Expat Thailand News

Latest 10 news items tagged Thailand

17 Apr at 6 PM 2014

Strong pound boosts expat spending power in South Africa, Turkey and Thailand

As the pound strengthens along with the recovery in the UK, a newly-introduced online currency index will help travellers and expats to select the countries with the most favourable rates. Fluctuating currency rates are an endless worry for most expats on UK pensions or with investments paying interest in sterling. Over the last year, the winners have been those living in South Africa, Turkey and Thailand, with the strong pound and weakness of local currencies granting them between 20 and 30 per cent more spending power. In...
2 Apr at 6 PM 2014

UAE expats benefit from UK passport cost cuts but others may not

The news of a cut in passport renewal costs is good for UAE expats, but those living elsewhere may not be overjoyed. The 33 per cent cut in UK passport renewal costs is supposedly due to savings to be made on the cost of processing overseas. In future, all expat passport renewals will be dealt with in the UK. For UAE-based expats, it’s all good news, with many surprised that government fees are actually going down. Renewals are required every 10 years and, for most expats across the world, the renewal process is still...
31 Mar at 6 PM 2014

British bank heavily fined by FCA for giving poor financial advice

Santander Bank have been hit with fines totalling £12,4 million by the Financial Conduct Agency for giving bad financial advice to its customers. After an investigation by the FCA revealed a list of misdemeanors, the high street giant was found to have failed to consider customers’ attitudes to risk when selling their products. In addition, it is also accused of a list of ethical business failures relating to general investment advice given by its salesmen. According to the FCA’s Director of Enforcement and Financial Crime,...
14 Mar at 6 PM 2014

Plunging currencies encourage Brits to purchase overseas

Strengthened sterling as a result of confidence in the UK economy’s recovery and falling currencies in troubled regions of the world have sent would-be UK expats on a bargain-hunting buying frenzy. Spain and France are at the top of most wish-lists, with the lower end of the Spanish property market still falling and entire abandoned villages on the market for less than a London garage. France’s real estate sector is still underperforming, and Greek property prices fell a further nine per cent last year. Surprise entries to the...
12 Mar at 6 PM 2014

Brit pensioners imperiled by financial and property scams

Although the FCA is now cracking down on dodgy FAs and property scams in the UK, British pensioners in Thailand are still being cheated out of their savings by unprincipled property agents and unregistered FAs. Hapless senior citizens who’d planned to retire in a warm, inexpensive country are being ripped off by their own people in Thailand’s favourite expat destinations. Readers will remember the media publicity surrounding the Harlequin Group’s investigation by the British Serious Fraud Squad after the administrators were...
11 Mar at 6 PM 2014

Financial Conduct Agency gets tough with commission-grabbing FAs

Three financial advisors have been banned and another prohibited from running an FA company for unethical manipulation of pension funds resulting in 4 million in commissions. The FCA investigation revealed the four had unnecessarily switched their clients’ funds held in six pension schemes in order to generate a massive sum in commission. Those whose funds were affected are at risk of getting lower pensions or even losing their savings as the investments in which they were placed are considered high risk. The four advisors were...
5 Mar at 6 PM 2014

New UK spousal immigration rules tearing families apart

UK expats who met and married their partners whilst working overseas are having their lives torn apart by new financially-based spousal UK immigration rules. The minimum income requirement now mandatory for migrants from outside EU member states was introduced to limit the numbers entering Britain. However, the net result has been that UK citizens wishing to return home together with their foreign wives and families have only two options - get a well-paying job or leave them behind. One such expat, born in the UK and privately...
27 Feb at 4 PM 2014

Pattaya property scam overturned by Thai court

Endless online warnings about buying condos in Thailand off-plan have been based on Pattaya’s Emerald Palace property scam, but the tables would now seem to have been turned in favour of the actual owners. Promoted by Brit developer Richard Haughton, firstly through Harlequin Thailand and later through Haughton’s Thailand Property, Media and Exhibition Company (TMPE), the condo units were sold off-plan. Buyers remitted the purchase prices to Harlequin and TMPE, with many paying up whilst still in the UK. What buyers didn’t...
10 Feb at 6 PM 2014

Expat investors advised to proceed with caution on overseas investments

With UK interest rates still at a miserable level and US stocks struggling since the start of 2014, investments in emerging markets may be tempting may expat investors. Investing in overseas emerging markets was expected to increase after the turn of the year, but the sector has taken a beating for a number of good reasons. Tepid economies, inflation, high debt to GDB ratios and increasing political turmoil have all taken their toll on formerly optimistic projections. China, the new power behind the global economy, has reported a...
17 Dec at 6 PM 2013

Expat health insurance inflation fuelled by overtreatment and fraud

Expats in most popular destinations are having to pay ever-increasing premiums for private heathcare due to local private hospitals' over-treatment and even fraudulent billing. Foreign nationals everywhere, especially in southeast Asian medical hubs such as Thailand, have seen their health insurance premiums soar over the last several years at a far higher rate than medical inflation alone would suggest. A large number of expats abroad are younger staff on assignment and with international cover, suggesting that increases in claims...