Retirement in Cambodia: Visas, Healthcare, Food, Housing
Cambodia is consistently ranked well in the annual global retirement index of InternationalLiving.com and can also easily obtain visas for retirees purchased in other ASEAN countries.
In 2019, the annual global retirement index InternationalLiving.com named Cambodia the 12th best place in the world for retirement. This is the fourth year in a row that the Kingdom has this title.
In the 2021 edition, Cambodia was also rated as one of the cheapest retirement destinations and one of the highest income countries ever. Nine.com.au has also named the kingdom one of the best sites for retirement. This article provides you with a step-by-step guide to retirement in Cambodia. We will cover the rent, get a visa and somehow stay active.
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Rent a property when you leave for Cambodia
The rent in Cambodia is of course very cheap. You can rent a Western-style apartment in Phnom Penh for $ 300 a month. It is of course in the capital. In other famous cities like Kampot, Sihanoukville, Battambang and Siem Reap, it’s even cheaper.
For those on a fixed income, it is still possible to live comfortably in the Kingdom. There are serviced apartments that cover almost everything you need. Most provide housekeeping services, fitness centers and even swimming pools. You can find one bedroom places like this, starting at almost $ 500 a month in Phnom Penh.
Obtaining a retirement visa to Cambodia
The visa process in the Kingdom is relatively simple. There is even a special category for retirees. When you arrive in the country, make sure you have a regular E-Class visa, not a tourist visa, so you can get a Cambodian retirement visa. Then you just apply for an ER (pension) extension.
Here are the requirements for a retirement visa:
- You must be over 55 years old.
- You cannot be employed.
- You must prove that you are retired (proof of pension or social security) and have sufficient funds (bank statements or pension).
These extensions can be valid for different lengths up to one year. Prices are the same as working visa extensions, which cost about $ 290 for a full year with multiple entries. Go to any travel agency in the city and they will help you with this process. Note that immigration officials may fine ER holders working in Cambodia and, if necessary, grant imprisonment and deportation if the law is violated.
The Alien Present in Cambodia (FPCS) system was also introduced in 2019, and each expat is required to register with the system.
A Cambodian ministry task force has proposed a new immigration law to regulate foreigners in the SEA, but has not yet been finalized.
In which city to retire in Cambodia?
Cambodia is chosen by many expats in the West for its friendly atmosphere and extremely low cost of living. The most famous retirement home is, of course, in Phnom Penh. There is everything every retiree wants from good food, various entertainment and social activities.
Basic public services and health care are also easy to find in Phnom Penh. Because health care is a retirement care, we have compiled a comprehensive list of hospitals and clinics in Phnom Penh. Even if you don’t want a city with rapid modernization, Siem Reap or Sihanoukville can be a good choice if you want some city comfort. They do not reflect the same kind of lifestyle as Phnom Penh, but instead are more busy when it comes to tourists visiting the iconic temples of Angkor Wat or the islands on the south coast.
Siem Reap itself has a growing portfolio of proprietary projects that are of interest to anyone retiring. It is more comfortable, has excellent food and drink options, nature at your fingertips and a lively artistic and cultural scene.
Sihanoukville has undergone great development and the city itself is now growing, offering shopping malls, apartments and planned golden curses and is the gateway to the beautiful islands. Kampot and Battambang are more reserved, but for their lifestyle they have become more popular with expats and retirees.
With retirement, a new world of fun will begin!
What about food when retired in Cambodia
Whether you want to cook for yourself or dine in a restaurant, dining in Cambodia is a small expense, but you can also wine and dine in gourmet restaurants and five-star hotels.
Eating out at a cheap restaurant in Phnom Penh can cost you only about $ 4. Elsewhere in the country, the price is even lower.
Just for information, here is a list of some common foods and what are their average prices in Phnom Penh:
- Loaf of white bread – $ 1.75
- A dozen eggs – $ 1.60
- One kilo of chicken – $ 4.47
- A liter of milk – $ 2.27
- Latte or cappuccino in a cafe – $ 2.50
- Bottle of beer – $ 1.00
As you can see, everyday life is absolutely cheap. If you want to find cheap food, items and household items, go to your local wet market. Otherwise, beat local supermarkets, such as Western-style supermarkets, for something more western, or even for a growing number of specialty stores.
Brands such as Circle K, Super Duper and Aeon Express are growing rapidly and expanding into cities, with international markets constantly opening up in the UK.
Retired, but remains active in Cambodia
Productive entertainment is easy to find in Cambodia. If you are the active type, there are clubs for all kinds of sports such as tennis, golf or jogging.
If you want to ride or repair motorcycles, Cambodia is great. The ride takes place all year round!
Is humanitarian work your style? There are many NGOs that need your help. You can still volunteer and teach local youth, but many reputable NGOs and schools will need to conduct audits.
Travel on retirement. This is a Cambodian way!
If you are retired from the West and have decided to live in Cambodia, you probably have a travel bug. Fortunately, the country is located in the middle of Southeast Asia, one of the most popular tourist areas in the world.
Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, Hong Kong and other countries are just a short walk away. Far, yet close are China, India, Australia, Japan and South Korea. And of course traveling around Cambodia is an adventure in itself.
Healthcare is not expensive for Cambodian retirees
Cambodian treatment can be a mix bag. There are pros and cons.
The positive points are:
- Cambodian medicine is extremely cheap.
- Almost everything is on the counter.
- Visiting a doctor for common ailments, such as the flu or stomach pain, is usually quick and easy.
- Phnom Penh’s high clinics and hospitals probably have good doctors who speak fluent English.
- If you want to visit a Western doctor, some in the Kingdom practice.
However, there are certain disadvantages. It is still a developing country, although:
Many people (including locals) choose to see doctors in Thailand, Vietnam or Singapore for serious problems. Overall, the level of treatment you receive is better and still relatively inexpensive. Make sure you get medication from a reputable pharmacy. Better safe than sorry.
We recommend it to anyone who lives in Cambodia or is trying to have the necessary travel and health insurance.
Loving the retired lifestyle in Cambodia
At the end of the day, it’s all about being happy. Thousands of people retire every year. If Cambodia is a place that makes you happy, you should be.
We hope this guide will help all retirees in the Kingdom. Contact us if you have any questions or visit our page real estate in Cambodia.
Are you interested in buying a property in Cambodia?
Here is a summary of the property purchasing possibilities for foreigners:
Foreigners are allowed to buy property in Cambodia, condominiums, apartments, or offices, as long as it is not located on the ground floor of a building and at least 30% of the other properties in the building are Cambodian owned (quota).
To purchase property in Cambodia all you need is a current passport and visa. However, we would strongly recommend that you have someone advise you through the process, such as a real estate agent or a lawyer.
It is important to conduct a title search before purchasing property. We can help you with this. Feel free to contact us.
Although Cambodian law prohibits foreigners from owning land, there are some possibilities. If you have any questions regarding a real estate purchase in Cambodia, do not hesitate to contact us.
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In this article, we will look at how to buy property in Cambodia as a foreign investor. Let’s talk about the property law in Cambodia. Can foreigners buy property in Cambodia?