QUOTE(z_crush @ Jul 10 2012, 09:19 PM)
In an effort to fully experience another culture, my wife and I have decided to spend most of 2014 in Southeast Asia (mainly in Thailand). The goal of this trip is to integrate ourselves in Thai culture while illustrating our experience through writing and photography on a dedicated website we plan to launch shortly before our arrival.
We see this as our opportunity to commence the travel writing and photography career. We plan to rent out our condo as a source of income, and are looking into teaching English as a second language.
With the understanding that it takes a full year or so to build a successful website and develop a career in photography/writing, our work in Thailand will be the initial focus of our website. Our intent is to not only illustrate the scenery and culture of Southeast Asia through our website, but to do this from a different perspective, exposing maybe something different through abstract writing and photography? We know we need to do something different, something that will spark the interest of travel readers (and maybe others) who are looking for more than just a review or recommendation.
For those of you who are experienced travelers, writers, and photographers, how should we direct our focus in writing and photography?
Experienced English teachers abroad: TEFL seems to be the best program to start an English teaching career abroad from the little research I have done already. What advice do you have? What is the reality of my wife and I both teaching English at the same time and location in Thailand?
Successful website developers (sorry, this is the best I could do at 5:15 am): How can we make a successful site that will get the kind of traffic we need to eventually run advertisements, etc. to generate steady income?
My wife and I are passionate about traveling, writing, and photography. Our main reason for this is the experience itself, and not to necessarily make money. However, we are also using this opportunity to understand the reality of our travel writing/photography ambitions. Even if our website is a complete failure, with no other readers other than family/friends, some of our best memories together will be very-well documented!
Carrie and I are 25 and 26 years old, respectively. We appreciate any advice, comments, and guidance you can provide. We are both new to blogging (this is actually my first post, ever), but see this as an important aspect of our research efforts.
Any advice/comments/questions are greatly appreciated!
You can't just show up in Thailand and stay as long as you want. You need a proper visa. If you intend to work in Thailand you need a work permit. It is possible to stay in Thailand for six months with a pair of tourist visas, one for 60 days and then extend it. Then schedule your visit to another country before the extension runs out. Buy another tourist visa in a different country and extend at the end of 60 days. This means 60 plus 30 and then another 60 plus 30 giving you 180 days. This is if you are from a country like the US, UK, Oz, Canada and most of Europe. Other countries may have lower visa stays in Thailand. Make sure you have 6 months remaining from when you plan on leaving Asia. With only one way flights from your country you may have a problem getting out of your home airport. Many countries require proof of onward travel. This is usually a return ticket. http://archive.ifla.org/IV/ifla65/65visa.htmhttp://www.thaivisa.com/forum/topic/569255...y-plane-ticket/
But working legally in Thailand could be a BIG
problem!! There are some schools that accept teachers but if they do not do the work permit they are probably not on the up and up. If they want you to use a tourist visa they are not legit! If you get caught working illegally you could go to jail. Money you make in Thailand teaching depends on the school. On average you would make more money working in a fast food restaurant in your country, something like a Burger King, than what you get in Thailand. Salaries are low in Thailand unless you are working for a foreign company doing business in Thailand.
Ajarn is used for teachers. Thai Visa Expat forum has info on Visas and on Teaching in Thailand. Teaching requirements have tightened up, hopefully they do criminal backgrounds. Pay is low. Be prepared to use your savings to keep you in the lifestyle you are accustomed to. With a typical teachers salary expect maybe squat toilets, cold water and no air conditioning. Retirees with a fixed retirement income do okay but they don't live only on the school salary. http://www.ajarn.com/http://www.thaivisa.com/forum/http://www.thaivisa.com/forum/forum/46-tea...thailand-forum/
You are not allowed to take a job away from a Thai citizen. Do some more research on visas. Some cities in Thailand are cheaper to live in than others. Phuket is more expensive than just about anyplace else in Thailand. If you drive a motorcycle you stand a good chance of being in an accident. Motorcycle accidents account for most of the tourists deaths in Thailand. If you plan on staying for a long time also have some money in the bank to pay for the extras you might need.
If you intended to fly to Thailand with a One Way Flight
and then at a later date buy another One Way Flight
you could be paying a lot more than using a Round Trip Flight
to and from the same city, like Bangkok. One way flights to and from Asia often cost more than a round trip ticket. Do the math! This means you must choose a date in the future to return home to get a cheaper ticket. But this also means you do not have a big hassle at the airport that you might get with a one way ticket.
Visa requirements are a little more loose in Malaysia. Teaching jobs may be easier to get in Cambodia. But living in Malaysia you always have an undercurrent of Muslim-Infidel tension. In Cambodia your living conditions may not be as good as what you get in Thailand.