Thailand Ranked Among the 10 Best Countries for Expats

InterNations’ Expat Insider 2022 survey has ranked Thailand among the top 10 best countries for ex-pats, rising from 14th to 8th compared to last year’s list.

Berlin-based InterNations, the world’s largest ex-pat community with 4 million members, surveyed nearly 12,000 foreign nationals living in 52 destinations worldwide.

The survey considered various aspects, including expatriates’ satisfaction with Quality of Life, Personal Finance, Ease of Settling In, and Working Abroad. Other Expat Essentials Index gauged digital life, housing, administrative issues, and language.

The kingdom excelled in the Personal Finance  (4th) and Ease of Settling In (11th) indexes while scoring 18th for Expats Essentials.

In contrast, Thailand performed poorly in Quality of Life (35th) and Working Abroad (45th), which lowered its overall score.

However, around 77% of ex-pats surveyed said they were happy to live in the country, compared to 71% globally.

This year, Thailand was ranked six places higher than in 2021, when it held the 14th spot. It was also a significant improvement compared to the 25th place it got in 2019 among 64 destinations.

Also, in 2020, InterNations published a ranking for cities, giving Bangkok 20th place out of 82 locations.

The Expat Insider 2022 survey showed that 85% of ex-pats in Thailand felt that their household income was enough to lead a comfortable life. The kingdom also ranked top in the housing category, with 74% of respondents saying accommodation was affordable and 85% stating it was easy to find.

However, the Expat Essentials Index unveiled different opinions. Respondents were dissatisfied with the low availability of administrative or government services, with over 51% saying they found it hard to deal with bureaucracy and local authorities.

In terms of communication, 70% of the respondents said it was easy to live in Thailand without speaking the local language, while 68% said it was difficult for them to learn Thai.

Ex-pats have also given Thailand a good rating in the Local Friendliness subcategory, with 86% describing residents as “generally friendly” and the other 81% saying they are friendly towards foreigners.

Thailand also received positive comments on leisure, nightlife and medical care, ranking second worldwide for its culinary variety and dining options.

However, the country drew criticism for Environment and Climate issues, with 45% of those surveyed rating the air quality negatively. Two out of five respondents said they believed authorities did not support the related policies.

The kingdom’s biggest weakness was in the Working Abroad Index, in which it was ranked 45th, and in the Work Culture and Satisfaction subcategory (48th). It was also among the bottom ten countries for Salary and Job Security (46th).

Mexico, Indonesia and Taiwan were the best destinations for ex-pats, with the 1st, 2nd and 3rd spots, respectively. Kuwait, New Zealand and Hong Kong had the worst ratings.