Thailand carries its success as the second-largest economy in Southeast Asia. With popular locations, the average salary in Thailand, however, is lower than in countries like Singapore and the United States. Averaging at about 1,160,000 THB annually (1). Alongside fixed salaries, employees are offered wages based on compensation and hourly work.
The average monthly salary rate in Thailand is around 96,000 THB (2904 USD). With a median salary of 103,000 THB, 50% of the population earns a decent annual amount. However, many factors affect the annual salary range. These include nationality, province, experience, and profession.
It can be noted that there are significant differences in the average salaries of people within different working classes, locations, and professions. This article will discuss Thailand’s financial structure and the advantages and disadvantages by which salaries are distributed.
Background of the Average Salary in Thailand
Thailand has an average salary range from 24,500 THB (734 USD) to 433,000 THB (12,984 USD) in a month. It can be applied that half of the country earns more than 103,000 THB, while the other half makes below that average estimation (1).
The daily minimum wage in the country ranges from 313 THB (9.4 USD) to 336 THB (10 USD) and 20,854 THB (625 USD) in a month. However, the average monthly salary is based on financial compensation such as transportation payments, housing, paid leaves, and insurance.
On the other hand, the average wage is a compensation that the employee receives based on the actual number of hours or days the employee worked (1). A fixed salary will not pay close attention to the amount of time and effort the employers put into their job.
Thailand’s Average Salary Rates by Province
The minimum wage in Thailand ranged from 313-336 Thai baht per day in 2021. Equivalent to 10-10.7 U.S. dollars, the minimum wage increased by 5-6, per its prior rate in 2019 (2). Studies by the local government also showed that the minimum wage varied in Thailand depending on the region.
Rates By Province (Per Day):
- Chonburi and Phuket: 336 baht
- Rayong: 335 baht
- Bangkok, Nakhon Pathom, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Samut Prakan and Samut Sakhon: 331 baht
- Chachoengsao: 330 baht
- Krabi, Hong Kaena, Chiang Mai, Trat, Nakhon Ratchasima, Ayutthaya, Phang-nga, Lopburi, Songkhla, Saraburi, Sufan Buri, Surat Thani, Nong Khai and Ubon Ratchathani: 325 baht
- Prachin Storm: 324 baht
- Kalasin, Chanthaburi, Nakhon Nayok, Mukdahan, Sakon Nakhon and Samut Songkhram: 323 baht
- Kanchanaburi, Chinat, Nakhon Phanom, Nan, Bung Kang, Buri Ram, Prachuap Hiri Khan, Fatthalung, Fithsanuloke, Phetchaburi, Phetchabun, Fayao, Yashoton, Rua and Su, Loei, Sa, Kai Ang Tong, Udon Thani, and Uttaradit: 320 baht
- Kamphaeng Phet, Chaiyaphum, Champong, Chiang Rai, Trang, So, Nakhonshithammarat, Phichit, Pra, Maha Saraham, Mae Hong Son, Ranong, Ratchaburi, Lamphung, Si Sa Ket, Singh Buri, Sukhothai, Nong Bua Lamphu, Uthai Tani and Amnat Charoen: 315 baht
- Narathiwata, Pattani and Yala: 313 baht
Thailand’s Average Salary Rates by Sector of Economy
According to the Local Occupational Safety and Health Act, Thailand’s average working day rate is around seven to eight hours. The capital has earnings of around 22,272 baht ($710). In the private sector, the average is 21,301.04, and the public sector is 30,068.52 baht (2).
According to the official data from the National Statistics Office, the average salary in Bangkok is differentiated depending on the different sectors of the economy and the supplies or different factors within each profession (2).
|Sector of Economy||Salary Per Month|
|Agriculture||8000 THB (250 USD)|
|Administrative and support services||15,395.90 THB (480 USD)|
|Accommodation and meals||15,541.46 THB (485 USD)|
|Production||19,100.02 THB (595 USD)|
|Construction||20,383.60 THB (635 USD)|
|Wholesale and retail trade||20,727.90 THB (645 USD)|
|Transportation and storage||22,820.94 THB (710 USD)|
|Public administration and protection||25,212.30 THB (785 USD)|
|Art, entertainment and leisure||25,472.04 THB (790 USD)|
|Education||25,718.03 THB (800 USD)|
|Real estate operations||25,810,27 THB (800 USD)|
|Health care and social work||27,782.71 THB (865 USD)|
|Professional, scientific and technical activity||29,156.13 THB (905 USD)|
|Water supply, sewerage and waste management||30,000 THB (935 USD)|
|Mining||30,485.40 THB (950 USD)|
|Financial and insurance activity||34,620.55 THB (1,075 USD)|
|Information and communication||40,659.15 THB (1,265 USD)|
|Supply of electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning||52,569.26 THB (1,635 USD)|
|Others||11,866.96 THB (370 USD)|
5 Essential Factors for a Good Average Salary in Thailand
Many factors come to play when expecting to make a good income in Thailand. Like other countries, experience and background are essential; a degree determines how well you will work in your desired career. Additionally, each profession carries different expertise and salaries, depending on the location in which you apply. Let us look at how these factories can play a part in the financial structure.
The average Thai salary of an employee can increase with experience; an employee with up to 25 years of experience can earn 32% more in comparison to the basic salary. An employee with more than five years in the field will get paid 36% more than those with less than five years of knowledge (1).
Additionally, employers who hit the 10-year mark make a 21% higher salary, and those with 15 years extra experience are expected to get an additional 14% increase (1).
Another essential component of finances and the average income includes your choice of profession. Although it would be a dream to earn while doing something we enjoy, that will not always be the case.
Healthcare professionals are the highest-paid workers in Thailand; they generally earn around 228,000 THB per month (6836 USD). Moreover, a Thai person working under an Executive and Managerial position would earn an average salary of 131,000 THB per month. Legal representatives make an average of 117,000 THB per month (1).
According to Average Salary, here is a list of some popular professions and their average monthly salary:
|Profession||Average Salary Per Month|
|Human Resources Manager||152,000 THB|
|Business Development Manager||155,000 THB|
|Developer / Programmer||96,600 THB|
|Real Estate||70,512 THB|
|ESL Teacher||85,100 THB|
In most fields, an expat makes a higher salary rate than a native; a non-native teacher is paid more than a native English teacher. Additionally, a qualified teacher with a TEFL certificate can make more than a teacher with only a language degree.
This, however, depends on the type of school; international schools tend to pay foreign teachers more than public schools. Moreover, employees within the same designation receive 7% higher than working for the Thai government under the private sector (1).
In all countries, education is a must-have for a higher-paid job. This can be seen according to the statistics provided (1) :
- A worker with a diploma will earn 17% more than one with a high school degree
- An employee with a Bachelor’s degree will receive 24% more salary than those carrying a Diploma degree
- A Master’s degree guarantees 29% higher salary than a Bachelor’s degree
- An employee who has completed a Ph.D. is expected to earn 23% higher than an employer holding a Master’s degree
The average salary also depends on the city. There are different levels of industrialization across the country; more developed cities would have more businesses that pay higher salaries.
5. Increment, Bonuses, and Incentives
Employers in Thailand get an increment of 8% at every 17-month average. This is higher than the world average of 3% every 16 months (1). As of now, the increment rate is determined by the industry as follows:
The increment rate also depends on the rate by experience. With junior-level experience, the annual increment is around 3-5%. With senior-level experience, the increment rate is 10%-15%. Lastly, with top management experience, the average annual increment is around 15%-20%. A Salary Explorer survey also found that 56% of people received a bonus of 2%-7% on their annual salary (1).
Salary for Foreigners in Thailand
A good salary in Thailand can also vary depending on if you are a local or a foreigner. The one profession which shows such drastic changes within the salary exchange in Thailand is teaching.
ESL teachers make an annual salary of around 35,000-40,000 Thai baht per month; this is typical for foreigners who come to Thailand hoping to live in the country, but this is the only job they can get. This job is considered “bottom of the barrel” for expats in the region as it foresees minimum requirements such as one degree from which they can get a non-B visa (3).
The job offers a comfortable wage for Thais; however, it is low compared to Western countries that offer the same job alongside decent accommodations. Fewer requirements and degrees are often the case for businesses that offer low-income jobs for illegal citizens (3).
English teaching jobs can be found around the country, especially in government schools that pay more to foreign teachers. However, although it is a reasonable salary, they often come with larger class sizes and extra work requirements.
On the other hand, semi-qualified teachers make around 50,000-80,0000 THB per month (3). This job requires some qualifications, but their salary is not enough for a big-paying international school. Moreover, qualified teachers can make 80,000-180,000 THB per month. This pay is quite good for a professional and prestigious school like ISB or Bangkok Patana which offer higher tuition fees (3).
Other foreign jobs which pay higher are corporate placements at a good salary rate of 200,000-400,000 Thai baht per month. International companies bring employees from the USA, Germany, and Australia to Bangkok city for three to five-year placements. This gives them excellent full pay to live expensively in Thailand. However, it comes with the requirement of a prestigious university degree and line of experience (3).
One of the highest-paid salaries you can earn in Thailand is being a business owner. Up to 0-1,000,000+ TBH is guaranteed per month. This, however, is a truly risky and tricky affair and depends on your own business. In Thailand, you are legally allowed to own up to 49% of businesses.
Is Thailand A Good Place to Earn Money?
Thailand’s economy has risen 7.5% in the late 90s and 5% more in the early 2000s. Although there was a significant decrease in unemployment and poverty during the pandemic, the country still has a GDP of 501/795 billion USD in 2020, and the World Bank predicted that this will grow by 5/1% in 2022 (1).
The country guarantees a lot of advantages when it comes to living and earning in Thailand. There is low-cost operation, which means that the cost of hourly minimum wage and infrastructure are lower in Thailand than in other countries; it is easier for companies to set up their offices and begin a business (1).
There are also skilled employees; the literacy rate of Thailand is around 93.8%, as noted in 2019- this is higher than 87% of the world. Furthermore, Thailand offers high adaptability – home to 6.7 million international visitors in 2020 alone, Thailand has over 11,000 expats teaching English (1).
Thailand also offers an employment contract under the Labour Protection Act (LPA). This specifies all conditions to avoid misunderstandings and ensure the correct salary is distributed (1). Overall, Thailand guarantees a decent salary exchange and a very good one if you go into an expensive profession or business.
Thailand is a great country to start a local business, begin work for the first time, or to earn more than you would in neighboring countries. With an average salary rate of 96,000 THB, 50% of the population makes a decent amount. Thailand is unique in that the country favors foreigners and works to provide more global and international jobs.
Even then, Thailand is similar to other countries; factors such as experience, professional field, education, and city are all important things to consider when applying for any job. With a higher literacy rate than the majority of the world, Thailand is undoubtedly a rising economy specializing in professions.
1. Lauren Soucy. What Is The Average Salary In Thailand In 2021? Time Doctor. [Online] [Cited: December 18, 2021.] https://biz30.timedoctor.com/average-salary-in-thailand/.
2. WageCentre. MINIMUM AND AVERAGE SALARY IN THAILAND . WageCentre. [Online] [Cited: December 18, 2021.] https://wagecentre.com/work/work-in-asia-and-oceania/salary-in-thailand/.
3. Tim. Average Salary In Thailand For Foreigners. Thailand 505. [Online] November 14, 2019. https://thailand505.com/average-salary-in-thailand-for-foreigners/.