Max Davies still can’t believe the monthly fee for using the gym at his local 4-star Hilton Hotel is only $87. The facilities on offer include a sauna, pool, weights room, squash court, ping-pong tables and a changing room scented with frangipani. It’s just one of the many benefits of retired life he’s discovered in Hua Hin, Thailand.
The royal resort town has been home to Max, 53, for about six years. He first came to Thailand on an extended break, exploring the different beaches along the southern coast and enjoying the fresh seafood, nightlife and relaxed day-to-day lifestyle. Once he arrived in Hua Hin, it only took a few weeks for Max to decide he was staying put.
The cost of living was a major factor in his decision. His retirement package is about $4,000 a month which lets Max enjoy the good life in Thailand. “I never dreamed I could stop worrying about money day-to-day,” says Max. “But here in Hua Hin I can do what I want, enjoy life and money is just a tool I always have in my pocket.”
Max is fit and tanned, with unruly, short grey hair. You can see he spends a lot of time outdoors. Dressing up for him is jeans and a pressed t-shirt, which is fine for almost all of the restaurants in this laidback town. Hua Hin fits his desire for a simple lifestyle near the beach.
Max’s apartment is just a 10-minute walk from the beach where he goes for his daily jog. He uses this time to reflect on his life, his two grown daughters and a book he has always wanted to write.
Rentals here can be had from as little as $650 a month and at the high end around, $2,000 a month. Max rents on the lower end of the scale as he doesn’t need much space and is happy to stroll to the beach.
Healthcare is also affordable here. Max recently had a major root canal procedure for a little under $300. The hospitals and medical services overall are excellent, but Max recommends you do a little research on the doctor or dentist first. Just Google the person, look at where they graduated, where they have worked, make sure they speak English well and check reviews on expat forums.
For Max, scouting out his adopted homeland was a smart move. He was able to settle into the rhythms of local life and work out if life in a Thai beach town was for him. Happily, it is. In fact, Max says retiring in Hua Hin was one of the best moves he’s ever made.