Renting an apartment in Bangkok – Tips from an international student

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Are you looking for an apartment in Bangkok? Find out where, how, and what!

Sawadee kha! Greetings from Bangkok! I’m Sky, currently doing my semester abroad with Asia Exchange in Bangkok, Thailand. Finding a place or an apartment to live in Bangkok is one of the most important parts of studying abroad. Thus, you might have these questions in your mind: Where should I stay? How can I decide where to stay? What should I consider before renting a room? Therefore, I will help you clear your doubts by sharing my own experience. 

Where: City center, nearby campus, or anywhere?

Firstly, where you stay depends on your classes. Because of the pandemic, they may be online, offline, or hybrid. Classes can switch to offline mode, so stay cautious of school announcements. As a result, you don’t have to be concerned about commuting to school. Some of our friends travel across the country while attending classes online (yes, you can, but remember: studies always come first). However, there are benefits to sticking around the campus. For instance, many of your classmates will choose to stay there, making it easier to meet up! 

You might also be interested in 10 Tips to make local friends in Thailand

study in Thailand Bangkok
The neighborhood of UTCC in Bangkok looks like this!

How: Ways to find an apartment in Bangkok

1. The internet

Airbnb, Agoda, Renthub, Propertyhub…these pages are the first ones that pop up when you look for accommodation in Bangkok on search engines. Price ranges, the name of the building, and the person in charge are all displayed while searching online. The majority of the Thai people use Line for their daily communication, so if you want to know more about the rooms, add them via Line. Yet, some of them lack English translations and prefer tenants willing to sign longer contracts. Airbnb and Agoda are tourist-friendly websites that provide direct contact of house owners and offer great deals for short stays. Additionally, you’ll receive a discount on monthly rent.

2. Get help from estate agents

Arrive in a completely unfamiliar city, far away from home, didn’t have much time to look around, it’s a good idea to seek professional assistance. They often offer a contract of either 6 months or 1 year, a variety of apartment options, accesses to building facilities, and giving advantages of fixing broken equipment (as you wouldn’t need to call for repair yourself). If you’re looking for an agent, ask former students of Asia Exchange for recommendations.

3. Walk in spontaneously (personally recommend!)

Because Bangkok is densely packed with apartments, universities rarely have their own dormitories. As soon you visit your campus, you will notice that there are lots of accommodations around. They may not be on the websites mentioned above, but at least they are on Google Maps. Search for apartments, condominiums, and share houses on Maps near your school. Save them and let the GPS take care of the rest. Walk into the reception counter, or office, tell the staff you’d like to see some rooms, they’d be pleased to assist you.

Helpful Thai Vocabulary for exchange students

Not everyone you meet on your hunt for accommodation in Bangkok speaks fluent English. Here are some simple Thai words to use when you encounter non-English speaking staff:

1. See rooms: Du Hong

  • Example sentence: “Sawadee kha/khrub, don ni du hong dai mai kha/khrub?” Hello, is it possible to see some rooms now?

2. Water & Electricity fee: Khao Nam Khao Fai

  • Example sentence: “Khao nam khao fai tao rai kha/khrub?” How much is the water & electricity fee (for 1 month)?

3. Stay for…months: Yu…dueen

  • Example sentence: “Yu ha(5) dueen dai mai kha/khrub?” Can I stay for 5 months?

4. Record videos (for reference): Aad video

  • Example sentence: “Aad video dai mai kha/khrub?” Can I record videos?

I promise it’d be an excellent opportunity to learn Thai! But still, don’t hesitate to use translation apps when you have further questions to ask. 

What: Consider this before deciding on an apartment in Bangkok

In my case, quietness, cleanliness, and the internet were my top three priorities. Watch out for the condition of the building and room: how are the elevator and air conditioner working? Old ACs can cost you a fortune on electricity. Do you mind not having non-English speaking staff? What’s the minimum lease? Where’s the nearest public transport…etc. There is a lot to consider when you decide on your apartment in Bangkok. Asia Exchange recommended that you stay in a hotel for a few weeks initially, so you have plenty of time to find another place to land. Take your time and know your standards well. In a nutshell, my recommendations for locating lodging in Bangkok are to be patient, compare, and discuss with friends and family.

Do you want to study abroad in Bangkok, Thailand? Find out more informationhere!

Asia Exchange is a Finnish company providing study abroad opportunities in Asia Pacific for students from all around the world. Want to get travel tips and new blog posts straight to your inbox? Subscribe to ourmonthly newsletter!If you have any questions about studyingabroad, feel free tocontact us! We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

This blog post was written by our student ambassador, Sky!