Ever since I arrived in Surat I’ve been harping on about the low cost of living here – the 30 baht lunches, the 50 baht beers, the glorious 10 baht double chocolate ice creams at work. Well I’ve decided to see just how cheap it can be and set myself a challenge. Seeing as I’m on the home straight as far as my contract goes I need to save as much money as I can for a buffer against the three paycheckless months ahead. I need impetus to do this, especially since Em’s away and I want to fritter my pennies away on mindless entertainments, so it’s competition time.
For the next month I’m going to live off 6,000 baht, a budget of 200 baht per day. For those unfamiliar with current exchange rates, that’s about £125 give or take. There are a couple of caveats here – firstly this does not include any rent money as this is provided by my employers. Secondly it does not include winnings from any quizzes I may partake in (my team won the local pub quiz yet again last night, 400 baht each). I will have to pay for utilities, mobile phone charges,, fuel for the motorbike, entertainment and food.
This is absolutely not an exercise in hermetically sealing myself in my room for a month – don’t worry Em, I’m still going to speak to people 🙂 No, I have to lead as normal a life as possible on this budget so socialising is still part of the deal. Obviously I can still socialise while playing the Wii or going to the gym!
I think it should be possible. The only things I spend large amounts of money on are beer, which I’ve more or less quit, and holidays. Seeing as I won’t be going on any trips till mid-October, a trip which this project should be financing as an added incentive, I can’t see where any extra money would go.
So that’s the plan. On the third day at the moment and my spending is currently 475 baht, although that included a phone card and a full tank of gas. The 400 baht from last night’s quiz means I’m really sitting on a total outlay of 75 baht, I can live with that.
So, let’s see how this goes, will try to keep my progress regularly updated here to help keep my eye on the prize. If anyone in the UK wants to try to match my £4 per day plan, be my guest…