“It’s never been a better time to move to Cambodia for young professionals. In this article our CEO, Joseph Telfer, explains why he’s based there.”
Cambodia is a medium sized country in South East Asia with jungle inland and a long coast line that separates it from Thailand in the north and Vietnam in the south. Cambodia is probably best known for two things: number one, the brutal Khmer Rouge regime that decimated the population in the 80s and early 90s. Number two, the mind blowing and awe inspiring Angkor Wat temple complex that features on the national flag – made famous by the Tomb Raider films.
Whilst Cambodia’s ancient glory and more recent horrors have left an indelible mark on the people and their culture Cambodia is now a forward thinking modern country growing at 10% per year. This growth rate creates an infectious optimism and abundant opportunities. Tourism is big business in Cambodia and this is bolstered by a vibrant and growing tech scene.
The population is young, educated, ambitious and connected. However because of the tragedies of the Khmer Rouge time the country lacks strong domestic industrial leadership. This has resulted in huge numbers of international workers moving to the country over the last 15 years creating a rich and multicultured society. Food is a central part of the Cambodian way of life and you’re spoilt for choice with international restaurants on every corner of Phnom Penh’s streets.
Why is Cambodia a great place to live and work?
Optimism & Happiness
Cambodian’s above all else are a happy and optimistic people. There’s a great warmth in Cambodia where knowing your neighbour still means something. Even in the big cities people still take a lot of time to socialise, relax, exercise and play in the many open green spaces provided by the city authorities. The size of the city means that traffic is not so bad and cars move slowly.
Food in Cambodia is almost a religion. Cambodian food, although not so well known internationally, is spectacular. Similar but yet deeply unique from its better known cousins in Thailand and Vietnam. In Cambodia there is an enormous selection of the world’s finest cuisines, from Japanese to Taiwanese, Indian to European and so much more. It’s all here and all cheap.
Nature and Activities
The cities in Cambodia are the hubs of activity but travel just a short distance and you can be in lush jungle parks or pristine coast line. Sailing, paddle boarding, trekking, motorcycling, boat cruises, cycling, horse riding, wind surfing, kite surfing, artistic exploits, running, dancing, martial arts… there is never a shortage of things to do and plenty of time to do them with Cambodia having a total of 28 public holidays per year!
Life is still relatively cheap in Cambodia whilst standards are high. A 15 minute tuk tuk trip will get you most places in Phnom Penh (easily booked with an Uber like service called PassApp) for around 1$. Even a 3 hour journey in a comfortable taxi will cost around $40. You can eat until you explode for around 15$ and a stay in a reasonable hotel in one of the country’s more popular resorts can cost $40-100$ depending on the quality. A brand apartment in the city centre with pool is around $1000 with far cheaper options available too.
AirAsia is your new best friend! Cambodia is the perfect location to explore the wider region of South East Asia and more generally this side of the world. Here’s just a small list of places you can visit in less than a four hour flight: India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines… Not to mention Australia and New Zealand being pretty close by!
The Rising Tiger
It’s Asia’s time to shine. The ASEAN population is 639 million people and they’re hungry for innovation. The smart phone and new technologies are changing the ways these countries approach economic development and that makes it an incredible time to be part of the journey. Whilst the West wanes, loses economic influence and infighting grows the East remains focused on the future. Innovation, investment, growth and economic opportunity is everywhere and there’s an infectious energy that sweeps new arrivals off of their feet.
Average Living Costs
|1 Bedroom Apartment||$600|
|Dinner & Drinks||$20|
|3 Hour Taxi||$40|