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What makes Phuket one of the best destinations in the world to retire

Cita Catellya



Photo via iStock

Have you been dreaming of spending your retirement years in a tropical paradise? Would you like to escape the hustle and bustle of busy city life? If the answer is yes, then Phuket can be a fantastic destination for you.

There are so many excellent reasons to retire in Phuket. With its gorgeous beaches, lively nightlife, and fascinating culture, Phuket has something for everyone. Plus, the people are welcoming, and the island has an amazing mix of Thailand culture and Western conveniences. But besides these reasons, there are numerous other advantages that make Phuket one of the world’s top retirement destinations.

We’ve compiled some of these advantages below!

1. Obtaining a Retirement Visa is not complicated

This is possibly one of the biggest advantages of retiring in Phuket (or elsewhere in Thailand). The Thai government actually encourages people to retire in the country, so obtaining a retirement visa isn’t too complicated. And if you want an easier visa process, there are numerous services that can make it more hassle-free. The qualifications to retire here may change from time to time, but you generally need to meet any of the financial requirements and provide supporting documents like an updated bank book. Additionally, the retirement age requirement to obtain Thailand’s retirement visa is very young: 50 years of age.

Another advantage of retiring in Phuket is that foreigners can buy property on the island, with condos the easiest to acquire. While foreigners can’t own land, many choose to buy villas and houses with extendable leases on the land the property sits on.

2. A wide range of accommodation options

Some people coming on a retirement visa may purchase right away to avoid the hassle of moving their belongings from one property to another. Some others may rent for the first year before buying a property to test the waters before committing to buy a property and live in the country for a longer term. Sometimes people prefer to only rent, either because they don’t feel like they need to own a property on the island or because they don’t have the funds.

Whether you’re looking at renting or purchasing, there is a wide range of accommodation options to choose from. The island is filled with simple townhouses, Thai block-style apartments, luxury penthouses, beach villas, high-end condominiums, and more. Whether you want to live a humble lifestyle or an extravagant one, you can find any property to fit your lifestyle.

Since the offers on both properties for rent and for sale in Phuket are limitless, it’s a good idea to find a professional property agent to help narrow down the options. An experienced agent may also help answer any questions you might have, such as the different ownership structures before acquiring a property on the island. They can also help you make the best choices and avoid scams.

Retirement in Thailand

5 Bedroom Villa for sale at Botanica Bangtao Beach. Photo via FazWaz

3. Central Location

Phuket boasts a fantastic location. The island has an international airport where you can easily find direct flights to surrounding countries, such as Cambodia, Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia, and so on. In addition, it’s only an hour’s flight to Thailand’s capital, Bangkok, which is a great place to visit every now and again if you’re itching to spend time in the big city. Bangkok also has numerous flights worldwide, so you can quickly and conveniently access global destinations.

4. A thriving expat community

With so many people choosing to retire or simply live in Phuket, the international community on the island is enormous. You can find expats from all around the globe in this tropical paradise. The easiest way to find them is through expat Facebook pages, where they regularly post events and activities. There are groups to do yoga together, try water sports, drink at bars, play golf, and more. It’s pretty easy to find others with the same interests and make friends here, as long as you put yourself out there. Furthermore, the large and strong community of expats in Phuket can help make you adapt to your new life more easily.

Retire in Thailand

Photo via iStock

5. World-class healthcare and wellness facilities

If you’re apprehensive about retiring in Phuket due to the health and wellness facilities, then you have nothing to worry about. Thailand, particularly Phuket, was a medical tourism hub before the Covid-19 pandemic. Today, it’s slowly rising to the top of the list again, thanks to its world-class healthcare facilities. The island boasts a good selection of international hospitals offering high-quality treatments.

You can find specialists in many aspects of healthcare, from general practitioners to chiropractors to neurosurgeons. Being one of the world’s top destinations for medical tourism, many hospitals in the country also employ language translators and interpreters. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about communication. In addition, the cost of healthcare is much more affordable than in Western countries. If you want to retire in Phuket, living near professional medical practitioners and top-class facilities can really put your mind at ease!

Aside from the hospitals, Phuket is also brimming with fitness and wellness facilities to keep you healthy. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is easy when you’re surrounded by indoor gyms, running tracks, golf courses, rejuvenating spas and massages, and more. Even some condos and villas in Phuket are equipped with their own gyms, spas, and swimming pools to keep you active!

6. Cost of living

Another reason why many choose to retire in Phuket is the cost of living. Obviously, the cost of living in Phuket depends on your lifestyle. It can be as low or as high as you want. However, when compared to most Western countries, it can be significantly more affordable. Staying afloat and living off small pensions is easy since you can find cheap, healthy, and fulfilling food virtually everywhere. Furthermore, there are many low-end townhouses and Thai-style apartments where the rent won’t break the bank. Even living in a luxurious property can be much more affordable on the island than in many other places around the world. And if you want some entertainment, there are many things you can do in Phuket for cheap or even for free.

retirement in Phuket

4 Bedroom Villa for sale in Rawai, Phuket. Photo via FazWaz

7. Plenty of international schools

For people who are retiring early and have children, Phuket has a number of top-notch international schools to choose from. These include British International School, QSI International School, and UWC Thailand, among others. Also, it’s pretty easy to find a place to live near these international schools!

8. It’s like being on vacation everyday

Lots of people come to Phuket for a holiday, but they get so enchanted that they come back to spend their retirement days in this tropical paradise. Whether you want to live in a soothing environment or be close to the lively nightlife, living in Phuket can make you feel like you’re on an endless holiday. There are always things you can enjoy here. You can relax on its stunning beaches, see the latest blockbusters for under $5, go shopping, explore waterfalls, stroll around waterparks, or relax in a beautiful pool villa.

With all of these advantages, it’s easy to see why Phuket is one of the best destinations in the world to retire.

If you’ve decided that Phuket is the best place to spend your retirement days, it’s time to find the best property to suit your needs! Thaiger Property can help you make a well-informed decision and find your dream home in Phuket.


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    Cita Catellya is a journalist and content writer who covers a range of topics from medical and property to leisure and tourism. Her career began as a copywriter, where she worked with several brands in Indonesia to help them increase their online presence.


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