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Expat Insider - The World Through Expat Eyes

Bangkok: Affordable Housing & Excellent Healthcare

Low costs, friendly locals, readily available housing — does the Thai capital have it all?

Bangkok comes 9th out of 49 in the Expat City Ranking 2023 and is featured among the best-rated destinations in the Personal Finance Index (2nd). Expats find their financial situation (3rd) and the general cost of living (5th) in Bangkok very satisfactory. And 86% say that their disposable household income is enough or more than enough to lead a comfortable life (vs. 73% globally).

The Quality of Life Index (39th) reveals very mixed results, though. On the negative side, Bangkok comes in last in the Environment & Climate Subcategory (49th). Both the air quality (48th) and the urban environment (49th) end up in the bottom 3. Safety & Security (44th) is another lowlight, mainly due to the fact that 28% of expats feel they can’t openly express themselves and their opinions (vs. 15% globally). On the other hand, expats praise the Leisure Options (9th) and Healthcare (7th) in Bangkok.

Bangkok does very well in the Ease of Settling In Index (10th). Expats are especially happy with the friendliness of the local residents (8th) and their thriving social life (4th) there. In the Working Abroad Index (35th), Bangkok nearly ends up in the bottom 5 of the Work Culture & Satisfaction Subcategory (44th). Expats report that the local business culture does not encourage creativity (45th), independent work (45th), or flexibility (40th).

The Expat Essentials Index (13th) reveals that expats struggle with the unavailability of government services online (38% unhappy vs. 21% globally) and the challenging local bureaucracy (48% unhappy vs. 38% globally). However, Housing ranks 1st globally — expats say it’s both affordable and easy to find (2nd for both). Overall, 85% of expats are happy with their life in Bangkok, compared to 72% globally.

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