1. andre Apr 2, 2010 5:16 PM

    Well i was in costa rica and it is so expensive. Unless you have money then you can have an great time

  2. bob Apr 4, 2010 1:04 AM

    man i dont know what is up with this article but central america is not safe for americans .i have a brother who lives and travels in honduras as a missionary and i can tell you from personal expierience . you are a target for gringo pricing . also robbery and kidnapping are the norm . my nieces have been targeted many times . the only way he kept it from happening is grace of god. a good clue to the saftey of a country ; when every cop in the country carries a machine gun it aint safe, drugs are a death sentince and so is the water and any food that you dont buy in a resturaunt that is not gringo friendly . do lots of home work before you go. if you dont believe me do a little research on ms 13 gang and this should open your eyes . this goes for most c.a.countries . also legally in most of these countries you can lose your property at a whim . if u arent local u are a target .i have traveled extensively in this part of the world and it is beautiful but do ur home work . what you dont know will kill u here.and before u bag on the spelling dont waste your breath i dont care . i pick up a computer about once a month .if i aint working i am on the harley or sleeping so do ur worst :)

  3. thai Apr 4, 2010 6:45 AM

    u crazy thailand is as expensive as usa for lost of things my wife is thai and she cant live on 500 a month

  4. thai Apr 4, 2010 8:48 AM

    u crazy thailand is as expensive as usa for lost of things my wife is thai and she cant live on 500 a month unless you farming

  5. US Expat Apr 4, 2010 5:30 PM

    I'm not sure where this information comes from, but unless you want to live under the most basic conditions, there is no way most westerners/Gringos would be happy living on $500 a month in Costa Rica. I guess if you want to eat rice and beans every day... My husband and I make around 3k a month working here and that barely covers the bills, rent, car payment, food, etc. Realize that unless you're talking about the most basic of food, almost everything is imported, making it a lot more expensive than in the US, and this goes especially for appliances, clothes, etc. Any sort of imported prepared food is going to be 2-3x more expensive than in the US. Almost everything is expensive here, though housing is still relatively a bargain, depending on where you live and what your needs are (we pay $1200 for a 3BR/3BA house in a private community in the Central Valley, and believe me it's considered a good deal). If you have kids, know that most public schools here are crap, so be prepared to shell out several hundred $$ a month for private school or just go the homeschooling route (oh wait, that's illegal here!). Medical care and veterinary care are still inexpensive as compared to the US; it is worth it to get private insurance that will cover CIMA if you feel you will need it, as the public system is good for emergencies but that's about it (expect to wait forever to schedule a surgery). "Excellent" meals for $4-5? I would love to know where! Crappy casados at the local soda wear thin real quick. I know of one restaurant where you can get what I'd call an "excellent" and inexpensive meal (Lubnan in San Jose, though it's still more than $5pp), otherwise it usually runs us around $25-30 for a family of 3 (2 adults and 1 kid) to have even a decent pizza out somewhere. Bottom line: Costa Rica is NOT cheap! It's definitely cheaper in some ways than the US and Canada but more expensive in many others. So much so that we're planning on moving back to California in a few years, where at least we get the infrastructure and public museums, libraries, etc. that are sorely lacking here. (Road taxes are extremely high -- almost $500 last year for us for our small SUV -- but you wonder where the money goes, as it's certainly not spent on improving the roads much.)

  6. Hamed Apr 5, 2010 10:02 AM

    Oh Guys, let me introduce you the best place to live and enjoy life and nature as much as you may even think.....Yes...that is IRAN . just check the following link to know more about just its nature :
    You can live with 500 $ normally. be sure

  7. JP Apr 7, 2010 9:37 AM

    I'm sorry but I moved to Puerto Rico's west coast. Surfing towns like Rincon, Aguadilla,Isabela, Cabo Rojo and pay 500 for a 3bed 1 bath home by the beach, have supermarkets, movie theater,restaurants all close by,cable and high speed internet, and live with 1000 a month, it may not be 500 but it is pretty safe,clean, and no political unrest because I am still in a US territory. Beer, Medalla, you can get it for a dollar at a small bar 2 by the beach.

  8. Guest Apr 7, 2010 1:05 PM

    So what ? What do you want in yr life ? wanna rest in a beach the rest of yr life ? you'll be tired of it within the first month. I think it's not all about 500$ Per month or whatever, the living standard is what we can't neglect. But I like the lifestyle, living somewhere relaxing, but what to do ? anybody has such an experience ? Living somewhere n doin nothing ? Possible ?! *******

  9. Cho Apr 7, 2010 4:34 PM

    I live in Thailand. It is that cheap or cheaper, and I bet Cambodia (and Laos) are even cheaper than this. 500 a month is more than enough to cover the basic expenses (rent, food, gas, utilities, internet, etc) for 2 people if you aren't an idiot tourist (hen farang keun raka!) and don't look for a place to live in any classified or online source- just hop from spot to spot on a motorbike for a day or so, you'll find plenty of places to live that will suit your needs for some decent prices.

  10. limousine Apr 8, 2010 3:23 AM

    I have no words for this.All places are so so cool.All are cheap to live,this is very good for me.

  11. port0098 Apr 8, 2010 3:30 AM

    CAMBODIA,this is my dream places.its so beautiful.

  12. Vlad Gîdea Apr 8, 2010 5:45 AM

    Yeah, well in Romania the minimum pay check is 150$. So if you spend 500$ a month you're doing pretty good ;)

  13. another Vlad Apr 8, 2010 6:32 AM

    is all about you :) in normal conditions I'll never picture myself living on 500$.
    if you plan to have a nice life, with min same conditions as at home (Europe), 1000-1500euro/month seem to cover it in Thailand. Nice house, dive, kite,wake all day long, restaurants wherever you please.
    About Romania- we have a paradox here :) you can live with 500usd, but expect a small apartment (studio 99%), eating at home 28 out of 30 days,just Sunday driving for big cities or in some countryside. "la tara" with 500 usd/month you can have a nice life.
    To live in Bucharest and willing to have a close to luxurious life is just a dream that will never happen :P

  14. jojo Apr 8, 2010 8:09 PM


  15. rdpogs Apr 10, 2010 11:34 AM

    ii love travel.. thanks for the blog!

  16. Guest Apr 10, 2010 12:13 PM

    please could u include south Asia country..NEPAL as cheapest holiday destination....

  17. Critter Apr 10, 2010 7:34 PM

    I would like to find a place where I could spend no more than about $3000 a month in retirement without having to work and live well including medical costs. I don't mean to sit around and do nothing, but just to not have to work for a living. Maybe do something to help other people or animals. I would like to live in SE Asia and then be able move back to the US if I got very ill or something. I was thinking Northern Thailand, Chian Mai?. Malaysia is too Muslim for me, Indonesia even more so. Singapore way too expensive and materialistic. Laos the government won't let you stay. Cambodia I dont know, but the hospitals there must suck.

  18. bob Apr 10, 2010 10:31 PM

    I plan to live in USA-NY With the socialist goverment we have in place now I can get free health care, unemployment, welfare, food stamps, stop by the food bank, rent controlled apt. free bus pass, and soon free medical marijuana. I run my own line from my neighbors cable tv and internet. I could go on but I have to go pick up my check.

  19. Critter Apr 11, 2010 9:08 AM

    Hey Bob, why didn't I think of that? You're right, the USA is soon becoming the next socialist regime, so perhaps I should hide all my assets overseas and then live here for free by claiming welfare benefits. If the politicians don't feel guilty about it, why should I?

  20. josh Apr 12, 2010 4:34 PM

    i really am looking to move somewhere and see the world i would like to go to asia in the perfect situation ill have about 10 grnad in saveings and just want to go backpack and do my thing for a while and pic up a odd job just to keep some kind of $ going is thailand or the philipins a good idea for this

  21. charlie Apr 15, 2010 3:53 AM

    Thailand in parts is as expensive as the UK. How do I know. I have lived here for ten years. It can be cheaper but then you have to accept a much lower standard of living then you are used to in UK. Many of my friends who come comment how expenisve it has become. In Bnagkok you can pay$5-10 for a beer in some places . Accomodation varies but for anything half but decent you need to spend atleast $400 a month minimum.

  22. phil Apr 16, 2010 10:17 AM

    i have geen in thailand about a week and it has cost me a fortune well over 20000 baht so far

  23. Rick Apr 16, 2010 1:38 PM

    you know after reading all this , and thank you all but i love it in the U.S.. And i just want to relax worked hard all my life. You haved helped me make my desition . Thanks

  24. DON Apr 17, 2010 1:54 PM

    $100.00 CABLE TV, POWER , WATER

  25. Sarah Apr 20, 2010 9:21 AM

    A lot of people are commenting about the price of living in Thailand, and how its hard to get by on $500/month. I live in the Philippines (native filipina), but I've been to Thailand on several occasions and i can say that its definitely more expensive compared to my country. i have friends who own a pension house in the middle of Cebu city and a very nice room for 2 people costs less than $20 a night ( ). You can have a big meal for less than $3 (rice, meat, and beer). Seriously, its all about knowing where to go to get the best deals. also imho, its a lot easier for foreigners to get around here in the Philippines since everyone but the least educated can speak passable english, plus we Filipinos are known for our friendliness and hospitality. :D

  26. Rory Apr 20, 2010 3:44 PM

    I am in Thailand right now, on holiday. I spend 160Baht ($5.3Aus/$4.9USD) per day on a room with shower, toilet, good fan, 2 beds, desk and chair.
    The room is in a guesthouse next to a 24hr 7/11 with all I need nearby including laundry (30Baht/kg), Post Office, Restaurants, Massage
    Shopping Plazas, Night Bazaar, Weekend Markets.
    For me, Its easy to spend money on clothes and presents. That bumps up my expenses. What the hell... I'm on holiday. What I save on accomodation I spend on food. In the end it comes down to how you want to live.
    I need clean food, water and mosquito free accomodation. I can get it here
    in Chiangmai for less than $500 per month easily, but life would be pretty dull. I want to see movies and eat at sushi-train and get a few
    massages a week... Chiangmai is the massage capital of the world.
    Miss out on massages and you arn't taking advantage of one of this Towns
    best assets. The other asset is the regular markets, where you can buy things you only dreamed of back home, like a Giorgio Armnani watch for $15 or a Rolex for around the same price. Who wears a watch? But they
    are great for presents. The markets are Kilometres long. Compare that
    to back home. The Land of Smiles is an experience that becomes Visceral.
    When you get back home, you get withdrawls that any one who has been
    to Chiangmai (City) for any longer than one month can testify to.
    If you want to Party and love Chaotic Frenzied Celebrations, come
    to Chiangmai around the 13th to the 15th April for the Songkran festival. Even better, try not getting wet. Its a Water festival and its Buddhist roots means that you become ritually cleansed
    if you get a bucketing or a hosing down.
    The town really Buzzes.
    I come to Chiangmai every time I need to relax and re-charge, but I get a lot more than that. I usually buy a new set of clothes,
    new piercings, Shoes, mobile phones and the like. The phones are usually unlocked as are the USB Internet sticks. I get DVDs for $5Aus or buy 5 and get one free. The sales on at present are between 20-50% off normal prices. If you are shy of the hot climate at the moment, go and
    spend your time in the Plazas during the day. At the Airport Plaza, you get to see the latest films in the best Cinemas in Chiangmai for around $5 Aus (3D films for around $7) You get a 1 hour foot massage for less than $7Aus, an icecream at Dairy Queen for less than 60cents, a pair of Trousers for around $15 and a shirt for around $5. These are the clothes that are made here and sell for 5 times as much at home. To get around I pay about $1Aus or less to get most places around town. In rush hour
    the fee may rise depending on the mood of the driver and your bargaining skills. What you get here is not just a cheap holiday, you get much
    more than you think. If you are captivated by the Buddhist Culture you can uncover some gems of Architecture and Sculpture in the temples
    or even become captivated and spellbound by the atmosphere at prayer time, when the monks are chanting amidst candle light and incense.
    Chiangmai gives you back more than the $500 a month you pay in expenses.
    Take a look at the pictures in my online diary if you are interested.
    Because its my Diary, there is a lot of personal stuff, but I have included lots of photos of temples, the Plazas, the Moat around Chiangmai, the Walled City, The Markets, some of the streets and buildings, and other
    things I have found interesting. I find Chiangmai fascinating, rejuvinating and fun. At $5 a day for accomodation, and free VISAS right now until 2011, bypass Bangkok and come to Chiangmai. Take a few days to aclimatise,
    get a massage, eat your fill, see a movie, buy lots of clothes, then go discover the city. I can recommend it. But Dont Tell Anyone.
    Its a secret. My Website:

  27. Jon Apr 20, 2010 4:15 PM

    If you wanna be a fag for 500 a month

  28. shanny Apr 20, 2010 8:04 PM

    From reading all these comments and doing some of my own research it seems like this is all bull... on the other hand I must say it doesn't sound too bad if u can get away from the crime... I live on the eastern coast of the US and I'm lucky if I can find a 2 bedroom apartment for under $1000 a month with just heat and hot water!

  29. Jan Talley Apr 20, 2010 11:06 PM

    You forgot to include Bogota, Colombia. One of the great things to consider when moving to another place to live is the cost of living. I am currently living here now and I am only renting an apartment. Everything is cheap here and everything is great.

  30. Rory Apr 21, 2010 1:30 AM

    Hi Jon, What have you got to contribute that is in any way positive to this discussion.
    You are the kind of people I like to leave behind when I travel.

  31. Flip Apr 21, 2010 2:03 AM

    Just to give you a general idea of the prices in the Philippines (manila) in the province its cheaper
    you can rent a condo/apartment for 150-200USD/ a month,if you want to buy one its can start at around 50k, food would cost about $100-150 depending on how/what/where you eat. (fresh whole chicken in the market is around $3.00-3.2; rice is aound 60cents/kilo, if you go out to drink, a bottle of beer would be around 50 cents, a pack of cigarettes is about 1$, home service clean whole body massage around $5, special massage (you guys know what i mean) ranges from $10-$100, a shirt costs about $2, jeans around $5-6 well hope this gives you an idea of the cost of living in the phils

  32. Michael Apr 22, 2010 3:27 PM

    Costa Rica is no t a cheap country to live in. Food prizes run as high as in the States. The streets have no names, so is very difficult to move around.The roads are narrow and in desrepair.Mass transit almost does not exist. The beaches are mostly contaminated. The beaches in the pacific coast are polluted by boats. the ones in the Atlantic by the pestecides washed away from the banana and pinneapple plantations..I lived one year in Costa Rica.and I was all over the country...Great People thou.

  33. Sal Apr 22, 2010 3:42 PM

    I agree, Costa Rica is not cheap,Granted the people is very friendly, but be ware...Us passport theft is a National pastime Be ware during the rainy season, flash floods, and mudd slides are often and dangerous.True, the streets have no names and the houses no numbers. Beaches are polluted not only by the plantations but also by hotels and private residences that dump human waste in the Ocean a nice country to visit for awahile but not to live in. Property prces are as high as in the states same as rents...defenetely not a cheap country lo live in

  34. guest Apr 23, 2010 7:45 PM

    there are lots of two bedroom apartments even in chicago for $500 a month.

  35. Aaron Detroit Apr 25, 2010 8:53 PM

    Just go to Detroit as i just bought a nice house for $10,000 and if you shop around you'll a fixer upper for anywhere from $500 to $5000... vacation for as long as you want! you can eat really good for $80.00 a Week if your cooking all your own food. taxes on the house are about $850.00 a year.

  36. glou Apr 29, 2010 8:33 AM

    Hey You !! yes, You, the experienced backpacker :) do you have an answer for me ?

    here's the question :
    where to go for cheap 6 months/1 year of solitude ? Don't want to bother with people, at least not with crowds... i don't need pubs, night-clubs, prostitutes, cheap counterfeit rollex or whatever.
    (already live like that since years, so don't bother telling me i would be bored or whatever..)
    i'd just like to find a place with some beauty in it, not a tropical climate, and decent/dignified people that i can meet without second thoughts... i can spend about 500-700 euros a month.

    oh, and what a paradox to ask this here, but i'd like to avoid tourists as much as possible.. specially the organized travel kind..

    i'm thinking Nepal right now.. maybe some remote place of india also, but don't know where..

    So.. interested in all opinions.. thank you :)

    anyone can mail me at
    (remove all numbers from the mail adress, that's a trick to prevent bot spamming)

  37. glou Apr 29, 2010 8:36 AM

    Hey You !! yes, You, the experienced backpacker :) do you have an answer for me ?

    here's the question :
    where to go for cheap 6 months/1 year of solitude ? Don't want to bother with people, at least not with crowds... i don't need pubs, night-clubs, prostitutes, cheap counterfeit rollex or whatever.
    (already live like that since years, so don't bother telling me i would be bored or whatever..)
    i'd just like to find a place with some beauty in it, not a tropical climate, and decent/dignified people that i can meet without second thoughts... i can spend about 500-700 euros a month.

    oh, and what a paradox to ask this here, but i'd like to avoid tourists as much as possible.. specially the organized travel kind..

    i'm thinking Nepal right now.. maybe some remote place of india also, but don't know where..

    So.. interested in all opinions.. thank you :)

    you can mail me at
    (remove both 789 from this adress, that's an anti-spam trick)

  38. allan Apr 30, 2010 1:48 PM

    All through these comments nobody has mentioned Peru. I am an older Canadian who has a peruvian wife who is a professor of communications.

    My stepdaughter and 2 stepsons rent very nice 1 bedroom apartments at $125 per month. I son is a lawyer and the other is a banker and salary is $800 per month. My stepdaughters salary is $400 per month. I like my comforts so believe me you can live for around $600 per month very very comfortably.

    Buses are 30cents, taxi's around 3 dollars, food at cafe's $3, i had a full american breakfast every day for $2.

    If you want to travel you have luxury buses with attendants and served food, t.v. etc and internet connection. These buses are double decker and the cost is very low. Regulary visited family 1200 k.m's from lima on these buses for $30.

    Lima is a very cosmopolitan city and yes there is extreme poverty but you do not have to be in that part of town. There are lots of very nice area's of Lima where you can still be very safe, live, and be close to the beach, nightlife etc.

    There are very nice towns where you can easily live for $500 per month or less and still be comfortable. Before you ask, YES it is safe i have lived and been to Peru many many times and not 1 problem. You use your head like any other city or place in the world.

    I have traveled the world and found that South America has some of the better countries in the world to live nicely but affordable. Minimum wage in Peru is $200 so the economy is geared to a medium wage of $350 to $400
    Check out Peru, Uruguay, Argentina, Chili.

  39. christy Apr 30, 2010 2:23 PM

    anyone have some experiene in Nepal? is it safe? is it cheap? is it comfortable? I will be volunteering there could possibly extend my stay...

  40. Tom Thumb May 1, 2010 12:31 AM

    I find it ironic we are talking about finding a paradise somewhere in a third world country for less than $500 a month when most people from these countries dream of living in a western country for more than $500 a month.

  41. saddam May 1, 2010 4:24 AM

    hi have you

  42. gary May 1, 2010 7:16 AM

    i live in zamboanga city (philippines) you can still get a nice house for 7,000php a month beers 18 php a bottle cig,s 180 php a pack 200 ,so still pretty cheap there thats 2009/dec before someon e says it was yrs ago lol the exchange rates poo now but think it ll pick up it was 97 php tp pound but has dropped to 68 php to pound like everywere watch exchange rate hopefully it ll go bk up to 97 php to pound ill be better off then ( of course you have kidnappings and thiieves everywere not only in asia just use common sence

  43. ed May 2, 2010 10:06 AM

    this is all pretty funny. certainly, it is possible to live anywhere for $500.00 per month. completly depends on what you expect! The one thing I read that really makes sense is :who you know: If you go to another conuntry as a foreign national..don't know anyone, limited language abilities, be prepared to struggle. Having a "local" friend can be the thing that saves ya! I lived in Brazil for 9 years. ( just came back) Living in any of the major cities on $500.00 could be possible, but to rent an apartment takes a "secondary signer" who will secure the payment if you bail. If you somehow can get into a rental without this..possible to do if you are in rural areas and if you have a nasty disposition, you could stop paying rent and use the remarkably slow brazilian legal system to live rent free for a year or so. This would be bad for the "gringo image though, eh"? Food in major cities is expensive, but if you cook yourself and eat can be cheap. cost of durable goods just depends on what you lots of used things are available. Over 60 can apply for immigration now, without the restrictions of "foreign retirement". gotta prove you have lived there for awhile to apply though. Getting perm. visa can be daunting...usually you must be married to a national, or have some highly needed tech. skills. All of this means you speak decent portuguese too..forget it if you don't know the language..I am sure this applies to most countries. Of course, you can get by on english, but only if you are in the more educated areas and this translates to..."more expensive" areas.
    If you want a lot of luxuries, expect to pay.
    I lived in Brasilia and Porto Alegre. In both cases I lived with Brazilians. Want to live cheap, make friends! Brazil has "free medical"...not the best..but it is true. Of course they also have some of the best medical facilities in the world..but there..expect to pay. A lot of perscriptions are over the counter and do not need a Dr. order. Once you have the box, just go to the pharmacy and pick it up...maybe at 1/4 the cost of in the USA. I think to live a decent life there you could expect to divide your cost of living here by 1/2 to 1/3 and have the same level. If you are willing to live simply...less than that. Many people speak english in brazil..but for anything you need officially, expect to know portuguese or have a bi lingual friend with you. I don't know if there are any generalities to living in another country, each place has its own. I found that Brazil is much like USA though.. living higher on the food chain costs more. economics are the same. Anywhere in the world can be dangerous now...violence is growing rapidly. Where I lived in Brazil was always behind huge walls, but I never really felt insecure walking around. I lived inbetween the very rich and the very poor in Porto Alegre..In two minutes I could be standing in front of a senators house or the local gangs hang out. I could see a line of limos with armed guards parked on the street during the day and hear people getting shot at night...all within my little neighborhood. in a two minute walk I could see manicured lawns behind 12 foot electrified fences with 24 hour guards to piles of garbage in the streets hiding places where you might not want to know what was going on. Oh well, this is not about the cost of living..or is it? Right now, I live in the mid west, USA. I am doing it on about $700.00 a month. I think I could scale back a little. But my needs are few. I am not sure everyone could live this way. I do have a house to live in, but no car. I guess it could be the other way around for about the same cost! haha. Well..good luck to anyone thinnking about living cheaply...It is possible.. My best advice is to try to know someone where ever you go, before you go!

  44. Jay May 2, 2010 5:40 PM

    you get what you pay for. 500 bath a month!!! it is a joke. Just came back from thailand and I don't think it is that cheap.. u better do some more research.

  45. Shripna Vreeptan May 2, 2010 6:33 PM

    Can't believe no one has mentioned Harare or any other city in the country. Always sunny, friendly people, live like an absolute king on $0.50 per day.

  46. frank miller May 4, 2010 11:36 AM

    I lived in all parts of asia and i could tell you it is cheaper in U.S.A i live in kentucky now and i bought a mobile home and 1 acre of land it only costs me about 500 bucks to live here a month taxes are cheap and property taxes are a joke i spend 100 buck a year you could have asia the heat,crime,terror i live here were the livin is good and no BLACKS live around this area which makes it even better SCREW ASIA

  47. sean May 5, 2010 6:45 AM

    what about vietnam & india? 2 very, very, very, cheap countries.

  48. John May 6, 2010 6:46 PM

    You must try London or tokyo. They are the cheapest places to live on earth. A gallon of milk costs only $150. There an apartment is way too expensive. So, ya, it's cheap.

  49. catcompare May 6, 2010 6:56 PM

    my friend is from thai and says i could live a good life there for $500, thou she is thai and i am english.

    not sure if i will enjoy it and be safe etc for a year or so, will never know unless i try i suppose..

  50. catcompare May 6, 2010 6:58 PM

    is thailand safe?

  51. Phoemchai S May 8, 2010 5:19 AM

    A very good article. If you speak local language, you will get a better deal.

  52. steve May 8, 2010 5:24 PM

    if you want to go to philippines make sure you have £2,500 for 14 days cheap its not

  53. Curt Pedersen May 8, 2010 10:17 PM

    I just returned from living in Belize. I lived in Belize city. My rent for a two bedroom/1 bath apt. was $320, and another $30 or so for utilities, My food ran about $300 a month and included lots of eating out in restaurants. All in all, I spent around $800 to $1,000 per month for everything, and that includes transportation and going out for entertainment. In a few years after I save up more money, my wife and I are going to move there for retirement. Hint, in the long run it seems cheaper to rent then to buy a house, as the rents are ridiculously cheap and it allows you to move around the country as you like. The people are extremely friendly. You can hire a housegirl that will work 5 days a week, cook two meals, and clean for about $350 a month. In the U.S. it would cost over $2,000. Very easy to fly into Belize city from major U.S. cities, or through Mexico city. They speak english. official language. There is crime, but if you stay in at night, and stay out of the seedier areas, you won't be bothered. It's a far better choice than Asia, as it's cheaper, friendlier, prettier country, speak english, closer to fly to than Asia, and better weather.

  54. GER May 9, 2010 9:49 PM

    i'm from germany, and me and my mother we thought about to move to another country because living in germany is really expensive. well, we've been thinking to move to paraguay or urugay, but we're not sure yet.
    what is the best place to live? where is it cheap? what are the costs going to be? how much money do we really need? and is there a chance to find a job?

  55. Steven May 10, 2010 11:27 PM

    This definitely are the best places for travelers to visit. And the great part is that they are very cheap. Definitely a saver for cash strapped tourists.

  56. Airyk May 11, 2010 4:37 AM

    I live in thailand, outside of the major cities. I have a kitchen, a bedroom, a nice balcony. Not too big but still good and all cooled by and AC. My rent is about 70$ per month. After that I eat out every meal. So thats another 100$ per month. Maybe about 30$ for power for the whole month. then I have 100 left over to party...and 100 is more then enough to go partying for many many days.

  57. johno May 11, 2010 3:50 PM

    THE FACT! You can live anywhere in the world for less than $500 a month.
    THE FACT! To live comfortable you must spend at least $1000 a month.
    THE FACT! What you pay less for one thing you end up paying more for another.
    I have been to every country mentioned here. All were great. Remember if you get sick in Laos you will probably DIE! If you get sick in Costa Rica you will be broke by the time you get well again.
    OH...Don't forget that when you are in a "3rd world" country as an American or European...You are considered wealthy and become a open season target for every scam in the book.
    There is a difference in what you are charged for everything compared to the locals. be ready to argue over everything you purchase.
    In my opinion the best places to live comfortably and safe are Argentina, Malaysia (Langkawi) and Margarita Island Venezeula. I have lived in those places among many others and I find them to be the best .

  58. gh May 14, 2010 2:31 PM


  59. The Observer May 15, 2010 5:26 PM

    Sadly everywhere in the world is expensive if you are Western Caucasion.

  60. Ham May 16, 2010 8:56 AM

    I'm in Phuket thailand at the moment and pay $200 a month which includes room, bath, all expenses, kitchen, pool, wireless and cable tv. I get food at the market which costs me $4 a day. 4 x 30 = $120.

    So far this is a total of $320 a month. You also need a motorbike and I bought a second hand one for 200 bucks. Petrol is $4 for a full tank and lasts me a week.

    I'm not sure of total expense but would not be surprised if I spend less than $500 a month. Coming from Australia where my rent was $1500 a month I've stopped even keeping track of my expenses in Thailand.

  61. Twieseke May 16, 2010 3:59 PM

    How about New Zealand or Northern Marianas, any thoughts?

  62. Bubbs May 16, 2010 10:50 PM

    Its not Damaguete, its Dumaguete...

    Dam or Dum...what the heck's the difference...
    You're either be Dammed or Dumb if you go!!!
    Heh Heh Heh....
    Look for a great place in the good old USA and cut the the whining before you spend all your (Dam) money and have no place to live (Dummy)...

    With all sincerity,

  63. Tracy May 18, 2010 9:26 AM

    I lived in the Philippines a few years ago and what I really love about the country is they will treat you like a goddess or something. Have a foreign blood and your off to celebrity stardom there.

  64. Patrick May 19, 2010 12:14 PM

    Costa Rica one of the cheapest in the world? Pleeeeese. Panama next door is much cheaper and safer so much for this and other surveys

  65. Max White May 19, 2010 6:17 PM

    Philippines is much cheaper than any other places.

  66. guest May 21, 2010 1:24 PM

    this site is crap, the mentioned countries USED to be 20, 30 years ago cheap, now they r very expensive. Take Costa Rica and Belize: the most expensive countries in Central America! close this site!

  67. DudeManGuy May 22, 2010 1:14 PM

    Jesus the comment section here is full of idiots. Not everyone demands a cushy suburbanite lifestyle, and many are quite happy roughing it a little.
    Amazing how many people say it's simply not possible to live off less that 500$ when people do it here in the US all the time.
    If you're travelling with partners to share lodging costs, this pretty much becomes a no brainer.
    There's a big difference between a traveller and tourist. Judging by the comments, I'd say it's mostly tourists here.

    (p.s. browsing a few sites is not "research" and you're completely clueless if you expect to find this sort of stuff conveniently posted ot travel websites, do you find the cheaper apartments in your area published worldwide in foreign language?)

  68. Travler May 23, 2010 1:09 AM

    All noit true all this countries are more expensive then 500 usd in the month. And about Philppines philppines is shit country the Philppines filipinos cant behave aganst foreigners , Filipinos are very stupid peoiple i think self the dont belong to thye human rase the belong to the insect world rase

  69. Ben May 25, 2010 1:04 AM

    Stupid article that is not at all true or fact based by the writer....what dribble.

    Give a cost breakdown, research, and than learn to write.

    You and your editor should both be fired for posting this crap.

  70. USA May 26, 2010 2:19 AM

    USA - lazy boys. It's best place to live if you are not lazy.

  71. Sri Lankan May 27, 2010 6:25 PM

    SRI LANKA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Colombo, I gurantee it would be less than $500! but hey who am I to recomend, you guys should try it yourself.

  72. Going South May 27, 2010 6:50 PM

    La Paz, Baja California is only two hours from the L.A. area by plane. Apartments that rent from $400-$500 and include utilties can be found a block from the beach.

  73. Guesst May 29, 2010 1:45 AM

    Everyone has their own story.

    My best advice is to go out, live it and experience it for yourself.

    Money sucks.

  74. jm May 31, 2010 1:51 AM

    Ive been to all those countrys and a western guys needs more money, also i get robbed regularly in canada also

  75. jfgrissom Jun 1, 2010 2:02 PM

    How come nobody puts their name on these posts?

  76. BarbieRetiree Jun 2, 2010 3:35 PM

    Good gosh folks - head to Mexico - everything is available there - plus great cost of living.

  77. EISH Jun 2, 2010 5:46 PM


  78. Jennifer Jun 3, 2010 12:14 PM

    We always wanted to go to the Philippines but I have a terrible phobia with differnt bugs, especially spiders. Does anyone know how bad it is there? Or that isn't a problem?

  79. novi Jun 3, 2010 10:09 PM

    ooo..why not bali or other places in indonesia...u can live well with $500/month..please put them on the lists

  80. Max Weber Jun 4, 2010 10:49 AM

    Waht are y'all talking about!?! Over 11 million Americans live in the USA for free. In fact, I've heard second hand of Russians and other nationalities moving here to get on the program. Not to mention 41M who get food stamps and other freebies. Sure, not as good as working but if you're a drug dealer or otherwise evade taxes....
    BTW, I went to Belize in '05. $ for $, you're going to do best in a small southern town. Safe. Friendly. Access to great hospitals. And housing is maybe even cheaper.

  81. Jeannette Bowes Jun 5, 2010 11:43 PM

    Costa Rica is VERY expensive!!!! What are you thinking?!
    Panama is one third of the cost(s) of living in CR...
    I think you need to definitely do MORE research, OR ask people who have actually lived in these places on a budget.......

  82. noname Jun 6, 2010 9:20 AM

    I would live in Turkey

  83. kanoinphil Jun 6, 2010 6:04 PM

    I have been lucky enough to travel to many of the countries listed. Several people have posted negative things about the cost of living estimates. It is true you can live off $500 a month in many parts of the world. The people posting you cant, have no idea what they are talking about.

    My girlfriend here in Manila makes 12k php a month(about $266). She is a graduate of one of the top colleges in the Philippines and has a great job. So, if you can not live in the Philippines for $500 a month... she must be dead.

  84. Danny Jun 6, 2010 9:22 PM

    Just got back from Cebu Philippines after 5 months 3 bedroom house on the ocean about $140 a month groceries for 2 people around $200 a month motorcycle rental $70 a cable and utilities month $50 rum around $1.50 a bottle beer around $0.85 very close to beautiful beach very friendly people also close to Moalbol nice resort Lived very comfortable on that amount

  85. guest Jun 8, 2010 3:49 PM

    My brother owned a house in Pangasinan Philippines. He is renting the whole house, 3 bedrooms, big backyard, nice living room and kitchen for P5000.00 to an American church minister. P5000.00 is barely $130.00. I think less than $500.00 a month is duable if you live in the province.

  86. ani Jun 8, 2010 6:40 PM

    u can make a holiday in indonesia(bali included)but not for a longer period.4 foreigners u have 2 pay 10x more for a entree fee,for example at borobodur is very expensive(due to agency).foreign food is getting more difficult to get at the supermarket.holidays ok but the rest forget it.indonesia is getting more expensive even for the locals.

  87. BAD HARRY Jun 8, 2010 7:23 PM

    I have lived in each of these countrys for less than 500us a month, but i like to mug the locals.

  88. ani Jun 8, 2010 7:26 PM

    after 3 years abroad we are back in germany,hurra.we enjoy every minute.when u are away 4 quite along period then u realised it is not all gold that visa run,freedom of speech without fear of getting yourself in trouble when u do so.thailand is not so cheap as some people think,singapore is boring,often they have to build a new tourist attraction.indonesia,for a short and thirsty holiday ok.

  89. El Holandés Jun 8, 2010 10:56 PM

    Medellin, Colombia is the best place to be in Latin America! The climate, the food, the women, the cost of living, the culture, etc., etc.! It has changed a lot in a positive way since 1993, when Pablo Escobar exchanged the temporary for the eternal.

  90. Ladyexpat Jun 8, 2010 11:34 PM

    I have traveled to both Thailand (regularly since 2002) and Cambodia. You would be hard pressed to live in either of these countries for 500.00 per month. I would love to see an apartment in Chiang Mai for 30.00 per month. Double the 500.00 got Thailand and you could probably live a comfortable modest lifestyle.

  91. rityy Jun 9, 2010 1:27 AM

    john.l you are so wrong!! It's not a backpacker lifestyle. If you have any common sense you can live a great life in Thailand - bangkok for the above mentioned costs - 5 star!!

  92. WRD Jun 9, 2010 10:50 AM

    I have lived in CR for four years now and have traveled to the other Latin American countries when i needed to leave CR for my 90 day passport stamp. Yes, all of these countries are beautiful and have some very good areas in which to live, but nothing is 'cheap'. Especially in CR. I live modestly and still cannot afford this economy. The govt' is making it very difficult for expats here and until you have residency, leaving the country every 90 days is expensive. Other Latin American countries mentioned have some very unstable govts and your safety can be an issue. And unless you are a very free spirit and assimilate into the culture, it can be very frustrating to deal with your new enviorment.
    If you have lots of money in the bank and can afford to have someone live with you to take care of everything, living in Central America is not for you!

  93. Fred Johnson Jun 11, 2010 10:29 AM

    I need a placer that's:
    1. Cheap
    2. Warm, not too hot
    3. Plenty of cheap and friendly hookers.
    Any suggestions?

  94. carlos castaneda Jun 12, 2010 1:10 AM

    if this is such a bad piece, why so many comments? Y B grammatical. Beauty of the internet and writers like this is that they DO ignore the best places. All the countries mentioned are always mentioned as part of the marketing hype, and real estate developers. But, we all did read and comment. More peyote with that koolaid?

  95. karima Jun 12, 2010 1:38 PM

    I don't know why people gets upset .
    I have spent 250 uk pounds per month in Thailand, not only it's possible but it is true.
    I have eaten no westerner's food. Taken night train and no dirty bungalow but just very simple. Went scuba diving everyday. So 250 uk pounds for one month with food, accomodation, travel included is not only possible, it's reality.
    I've done it several years.
    (I don't drink, but use to smoke and don't get girls)
    The funniest is that I wasn't especially trying to save money. I love night trains, the atmosphere is genius. minus a night at a hotel. I spent loads on food mainly. I wasnt eating with the thais, just thai food all the time, because it's so good. What I miss the most on my crazy island is sugar. But you feel much better for it at the end. For me what costed me the most in thailand is transportation. Trains, boats, taxis. Beter not change your mind at the last minute. My bungalow had no electricity during the day, only from 6 to 10 pm. It's a humbling time in my life and I miss it the most. Do we, back pack travelers, get more often bitten by moskitos , i believe not. Disconfort? not reallly..If you would have seen my place I dont think you would have thought i was the worse of. I mean who cares to be a bit unconfortable in heaven. Not favourite pillow, a bit hot, matress a bit hard, c'mon. Who cares? Not me. I would wake up and open my door to two beaches separated by land, one with sand , the other with huge dark polished grey stones. What more to ask? Go scuba diving begore breakfast, have a paradise is cheap. It's just true. You can do it for this cheap . I did. I went 8 times to Thailand.

  96. محمد مهدی Jun 13, 2010 6:33 PM

    very nice

  97. Butler Jun 14, 2010 9:39 AM

    No chance. I was in many of these countries within the past 12 months living as cheaply as I could. I can assure you that you would struggle in Thailand. Starve in Costa Rica and die in Belize. The only place you can do it comfortably would be India. Get yourself a beach hut in Goa and live on curry and one beer a day.

    Don't quit your day job just yet and if you go to Belize bring $50 for everyday and you still won't have enough. Trust me I didn't.

  98. Butler Jun 14, 2010 9:41 AM

    Bali is not cheap either. Seriously do some research.

  99. Tom Jun 14, 2010 2:42 PM

    OMFG, who provided you that information, you'll be lucky if you find a chavel for 100 bucks a month in Costa Rica!!! Groceries...jummm 250 per month ok we have 350, gash perhaps...130 a month...who sold you that information...look for living decently and with dignty in Costa Rica you must earn unless 1800 US Dollars a month!!!!

  100. Skip Jun 14, 2010 3:52 PM

    I totally, I'd prefer to expend a year in India or Iran rather than in Costa Rica or Belize, ok let's see:

    Costa Rica budget

    Supermarket goods: 250

    Fruits vegetables: 20

    Car/insurance/loan in a monthly frame: 280

    Rent of a 2 bedrooms apartment, no backyard with a single parking slot, no hot water at all, no furniture or shelves: 360

    Gash or diesel: 130

    You want your kids to go a private school?: add 800

    Wanna pay a gym? 80

    2 mobile phones and home phone: 30

    Internet and cable: 60

    Now, this doesn't include recreative activities, if desirable then add unless: 250+

    Don't say, hey I can affort it! yet, if you want a house in a area where your children won't be invited to smoke pot or get beated by drug dealer kids then you must own unless 5000 us $ for the hook of a mortgage and unless 1000 US $ for month for the payments, since they are private condos, in nice areas.

    University? ok, add 110 per month (very variable)

    One last thing , remember, in Costa Rica the car maintenance may cost you 200 up to 250 every 5000 km, everything is in dollar but 94% of jobs pay in costarican currency, so no gaining if you bring your own dollars.

    Think it 5 times before considering seriously que this site says.

  101. Name: Feb 7, 2016 6:05 PM