Expats in Thailand find greener grass in Cambodia

Published:  1 Jun at 6 PM
Want to get involved? Become a Featured Expat and take our interview.
Become a Local Expert and contribute articles.
Get in touch today!
For decades, Thailand has drawn expats from all over Europe and America to its stunningly beautiful islands, its raunchy mainland beach retorts and its surprisingly low cost of living, but many are now considering a move to Cambodia.

Reasons given for abandoning Thailand in favour of its next-door neighbour may seem trivial to those who’ve recently arrived in the Land of Smiles, but for many expat long-stayers the famous smile seems to have lost its charm. The daily routine, once so pleasing and relaxed, now includes a sizeable increase in the prices of everyday goods, road traffic and street crime is soaring and immigration rules are toughening by the minute.

Insecurity wasn’t a threat in the old days here, as long as annual extensions to easily available visas were kept current, and many single, divorced or widower expats took the plunge and married their very own Thai beauties. A true expat paradise on earth it never was, but the whole deal was close enough to be more acceptable than the home country.

Nowadays, political uncertainty is in most expats’ minds, leading many to investigate alternative destinations in Southeast Asia. It seems that, across the border in Cambodia, the smiles are still genuine, the weather’s just as warm, most necessities are cheaper and the expat communities are friendlier and more welcoming.

A plus point is that many Cambodians have knowledge of the English language and are eager to learn more. Most importantly, visa regulations are far less strict, especially where working in the country is concerned.

Expats in Thailand on the so-called ‘retirement’ visa are prohibited from working or even volunteering, with many feeling their talents are being wasted for no good reason. Cambodia’s work visa is obtainable along with its entry visa and both are easily renewable every year with no necessity to keep huge sums in a local bank account.

There’s a good choice of destinations, from the capital Phnom Penh to the busy coastal resort of Sihanoukville and quieter Kampot, and livelier Siem Reap’s adjacent Angkor Wat will please those fascinated with Cambodian culture and history. On the downside, healthcare isn’t as reliable as in Thailand, although new private sector hospitals are being developed.
Like this news?

Comments » No published comments just yet for this article...

Feel free to have your say on this item. Go on... be the first!

Tell us Your Thoughts On This Piece:

Your Name *
Email * (not published, needs verification one time only)
  • Facebook
  • Follow us on Twitter
  • RSS feed
  • Facebook

Latest Headlines

News Links

News Archive