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Cheapest Countries on the Earth

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Cheapest Countries on the Earth

Postby rudder » Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:21 pm

So, what are some of the cheapest countries on earth? I'm talking about the cost of living per month in USD including food and lodging. Give some examples of the cost.

South America- I think Bolivia is the cheapest country? Is this true?

Africa-

Asia-

India:
Dorm beds as low as $1.05
All you can eat meals as low as $1.00

Went out for breakfast- 4 people, bill came out to 65 cents!!

Train ticket was 14 cents. I changed my mind to take the bus instead, didn't even bother to wait in line to get a refund on the train ticket (local, about 20 minutes).

Your own hotel room just 10 minute walk from the main drag in Bangalore-- (one of the top 3 cities in India), just $4.50

Split a room with someone else pay just $2-3.

Pay $13 for a meal, and you are getting high luxury in an upscale setting.

Mosquito repellent, just 20 cents (decent sized tube).

Of course, lots of imported stuff and other things are more expensive. But i remember agonizing over 7 dollars-- as that was a lot of money and a big ripoff!!

Met some westerners (especially Israelis) living VERY cheaply-- and bargaining hard for everything.



Middle East-

Europe-
Last edited by rudder on Tue Sep 24, 2013 11:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby zacb » Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:30 pm

Bolivia is close, but Paraguay tops. I imagine in some areas it varies city by city, so look for special situations. For Africa, probably Zimbabwe or places near the horn of Africa. Philippines, India, Thailand, Russia (outside Moscow),Bangladesh, some of the stans (not Pakistan thought), are the best of Asia. Eastern Euro countries, and Germany for Europe (especially Berlin). Most of the Mideast is inexpensive Syria( although cost of transporting things may be a problem.), Iraq, Omen, not sure about the others (UAE and Saudi Arabia are expensive). Guatemala and Mexico are inexpensive in some areas, but with Guatemala you may need to serve in their military, and their individual tax rate (7 percent) may not be there forever. I have thought about Guatemala and Paraguay hard. You could also check numbeo.com .
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Postby Cornfed » Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:05 pm

What people should realize is that there is no really really cheap place, because you have internationally traded items you need to pay for. You need emergency medical insurance in case you get hit by a car or whatever. You have visa, immigration and associated costs. You will crave Western foods and amenities every now and then. You would want about $1k a month wherever you live.
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Postby zacb » Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:55 pm

Cornfed wrote:What people should realize is that there is no really really cheap place, because you have internationally traded items you need to pay for. You need emergency medical insurance in case you get hit by a car or whatever. You have visa, immigration and associated costs. You will crave Western foods and amenities every now and then. You would want about $1k a month wherever you live.


That is true. The base cost at a minimum is around 500-600 a month. But if you can pull off a western style job abroad,then you should be set.
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Postby rudder » Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:06 pm

zacb wrote:Bolivia is close, but Paraguay tops. I imagine in some areas it varies city by city, so look for special situations. For Africa, probably Zimbabwe or places near the horn of Africa. Philippines, India, Thailand, Russia (outside Moscow),Bangladesh, some of the stans (not Pakistan thought), are the best of Asia. Eastern Euro countries, and Germany for Europe (especially Berlin). Most of the Mideast is inexpensive Syria( although cost of transporting things may be a problem.), Iraq, Omen, not sure about the others (UAE and Saudi Arabia are expensive). Guatemala and Mexico are inexpensive in some areas, but with Guatemala you may need to serve in their military, and their individual tax rate (7 percent) may not be there forever. I have thought about Guatemala and Paraguay hard. You could also check numbeo.com .


Is Paraguay really cheaper? When I was looking at doing the Peace Corps, I thought I read something that Paraguay was the second poorest nation in South America after Bolivia. I guess the difference then is that although Bolivia may be the poorest, it doesn't necessarily have the cheaper cost of living.
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Postby zacb » Sat Sep 21, 2013 1:07 am

I think for rent, Paraguay is by far cheaper, but for other things, Bolivia is. Paraguay has a cheaper income tax, so if that helps.
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Postby rudder » Sat Sep 21, 2013 4:43 am

The problem with Paraguay though is that there are basically only two cities in the whole country. I'd love to live in the northern Chaco Boreal region of Paraguay, but I'd have to live in some town of like 300 Guarani speakers or in a freakin Mennonite colony. (Who are the Mennonites anyway? And what makes them so capable of just going to random corners of the globe and setting up shop in their own little bubble?) Has anyone else wondered this? They're like mystical gnomes that exist just outside our reality.

If there was a decent-sized city there in the north of Paraguay, then I'd definitely move there. Asuncion and Ciudad del Este are just too wet for my liking.

Back on topic, How about Asia? Couldn't you live in rural Laos or southern Phillipinnes for like $20 per month or something?

One other caveat is that the cheap place needs to have reliable internet access. Otherwise I probably would go live out in the middle of nowhere in northern Paraguay.
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Postby zacb » Sat Sep 21, 2013 5:19 am

rudder wrote:The problem with Paraguay though is that there are basically only two cities in the whole country. I'd love to live in the northern Chaco Boreal region of Paraguay, but I'd have to live in some town of like 300 Guarani speakers or in a freakin Mennonite colony. (Who are the Mennonites anyway? And what makes them so capable of just going to random corners of the globe and setting up shop in their own little bubble?) Has anyone else wondered this? They're like mystical gnomes that exist just outside our reality.

If there was a decent-sized city there in the north of Paraguay, then I'd definitely move there. Asuncion and Ciudad del Este are just too wet for my liking.

Back on topic, How about Asia? Couldn't you live in rural Laos or southern Phillipinnes for like $20 per month or something?

One other caveat is that the cheap place needs to have reliable internet access. Otherwise I probably would go live out in the middle of nowhere in northern Paraguay.


Not sure about Laos, but you can live in Southern Philippines for 500 a month, and that area is growing quite fast.
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Re: Cheapest Countries on the Earth

Postby Teal Lantern » Sat Sep 21, 2013 8:06 am

rudder wrote:So, what are some of the cheapest countries on earth? I'm talking about the cost of living per month in USD including food and lodging. Give some examples of the cost.


This is really going to depend on to what degree you're trying to live like a local.
Fast internet is cheap in some places, expensive in others.
Same with cigarettes or living space above a certain size.
In some countries, a car engine (or dwelling) above a certain displacement incurs a luxury tax. :shock:

general living: General purchasing power parity by country
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Purchasing_power_parity

specific items: Submitted by individuals
http://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/

Currency Converter
http://www.xe.com/

edit: One caveat. The numbers you get will be useful only if the country doesn't engage in the fuckery of charging locals one price and visitors a (much) higher price. :twisted:
Last edited by Teal Lantern on Sat Sep 21, 2013 7:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Ghost » Sat Sep 21, 2013 8:42 am

China is pretty cheap. I'm in a small city in the northeast. I live on about $400-$500 a month, and that includes splurging on some things, like fast food. The cost can vary though. I'm an ESL teacher, so I get my apartment rent-free, for example.
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Postby anamericaninbangkok » Sun Sep 22, 2013 12:18 pm

I'm currently researching cheap places in Africa, with a conflict or humanitarian crisis, preferably near the beach. I really only want to stay no more than a month or two @ $100-$125 per day. Any ideas?

Before Africa, these places on my list:

First - Myanmar - I need to finish up a couple things here and plan on going in November.

Then, either Afghanistan or Pakistan, but neither of these places excites me and I'd prefer to go to India but...at a later time. Africa comes first.

So...on the list in Africa:

DRC
Somalia
Sudan / S. Sudan
Eritrea
Angola

Although these places are poor, they're not necessarily cheap. Herein lies my dilemma. A month at $125 a day = $3750 + airfare, visas, etc. So I'm looking at $4500-$5000 minimum. Also, while I have ample contacts in Asia, in Africa I only have 2 or 3 and I'm not sure if they can assist me as one is in S. Africa, another is in Tanzania, and the last is in Namibia. So I'm pretty much on my own which means I will need a fixer. This adds to the budget...

Not interested in Asia or South America at this time.
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Postby anamericaninbangkok » Mon Sep 23, 2013 8:44 am

No one with any experience in Africa???
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Postby somedude » Mon Sep 23, 2013 9:03 am

anamericaninbangkok wrote:No one with any experience in Africa???


The only African country I'm familiar with is Egypt, it's been a bit unstable there since they ousted Mubarak back in 2011. I notice you do some photo journalism... not sure what your intent would be in visiting, however mentioning any form of the word journalist right now might be a death sentence there... or at least a street beating. A tourist in a touristy spot away from the conflict with a camera would not cause any concern however.

That being said, the red sea resort areas (sharm el sheikh, hurghada, etc.) usually always have all inclusive (meals and room) hotel package deals well within your budget, and of course the beach is right there. Vacations are still possible in those areas of Egypt from what I hear from the expats. Not sure that I would go to Cairo or even Luxor right now though, especially if one was inexperienced with the culture and language.

Hope that helps.
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Postby anamericaninbangkok » Mon Sep 23, 2013 9:14 am

Thanks, but not going to Egypt or Syria. Work is the intent. Honestly, I've never had the desire to go to Egypt. None what so ever.

The countries on the list are pretty much it, other than perhaps places near Nigeria...Ghana, etc. Maybe...Mozambique but I'd really like to stick with one or two places on my list. Maybe DRC - Angola or Sudan - Eritrea...not sure yet. I'm in the beginning stage of researching and brainstorming...I know they're not exactly the most popular destinations but it would be nice to hear from someone with experience in these places.
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Postby Jester » Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:10 pm

zacb wrote:Bolivia is close, but Paraguay tops. I imagine in some areas it varies city by city, so look for special situations. For Africa, probably Zimbabwe or places near the horn of Africa. Philippines, India, Thailand, Russia (outside Moscow),Bangladesh, some of the stans (not Pakistan thought), are the best of Asia. Eastern Euro countries, and Germany for Europe (especially Berlin). Most of the Mideast is inexpensive Syria( although cost of transporting things may be a problem.), Iraq, Omen, not sure about the others (UAE and Saudi Arabia are expensive). Guatemala and Mexico are inexpensive in some areas, but with Guatemala you may need to serve in their military, and their individual tax rate (7 percent) may not be there forever. I have thought about Guatemala and Paraguay hard. You could also check numbeo.com .


Good info, Zac - thanks.

I thot the flat no-deductions tax rate for individual proprietors in Guatemala was 5% of gross income, not 7%.

Syria is an interesting idea for folks interested in the Middle East. Lots of Christians, but cheaper than Lebanon, and without spoiled princesses. It's definitely on my short list to find an exportable bride or two.
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