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Thailand - Cost of Living
Shopping in Thailand is also very reasonable when compared with prices in the UK and the US. A litre of fresh milk costs on average 48 THB while a loaf of white bread costs around 37 THB. A dozen eggs has an average price of 50 THB. For fresh produce such as fruit costs vary but a kilo of apples or oranges costs around 70 THB while potatoes are cheaper at an average of 55 THB per kilo. A 1.5 litre bottle of mineral water costs around 15 THB, which is much cheaper than in the UK and the US. A bottle of wine is fairly expensive though at around 519 THB, although there are cheaper brands available. Smokers will find that the price of a pack of 20 cigarettes is low, at an average of 74 THB, the equivalent of just over $2.
Local transport is another area where the costs are fairly low. A single ticket on a local bus will cost in the region of 21 THB, but a monthly pass costs around 734 THB. This is the equivalent of around $19 and works out a great deal cheaper than similar monthly passes in the UK or the US. The starting price for a taxi journey is less than the equivalent of $2 and for each km travelled the meter will add on around 3.50 THB, which is also much lower than in other countries.
The cost of monthly utilities is also inexpensive when compared with some other countries. A combined monthly total for LPG gas, electricity, water charges and refuse collection comes to around 1638 THB per month, which is less than $50. Internet charges per month on average are around 631 THB, which is less than $20 per month. Both of these are much cheaper than in the UK or the US, where you would expect to pay more than double these figures.
Leisure activities also incur charges and the average monthly cost of a gym membership in Thailand is around 882 THB which is less than $25. A ticket for the cinema costs the equivalent of $3.50, which is also less than half of what you would expect to pay in the UK or the US.
When buying clothes in Thailand you will notice a big difference in prices. The cost of a pair of Levis jeans is on average 1141 THB, which is the equivalent of around $30. A standard summer dress in a chain store works out a little more expensive than the average in some countries at 1353 THB, the equivalent of around $36. Nike running shoes are the equivalent of around $63 which is a little cheaper than in the US. It should be remembered that if you buy locally made clothes then the prices are dramatically cheaper than those mentioned here.
If you are renting property then you will find that the costs vary according to area. As with all cities there are expensive and cheap areas. The average monthly rent of a 1 bedroom apartment in Bangkok city centre is around 10,500 THB which is around $285. This is fairly cheap when compared with some cities but there are also more expensive apartments available although rarely more than the equivalent of $520 per month. Outside the city centre prices are around half of this. A larger apartment in the city centre will cost on average 27,500 THB, which is around $750 per month. Again, outside the city centre you can expect to pay half of this amount.
The cost of living in Thailand is relatively low but as the country becomes more popular both as a tourist destination and a destination for expats, it is expected that the cost of living will rise slightly over the next few years although it is not expected to rise dramatically.
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