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Old 04-03-2011, 01:10 AM   #1
Iao
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Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

This is my story and if anyone wants advice on joining me then let me know.
I’m originally from the UK, London and have been playing poker for around 6 years to varying success but as it was to secondary work never really committed. Then the economic down turn happened I sold business (a night club) and I thought I’d take a couple of years out in a cheap foreign country.

I live on the Cambodian coast in a place called Sihanoukville, about four hours drive from the capital Phnom Peng. It’s a beautiful little spot with 5 beaches and with the Thai border 4 hours drive to the west and Vietnam about 5 hours to the east. It has a vibrant night life, with a number of clubs, beach bars and western and local restaurants (and 3 casinos). The sex trade is a lot less prevalent than Thailand and the place has a mixture of backpackers passing through, holiday makers from Phnom Peng and a large friendly expat community.

So why Cambodia.
• It’s cheap (half the price of Thailand), I stay in a 2 bedroom western style apartment, all mod cons, 24 hour security sea views $340 a month. A one bedroom bedsit in the same building is $120 a month. A meal out varies from $3.50 – about $7 for top end, beer is 50c-$1 a glass.
• Language isn’t a problem most Cambodians in the major cities speak English.
• Visas, unlike Thailand you can extend your visa indefinitely without leaving the country $250 a year.
• Internet, now is fine, i have ˝ a mega bite which is $60 a month and a 3g card for back up should either the internet go down while playing or a power occurs. Power cuts do happen infrequently but all that’s needed is a back up battery or a laptop.
• It’s safe, like any major city anywhere in the world there is crime, just don’t wonder down dark streets at 4am you wouldn’t in New York!
• The people are lovely, not yet obliterated by western values or capitalism.
• The expat community is varied and very friendly to new comers.
• The currency is the Riel but the dollar is more widely used
• No tax
• Live poker is available in casinos and a few low homegames
• The weather is hot from October to June, June to September is the wet season which while still hot it rains to varying degrees.

I think Pro maybe a little strong, I play 3 hours a day mainly in the morning (+7 GMT) and last month 90 hours made me $900, mainly I play SnG. $900 is hefty amount here, waitress earn around $100 a month and western bar managers around $400 a month. In the UK i would have to earn $3000 a month and have a fraction of the life style. I normally finish with poker by 10am and this leaves me the rest of the day to visit the beach, take a boat ride to Island, ride my bike, watch movies, study poker, or just visit friends for a beer.
I have yet to find anyone else out here who is supporting their lifestyle from internet and poker and would either like to find someone who is or encourage someone to come and join and me. I’d be happy to help anyone thinking of making the move and it would be great to have someone to speak poker with, especially if they were at a more advanced level than me
It could be ideal for someone who can make $1-2000 a month but not enough for Pro and a decent western lifestyle, or someone who has to grind silly hours to make a western style wage.
So ask me anything about me, my poker or living in Cambodia

Iao

Last edited by Iao; 04-03-2011 at 01:23 AM.
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:11 AM   #2
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GL
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:16 AM   #3
mas17
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

Quote:
It’s safe, like any major city anywhere in the world there is crime, just don’t wonder down dark streets at 4pm you wouldn’t in New York!
You mean 4am I hope. I hope. :P

Sounds like a great life bro. Few questions.

Was it at all hard for you to give up UK life and move to Cambodia? Friends, family, sentimental value?

How'd you meet your friends in Cambodia?
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:17 AM   #4
IIIII
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

Is 1/2 mgb speed really enough for playing online poker?
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:18 AM   #5
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

Maybe you shouldve started this thread here https://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/92/travel/

Sounds like an awsome place, i was interested in thailand before but the visa thing wasnt looking too fun.

Is online poker legal there?
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:19 AM   #6
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

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The sex trade is a lot less prevalent than Thailand
Count me out
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:22 AM   #7
Iao
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

Yeah I meant 4am

Well in the 4 months i have had 3 friends from England come over and visit and a few more planned as it is a great place to visit. Skype helps me keep in touch with freinds and family as well. I plan to go back at least once a year mayhbe more if the poker is going well. Meeting people isn't a problem most expats own business, bars and restaruants and will happily chat to new comers. There also a few low stake poker nights happening a weekly football game of expats vs locals. I am also engaged to a lovely local girl I met here.
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:26 AM   #8
Iao
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

Is online poker legal in Cambodia, well lets start with it is illegal in Thailand and most sites will block you playing unless you hide your IP. Here they don't so from the sites prespective its ok. The police im not sure but they won't come to your house and look at your hade drive and they don't scan the internet.
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:30 AM   #9
Bluffzorz
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

I dunno I feel like Cambodia is a place where police can easily be bribed. Who's to say someone doesn't pick up on your poker playing and bribe security and follow you.
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:33 AM   #10
IIIII
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

How on earth would anyone find out that you are playing poker online in your home if you want to keep it a secret?
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:33 AM   #11
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

It isnt that safe of a place like you think it is and it isnt a major city altough it grow bigger the last few years its still a small city where the crime rate is huge compared with other city's of this size.

For the rest its indeed a very nice place to travel to if you
dont get involved with the locals to much...so maybe stay away from the casino's there and play in Phnom Phen if you wana play live.

I regulary visit the place and altough its beatyfull i dont have the need to make it my homebase just for the safety reasons and the huge coruption o i forgot to mention the huge amount of drugaddicts.
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:51 AM   #12
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

i was thinking about going to that very city for a few months next year. I'm not sure if i want to get an apartment or hotel for my stay. what's your opinion? do the hotels have stable internet for you to use?

I also heard there's some sort of border dispute with Thailand, do you see any safey issues with this in the future?
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:56 AM   #13
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

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Originally Posted by Iao View Post
• The people are lovely, not yet obliterated by western values or capitalism.
Sweet, the "Nobel Savage" canard.

GL OP.
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Old 04-03-2011, 02:16 AM   #14
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

is polygamy legal in cambodia? I want to buy a large mansion and start a family with 10 wives.
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Old 04-03-2011, 02:49 AM   #15
Iao
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

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It isnt that safe of a place like you think it is and it isnt a major city altough it grow bigger the last few years its still a small city where the crime rate is huge compared with other city's of this size.

For the rest its indeed a very nice place to travel to if you
dont get involved with the locals to much...so maybe stay away from the casino's there and play in Phnom Phen if you wana play live.

I regulary visit the place and altough its beatyfull i dont have the need to make it my homebase just for the safety reasons and the huge coruption o i forgot to mention the huge amount of drugaddicts.
Ziggi I'm not sure where you hung out to see all this problems.

If anyone has only ever lived at home with your mum then its probably not the place for you. I grew up in London and worked in the night club industry so interms of saftey I've downgraded in threat level. My friends have been for 5 years plus without incident.

Of the 3 Casino's, one is attached to a large hotel, and the other is geared ter towards foriegners (having an unwritten no locals policy). The Manager is Korean and organises friendly $1/2 games occasionally.

Coruption is rife but shouldn't effect anyone either on holiday, living here but not owning a bussines. As for drug addicts I'm sure they are here but I haven't found them.

Last edited by Iao; 04-03-2011 at 02:56 AM.
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Old 04-03-2011, 02:52 AM   #16
Iao
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

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Originally Posted by sososoapy View Post
i was thinking about going to that very city for a few months next year. I'm not sure if i want to get an apartment or hotel for my stay. what's your opinion? do the hotels have stable internet for you to use?

I also heard there's some sort of border dispute with Thailand, do you see any safey issues with this in the future?
Hotels will have internet but it may not be stable enough to grind on. As for an apartment it depends how long you were coming for.

The border dispute is to the north away from any civilzation and i can't really
it coming to anything.
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Old 04-03-2011, 02:57 AM   #17
Iao
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

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Is 1/2 mgb speed really enough for playing online poker?
It's plenty, my 3g card is a fraction and will 12 table without a problem. You can't download a movie at the same time
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Old 04-03-2011, 03:08 AM   #18
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

Man that sounds awesome. I wish 1-2K off poker could let me live like a king.
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Old 04-03-2011, 03:15 AM   #19
glenrice1
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

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Originally Posted by Iao View Post

• The people are lovely, not yet obliterated by western values or capitalism.
I'm sure most Cambodians much prefer their grinding poverty to selfish material things like clean water and hot food that evil capitalist countries have.
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Old 04-03-2011, 03:17 AM   #20
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

how big's your roll? can u afford having some losing months?
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Old 04-03-2011, 03:24 AM   #21
jibbercluck
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

sounds awesome... good for you!! how old are you?? dont think youve posted that already....

i lived in thailand for 6-9 months a few years ago - the visa thing was a problem - had to take a trip to the burmese border each time it ran out, wasnt fun and very time consuming...

i was helping to teach diving on koh tao though so the beach life made up for it!!

plenty of people are playing online poker in thailand from what ive heard though - but if cambodia is cheaper then should be worth a shot if anybodys interested!! (unfortunatley not for me though im too old for all of that these days!!)

lol tc
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Old 04-03-2011, 03:50 AM   #22
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

Cambodia? You should try living in Thailand in a sick house with tons of poker friends..

Spoiler:
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Old 04-03-2011, 04:12 AM   #23
zigi
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by Iao View Post
Ziggi I'm not sure where you hung out to see all this problems.

If anyone has only ever lived at home with your mum then its probably not the place for you. I grew up in London and worked in the night club industry so interms of saftey I've downgraded in threat level. My friends have been for 5 years plus without incident.

Of the 3 Casino's, one is attached to a large hotel, and the other is geared ter towards foriegners (having an unwritten no locals policy). The Manager is Korean and organises friendly $1/2 games occasionally.

Coruption is rife but shouldn't effect anyone either on holiday, living here but not owning a bussines. As for drug addicts I'm sure they are here but I haven't found them.
I been visiting the town for over 10 years have friends living there for years so i think i know a little about this city that i saw fastly growing from a village to a city and saw it change to the bad.

It still looks like paradise but not for the people who knew it from the old days.I do understand your new there so before you replie please do some homework.

Since the Russians building bridges from mainland to a tropic island(nice view) the city is not the same anymore its all i say,enjoy your stay and i keep it by an occasional weekend to there when i am in PP because like you say its very beatyfull there(depends what beach you go)

You mention you dont see addicts???? Are you just arrived this week?every motorbiketaxi ask you to buy something(anything)

I know the chickenfarm is almost whipped out but all those girls are addicts and basicly locked up,good some NGO's did fight this for years and thats the reason its almost closed down now.

As for coruption and or crime on tourists i wouldnt wana give food to the ones robbed(stolen) of there monney in geusthouses by the owners or girls or there rented bikes been suddenly stolen(by the owner ofcourse).

Its true this should be moved to the travel forum because i could go on and on.

About 3 years ago a friend of me is killed there by a local who worked for him(smashed his head just for nothing)
As i said before i spended alll toghether alot of time there so i do know what i say but you seems to know it better thats good for me.And i am sure in a short while you will see more and hear more.

The thing is i compare with the past(when you could only reach it by boat from Ko Kong and a drive from PP to there toke ages or by dirtroad from Ko Kong crossing the river few times by little boats where now they build bridges) And it changed for the bad thats all i say and thats what every of your friends who living there for a while will agree with.Its not so long ago that simply a car was not that comon and i am not speaking 10 years back then.Trafficlights and decent roads where non existing....i know the world change fast some places for the good some for the bad and snookyville did for the bad....thats my opinion and so do the people(friends) who still living there and do for many years do feel it,kind of funny you argue with somebody who have the connections and 1 st hand experiences of many many years.

1 thing we agree on is that there some damn nice beaches there.

P.S i forgot to say that since your new there that soon your first rainseason is coming did your friends warned you alredy how funny it is there then?


like you said it is a great place to visit "if you skip the rainseason"

my 1cent

Last edited by zigi; 04-03-2011 at 04:30 AM.
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Old 04-03-2011, 04:29 AM   #24
moki
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

shhhhhhhh, don't ruin the White Man's fantasy... he has found paradise amongst his "noble savages", unblemished by Western culture and capitalism. lolz.

I'm sure his opinion will... evolve... after actually spending more than a vacation in country.
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Old 04-03-2011, 04:43 AM   #25
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Re: Living in Cambodia and turning Pro

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Originally Posted by moki View Post
shhhhhhhh, don't ruin the White Man's fantasy... he has found paradise amongst his "noble savages", unblemished by Western culture and capitalism. lolz.

I'm sure his opinion will... evolve... after actually spending more than a vacation in country.

Damn me why i made this huge post when so little words say it all and way better then i did.
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