Author Topic: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?  (Read 1401 times)

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Offline thaiga

Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« on: August 17, 2018, 05:54:47 PM »
Well done phil of ajarn.com Hits the nerve with the moaners, that a growing number of Western expats are not happy in the Land of Smiles. Such is the quality of comments as, Expat suicide? “Nah, he deserved it…for shacking up with a bar girl” rarely a word of remorse or pity let alone an RIP graces those boards, In fact, these expat forums seem to be where the most depressed and pessimistic farangs come to congregate. ha! ha! luv it. have a read. link above.

Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?

one might get the image of a forever disgruntled middle-aged, divorcee who sits in his underwear in his 40 square metre condo, fag in one hand, Leo in the other, hunt and peck style (two-fingered) typing, moaning about his lot and never quite able to find it in his heart to say nice things about his adopted home.
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 
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bunky

  • Guest
Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2018, 11:57:42 AM »
woah thats a bit near the mark, if it is true or a publicity stunt.  i lost my faith in what people say in thailand
cheered me up picture this old boy in skiddy pants beer on one side fag in hand slowly giving it the one finger rap to the keyboard  :lol
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2018, 03:32:44 PM »
Even at 38 baht to the pound most retirees won’t and cannot leave Thailand

The UK pound continues to drop against the Thai baht and at time of writing it is floating around the 42 baht to the UK pound.

It was not long ago that Brits enjoyed a healthy 70 baht to the pound if you go back 8 or 9 years ago, but since then things have gone from bad to worse.

According to pensionbee.com the average UK pension is £403 a week, this drops to £369 after tax. At todays price that is 62,000 baht a month, back when it was 70 baht to the pound retirees would have had 103,320 baht per month so the drop in income has been huge. In fact I would go as far to say that it has been devastating.

Many Retirees say 40 baht to the Pound is their breaking point, but is it?

Many retired expats comment on forums like Thaivisa.com that the breaking point for them is 40 baht to the pound, which if that is the case means we could see many British expats soon up sticks and leave Thailand. But, would they? What we don’t know is how sticky Thailand as a retiree destination is and there are other factors at play that I discuss later. I would suspect a fall any further will not attract more retirees but for those already here maybe home is still home whatever their budget.

For curiosity I wanted to run a scenario at a 38 baht to the UK pound and crunch some numbers around that point. To me it looks fairly tight. The lowest UK pensions come from the North East of England where they get on average, after tax, £269 a week. So let’s say £1,069 a month which is 45,000 baht to live on in Thailand.

In a recent Thaivisa survey it was reported that 75% of expats own a car, 1 in 2 a house and 1 in 5 a condo, but I want to focus on those already feeling the pinch and whom do not own anything which is still a sizable share.

With a 45k baht a budget you have fixed costs from a cheap condo rental which could be as low as 7k baht a month and then a bike rental at 3k baht a month. You are already down almost 25% of your monthly income.

Add a wife and kids into the mix and it gets even tighter

What if they have a dependent wife or kids? Again in another recent Thaivisa survey 87% of expats said they have at least one dependent child living with them in Thailand and 36% have two or more. The family alone must cost a good 10k baht a month and that is on a tight budget.

This leaves 17k baht a month for the retired expat for food, drink, clothes and any leisure spend. It can be done, for sure, but it does not sound like much fun to me. Any ideas of a holiday would be mere fantasy and I cannot help but think after all those hard years of working to finally get to retirement and be left on a such a tight budget is not ‘living the dream’ but merely existing. I feel for these guys.

Financially impossible for many retired expats with family to leave Thailand

I suspect if the pound dropped to 38 baht to the pound it would have an impact on the retirees being attracted to Thailand, like I said already, but would just add more misery to those already here that are largely trapped by the financial impossibility of upping sticks. And remember 87% have at least one child living with them meaning they would have to move their Thai family too, and on such a budget this would be impossible.

I suspect it would be a disaster for them on many levels. You still have to get a new retirement visa each year, this could lead to lots of struggling retiree expats on overstays that would effectively go into hiding.

If there are any ‘sick buffaloes’ out there then, I am sorry to say, they can forget about any money for help too…

interesting dan danaboutthailand.com
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 

surbition

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Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2018, 06:17:40 PM »
you will have to downgrade your house. ready to move in. Get back to nature in beautiful Khlong Toei
 

Offline Johnnie F.

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #4 on: August 19, 2018, 09:12:41 AM »
A few also surrender to their Thai wives' wish to live and work in Europe.
Fun is the one thing that money can't buy
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #5 on: August 19, 2018, 11:10:24 AM »
I wouldn't start panicking just yet guys, although i think 38 to the pound might come, this country is still cheap as chips and if your on a tight budget you can get by. think first, leave out the expat luxuries, put in your head if your from uk that is, a hundred bht is £ 2.50. some things are very expensive here like a large bottle of dettol bought yesterday nearly 400 bht that's a staggering tenner, it's about £3.50 in the uk. but thai food is still a bargain, for lunch yesterday take away noodles 30 bht. the missus bungs in a couple more boiled eggs @ 5bht a piece, we have a lady comes round our soi with sponge cakes with coconut on the top, 5 in a cellophane packet 10 bht. so 50 bht in all. full up.

Why o why o why do they put a metal staple in the food packets, that can be dangerous, a small piece of cellotape would be much safer.

wonder what you'd get for 50 bht back home. Debbie Davies had visited the Oxton Bar and Kitchenin Wirral recently, yet despite enjoying her ‘lovely’ meal, she decided to leave a two-star review on Facebook.Writing on the restaurants public page, she said: ‘Lovely food and staff are amazing but I cannot see how you justify your prices, small fish and chips £8

Her answer from the restaurant
They said: ‘Ok Debbie. Where do I begin? ‘Out of that £8, our nasty government is charging you 20% vat which we collect by law on their behalf, so we’re left with £6.66.

‘Out of this, we need to buy the fresh ingredients; 1 haddock fillet, get a chef to make everything from scratch; a delicious beer batter, homemade tartare sauce, mushy peas and chunky chips (the whole cost of ingredients for this plate comes to roughly £2.70).

‘This leaves us with £3.94 for which alas our pesky chef expects remuneration!!
‘Then we realised the ‘lovely’ food doesn’t float to you, so we have to pay ‘amazing’ staff to serve you and clear up after you?!

‘Pay utility bills (we need gas to cook, you need lights to see the food) and don’t get me started on business rates. ‘So if £3.94 is not justifiable for creating and affording this whole experience with us, you’re welcome to recreate it in the comfort of your own home.

‘I doubt it’ll be long before the government find a tax for that too.’

more here @ metro.co.uk
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2018, 11:38:49 AM »
You have to be extremely rich to be poor

Getting jittery, thinking of moving back to Uk. not an easy task if your short of money, you might even lose your partner in the bargain, as in my experience most thai ladies would find it hard to change to a different culture, my wife hated it in blighty, we went on holiday to the Uk for a month, after 3 days i was getting moans about food, you know how they love there food, so we found some outlets selling thai food @ ten times the price of our isaan shops. the same as farang food here is top in price, yes there are thai restarants but very pricey. so that won't do as your short of money that's why you left.

bit pricey to take the whole family, leave the kids with yi, your mrs. will be even unhappier missing them along with her family, you will get the grief not only from her, but also the phone bill. What she gonna do when you go to work,look english tv. then if loyalty is anything to go by with some of the the korat farangs, your so called mates might be knocking on your door whilst your at work, earning some money to send home to her family.

you need money to go with as settlement visa requirments. Immigration laws leave an estimated 33,000 people unable to remain with spouses in Britain as they do not earn enough to satisfy visa requirement,sad to say some people are too poor to live in their home country with the woman they love. heartbreaking as it is, others flouting the rules have made it bad for the genuine ones.

The British spouse must have available funds equivalent to a minimum annual income of £18,600 and this rises to £22,400 for families with a child.

Fish n chips anyone
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 

Nuko

  • Guest
Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2018, 08:17:45 PM »
after 3 days i was getting moans about food, you know how they love there food, so we found some outlets selling thai food @ ten times the price of our isaan shops. the same as farang food here is top in price,

It's not difficult to dislike British food! Thais who have to follow their Brit spouses to the UK are well advised to take a lot of chili etc. with them. ;)
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2018, 09:07:07 PM »
It's not difficult to dislike British food! Thais who have to follow their Brit spouses to the UK are well advised to take a lot of chili etc. with them. ;)
and who's gonna teach them to use the loo roll :fart
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #9 on: August 21, 2018, 12:37:30 AM »
A few also surrender to their Thai wives' wish to live and work in Europe.
get on with the washing up

the rich farang is slowly becoming a no no, the thai wife thinking the streets of england are paved with gold. i know plenty over the years that have took the chance, off to the western countries, only to find themselves in full employment trying to make ends meet, some of my wifes friends, are told by their husbands not to phone, as they are not allowed to run up a telephone bill, yes more money can be earnt there, but it's gone so quick as things are so expensive. take belgium for instance If you are a foreigner living in Belgium or working in Belgium, you will be liable to pay Belgian taxes and file a tax return in Belgium,Belgian income tax bands, earning Up to €22,290–39,660 40% is taken in tax.

if you are a thai lady wanting to earn good money abroad, i hear massage is the answer, no not the seedy type, you will need papers, a certificate and training is given in BKK. at massage schools. there is a call for it in the western countries, a friend of ours in germany was so successful, working from home massaging, she is opening a shop there, she has just returned from thailand to get needed qualification papers.

so the wife could be the bread winner  ;D  now get on with the washing up.
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 

Offline nan

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #10 on: August 22, 2018, 02:02:45 PM »
never under estimate a thai lady
you don't have to buy the sweetshop because you have a sweet tooth,why get tied down,go out and enjoy your single life,keep your money in your own pocket. if you want to give,why not give your family back home.

how many times have i read(why do thais work abroad and send their hard earnt money back home to their family)it's not only them in far off countries but also the thais that work in bangkok,sort of a tradition,i think it's quite sweet to take care of your family. your own flesh and blood. where as farangs do the same thing,send money to thailand,the only difference is most hardly know their family or where the money is going to.

reading around the forums in Thailand i get the impression some farangs are lonely,are they missing the farang way of life,trying to organise a get together,could be after all they give,they are still alone,or do they like mens company,do thai wives want to talk about football or even visit farang bars.

i should imagine the thai men are only too greatfull some farang take care of their kids,food,clothes,education,with their ready made family,having a thai wife,shouldn't think the thai men mind,there more into the new things,as you know. have you not ever wondered why a thai lady chooses a farang and not a thai man. or was there any choice. but there again what do i know,just what i read between the lines.

ignorance does not help your post one bit but it probably says an awful lot about you.
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #11 on: August 23, 2018, 12:23:28 AM »
Here's looking at you kid

How do those wonderful Thai folk really see us?

So much interest in this thread, i think it deserves another post from the same author that we started this thread with Tom Tuohy ajarn.com about How do those wonderful Thai folk really see us?  Have you ever wondered what the Thais in your life think about you? I mean really think about you? Your girlfriend? Your Thai boss,? Your maid? The guy who washes your car? The motorcycle guy at the end of your soi? It may not be what you think! have a read link above

when you think about this fact, it may not come as too much of a surprise to find out that many Thais probably think of farangs as completely irreligious drunken fools with the shallowest of lives who rarely take care of their parents when they are old, who are impatient (jai rorn), and who often show their anger at the drop of a hat. But can we really blame them for making such assumptions about us? And are such assumptions really true?

farangs would be unable to cope during the alcohol dry spell because ...

Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 
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Offline thaiga

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2018, 12:12:51 AM »
According to official UK government data, British citizens stand a greater chance of being arrested in Thailand than in any other country. even more than Spain, Costa del Sol would you believe, in spite of it being the most popular destination for Brits.



While we are eagerly waiting for roger to reply, but don't hold your breath as one wonders whether he might need permission first, well wait and see. I can see where the authorities get there caution from, westerners on holiday behaving badly. letting their hair down, so the long time expat gets classed the same. the difference being the holiday maker has a binge for his duration of stay, with the attitude f,it i'm on holiday anything goes. where as some long time expats those that are more of a serious drinker, causing no disturbance, apart from the few that fire up the internet, looking for company, as the people around them might ignore there conversation, as they just keep repeating themselves. over and over again.

A British tourist pleaded with furious locals to 'put me down' when they tied him up after he ran across their homes in his underwear. The 'delirious' unidentified man was spotted scuttling across the roofs of houses with blood streaming from cuts on his face and arms, sent corrugated iron roof tiles crashing to the floor as he shouted incoherently  2 May 2017

Shocking footage of Brit with hands and legs bound in Thailand
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 
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Online Taman Tun

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #13 on: August 24, 2018, 07:37:38 AM »
Interesting to see UAE (=Dubai) at #2 spot.  There are a steady stream of stories in the DM about people getting into trouble in Dubai. The most recent two were:-

A Scottish guy went there to work as an advertising copywriter, presumably with the intention of earning money. Instead he ran up debts of GBP 500,000 on credit cards. The Emiratis will not let him leave the country until he pays his debts.

An Iranian woman married to a Brit flew from London to Dubai with her two daughters and was arrested at immigration and put in prison. She was traveling on an expired visa and made a big song and dance at the Immigration desk when they would not let her in.  The DM made a big thing about her having drunk a glass of wine on the flight from London and hardly mentioned the expired visa.
We are masters of the unsaid words, but slaves of those we let slip out. Churchill
 
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Offline thaiga

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #14 on: August 29, 2018, 12:51:05 PM »
why are so many leaving

No one has mentioned the tightening of visa regulations, one reason to go if you can't meet the requirements and are not willing to take a chance, as if caught you could be banned from coming here, so back home they go. so Thailand is no longer the haven for those who want to domicile themselves in the country like before. as you know thai authorities are cracking down on the vast numbers of people trying to live here unlawfull without the documentation required.

a lot of these guys are heavy consumers of alcohol which is cheap and plentiful. some are at the point of what is becoming a problem, leading to depression, anxiety, and sickness, is that why the suicide rate along with the flying club is so high. still leaving but in a sad way, could the problem lie by living out in the sticks where boredom sets in, remote villages making life difficult to settle into the local culture. sadly a failed marriage, spent all you money, are some of the causes of depression in retirees. some are not in the best of health when they settle here, the drinking habit only makes them worse.

a bit of info from onlinelibrary.wiley.com

Thai lifestyle and culture, low living costs, a warm climate, and readily-available, attractive sexual partners. Most Westerners in-country reported feeling well-assimilated; half had Thai partners, and most planned to stay for life. Their major reported problems were the difficult Thai language, visa policies and so on. Common reasons for leaving Thailand were financial or disillusionment, occasioned in some cases by perceived poor assimilation. The move apparently works out well for many but assimilation often may be illusory and there are signs of a local backlash against the influx of Westerners.
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #15 on: September 15, 2018, 02:03:22 PM »
fewer Western expats in Thailand

A survey published earlier this month has shown there are fewer Western expats in Thailand.

This may have a follow-on impact for Thailand’s property and real estate sector, especially for property rentals.

T.Visa surveyed 1,429 Western expats in its Expat Survey 2018 and noted a “significant” fall in working Western expats.

It revealed a “significant number of working expats under 60-years-old” left Thailand since its previous survey in 2016.

If the numbers are repeated more widely, this will add to the current supply/demand imbalance in the rental sector.

There are far more units for rent than potential tenants right now.

The popular website for expats added that the rising cost of living in Thailand combined with the influx of Chinese and Indian tourists is changing the expatriate dynamic.

There was also some useful information for real estate agents and developers that emerged in the survey.

The average age of arriving expats had increased to 60-years-old, up from 50-years-old from just two years ago.

There are also younger, unemployed, expats arriving according to the survey results.

Just one in 5 Western expats is now under 50-years-old, with two percent under 30-years-old.

According to the survey, this indicates that Thailand is moving quickly back towards its previous position as a retirement destination for expats.

Just 23 percent of survey respondents indicated they were working, almost half of figures seen during 2016.

In terms of monthly budgets for Western expats, one of four said they have been THB 25,000 and THB 45,000 per month. Some 48 percent have monthly budgets of more than THB 65,000 per month while 10 percent said they have more than THB 145,000 to spend.

Perhaps surprisingly, 20 percent of expats questioned in the survey claimed to own a condominium.

When looking at the levels of attrition and levels of condo ownership, this would seem to indicate a business opportunity for agencies that can penetrate the Western expat property sales market.

Although the survey sample size was relatively small, it does provide some useful indicators that can be used in Thailand’s property and real estate sector.

Whilst this survey indicates there are fewer Western expats in Thailand, they have likely been replaced by both Japanese and Chinese nationals given the most recent data regarding the number of work permits issued in Bangkok, which is still rising.

thailandproperty.news
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 

Offline thaiga

Is going back home easier said than done?

Before I start this blog let me be clear: I am a happy expat. Previous blogs have allured to the possibility of a return back to the UK, but I was just being open in sharing some of the questions expats, like myself, inevitably have had. What is our end game – will we ever return back ‘home’ and will there ever come a time in the short term where one would need to go back?

The longer I spend living abroad, the less likely it is that I will ever go back to live again. The reality is there is very little back in the UK for me to go back for, I have my two brothers but see them when they come over on whenever I go back to the UK for a vacation. I have friends but we have all moved on from when I last lived in the UK over a decade ago. We are certainly still friends, but our mindsets have shifted in opposite directions.

Can you fit back in with a society that you left?

One of the biggest reasons for why I don’t think I will end up back in the UK is that I no longer fit in and no longer think aligned to the UK culture, friends and family. During August I saw on my Facebook feed all my friends back in the UK having their summer holidays – as it was half term for their children. So, every family gets away as the kids are off school. And they all jump on plane to British areas abroad in Europe and surround themselves with fellow Brit holiday makers. If ever I wanted reminding of the structure and routine to UK living that was it.

Let’s face it, no one really cares about what you have been up to living abroad, at best you will get a luke warm interest. Your experiences are of no interest to your peers back home.

After uprooting and moving abroad to then return back home means acclimatising to a different social ecosystem all over again. There is even terminology for this, it is called ‘Reverse Culture Shock’ when you return. Will you feel like you belong when you return, I am not convinced you will?

I am also quite sure you will be in shock with a whole raft of things from the weather change to increased taxes.

Never say never

I would certainly never discount returning back to the UK, preferably in a financially secure position, but looking into the UK from afar I really am not sure it is something I would want to rush back for.

danaboutthailand.com
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 

Offline Johnnie F.

Re: Western expats in Thailand – why are so many leaving?
« Reply #17 on: September 16, 2018, 03:51:18 PM »
Just a few weeks ago one of my grandnieces (25) discussed with me in PMs on FB, how big the likeliness of one going back to Germany is, when one has stayed abroad for decades. She had just come back from a three months internship in  the US and felt like now "embracing home" in Germany, as the US didn't impress her at all apart from a few natural attractions.

At about the same age I had been to the US for studying and working. When i got back to Germany after about two years, my friends and other acquaintances at my age did remember me and wanted to know all pros and cons about migrating to the US; they were also concerned about their own future and where to live. When I was last in Germany, those same friends weren't interested in moving anywhere else anymore; they had found their place. We were only talking a little about old times, realizing that now we didn't have much in common anymore.

When I told my grandniece, that such a long time away makes it very difficult to "settle back in", she seemed shocked, she would never forget her home soil. She didn't seem to understand, that it's not about remembering but rather keeping a lifestyle in a community. But she accepted, that I knew a lot of places/countries where I would prefer to live, if someday for some reason I had enough of Thailand.
Fun is the one thing that money can't buy
 
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