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Ok I thought I would create a thread that I really think should be a sticky here.
We need one solid thread that shows the average rent for a 2 bedroom apartment in every country in the world followed by links to sites... I think that would be extremely handy to be able to look up.
I can tell you for Mexico you can rent a 2 bedroom town house in Guadalajara for between 300 and 350 per month. In Toluca, Mexico you can get the same thing for $150 to $200 and in Puerto Vallarta I've rented a 3 bedroom apartment behind walmart for $300 per month. Food cost me between 30 and 60 dollars per month to stock my refridgerator full.
In Korea I had a tiny little closet of an apartment for $1000 per month The prices of grocercies in Korea match those found here in Canada.
In Japan I paid $700 for a crap 2 bedroom apartment. Food was twice or three times the amount here in Canada... the only cheap thing you could eat was ramen noodles...blech.
In Brazil I rented a small 1 bedroom apartment for $700 but I know that I was getting a bad deal because I've seen rents quite a bit cheaper. Brazil the food is very good and is about half the cost of living in Canada.
The Philippines- depending on where you live there are different budgets but to give you a guide- it is generally 4 times cheaper than the US. So, one thousand dollars a month can provide for a comfortable life in which you will be able to afford most things you want. A pretty good apartment can be had for $200-300 a month, If in the countryside, it is even cheaper, you can rent houses for that much.
A brain is a terrible thing to wash!
I have a small one bedroom in Baja, California, Mexico. Its $390 a month and a few hundred yards from the beach.
The food is cheap but sometimes hard on my stomach. Two fish tacos for 8 pesos - less then a dollar. 7 pesos for 5 gallons of drinking water. Auto Insurance - $350 a year. Government health insurance for residents - $250 a year.
http://www.echinacities.com/Cityguide/G ... spx?n=4279
Here's some prices from China. Use http://www.xe.com to do the currency conversion.
In Asia apartments are always small.
In Central China a one room apartment is 120 CNY per month. $17.57 USD
Local's Salary is 700 to 1500 CNY per month. $102.49 to $219.62 USD.
Teachers salary is 2,000 to 3,000 CNY. Foreign ESL teachers earn 6,000 to 8,500 CNY per month.
Food is 4 to 10 CNY per day, 120 to 300 CNY per month. $17.57 to $43.92 USD per month.
New electric bicycle, range 45km, speed 30 kph: 2,200 CNY, $322 USD
New cheap car: 30,000 CNY, $4,392 USD.
New nicer car: 80,000 CNY, $11,713 USD
You can buy as nice a car as you want: Audi A6, Buick Lacrosse, Mercedes, BMW's, VW Passat.
I live in a 110 m2 house, 5 rooms. I have been told that because it has a small yard, and land is very expensive in China, that it costs about 250,000 CNY - $36,600 USD. Apartments here are 150,000 CNY to 200,000 CNY. Beijing and Shanghai are much more expensive - think Manhattan as compared to rural Kansas.
6.83 CNY::1 USD
On a 15 hour work week as an ESL teacher it is possible to save 5,000 to 7,500 per month, 50k to 75k CNY per year. 2 or 3 years and one can buy a place outright, while still eating out and enjoying life. Working in a Big 3 city in China pays much more and if one avoids living like a RockStar then one can save huge sums - 15k to 20k per month, $2k to $3k USD per month, in realised actual real savings. Do that for ONE YEAR and take the money, move to a small city/village, buy a house, get a young virgin bride, and enjoy life.
Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico:
A northern MX city it is close to the USA and thus more expensive. Most people have newer cars and trucks and SUV's. It looks like Los Angeles.
Rent: 2300 MXN per month for a furnished corporate apt. This is very expensive, in the nicest neighborhood in town. $185 USD per month. 1,000 MXN per month is normal for locals, much less if you share.
Food: 30 MXN per day. $2 or $3 USD. Cafes within walking distance, fresh food made to order for 15 or 20 pesos. Like China, I lost weight in Mexico.
Bus: 1 Peso per trip. These busses are not airconditioned.
Gasoline/Petrol: 7 MXN per liter, 2.70 per US gallon. When prices in the US were over 3.50 a gallon in Socal, people were driving to Baja to buy gas and save money.
You must have A/C in Hermosillo. It is the hottest place in the Western Hemisphere, routinely reaching 51.1C or 124F on hot summer days. I thought I knew what heat was until I lived in Hermosillo. Anyone with any money buys a nice, new car, and it will have massively powerful A/C in it.
There are 2 Walmarts, 4 Sorianas (MX Walmart) and 2 Ley's (Food 4 Less). You can buy anything you need or want.
Bottled water 15 MXN for 20 liters.
No one drinks the water in Mexico. Not even the poor locals. Unlike China where one can drink tap water, Mexico this is usually not an option. Tap in Hermosillo is much much better than the rest of Mexico, but you will still get the usual results. In much of Mexico the tap water is intermingled with the sewage runoff, and it smells and tastes like it.
How is the level of racism/racial antipathy/ resentment of a white guy with a (virgin) bride in China/small town there? Because in Thailand it is pretty bad and so it is in Japan/Korea.
Please make your honest assessment of the situation.
A brain is a terrible thing to wash!
A virgin bride? That's something I've never had before... what a concept! How do you go about finding something like this?
In Japan and Korea, at least in my experience, it's pretty much the norm for westerners to be seen with locals because ESL teachers have been flooding in to those countries like crazy. Then again, I didn't stay very long in either place and the foreign girls were usually to shy to speak to me. I spent 80% of my time in Japan in a hall in the subway breakdancing with the local kids....good times!
I had no idea China was so cheap... I think that will be my next destination. What are the job prospects if you are teaching without a degree? I have a good job here in Canada (50k) so I can probably save the necessary funds to enjoy life in China but my first job (and hobby) was teaching ESL for 5 years, I would love to get back into it... I think I will.
For comparison (keep in mind the Canadian dollar is about on par with the American dollar)
Note: [I don't think virgin brides even exist here]
Meal at McD's $8.50, Meal at Moxie's $20,00 + tip
Grocercies for the week: $150 (one person), here at home my family (4 People) spend around $300 to 700 per week (x2 for the high end stores).
Bus Transport: $3.50
Gas: $1.00L (to fill my car it costs me $45)
Average Wage per hour: $8 to $10 (Low) / $15 to $20 (Middle) / $40+ (Upper)
The highest paid are generally tradespeople, doctors, lawyers, police officers, firefighters and nurses
Heat + Hydro + Rent: $700 (extremely low end) / $1300 (town house complex) to $4000 (upper middle class house)
Cost of a new bicycle: $150 to $3000
Cost of an electric bicycle: $500 to $700
Cost of a new electric motorcycle: $750 to $2000
Cost of a new car: $20,000 to $40,000
Cost of a nice car: $80,000 to $300,000
Cost of a new house: $150,000 (low end) / $350,000 (middle class) / $700,000 to $1,169,000 (upper middle)
Small Business (Hot Dog Stand)
Just a side note: It is nearly impossible to start a small business here with all the regulations and paperwork start up costs. You need at least $10,000 in the bank to have a hot dog stand (I have one). It requires you to pass through 4 city inspections, obtain a zoning permit $250, location re-zoning $500 + processing fee $100, small business license $250 to $1000/year, Insurance $500 to $1000/month, rent $500 to $1000/month... You have to file each season with the city for new inspections and the council of adjustment has to decide whether you qualify this year for a license.
The same small business in Mexico, startup cost: $100
In China and Philippines most rural or small town girls are virgins. I am spoiled and I do not think I want to deal with non virgins if I get married. Filipino guys do not marry non virgins as a rule. While not all girls are virgins in most poorer Catholic countries, most are. Some surveys put the number of young virgin women at 85% here in the Philippines.
A brain is a terrible thing to wash!
China is like the USA. Practical, pragmatic, materialistic in the big cities.
Virgin brides are easy to find. My classes are full of 700 girls, ages 14-17, and 98% or more are virgins. It is trivially easy to find a virgin bride here.
1) Get your visa so that you can stay in country. However this is done for you.
2) Rent a house or nice apartment in a smaller city, 50,000 or fewer. Keep in mind that all cities in China are growing as the young abandon the fields for the excitement of City Life. These cities will be 20-30km from a city of 200k to 500k and 200+km to a mega city of 2M or more.
3) Hang out, eat the food, learn Chinese. There are enough poor girls who could not afford school, or cellphone salesgirls, or retail clerks, or graduating HS Seniors, or girls returning after Uni in a slow job market.
4) Date for a few months and get married. Your dowry will be 9,999 CNY or some multiple of 9, very lucky for weddings. Either mom and dad will live with you OR you pay them off with a dowry gift. Your choice.
In China school is mandatory and paid for by the state up to age 14, then the parents need to pay to have kids go to school, if the kids scored high enough on tests. Thus those who cannot go to school stay at home, work or are stuck in the village working the fields.
What you have heard about Chinese women after they marry is true. If you are not prepared to be the figurative, financial, emotional, titular and spiritual leader of the house, you will be nagged to death. Set the grounds rules early and often, in stone. Be prepared to walk. Keep in mind that they can/will stop you from leaving if you try to bolt from your children in China.
And test, test, test.
Fuzz's post on CDN costs got me laughing.
Ready for L.A.? Here goes:
UNITED STATES: San Fernando Valley
Meal at Carl's Jr. $10.50, Meal at Woodranch Grill $45,00 + tip
Groceries for the week: $75 (one person)
Bus Transport: $1.75, but normal people don't ride the bus. If you live in LA get a car or don't come.
Average Wage per hour: $13 to $16 (Low) / $16 to $30 (Middle) / $40+ (Upper)
You need $80k a year to live in Los Angeles.
Heat + Elect +Cable+Gas+Rent: $1200 (extremely low end) / $2200 (avg apartment) to $infinity (any beach front property or Hollywood)
Cost of a new bicycle: $750 to $3000. No one rides except once a week on tuesday evenings.
Cost of an electric bicycle: $who cares? No one rides except once a week on tuesday evenings.
Cost of a new electric motorcycle: $who cares? No one uses these in LA and you will die in traffic.
Cost of a new car: $25,000 to $50,000
Cost of a nice car: $80,000 to $300,000
Cost of a new house: $375,000 (low end) / $475,000 (middle class) / $700,000 to $1,169,000 (middle class) / $1,169,000 to $20,000,000 (upper middle class and up)
But I mean when you go out with her and she is seen with a White Devil, will people talk bad about her? Will the mixed kids be treated badly? Money can only cover racial problems partially, not completely. How is the general population treating such couples? In Thailand, most good girls will not be caught dead walking down the street with you. Scornful looks, mocking smirks are a daily occurence.
Can they love a Foreign Devil? Or is it just for money?
and what do you mean you can't bolt out on your kids? You mean they won't let you go on vacation alone?
A brain is a terrible thing to wash!
Chinese women tend to be pragmatic, materialistic, and controlling. Plus men and women in China tend to be emotionally stunted unless they have been exposed to a good education and a decent social environment. The reality is most Chinese people would look down on a woman marrying a foreigner unless of course you're talking about the lower working class type people. From what I gather from the posts on here most expats seem to be dating the blue collar or lower-middle class women. I have no experience with these types but I assume there's probably less scrutiny about what they do in daily life. I imagine the family probably wouldn't like it much because they expect to be taken care of in old age and there's this rather justified belief that if their children marry a foreigner it's likely the "foreign" son or daughter in law won't give two shits about them.
For the middle/upper middle class Chinese it's definitely taboo in a lot of ways unless the foreigner in a substantial occupation like business owner, doctor, lawyer etc.. The attitude is similar to Thais in some ways which isn't surprising since the middle/upper middle class in Thailand is made up of people from a Chinese-Thai background.
No. I mean that if you have children with a woman in China, and you try to flee the country, if she figures out what you are doing, you can be stopped from leaving, prevented from going to another country, kept inside China, to fulfill your obligation.
You get your g/f pregnant, she tells you, you don't want the child, you have a fight over it and break up.
You then try to go to HK or another country and she has contacted the PSB (Public Safety Bureau at the local city police station) to prevent you from abandoning your obligation. China computerised its visa operations during the past 3 years, it is completely modern with a centralised data base so that provinces can see what is happening in other provinces. This is new and it used to be that you could screw up in one province and then move on to another and start afresh.
Or you become a Playboy and begin to work your way through the local talent, alluding that you will marry all the fine hot young things. Do this enough and you will come to the attention of the local authorities and get kicked out of the country for "not upholding the character of Chinese young people. Being a Player here is not as easy as in other more degenerated countries. ESL teachers who have done this and posted blogs about it have been rounded up and deported summarily and quickly.
China is a country like Europe or Russia or America in that it has a similar attitude towards time, money, work and food. It has cold, cold winters and people who did not save money and food for winter starved to death. This has happened not only within living memory but within the past 20 years. Thus China is NOT like warmer tropical nations like Thailand or RP or Malaysia where the land will always provide and there is so much abundance that people do not worry about food as there are 2 or more harvests per year. Thus China has a similar attitude of the ant who stores food all year in preparation for a long, cold winter, compared to the grasshopper in the RP that parties all summer long without a care.
In parts of Western and Northern China it reaches -40C in winter. In effect, parts of Northern China are Siberia more or less
If you have a job teaching English, even better at a University in a small city, you will have social standing and be a desirable mate. If you bring outside assets to the table, even better.