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Discussion Starter #1
Hello every one! My first post (and first time on a forum in a while) on ExpatForum, I've been browsing some past topics and what not, and have already gained minor insight. Any way..the newbie question of the day...and a little about my circumstances/self

I'm a 24 year old male, taking a temporary break from the rat race (and college) and will be relocating temporarely (5-6 months) to destination "x"

I've been looking at either Philippines, the Caribbean, or..you guessed it Thailand

I'll be working with a budget of 11-12K U.S. Dollars
Goals: To gain insight on culture, culinary culture, and enjoy myself ( no I'm not looking for women, haha)

what I'm wanting is a place laid back (island/beach) or a bustling city (Bangkok)

So I got to wondering, how do Phuket and the Philippines compare to each other? In terms of cost of living, overall well being, and stablility. Would Phuket or Bangkok be easier on the pocket than Philippines?

Just wanting some answers from some experienced goers. Any feedback appreaciated!

p.s. I've heard all the stories (from an expat pal) about how the thai girls/people can take advantage of young men as myself, this is none of my concern, lets just say from my previous escapades, I am very street seasoned and I've seen every game there is ran.

p.s.s. Lets say I was leaning more towards the laid back profile , think Philippines would be a better bet?

p.s.s.s. Is 12K enough for 5-6 months (thats alot of Baht and Pesos)

p.s.s.s.s \. I hope this isn't to long
 
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Welcome to the forum...

No. 1 rule ... those who think they are immune to being taken advantage of are the first to succumb!

Only kidding ;) well a little, anyway......

Bangkok's not so cheap, a dollar goes further in other cities like Chiang Mai in the north than in the capital, or the seaside resorts. 2,000 USD a month and you can live very comfortably, especially if you require no company of a night!

Plenty of culinary courses in schools in Chiang Mai, it's a bustling enough city, not a sexpat attraction like some more touristy parts. But lively enough.

Loads of culture, the laid-back lifestyle, Traditional Thai massages at 7/8 dollars for two solid hours, bliss ...

Can't compare to the Philippines, but other possibilities in SE Asia are the likes of Vietnam which these days is considerably cheaper than Thailand. Or Cambodia, but life is a bit more anarchic there. Plenty of expats in the likes of Phnom Penh.

Bear in mind that for some countries the visa requirements are restrictive, you can't just turn up in Thailand to stay for six months. There is a two months (easily extendable to three) tourist visa, but others are a lot harder to sort out.
 

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In my opinion there isn't much gastronomic delights in Phi - lots of sea food roasted over a charcoal grill, but nothing very exotic (other than the famented coconut milk drink - alcoholic).
Cost wise, Phi and Thailand are a much of a much really - on $2k/month you can live in either very well. If food is what you are interested in, then Thailand, Malaysia or Indonesia (though Thailand is the best IMO - Panang Cutty is Indonesian, but the Thai version is much tastier).
You might like to aim towards the Islands though given your preference for beaches and nightlife - or Pattaya if you want to end up like King Silk :D
 

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You might like to aim towards the Islands though given your preference for beaches and nightlife - or Pattaya if you want to end up like King Silk :D
Like an old man with to many dogs to walk? :p
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks fellas....hmmmmm...any of you got any experience in the Thai islands? I was thinking Ko Kut or Ko Change (the other one) ....I'm told Phuket is....well developed...Im not looking to stay in 5 star resort or anything like that. No one been to Philippines?

I really appreaciate the input!

Thanks again!
 

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....Who is King Silk?????

Who is King Silk? He's the king of Pattaya! [just kidding but in the eyes of his three 'girls' he's the "cat's meow AND the king of Pattaya.

Your biggest challenge will be getting and maintaining a visa for six months but not a real problem. In PI you're given a 21? day visa on arrival but you can mail off and get your passport stamped for I think 2 months and then let a travel agent renew. For Thailand you can get a three month visa [I'm pretty sure] and then it's a trip to a border for extensions/renewal.

Your biggest expense is housing. If you stay in a guest house or pension - depending on the country it will average $5-$20 per night depending on location and level of luxury [hot showers / air conditioning]

The food is good in PI but nothing to compare with Thailand [or Malaysia] but western food is readily available in PI and affordable - especially the food courts or malls.

Both have fabulous beaches so it's pretty much a coin toss - but the beaches are going to me much more humid than, say a Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai.

Why not visit 3-4 places instead of throwing out your anchor in one? If you're up to that suggestion I would add Vietnam to the list [I preferred Hanoi to Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City] It's cooler and less humid and you're only about 2 hours to Ha Long Bay which is a jewel. I would also consider Malaysia and Indonesia - the food in each is great, the people are friendly and the beaches very good. Sounds like you're planning pretty exciting trip. :)
 

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WOW...I usually don't decide on visuals alone...but Ha Long bay is like nothing else, I wonder if they got any little studious to rent....
 

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WOW...I usually don't decide on visuals alone...but Ha Long bay is like nothing else, I wonder if they got any little studious to rent....

KeyserSoyze,

I haven't visited the city of Ha Long but it has some big multi-story building so there probably would be places to rent. Ha Long Bay is like no other place I've visited - spectacular with those huge monolithic rock formations popping out of the ocean and the land as well. Ha Noi wouldn't be a bad place to spend time either. Sai Gon is also nice and many more expats there. If you do visit Vietnam try to see Hoi An as well - a nice coastal village with a long history as a trade center.

Serendipity2
 
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