The main reasons why foreigners move to Thailand are not only because of its breathtaking sceneries, world-class cuisines, entertainment, and extremely friendly locals but for the fact that it offers high standards of living at a low cost. Over the years, Thailand has attracted many foreign nationals, who, in most cases, end up being living there.

Different cities in Thailand offer different environment including the cost of living. If you prefer cities like Bangkok, Pattaya, and Koh Tao, the cost of living will be high as these are the cities with a large expat community.

Is it cheap to live in Thailand?

For expats, housing is very affordable as they can buy a condo given that 51% of the condominium belongs to the Thai nationals. Although a simple, well-furnished condo in Thailand can be bought around $20,000, the price can go as high as $250,000 depending on the real estate market of the city.

Apart from affordable housing, the food items are pretty expensive, especially when you have a thing for imported goods like wine and lobsters.

On the other hand, beauty and clothing can also be expensive as well, if you prefer branded items. Overall, despite everything, Thailand still is one of the cheapest places to live in Southeast Asia. You will find Thailand less expensive than Cambodia, Malaysia, and Laos.

What is the cheapest place to live in Thailand?

Thailand has always been a backpacker favorite – from lush green forests to beautiful sun-kissed beaches; it is a fascinating country to visit and live in.  

If you are moving to Thailand, it is extremely important to determine the money you need to maintain the standard of living that you currently boast.  

Here is a list of best places in Thailand to live in according to affordability (low to high).

#1 Pak Nam Pran

Located in southern Thailand, Pak Nam Pran is a promising region that still maintains a relatively small expat community. However, this up-and-coming region greatly appeals to the entrepreneurial expats who are eyeing to establish their roots early in the hope of taking benefit of the prophesied outburst of development, especially in the tourism sector. This is a great place for retirees to settle in as the residents have actively emerged in activities like artisan trade, farmers’ market, and organic farming.

#2 Chiang Rai

Chiang Rai is home to Thailand’s famous White Temple. It is quieter and slower than in most cities in Thailand. The region experiences a smaller number of tourists while offering restaurants and bars in abundance. It is experiencing steady growth. It is a great place to live in Thailand in a budget-friendly manner. The region is expected to see a sudden boom in the adventure activities section. Digital professionals, several NGOs, and adventure sports are already booming in Chiang Rai.

#3 Pai

If you are looking for a quieter life, this is the place to live in. Pai offers the diverse, well-connected community with a mutual love for art, health & wellness, and nature. It is hoarded with tourists, expats, and locals due to its slower, artistic way of life. Pai is spread across a small area with mostly villages that are highly wellness and art oriented. It is home to many expats especially retirees and young entrepreneurs. The community is working towards the betterment of the town’s growth by undertaking several projects including reforestation and tourism promotion.

#4 Pattaya

pattaya villa

If you have a thing for coastal life, Pattaya offers an established community of expats that allows you to fit in easily. Pattaya has one of the largest expat communities in Thailand with over 40,000 expats establishing an efficient infrastructure. It is slightly expensive in terms of housing and lifestyle as compared to the previous three cities we mentioned. It is home to some of the best restaurants, bars, theme parks, and more, giving a family-friendly vibe. If you are moving in with your family, you can easily find a decent condo with all amenities under $35,000.

#5 Bangkok

If you want the convenience of living a big, fast-paced life, Bangkok could be the one to provide it to you. Known for its upscale accommodation at the right price, Bangkok offers accessibility to both natural surroundings and city comforts. It is a hub for business magnets and young entrepreneurial minds that makes the city running 24/7. It is also known for its nightlife. The housing can be expensive here including daily lifestyle.

Final Words

The cost of living in Thailand is cheaper. For a single male/female, the cost of living is around $750-1500/month. This includes socializing, gym membership, internet access, food, and rent.