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AlanM

Retire to Chiang Rai compared to Chiang Mai ?

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Comments welcome.

Currently I am in South Africa. With the increasing high crime rate here, it is time to consider the rest of my life

Wanting to retire to Thailand mid this year. My initial thought was Chiang Mai, after visiting previously. However, I believe of late, Chiang Mai is becoming more like Bangkok with the hustle and bustle of city life.

I am 65, not in to bars and clubs. Been there, done that.

I have a retirement pension which I need to budget on. Would accommodation and general way of life be cheaper in Chiang Rai than Chiang Mai.

Also, I believe, what I am told, there is more of a Thai culture feel to Chiang Rai

Thanks

Alan

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The OP asked if CR was cheaper than CM, and I too am curious. Any comments, please?

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I think Thsilsnd has had its day. I'm married and <55 but if I had a pension, I would not be here.

I have never liked Chiang Mai. Hot, smoky, landlocked. At least Bangkok is buzzing.

Then you have the politics. These issues as of late are ongoing snd unsettled from.decade/s past and won't be resolved soon.

Immigration procedures are tedious in all but the largest cities.

But hey, if you are lonely and coming for the women, I guess you too can live the dream

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Straight forward answer, Chiang Rai is a much smaller town (Chiang Mai is Thailand's second largest city) and consequently, Yes, Chiang Rai is cheaper than Chiang Mai.

How much cheaper depends on how you plan to live, will you buy or rent your home? how do you spend your time? your money?

The people at the Immigration office in Chiang Rai are an absolute pleasure to deal with, they always have a smile for everyone, I don't have any experience with the Immigration officials in Chiang Mai, but I have heard it's not so pleasant.

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You have to qualify that cheaper.

Yes it is cheaper for many things but for accomodation of Western Style and Condos it can be much more expensive. There is an oversupply of condos in ChiangMai so it is possible to rent a quite liveable condo for 4000 baht but here that would not get you a tiny box in one of the few condos there are here.

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I might suggest Nan - still very Thai but with a small but growing tourist and farang resident population. Great little city, but unfortunately it will end up like Chiang Mai withing 20 years with ASEAN, tourism and the Laos border opening up. It's got everything Thai that CM has - mountains, hilltribes, river, temples (and now an array of coffee shops, boutique hotels, 2 farang restaurants and even a Tesco's!). The downside is that they don't have many if any condos and the property and land prices, although quite inflationary, is not easy to access for outsiders as there doesn't seem to be any estate agencies. Also with 1 small plane a day from BKK, no railway at the moment, there are only cars and long distance buses to get there. They are widening the roads to cope with the influx. But it's worth it.

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Chiang Rai is very small and very quiet, and compared to Chiang Mai is rather primitive.

Western style nightlife is almost nonexistent.

So depending on what you are looking for, you'll either love it or hate it.

Edited by jackflash

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CR is small and remote and not yet developed very much, if people here celebrating a TESCO in town I would wonder how developed the hospital situation is based on western standards: language, equipment, professionality...

Being 65, might be something to consider.

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CR is small and remote and not yet developed very much, if people here celebrating a TESCO in town I would wonder how developed the hospital situation is based on western standards: language, equipment, professionality...

Being 65, might be something to consider.

Actually it is fairly well served. It has two private hospitals of qute fair standard and a public hospital which provides very very good health services within it's means. It is well equiped to handle all routine care and a transfer to Chianmai can be done in 2 hours by ambulance at a cost of 5000 baht if you really think you need it.

Edited by harrry

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