If you're interested in living abroad for any reason or any length of time - from becoming an expat to volunteering or teaching English for a few months - this is the forum to discuss it. Learn about TEFL, Peace Corps, international volunteer organizations and corporate opportunities. Discuss visas, logistics of moving overseas and how to work 'under the table'.

1 Year, where would you live?

Markus

User avatar
Squat Toilet Professional
 
Posts: 954
Joined: May 27th, 2001
Location: Vancouver, Canada

Share on Orkut

Tags: liveabroad livecheap
  • Added on: November 23rd, 2007
I've recently started thinking about how to realize a project of mine and it involves spending roughly a year living without an incoming income. It occurred to me that it would be silly to try to save up enough money to pursue my goal while living here in Vancouver after considering the relatively high cost of living.

What I'm thinking is that since I can work on this project from pretty much anywhere in the world, and since I've always wanted to spend some time living abroad, then I might as well go find a cheap place to live so that $10,000+ savings could sustain me for a year rather than the 5 or 6 months it would last in my current situation.

I've done a bit of research and have a few places in mind already, but thought I'd open it up to the community to see if any suggestions jump out at me. India, SE Asia, and Eastern Europe all appeal to me and have (what I imagine to be) lower costs of living. I'd love to be able to pay under $300 (CAD/USD) per month for an apartment and a nice bonus would be easy long term visas for someone who won't be working in the country. I could always claim an income from web design if need be.

So, if you were looking to live on the cheap for a year, where would it be and why would you choose that city?

I'm not looking for other people to do my research for me, just wondering if there are any little gems of towns that BnA'ers dream about spending some time in.

Eppyboy

User avatar
Sells Travel by the Gram
 
Posts: 1911
Joined: June 20th, 2005

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 23rd, 2007
notwithstanding the situation of long term visa, i'd say vietnam...it is really damn cheap...

How small are you talking about? Luang Prabang, Laos is probably cheap to live in but I figure after a while I would definitely get bored...

There are several cities in thailand, i.e. chiang mai, bangkok that would probably work...

I am unfamiliar with india or eastern europe...
Josh has taken his much needed vacation and will be going on another Christmas to New Years 2011/2012. However, before he does read about his past trips http://blogs.bootsnall.com/eppyboy

Sophie9

User avatar
Knows What a Schengen Visa Is
 
Posts: 364
Joined: January 4th, 2007

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 23rd, 2007
I can't vote for any cheap place in particular, but I will say that eastern Europe isn't necessarily cheap. Particularly housing. And most of eastern Europe has joined the EU. You can't just pack up and move to an EU country, there are immigration laws in place.

Almost all of Europe now belongs to the EU with the exceptions of Belarus Eek the states of the former Yugoslavia, Georgia and the Ukraine. And of course Russia....

Really the only cheap things in eastern Europe are labor and local food. Utility costs are going up up up. Housing is expensive. Although in a comparative sense Hungary is probably cheaper than Italy, 1 year in eastern Europe on $10,000 would be a very very frugal existance. That's less than $1,000 a month.

If I were looking for a cheap place it wouldn't be anywhere in Europe.

2wanderers

User avatar
Extra Pages in Passport
 
Posts: 3620
Joined: August 20th, 2003
Location: Edmonton, Canada

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 23rd, 2007
Well, Turkey would be my first choice. If you get away from Istanbul, and the Med and Aegean coasts, it should be possible, but it would be pretty basic. (We're talking $10k after airfare, right?) Turns out the other countries that I think I'd like to spend a whole year in are actually more expensive than Canada, so they won't do.

I lack personal experience, but parts of S. and C. America would probably fit the bill. I think spending a year in one of the Andean countries would be appealing, and probably fit the budget.

vinorosso

User avatar
Armchair Traveler
 
Posts: 29
Joined: March 10th, 2006

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 24th, 2007
Wow, what a great question. I would say somewhere in S. America -- never been and have been aching to go!

_________________________________________________
blogging myself to italy*my blog

Markus

User avatar
Squat Toilet Professional
 
Posts: 954
Joined: May 27th, 2001
Location: Vancouver, Canada

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 26th, 2007
@Eppyboy, size isn't really that much of a concern. If I could easily travel to a nearby town with a wifi connection once a week then I'd be happy to entertain even the smallest village.

As for boredom, I figure I can last 3-4 months in relative stasis before moving on to someplace else.

@Sophie9, I'm not really sure where I got the idea that Eastern Europe was inexpensive. That was just thrown down as an idea as I was typing.

Personally, I'm leaning towards Indonesia so that I have access to good surf but it's interesting to see what others would choose.

Anyone else?

girlgoesglobal

User avatar
Knows What a Schengen Visa Is
 
Posts: 432
Joined: April 27th, 2007

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 27th, 2007
For me, India...hands down. So many cultures, beliefs, and ways to cook curry! So many colors, sounds, smells and how can you argue with Bollywood? Thumbs Up
http://girlgoesglobal.com is back!

WT

User avatar
Street Food Connoisseur
 
Posts: 706
Joined: February 19th, 2006
Location: 3 years into an open ended world tour as a family

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 27th, 2007
You could live on that quite well in a small village in Andalucia Spain. We can see the ocean ( and mountains) out our window, but I do not know if there is surfing there or not.

You can ski and go to the beach all in the same day, the people are great and it is gorgeous and warm in the winter.

This is our second winter here and it works for us. Wink
http://www.soultravelers3.com

I am always doing that
which I can not do,
in order that
I may learn how to do it.
PABLO PICASSO

Brambles24601

User avatar
Street Food Connoisseur
 
Posts: 565
Joined: May 2nd, 2006

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 27th, 2007
My first though IS in Eastern Europe. We seem to forget that Eastern Europe is much much larger than the new EU member states. You can enjoy things there for that much money. Here are some suggestions, I will list some costs I remember and some things about visas that I have observed, grated I have spent as little a week in most of these places, less in some.

Sarajevo, BiH.
Ice cream cone to go from the most famous/popular store: $0.30
Fresh organic local cantaloupe in season: $0.20
Ticket to Mostar (3.5 hours away): $10
-Visas are not required for tourists and they don't stamp or even check on entry. You might want to get a visa for a longer stay though, as you are legally obliged to register with the police nearest to your hotel/place of residence.
Mountain skiing places are directly nearby the Adriatic is a few hours away. Budapest, Zagreb and Belgrade among others are only a night bus/train ride way.
Why? The rich local culture and harmonies recently abrupted by one more war. With many scars yet to heal emotions are raw and Bosnia is, at least for me, one of the most sensual places. Wether it be sipping a fresh warm vegetable soup on the balcony of a Soviet housing block surrounded by crisp mountain air, or it be watching the crimson sunset over the Adriatic Sea, BiH alway seems natural to me.

Kiev, UA.
Subway ride: $0.20
Fast food pastries (200g): $1.00
Beer (0.5 L) from Kisok: $1.00
-Immigration ladies are mean, there is a tourist visa waiver.
A beautiful, green city. The rents in the city aren't cheap at all, but there is very good public transportation to the places on the edge of town.
Why? Kiev is the city of parks and leisure. There are countless site and many people in no hurry. Yet it is a huge city with much to offer. Kiev is honestly torn between East and West, the new and the not yet forgotten.

Chisinau, MD.
Bus ride: $0.15
Imported water (the local stuff ain't good) $2.00
Cigs: $1.00
Bottle of amazing local wine: $1.50
Private Double 2-Star Hotel Room: $20
-Tourist visa waiver to copy Ukraine. High tech wireless laptops used for strict control on the trains: they seem to take it seriously indeed.
It is one of the most empty countries in Europe (parts of it will make a North American feel right at home, it looks like Montana...). It is the poorest country in Europe too, so costs are very very low, especially outside the city.
Why? Its a nothing country with much to offer: no one seems to ever know that it even IS a country much less know where it is located. It is a quirky place, the odd-ball even of the European Soviet family. In my opinion, Moldova is about awkwardness and the other way of doing things.

Berlin, D.
Fresh Roll: $0.12
Beer in store (0.5L x 24): $14.00
Haribo Candy (300 grams): $1.00
For $10,000 you could squeeze by decently even in Germany.
A room in a shared apartment in Berlin is easily to be had for 200 Euro (even less if you seek it out throughly), and food costs are low. You can make it if you have to on 400 Euro a month. 400*12 Euro = 7250 US(/CA)D$ + Airfare.
Visas can be problematic (well, its hit and miss) but with the Germans it never hurts to ask nicely, show that you have enough money, explain why you are there and they may just give you one like that.
Why? Berlin is a funny place, its where the ultra-chic Northern European and the Capitalism?-that-looks-like-fun-to-try former USSR meet up with some of the biggest socialist and anarchist idealists of Europe. There is always plenty going on and more interesting souls to meet. The history never stops either. Plus you can reach places as far away as Portugal and Athens for a $40 return flight.

Also what about Africa?

Cairo, EG.
Private hotel room (two stars) inc. wifi: $5.00
Cigs: $0.50
Pita per/peice: $0.02
Falafel Sandwich: $0.20
Bus/subway ride: $0.20
Beer 0.5L: $1.20
You could live off $10,000 over a year staying in a hotel and eating at restaurants. Also a plus is that Cairo is cheap to get to relatively to southern or western Africa (flights from Chicago go for $700).
Visas: not sure about long term, but I presume it is more or less a matter of just proving you have money and buying one, like the tourist visa (which costs $15).
Why? The people are some of the kindest in the world. Some try to extort you but most are really just caring. There are always new neighborhoods to explore and long conversations to be had.

So many more places... even here in Milwaukee it would be possible to live decently off $10,000/year, if you shared an apartment. (Sorry, this was too much fun and I went a bit overboard.)

Sophie9

User avatar
Knows What a Schengen Visa Is
 
Posts: 364
Joined: January 4th, 2007

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 27th, 2007
quote:
Originally posted by Brambles24601:
My first though IS in Eastern Europe. We seem to forget that Eastern Europe is much much larger than the new EU member states.


I would dispute that. There is very little of eastern Europe that has not been annexed by the EU. Last year they also took in Romania and Bulgaria.

Moldova is one of the poorest countries in the world, usually coming in down the bottom of the list with west Africa. Russia is full of Moldovans because they find it impossible to survive in their own country. Moldova has almost no economy, a near non-existant health care 'system', and almost no infrastructure. Moldova would not be a good choice for an American looking for an escape.

May I remind you that Berlin is in Germany and that Germany is not only an EU member, but a Shengen country?

The Ukraine also has high hopes of joining the EU as soon as possible. I think they will succeed. And right now it's not an altogether stable political environment. Housing in Kiev is expensive.

The OP was looking for a place to live for a year cheaply, not visit for a week.

Of all the things you mentioned, only Croatia might be a go.

KateL57

User avatar
Vagabonder
 
Posts: 1895
Joined: August 3rd, 2005

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 28th, 2007
quote:
Originally posted by Brambles24601:
We seem to forget that Eastern Europe is much much larger than the new EU member states.


I agree and think this is important to remember (okay, maybe I would remove the "much much" but Europe is larger than the EU). I would hate to think of a time when if a European country is not in the EU, people talk about it as if it is not in Europe.

Different people like to live in different places, and while I would disagree with someone who said Sarajevo is not a place they'd want to live, that's their prerogative. But although Bosnia is not in the EU, it is definitely part of Europe.

I would concur that Sarajevo is cheap and a great place - it is where I feel most at home in Europe. I don't know if I'd automatically recommend to anyone to live there for a year...it is fairly far from other cities (and no cheap airlines go there yet) and I knew several foreigners who found it too small. But I liked it a lot and it can be very affordable.

I haven't been to Moldova, but I know a Fulbright scholar who has been there six times and likes it a lot. I wouldn't say that a poor economy makes a place a poor choice if you have money saved: in some or many cases, things are cheaper because of that poor economy.

As above I don't know about Moldova and agree it is maybe not a first choice for somewhere to live for a year, but I disagree strongly with the notion that a "poor country" is necessarily a bad place to be.
Make cay, not war - Kesmen

Comenius

User avatar
Lost in Place
 
Posts: 94
Joined: October 10th, 2004

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 28th, 2007
I'd throw my votes into one of the smaller countries in South East Asia.

I've been to Laos and Cambodia and could easily see living there for a year. I've heard great things about Vietnam too. All of them have a lot to offer in local attractions, interesting food and culture, and of course great people.

The cost of living in these places is very cheap, and being close to Bangkok you can arrange cheap flights to just about anywhere should the travel itch need a scratch from time to time. Smile

Brambles24601

User avatar
Street Food Connoisseur
 
Posts: 565
Joined: May 2nd, 2006

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 28th, 2007
quote:
Originally posted by Sophie9:
I would dispute that. There is very little of eastern Europe that has not been annexed by the EU. Last year they also took in Romania and Bulgaria.


Yes but that still leaves Eastern Russia, Moldova, Ukraine, Belarus and a little bit of the Balkans. While this isn't very many countries, it is a huge land mass that I would approximate is half of the European part of the ex-USSR

quote:
Originally posted by Sophie9:
Moldova is one of the poorest countries in the world, usually coming in down the bottom of the list with west Africa. Russia is full of Moldovans because they find it impossible to survive in their own country. Moldova has almost no economy, a near non-existant health care 'system', and almost no infrastructure. Moldova would not be a good choice for an American looking for an escape.

You have a point: the unstableness and poverty in Moldova is similar to that in some parts of the US, so it would not be a good escape for an American. Our dear friend, Markus, appears to be a Canuck and they are more advanced than that up there, so it would be an escape (not that he said he was looking for an escape per say). Moldova is a fine place to live if you like weird things and can deal with people living in extreme rural poverty.

quote:
Originally posted by Sophie9:
May I remind you that Berlin is in Germany and that Germany is not only an EU member, but a Shengen country?

Yes. I live there. I noticed that. Also from the 1st of January many other countries in the EU will be Schengen such as the Baltics, Poland, Hungry, Czeck and Slovak Republics... And your point is...?

quote:
Originally posted by Sophie9:
The Ukraine also has high hopes of joining the EU as soon as possible. I think they will succeed. And right now it's not an altogether stable political environment. Housing in Kiev is expensive.

Yes Ukraine joining the EU is all well and good until the Russians turn off the energy that heats Ukraine in winter because the Ukrainians are getting to Western with their foreign policy. I love Ukraine but they are ways from the EU yet. Housing in Kiev is expensive but he can find a place further out on the metro line for sure.

quote:
Originally posted by Sophie9:
The OP was looking for a place to live for a year cheaply, not visit for a week.

Of all the things you mentioned, only Croatia might be a go.


Yes, I have visited these places for a week, but they would make my short list as far as live for a year. Anyhow, if you end up in the wrong place you can always move.

I never mentioned Croatia. It is very expensive these days.

Brambles24601

User avatar
Street Food Connoisseur
 
Posts: 565
Joined: May 2nd, 2006

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: November 28th, 2007
BTW, I found this enlightening information about Europe: non-EU eastern Europe is a larger land mass than the entire EU put together.

The EU is 4324287 KM2.
European Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Molodva, Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia, Montenegro, FYROM and Albania put together are 5069091 KM2. (We could also add European Turkey, Switzerland and Norway to that...) The EU isn't that much of Europe. See?

folecr

Lost in Place
 
Posts: 89
Joined: August 28th, 2007

Share on Orkut

  • Added on: October 5th, 2008
$10000. hmmmm ...

I'm originally from Bangalore, India.
You should be able to easily survive a year in India. If you're in a big city like Bangalore/Delhi/Bombay you can spend way more than $10000 for a party lifestyle. But I can easily see you getting by on half the amount. Especially if you are willing to share accomodation.
The above three cities in particular have a large non-native (but Indian, ie non-native to the city) population so you should be able to easily find English-speaking roommates. This has the very, very nice advantage that you'll know someone who knows where to get stuff cheap, negotiate rents or whatever. Also, given that a lot of people move to the big cities right after school you'll be able to find someone who has the time/inclination to travel a lot.

If non-exotic locales appeal to you, you might consider living in a small town in the US/Canada. $10000 should be enough to live in a college town in Utah (mountains) or northern Ohio (lakes) for a year.


Next

Return to Living Abroad

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

PLEASE NOTE: Your original BootsnAll Boards Member login still works by logging in below on the Boards.
We have a new BootsnAll Account that you will start seeing around the BootsnAll Travel Network. This new login is not yet linked to your current Boards Account. In the meantime, you will need to sign up (for a BootsnAll Account) to use Account features like Indie ™ , Traveler Profiles etc.

Quick Links

Community Activity

Statistics for the last 7 days

New posts:
0
Newest Member:
Stephen


Indie - Multi Country Flight Finder
Round the World Travelers


Join BootsnAll on Facebook

1 (503) 528-1005

© 2018 BootsnAll Travel Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.