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October 26, 2011


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I haven't been to any of these cities but I have lived in a third world country. Before making such a huge decision there are so many more things to take into account than just the money. Number 1 must be safety, and a close second is the language, how many of us are comfortable learning a new language, culture, way of life when we are ready to retire... My advise would be to try it for a while before you make the decision

I have been to Jamacia, Grand Cayman, Cozemal, St. John, and a couple virgin isalnds. This is on a cruise and really not a good incidaction of the way of life there.

Jamacia I can tell you is there is alot of haves and have not. I did not feel safe there. The others I felt safer but wonder how it is outside the cruise line safety zone.

Personally I would move to rural america before moving to a foreign country.

I've been to Chiang Mai and Bangkok - on a tour vacation so I'm pretty sure I didn't get the "local" feel. My bFF spent a semester in CM and loved it. I would choose a spot where I could at least fudge the language a little bit until I got my feet under me, like a Spanish-speaking country. Safety would also be a huge concern for me, but I may be morecautious about things like that than others :)

Apparently, "Cheap" is really relative! Most of those places are way out of my price range. The only one that seems reasonable is Thailand for $1200, and perhaps Malaysia for $1600. Anything more, and I'd out.

Those seem really expensive to me, I would like to see a break down of expenses. I thought these countries were supposed to be cheaper? I can live much cheaper right here in the U.S.

That seems really high for Maceio, Brazil.

I rented a small but nice 3 bedroom apartment in an outlying suburb of Sao Paulo for about R$600/month a few years back. Food for two was about R$300/month and water and electric weren't all that much. Say that all works out to be less than R$1000 or US$570 per month.

You'd be living a pretty swanky life with another US$2k per month.

It's been 15 years since I visited Maceio, but it wasn't my impression that the standard of living there was any higher than the rest of Brazil.

I can personally attest that living in Chiang Mai is very nice for much of the year. There is a short period in April - May where the farmers burn all the fields and the air quality is unacceptable- basically you cannot go outside. Barring that short window, it is a very nice place to live.

Bangkok has better hospitals and health care professionals but it's a 1 hour flight / 7 hour / 450 mile car ride away.

You can live quite well on just $1200 a month, but it would be a somewhat basic lifestyle without too much international travel or imported things that cost a lot.

Then again there are many places to live in the midwest where you can live comfortably for less than $2k a month provided you already own your own place.

The Thai people are a very easy going bunch and that makes for living in the country a generally pleasant experience.


I've been to Chiang Mai. I didn't look into real estate or the rental market, but I think a couple could easily retire there on this amount. By American living standards, it would be a rough living.

I found the people (mostly) helpful and kind. The food is extremely cheap and the landscape outside the city is beautiful.

Really If anyones been to Thailand especially Chiang Mai you would know that there are a lot of ex-pats there, that it is very safe and the cost of living is very cheap. Great place to retire if you can handle the heat.

Anywhere, it depends on the standard of living you find acceptable. I live in Abq, NM, for $1200 a month. I live as simply as possible, philosophy + necessity. I'll bet I could live in any of the places listed for considerably less than the col given.

Buenos Aires is a beautiful city but I certainly wouldn't want to live --too much political corruption (& kidnapping of westerners, these days). You have to bribe everybody all the time to get anything done--we had to bribe people just to get to the airport. And Medellin Columbia--LOL! Be sure to pack your machine gun....!

We have been to Chiang Mai three times where we stayed for several days as part of vacations in Thailand. It is a great place to spend a few days exploring the many nearby places of interest.

Living there year round however would be totally out of the question for us. We always visited at the time of the year when the weather was perfect, just like the SF Bay Area where we live, however as we are currently seeing they have Monsoon rains for part of the year and sweltering heat and humidity at other times. We don't speak Thai and certainly wouldn't want to drive amidst all of the various types of high polluting small motor vehicles in the very hectic traffic. The people are very friendly and being largely Buddhist are very spiritual and non violent, so we would certainly feel safe. They do have excellent healthcare available though still not up to the standard we currently have which is second to none.

Fortunately we enjoy a lifestyle that is perfect for us and since money is not a factor we don't have the slightest motivation to move anywhere at all.

Buenos Aires is amazing. One of the most beautiful cities in the world. That said, can you spell hyperinflation?
La Serena Chile is also gorgeous. As is most of Chile. Chile is very, very safe, stable (much more economically so than we are) country that has great agriculture -- so a good source of food. That said, you better be really good at Spanish to live there (although I have a friend who owns three properties but doesn't live there full time, but has $ for spanish speaking caretakers who translate for her).

Also, that cost for La Serena is too high. I bet you can live okay for less than 2K, especially if you bought a place and didn't pay housing.

I live in Italy in a more expensive city than Abruzzo. With a morgage of 600 euros a month and two teenage boys, the four of us live on 2400 euros a month comfortably. I guess you can live on a lot less when you retire so that 2400 US dollars is just too high I think.

Medellin is a lot safer today than it used to be. The drug cartel is down and Uribe is working on FARC.

How much would it cost to live in Trinidad & Tobago?

You should come and see the Turkey. Turkey is still developing country. Turkey has fifth biggest economy in Europe just for now. But for retired people Turkey has great opportunities such as rich German people who are retired immigrated and lived in Turkey since 1980s.

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