Working in Thailand

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Working in Thailand is an easy next step for many seduced by the country’s sunny shores and even warmer cultural climate. While employment opportunities are more plentiful in the cosmopolitan centre of Bangkok, many expats opt to pursue work in the surrounding countryside and in the southern island regions in order to take advantage of the nation’s natural aesthetic and laid back style of living.
PADI certifiend scuba instructor in Thailand
As of late, the current Prime Minister has placed a large emphasis on developing international business and trade agreements in an attempt to create a fertile environment for the import/export sector. The automotive industry has also experienced recent growth, and as always, the demand for English speakers in the goods and services sector increases as does the need to cater to a more globalised economy.

In general, well paid expat positions are given to employees hired from overseas or who have relocated to Thailand at the request of their current employment. Expats hired from within Thailand have a much lower salary.

Teaching English remains the most common type of work available to expats, and the pathways to employment are easily navigated and lucrative relative to a normal local income. It’s possible to find teaching positions online if you’re already licensed, otherwise, finding employment in this field once in Thailand is not difficult. Positions in international schools render larger salaries than those in simple English language schools.

Though opportunity for expat employment abounds in this sector, it is not the only option for those considering moving to Thailand.

Temporary positions as business salespersons promoting Thai products in English at conventions or similar events are also a great source of income. These positions are primarily attained through networking, so be sure to perfect your image and speak to as many people as possible at appropriate events. Companies are also known to advertise in the Bangkok Post and The Nation, Thailand’s two daily English speaking newspapers.

Thai companies only rarely hire expats searching for formal professional positions as accountants, engineers, lawyers, etc., thus it’s best to approach multi-national corporations if interested in pursuing employment in these fields. Bangkok plays host to a variety of large international companies, like Siemens, IBM, HP, Price Waterhouse and many petrol related businesses. Take care to negotiate an expat package in your home country’s currency if solidifying one of these jobs.

Expat jobs outside of Bangkok usually relate to the tourism industry in some form. If you have a PADI dive certification there’s a host of dive shops and "live aboards" that work from the many islands on Thailand’s coral rich southern coasts. Otherwise, a multitude of service positions are available and often will not require a work permit.

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