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But How Much Can You Save?


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Okay long-timers.

Here is the question.

As a 20something American with a B.A. and a TEFL certificate, who gets a job in either a language or public school with pretty standard pay...can anything be saved per month, like even $500 USD or so?

-I am not a big drinker/nightclubber and that's not what draws me to Thailand

-I'd be living in Bangkok, with at least one roommate and none of us need or want anything too fancy

-I love Thai street food and could probably eat a Pad thai or Tom Kha Gai soup just about every night of the week

Is around $500 USD/month a doable goal based on the above scenario? I don't need to save for anything specific, and I'm very drawn to the culture and climate of Thailand and would love to spend a year living in Bangkok, teaching English and maybe studying Thai and doing a big of traveling around the country and perhaps other, cheaper southeast Asian countries as well. But I'm pretty cheap, and I'd like to be able to hang on to at least a few hundred bucks a month no matter what job I'm working, if possible.

Thanks all! :)

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Highly depends on your qualifications. With good qualifications you might find a job at an international school, getting good pay. Without good qualifiactions and working at a language school forget about saving that kind of money.

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You have a good sense of what you need to be trying to do, which is have some savings building all the time.

With a BA and a TEFL, you would probably be able to get into the 35-40K (baht) job range, easily. If the BA were in a school subject like maths or history, and with 2-3 years of experience with classrooms, you might be able to get into the pseudo-international school system at 50-60K+. At this salary range, you are beginning to look at being able to save a bit.

If you continue to get experience and choose jobs wisely, with possibly further post grad education studies later, you're probably looking at the 70-80K+ range within 5 years or so.

At your age, there's no reason you shouldn't be teaching at the highest possible levels within about 10-12 years.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Perhaps we have some posters who work at or know people who work at the bigger international schools, but based on previous posts, you should earn in the neighborhood of 120,000 per month. There are also other benefits, such as housing, home leave etc..

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You have a good sense of what you need to be trying to do, which is have some savings building all the time.

With a BA and a TEFL, you would probably be able to get into the 35-40K (baht) job range, easily. If the BA were in a school subject like maths or history, and with 2-3 years of experience with classrooms, you might be able to get into the pseudo-international school system at 50-60K+. At this salary range, you are beginning to look at being able to save a bit.

If you continue to get experience and choose jobs wisely, with possibly further post grad education studies later, you're probably looking at the 70-80K+ range within 5 years or so.

At your age, there's no reason you shouldn't be teaching at the highest possible levels within about 10-12 years.

The timeframe described there is just depressing...especially when the pay at it is pretty average still after 5 years.

Why not take another year out, get a proper teaching degree, do a year or two at a school in the US...and in 3 years you could be out here earning 80K and a package.

Just a thought...

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Perhaps we have some posters who work at or know people who work at the bigger international schools, but based on previous posts, you should earn in the neighborhood of 120,000 per month. There are also other benefits, such as housing, home leave etc..

Those figures are in the 'ballpark' for a teacher with 4-7 years experience. Higher salary is given for positions of responsibilty too.....such as HOD, Key Stage Coordinator etc.

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I don't teach in BKK (I'm in RoiEt), but I'm sure that you should definitely be able to save at least $500US a month (~15000฿ right?) if you're a little frugal. Albeit, maybe not in the first few months as you will need to find the cheaper places to go + make a few "comfort" purchases to keep you entertained etc.

As although the cost of living is quite high in BKK, it sounds like you're prepared to live "Thai style", which is considerably cheaper (albeit less convenient) than living "farang" style. As such, you could probably get by on 10k a month, maybe 20k to be conservative since you're not actually Thai lol, and then you can put away 15k+ for savings (assuming 35k+ salary).

But when it comes down to it, how much you save, will depend on what sort of job you get + the standard of living which you subject yourself too.

Also imo if you can't find anything 35k+ in BKK, look for jobs in other areas of Thailand, as the cost of living is much lower and you can still get 25-35k even without much prior teaching experience.

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I'm going to assume from your id name that you are female. A 20something female with a BA shouldn't have any trouble at all getting a job. I would recommend trying to get some experience at a day-care center or kindergarten before coming out here.

With some experience and a good attitude and appearance a good job teaching Kindergarten or 1st grade at an international school would not be out of the question.

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