Thailand Weekly Vol. 20
Thailand news and stories delivered free every Sunday 🇹🇭
Well, I’m writing this from a hotel room just outside of Khao Yai National Park a few hours Northeast of Bangkok. Chris, our buddy Dana, and myself are now on the final leg of an epic 4-day motorbike trip through the hills and jungles of this magical place. It’s been awesome. One of the greatest perks about living in the Thai capital is everything you have at your fingertips just a couple hours outside of the city. The next time you find yourself over here, I’d highly recommend taking a few days and picking somewhere relatively off the beaten path to go and explore! The mini adventure we currently find ourselves on encapsulates the first story in this weeks volume perfectly. More on that below… Cheers guys!
Thailand Ranks As One Of The Best Places To Live For Expats
Thailand has been ranked as one of the top countries in the world for those looking to move abroad and enjoy life as an expat in a recent survey facilitated by InterNations. The Berlin-based group has an expat community of more than 4 million members and surveyed 12,000 people across 52 different countries. The Kingdom came in at number eight overall (just ahead of Australia and Singapore), and ranked especially high in the housing category with those that participated in the survey mentioning that their accommodation is both affordable and easy to find. The survey also shows that 85% of Thai expats feel that their disposable income is enough, or more than enough to lead a life that they enjoy.
Having said that, Thailand ranked relatively low as it pertains to the availability of online government services with 43% of expats stating that they are unhappy with what is currently available compared to the 21% average reported across all countries. All in all, the data shows that 77% of foreigners in Thailand are happy with their lives here in the Kingdom compared with the 71% average seen elsewhere.
You can find the the full ‘Top 10’ list below:
New Tourism Insurance Fee To Cover All Foreigners Entering Thailand
Although postponed since the start of 2022, the proposed 300 baht (USD $8) tourism fee is now back in the cards with the Tourism and Sports Ministry providing more insight into how it will be collected and what it will be used for. Firstly, it will apply to all foreigners arriving by land, sea, or air (including expats, work permit holders, long-term visa holders, diplomats, etc.), and is payable upon entry, unless you’re arriving by air, in which case the fee will be included and built-in to the cost of airfare to the Kingdom.
The funds will be used to provide insurance coverage of up to 500,000 baht (USD $13,650) for each person, up to 30-days. The insurance will cover accidents, riots, terrorism, natural disasters, and ‘other’ incidents, while health, hospital, and COVID-related expenses wouldn’t be covered. It is expected that the government will confirm the plan over the next 30-days and then have it go into effect 90-days later when it is officially published in the Royal Gazette.
Thailand Travel Tip
Thailand is an easy place to explore at surface level. The tourist areas are well-defined, the locals are friendly, and things are relatively straightforward. Having said that, as soon as you want to start pulling back the hundreds of layers that make this country extra special, it can get difficult. Local restaurants, activities, attractions, nightlife, etc. can be tough to navigate. Bangkok’s back-alley noodle shops. Koh Samui’s secret beaches. Chiang Mai’s speakeasy bars. They’re all special places, but can be almost impossible to find unless you have local friends. That’s why we created the Teenee App. It’s a handpicked list of the best things Thailand has to offer, overlaid on an easy-to-navigate map interface. Every spot is recommended by Thais or Expats that actually live here. With the ability to search, filter, and enjoy bite-sized videos across over 350 recommendations, it’s like having a local friend in your pocket at all times. This is something that Chris and I created ourselves as a way to share our love of Thailand with the world. None of these videos are sponsored and the small subscription fee is what allows us to focus on just one thing… the Thailand traveller. Click here to check it out.
Ultra Rare Footage Of Tigers Captured Near Khao Yai
This past week, ultra-rare footage of a family of tigers feeding on a large animal carcass was captured in Isaan’s Dong Phayayen-Khao Yai Forest Complex by the Department of National Parks. In 2005, the forest complex was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its diverse set of wildlife, with over 800 different species living in this part of the country.
These videos are extremely rare as it’s estimated that there’s only 250 wild tigers left in Thailand because of the illegal wildlife trade. In fact, this past April, the Thai police rescued a 4-month old tiger cub that was smuggled into the country from Laos ready to be sold for 400,000 baht (USD $11,000).
Only In Thailand 🇹🇭
A bit of a strange situation this past week when locals called the police because they saw someone floating in a Bangkok canal. People were shouting at him, hoping that he was responsive, but did not hear anything back. Everyone thought that the man was potentially unconscious or dead, but once an onlooker finally jumped into the water to try to help the man, he suddenly woke up. Turns out he was alive and well in a deep meditation. As a mix of panic ensued around him, the elderly man was in such a deep meditation that he did not hear anything going on and was totally unaware of his surroundings. The medics arrived, confirmed he was in good health, and then sent him home. The one word of advice they gave? Find a better place to meditate. 😳