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Bangkok 20th on expat city list

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Bangkok ranks 20th on a list of expat-friendly cities in a survey conducted by InterNations, the world's largest expat community with more than 3.5 million members.

Bangkok gets high marks for affordability but its ranking was dragged down by poor scores for environmental quality and political stability.

Twelve Asian cities are featured in the Expat City Ranking 2019, with four of them -- Taipei, Kuala Lumpur, Ho Chi Minh City and Singapore -- occupying the top four positions worldwide. Yangon was in the bottom 10 of the 82-city survey in 73rd place.

The rankings are based on the annual Expat Insider survey by InterNations. More than 20,000 expatriates representing 178 nationalities and living in 187 countries or territories provided information on various aspects of expat life.

Participants were asked to rate more than 25 different aspects of urban life abroad on a scale of one to seven. The rating process emphasised personal satisfaction and considered emotional and factual aspects with equal weight.

The ratings were used to create four indices -- Quality of Urban Living, Getting Settled, Urban Work Life, and Finance and Housing -- which were then averaged in order to rank the cities.

Coming in fifth out of all the cities surveyed in Asia, Bangkok ranks third in the Finance and Housing Index.

Some 58% of expats say housing in Bangkok is affordable (versus a global average of 36% for the same indicator), and 80% say accommodation is easy to find (vs 50% globally).

While Bangkok also ranks high for the local cost of living (9th), it performs poorly in the Quality of Urban Living Index (56th).

The vast majority of respondents are satisfied with the availability of healthcare (83% vs 73% globally) and safety (89% vs 81% globally).

"It is a much safer place for my son to grow up in," said a German expat.

However, the city is one of the worst in the world for the quality of the environment (79th) and political stability (74th).

While Bangkok fared reasonably well in the Getting Settled Index (32nd), the Urban Work Life Index (46th) was disappointing.

"Visa regulations and the amount of paperwork needed to get a work permit makes it very difficult for expats to stay for a long period of time," a Bulgarian expat complained.

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Vocabulary:

affordability : not expensive - ไม่แพง

affordable : not expensive - ไม่แพง

disappointing : not as good, successful, etc. as you had hoped; making you feel disappointed - น่าผิดหวัง, ผิดคาด

drag (verb): to pull - ดึง

emphasise : to stress something such as an idea, fact or detail; to explain why something is important - เน้น

expatriate (expat) : a person living in a country that is not their own - คนที่อาศัยอยู่ต่างประเทศ (เป็นเวลานาน)

poorly : not done very well -

reasonably (adv): to a fairly high degree, level, or standard - พอใช้ได้

regulations : official rules that control the way that things are done - ระเบียบปฏิบัติ

stability : a situation in which things happen as they should and there are no harmful changes; when something is not likely to move or change - ความมั่นคง, เสถียรภาพ

survey : the act of asking for and recording information - การสำรวจ, การหาข้อมูล

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