, is to get a mobile phone.  Without this your communications is severly impaired.  Thai people are very big on cell phones, in fact if you want to foster relations with the lovely thai ladies this is almost a neccessity in a big city.
The best phone to buy is a tough one, you’re spoilt for choice as nearly every other street has a phone shop on it.
The good news is that if you have brought your own phone from Europe with you it will more than likely accept a thai sim card.
Once this is done you need an apartment, transport, a thai drivers licence and a routine.

Bangkok Survival Guide Section.

Food in Thailand

The food in Thailand is among the best in the world for affordibility, nutrition and uniqueness.
Drawbacks to it can include – Aquirred taste, spicy (often very much so) and the portions tend to be slightly smaller than ‘back home’
Now for me personally I’m not a gormet kinda guy.  I eat to live rather than live to eat.  However even I can appreciate the sheer size of food variety in Bangkok.
You may be noticing that I’m talking about Bangkok a lot.  The deal is that Thailand is somewhat capital city orientated.  Also known as capital-centric.  All roads lead to Rome goes the saying.  In Thailand it’s all highways lead to Bangkok, because that’s where a lot of the provinces ship their goods to.

Expat Food Guide in Thailand

Double Pricing in Thailand

It’s a way of life in Thailand I’m afraid to say.
Being a Farang (white caucasian) has dual benefits and with those come with dual pricing.
One price for the Thais and one of the Farangs, they pay less, you pay more.  This system is also summed up as the tourist or expat having to pay 'farang price’.  This is an inflated price that’s ‘justified’ by the decreased cost of living of eastern civilisation compared to western civilisation.
You can argue and get blue in the face over this and some use this to attempt to rectify dual pricing along with boycotts etc.
However to save getting fustrated I would suggest you get good at the language, negotiate, flashing a Thai drivers license can help and make you seem more the friendly resident.  It will win you respect and rapport in the long run.  If dual pricing remains you can always mentally note to avoid it in the future.

Transport in Thailand

Getting around Thailand.  This is a big subject and as you might notice from us, it tends to focus on bikes for transport primarily.
However in Thailand a bike, while great for the lone rider, isn't always ideal if your travelling with a buddy who either can't or won't ride.

Transportation Guide in Bangkok.

Things that seem to get people here is the drinking and the women (the 'bad' ones that is).


Thailands a big place, explore the map below and see what Thailand has to offer!

Click on a city.

 Map of South East Asia Nakhon Sawan Chiang Mai Province Phitsanulok Bangkok Pattaya Chumpon Hua Hin Ayutthyaya Koh Tao Koh Pang Yan Koh Samui Udon Thani Province Khon Kean Ubon Ratchathani Phuket Chiang Rai Mae Sai Nong Khai Ranong Cambodia Laos Vietnam Vietnam Kamphaeng Pet Mae Sot Thai Seas




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