Re: Living here cheaply (PM Hillary Friday, 21 June 2013) – Be realistic. Don’t encourage people to come here expecting to live on nothing. Even Thais renting a concrete bare floor hovel in Jomtien pay 2500 baht for a single room with no kitchen (walk up) plus a flat fee for water that is inflated and an inflated one for electricity.
A realistic rent is 12,000 baht per month at the low end in decent accommodations and budget 2,000 a month for air & electricity, or 650 baht if you choose not to use air conditioning. 400 a month for water.
Thai street and restaurant meals (totally Thai) range from 40-70 baht depending upon size and type. Western food cannot be had (even a hamburger) for less that 100 baht unless it is a breakfast which can give two eggs, cold toast and fatty bacon plus coffee for 99 baht to 180 baht for a good breakfast.
Now, there is a crying need here for English language teachers and if you are willing to take a course from a good school in teaching English (getting certification in six weeks) you can make some nice coin on those months of the year when school is in session. This will aide your “special” teaching visa. For those months you would earn 30K baht per month and expect to work for it. This is one alternative for you. Otherwise get a “student visa” and you will get a visa as a student studying Thai language which you can do forever. Quarterly you will pay 1,900 baht plus fees for the coursework. You will learn Thai gradually and can stay here without having to prove income or make visa runs. ATM machines will accept your OZ card here and give you money of course. Scotty, no one plans to fail, but too many fail to plan.