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MoneySmart Migration Series: How Much Does It Cost To Move To Bangkok?

how much does it cost to migrate to bangkok

Joanne Poh

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While many Singaporeans gyrate at Thai discos on weekends and have wardrobes full of clothes from Chatuchak Market, few have actually considered migrating to Thailand.

Which is a pity because tons of foreigners are flocking to Bangkok and Chiang Mai, where they run their tech startups or kickstart their freelance careers in an environment that’s cheap, good and more fun than you’ll ever have at Ku De Ta.

We’re not going to lie—unless you get posted to Bangkok as an expat, you probably won’t be earning what you are now. But will you need to, when you can get a good meal for S$1?

 

Migrating to Bangkok, Thailand

Migrating to Bangkok

Image Credit: Swaminathan

Bangkok is such a popular holiday destination for Singaporeans that many can out-bargain the Thais themselves.

Of course, if you’re looking for an idyllic country town, even Punggol fits the bill better than Bangkok.

With a population of more than 8 million, inner city Bangkok is crowded—but still not as crowded as Singapore, considering the city measures 1,586.7 square kilometres, more than twice the size of Singapore. What it does offer is a lower cost of living in a city that nobody can accuse of being boring.

Population: 8.3 million

Crime rate: Approximately 5 murders per 100,000 people

Weather: Not too different from Singapore—hot and humid. Daytime temperatures are usually over 30 degrees celcius. To be fair, Singapore is more humid. If you can survive Singapore you can easily handle Bangkok.

Unemployment rate: 0.74%, spectacularly low.

Income tax: 0% to 35%, the top tax bracket applying to 4,000,000 per year.

Migrating to Bangkok

Image Credit: Trent McBride

Cost of rental properties: About 55,500 baht (2,182 SGD) for a 3-bedroom apartment in the city centre, or 20,640 baht (811 SGD) for a studio in the city centre, for which you could rent 5 separate HDB rooms. We’re talking about accommodation in the city centre here.

Purchase price of properties: 105,940 baht (4,163 SGD) per square metre in the city centre, 4-5 times cheaper than the Singapore equivalent.

Migrating to Bangkok

Image Credit: Keng Susumpow

Cost of Public Transport: Approx 25 baht (1 SGD) for a ride on the BTS Skytrain

Cost of a brand new Toyota Altis (Corolla) : Approx 1,000,000 baht (40,000 SGD)

Cost of Louis Vuitton Speedy Handbag: Approx 26,000 baht (1,022 SGD)

Cost of a movie ticket: 180 Baht (7.89 SGD)

Cost of a Starbucks Grande Latte: 105 baht (4.10 SGD)

Cost of applying for PR status: Approximately 200,000 baht (7,870 SGD) for PR application

Would you consider migrating to Bangkok? Tell us why in the comments!

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Joanne Poh

In my previous life, I was a property lawyer who spent most of my time struggling to get out of bed or stuck in peak hour traffic. These days, as a freelance commercial writer, I work in bed, on the beach, in parks and at cafes, all while being really frugal. I like helping other people save money so they can stop living lives they don't like.