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Koh Lanta, 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 Koh Lanta, 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 Koh Lanta?

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

"Expats considering retirement in Koh Lanta should be aware of several important factors. Firstly, they should understand the visa requirements, which typically involve obtaining a retirement visa, also known as a Non-Immigrant Long Stay Visa. This requires the applicant to be 50 years or older, have a clean criminal record, and meet certain financial requirements. The cost of living in Koh Lanta is relatively low compared to Western countries, but it's important to budget for expenses such as housing, food, healthcare, and transportation. Expats should also be aware that while healthcare in Thailand is generally good, it's advisable to have comprehensive health insurance to cover any potential medical costs. The climate in Koh Lanta is tropical, with a rainy season from May to October and a dry season from November to April. Expats should be prepared for high temperatures and humidity year-round. Language can be a barrier for some expats, as Thai is the official language and English is not widely spoken outside of tourist areas. However, there are language schools and courses available for those wishing to learn Thai. Expats should also be aware of the cultural differences and local customs. Thai culture places a high value on respect and politeness, and it's important to understand and adhere to these norms to integrate into the local community. Finally, it's worth noting that while Koh Lanta is a beautiful and peaceful island, it's relatively remote and may not offer the same level of amenities and entertainment as larger cities. Therefore, it's important for expats to consider their lifestyle and personal preferences when deciding to retire in Koh Lanta," said one expat in Koh Lanta.

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What do I need to know before moving to Koh Lanta?

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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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