Written By: Bryan Flowers
I have lived in Pattaya for around 12 years, I have written about my start here but in short I was 25 years old and I arrived with 30,000 baht.
Here are some general tips of how to stay here long term.
- Leaving the bulk of your assets/money back at home or tied up – I didn’t have any, but the main point is if you have cash available here, you are more likely to spend it and if you arrive with almost nothing, you are more motivated to work.
- Getting out of holiday mode asap – I see many guys moving here then drink and spend like a tourist. Its not possible to keep up with your mates on holiday. And just because everyone else is drinking everyday, doesn’t make it ok when you are trying to live here.
- Live as frugal as possible with a smaller house/room to start with, until you have your routine/budget manageable then start making slow changes. I don’t like to recommend budgeting as I think people should spend more but earn more, but to start with, I feel everyone should be cautious until they are in a solid routine.
- Loyalty, be loyal to anyone you work for, work with and support those around you. The reason I am still here is because I have been loyal to people around me and not chasing the “best” opportunities.
- Be prepared to adapt, includes living location, living arrangements, work, budget, hobbies and helping friends.
- Live away from distractions – this could be bars, night clubs, gogos or anything else that may burn your health, time and wallet.
- Talk to some expats about what they do and where they hang out
- Always work, even if its volunteering. I feel that work is the key to happiness and not being a bitter jaded expat, even if you are rich and retired, I believe we should all work or volunteer, there are plenty of charity foundations or even struggling business owners that need help.
- Keep your days busy or you will end up meeting people in bars or drinking or spending money.
- Try to quit alcohol or limit it to set days. It seems most expats are forced to quit alcohol later on, for me it wasted my time. Its ok to have fun on holiday and drink, but not so much fun when you are trying to build a stable life in Pattaya.
- Build connections – Visa agents, business owners, doctors, hair dressers, everyone knows somebody and you may need help later on.
- Learn Thai – The faster you learn Thai, the quicker you will see the huge benefits from it.
- Hang around with expats that are working or active making a difference somewhere.
- Find a girlfriend for a stable life, some guys will object to this one, but she doesn’t have to be an exclusive girlfriend, I know many “single” expats that have solid girls they trust for when they get ill or they need some help. I guess you could call them good friends. I personally think having a wife and children added many years onto my life because it makes me look after myself better.
- Be a man of your word and be honest, if you say you will do something, then do it and bare the costs if you got it wrong!
When I moved to Pattaya I moved to Soi Nern Plab Wan at East Pattaya in a shared house far away from the bright lights of Pattaya, then I moved to Sattahip for 6 years and I came to Pattaya 1-2 times a week. I lived at the bottom of a mountain in the middle of nowhere with monkeys and snakes in my garden, I did this to make sure I had distance between me and bars. I also set out to find a girlfriend immediately in which I did.
Some articles I wrote before: (2 years old or more)
Bryan Flowers is the founder/CEO of Night Wish Group, Pattaya Addicts Forum, co-owner of The Pattaya News and writes on his personal blog. https://bryan.flowers/