Excellent post man.
I too am interested in the cost of living and quality of life.
1. What would a middle class (North American standards) couple with no children have to spend per month on food/lodging/entertainment etc.. if they wanted to "upgrade" and live "well"?
2. What are the biggest issues with living in what is commonly accepted as a third world country?
3. How reliable is basic infrastructure (electricity/cable/internet/roads/public transport - etc...)?
4. How corrupt is law enforcement (a 2+2 poster was caught with some weed and extorted out of $2000 USD in exchange for not getting booked - is this common?).
TIA - I will ask more as I think of new questions.
At the full moon party they have a nice little racket going. If you are caught with drugs you owe a very large fine in cash on the spot, or you go to jail. I beleive its about $2k US and that might be what happened to said poster.
The cops dont get paid much so I'd imagine if you were in some ish you could bribe them...but there really isn't the need for that. If you are coming to cause trouble...go some place else.
I'll own up to it - it was me. I certainly wasn't looking to cause any trouble (especially because in my short experience the Thai people are extremely humble and welcoming people). I was also young and stupid and thought I was safe, and couldn't pass up the chance to buy an ounce of weed for <$5. It was actually in a Songtow (sp?) coming back from a trek in Chaing Mai. The cops pulled us over for a 'routine' spot check, but I have a feeling they were tipped off by the driver (who, ironically, was high as hell on opium at the time). Is that common?
Also - how do you handle the influx of North American, White businessmen who come there with the sole intention of getting some 12 year old Thai boys? I found that the most difficult thing to get over when I was there (again - mostly up North). Just seeing it made my skin crawl, but I'm certainly not one to impose my values while in another county. But I will say it detracted from my overall enjoyment of the trip.
Is it true the STD rate among prostitutes is >90%?
Awesome thread by the way.