Whether you are a digital nomad or on the verge of retirement, Thailand beckons many westerners who wish to relocate to this unique land, which has long been a top tourist destination and there are many reasons why.
Here are a few tips from seasoned expats regarding relocating to tropical Thailand.
- Never overstay your visa – Seriously, Thai immigration does not take kindly to overstaying visas; always prepare the necessary documents in advance prior to visiting immigration, or you could use one of the approved visa agents to facilitate the process. In the event a foreigner is apprehended with an expired visa, they are arrested, sent to court, deported and blacklisted for a specific number of years, depending on the length of the overstay.
- Buying or renting real estate – There are some stunning Pattaya homes for sale with a leading real estate agent and they can assist you with the legal aspect. If you are planning to retire in Thailand, you might prefer to lease an empty plot of land and build your dream home; the law in Thailand states that a foreigner cannot own land, however, you are able to lease land and are the owner of any house you build. Another option is to set up a Thai limited company, and the entity can purchase real estate.
- Learn to speak Thai – If you can communicate with the locals on a basic level, this will help with day-to-day stuff; if you are not eligible for a retirement visa, you can enrol at an approved Thai language academy and apply for an education visa. Free practice is a critical component of language acquisition and living in Thailand allows you to practice anytime you feel like it.
- Don’t bring your furniture –Aside from the high cost of importing furniture. Thai customs are notoriously difficult when it comes to importing used items. Save yourself a lot of hassle and sell everything at home; all types of furniture are available here, while major household appliances are relatively cheap, as they are made locally. Here are a few signs that you are close to burnout mode.
- Don’t compare costs to home – When you see something for sale at 1,500 baht, you automatically convert that into your home currency, and then suddenly it is a real bargain! While it might be a lot cheaper than at home, it might be very expensive in Thailand; while on vacation, it is fine to compare prices, but once you live in a country, comparisons should stop. You could end up paying 50% more than you should!
- Take out medical insurance – Hospital treatment in Thailand is expensive; a life-threatening event that leads to surgery could literally wipe you out financially. Google ’health insurance in Thailand’ and browse the providers to find a policy that suits your lifestyle.
Tale a look at the Tourism Authority of Thailand website for useful information for those who plan a stay in this amazing kingdom.