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Khao Lak, Thailand

By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Sep 05, 2023

Summary: Expats, digital nomads and retirees talk about what it is really like living in Khao Lak, Thailand. They offer advice about meeting people, cost of living, finding a home and more.

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What do I need to know about living in Khao Lak?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Khao Lak, they said:

"Expats considering retiring in Khao Lak should be aware of several factors before making the move. Firstly, they should familiarize themselves with the visa requirements for long-term stays, such as obtaining a retirement visa or a non-immigrant visa. They should also be prepared to show proof of financial stability, as this is often a requirement for obtaining a long-term visa. It is essential for expats to research the cost of living in Khao Lak, including housing, utilities, groceries, and transportation. While the cost of living is generally lower than in Western countries, it is essential to budget accordingly and be aware of any potential fluctuations in currency exchange rates. Healthcare is another important consideration for retirees. Expats should research the quality and availability of healthcare facilities in Khao Lak and consider obtaining international health insurance to cover any medical expenses. Language barriers may be a challenge for some expats, as Thai is the primary language spoken in Khao Lak. It is beneficial to learn some basic Thai phrases to help with daily interactions and consider taking language classes to improve communication skills. Expats should also be aware of the cultural differences and customs in Thailand. It is essential to respect local traditions, such as removing shoes before entering a home or temple, and dressing modestly when visiting religious sites. Being aware of and respecting these customs will help expats integrate more smoothly into the local community. The climate in Khao Lak is tropical, with hot and humid weather throughout the year. Expats should be prepared for this climate and take necessary precautions, such as staying hydrated and wearing sunscreen. Finally, it is essential for expats to build a social network in Khao Lak, as this can help ease the transition to a new country. Joining local clubs, participating in community events, and connecting with other expats can help create a sense of belonging and make the retirement experience more enjoyable," remarked one expat who made the move to Khao Lak.

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William RussellWilliam Russell

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
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What do I need to know before moving to Khao Lak?

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About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

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Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
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William RussellWilliam Russell

Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
Get Quote

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