7 Reasons Why You Really Shouldn’t Move to Cambodia

Posted on by Gavinmac


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Lately, there have been a lot of Westerners moving to Cambodia or making plans to move to Cambodia. This is partly due to the difficult job market in many Western countries, and it’s partly due to Cambodia becoming a more “mainstream” destination for tourists and expatriates. Some of the recent interest in Cambodia has come from Westerners living in Thailand. Rising prices in Thailand and stricter Thai visa regulations have already contributed to a noticeable influx of shifty-eyed, tattooed sexpats creeping across the border into Cambodia. Fortunately, a lot of those dudes haven’t made it past Sihanoukville.

There has been such an overwhelming interest in moving to Cambodia that two recent books have been published on the topic. Lina Goldberg published the excellent “Move to Cambodia: A Guide to Living and Working in the Kingdom of Wonder” in late 2012. Earlier this year, Khmer440 contributor Gabi Yetter released her own very well-received manual, “The Definitive Guide to Southeast Asia: Cambodia.”

Both of these books provide helpful information and optimistic encouragement to readers who are considering relocating to Cambodia. It’s the optimistic encouragement that I have a problem with. I personally believe that there are significant drawbacks to moving to Cambodia that could probably fill an entire book. Maybe not a real book, but definitely one of those silly e-books.

Unlike Ms. Goldberg and Ms. Yetter, I don’t have the necessary work ethic or attention span to write a whole book about anything. So I’m just going to offer these 7 Reasons Why You Really Shouldn’t Move to Cambodia.

1. You will die younger in Cambodia.

This is a big one. The average life expectancy for Westerners living in Western countries is about 75 to 80 years old, depending on the country. Unofficially, the average life expectancy for Western expatriates living in Cambodia is 57.4 years old.

There are a number of reasons why moving to Cambodia will shave about twenty years off your life. Cambodia has a lot of common diseases that you would never catch in your home country, like Typhoid, Dengue Fever, Hepatitis, and Malaria. The medical care in Cambodia is atrociously bad. The ambulances are unreliable; the doctors are unqualified; the hospitals are unsanitary. Even easily treatable illnesses can quickly become life-threatening if Cambodian doctors get involved.

Sometimes expats in Cambodia succumb not to illness, but to traffic accidents or other hazards. Expats like to ride motorbikes, often helmetless, presumably because they think it makes them look cool. This can be rather dangerous in a country with reckless local drivers, no enforcement of traffic laws, and poor emergency medical care. Private ambulances in Cambodia will actually refuse to take patients who are seriously injured, because they don’t want to risk transporting a dying patient who won’t be able to pay the hospital bill.

But perhaps the primary reason why expats tend to die young in Cambodia is that many of them “lose the plot” and develop unhealthy habits involving drugs, alcohol, and prostitution. This leads to weekly reports of expats in their forties and fifties being found dead on their bathroom floors from a “heart attack” or “fall.”

Cambodia is full of dangers, and very few of the locals even know basic first aid. If you start choking in a restaurant in a Western country, your waiter or another customer will quickly perform the Heimlich Maneuver on you. If you start choking in a restaurant in Cambodia, the locals will all stand around dumbfounded and stare at you until you turn blue and collapse on the floor. Only then will one of them spring into action and attempt to revive you by vigorously rubbing tiger balm on your forehead.

2. Cambodia is a horrible place to raise a child.

If you have a child or you are planning to have children, you definitely should not move to Cambodia. World Health Organization statistics show that a child born in Cambodia is ten times more likely to die before the age of 5 than a child born in France. All of the diseases that kill adults in Cambodia are even more dangerous to young children. Kids are also more likely to be involved in accidents requiring emergency medical care, because kids are fragile and kind of stupid.

While children may be coddled and overprotected in Western societies, they are simply left to their Darwinian fate in Cambodia. Cambodian children are often seen wandering the streets without adult supervision or perched helmetless on the front of passing motorbikes. Last year a “mystery illness” killed 60 children in Cambodia. Nobody really cared.

Raising any child in Cambodia presents grave risks that you wouldn’t have in a Western country. If your daughter develops acute appendicitis in your home country, you can take her to the emergency room at a modern hospital. A knowledgeable doctor will promptly diagnose her condition, a skilled surgeon will remove her appendix before it bursts, and she’ll be back to normal in no time.

If your daughter develops acute appendicitis in Cambodia . . . well, she’s probably screwed. Just start over with a new kid.

Let’s assume that your children are lucky and that the Cambodian diseases, traffic accidents, and poor medical care don’t kill them. Their future will still be quite bleak. The educational system in Cambodia is absolutely dire, from the primary schools through the universities. The only way to properly educate your child in Cambodia is to pay about $15,000 per year to send her to a top international school. This is going to be hard to afford if you moved to Cambodia to teach English for $9 an hour.

You may fancy the idea of moving to “wild” Cambodia, but the true test of being a good parent is whether you place your child’s safety and security above your own interests. That’s why many devoted parents from third world countries will do anything possible to sneak their families into Western countries where their kids will have a brighter future.

As young Western citizens, your children enjoy the same wonderful opportunity that you had to grow up in a civilized country with good schools, quality health care, free speech, seat belts, career prospects, democracy, Fig Newtons, and long life expectancies. They would kindly appreciate if you don’t fuck all that up for them by raising them in a corrupt, oppressive third world shithole. Your choice.

What amazes me is that the Westerners who decide to raise their children in Cambodia remain in total denial about what terrible, selfish parents they really are. Some have even started a Yahoo group called the “Cambodia Parent Network,” where they exchange tips on how to raise their doomed offspring in a country where no responsible Western parent would ever voluntarily raise a child. Cambodia Parent Network? Good grief. That’s like starting the Chernobyl Gardening Club.

3. The infrastructure sucks.

Even compared to neighboring countries like Vietnam and Thailand, the infrastructure in Cambodia is truly appalling. The schools, hospitals, roads, and utilities are all of very poor quality. Trash piles up in the street. Rats and roaches abound. Main roads in the capital city are now gridlocked during rush hours, and traffic only gets worse each year. There is no mass transit system and nowhere to park your car. Sidewalks are impassable. Internet connections are relatively slow. The tap water is dodgy. There are no zoning laws and no effective law enforcement. The noise pollution from karaoke parlors at 2 a.m., barking dogs at 4 a.m., and construction workers at 6 a.m. can be unbearable.

Many expats report regular power outages in their neighborhoods, sometimes lasting 3-5 hours a day. That will put a major damper on your online porn habit.

Cambodia does have excellent nightlife, but there’s absolutely nothing to do during the day – no decent parks, cinemas, museums, malls, libraries, etc. Just walking outside between the hours of 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. can be quite unpleasant due to the heat and humidity. Oh, and Cambodia smells really bad. If you’re thinking of moving to Phnom Penh, you need to know that the entire city stinks of garbage, smoke, urine, and rotten fish. Not just the Walkabout.

4. Living in Cambodia will destroy your financial future.

Let us agree that the hallmark of a successful life is living as long as possible while simultaneously acquiring as many material possessions as you can. Like Mr. Burns from The Simpsons, but with a hot young wife too.

You may be able to find a hot young wife in Cambodia, but unless you are transferred there by a multinational company, you’re not going to make any decent money working in Cambodia. If you’re one of these guys who just decides to move to Cambodia to “teach English” or “open a bar,” you will guarantee yourself a life of relative poverty. You’ll likely start out making about $8 – $10 per hour, which would be the bare minimum wage in many Western countries.

You may be thinking, “But I heard I can teach English and live like a king making $1,200 per month in Cambodia.” You can’t. You’ll be able to afford a relatively crappy Khmer-style apartment with tiled walls, bars on the windows, unreliable electricity, and loud, annoying neighbors. Near Russian Market, of course.

You won’t be saving any money, and you won’t have health insurance. So if you get sick and and can’t teach for a few weeks, you’ll be on the verge of selling your passport for noodle money.

Unlike the minimum wage earners in Western countries, you won’t even be paying into social security, or a pension plan, or any kind of retirement benefits. So just plan on working in a low paid teaching job in Cambodia until the day you die. Of course, your lack of retirement planning will be the least of your concerns when you’re lying on your deathbed in a dirty Cambodian hospital at age 57.

Because you’ll have no savings, you won’t even be able to leave money to take care of your wife and kids when you die. Keep in mind that your kids will already be well behind the financial eight ball because you raised them in an impoverished country with an inadequate school system and few legitimate career opportunities.

I know what you’re thinking now. “I’ll just move to Cambodia for a few years, then I’ll move back home and get a good job that pays well.” Not a chance. The job market is extremely competitive these days in most Western countries. Cambodia still has a notorious reputation, and it’s hard to get a good job when the hiring manager who reviews your application says, “This candidate has a fascinating resumé. I wonder if he’s a pedophile.”

5. Your mother will be so disappointed.

If you move to Cambodia, you’re probably going to have to tell your mother at some point. Of course she’ll tell you that she supports your decision, because that’s what good mothers do. But deep down, she will be crushed that you are moving so far away from her.

You have a moral obligation to help take care of your mother in her later years. Don’t be a selfish ass who passes that responsibility off on your siblings so that you can live 8,000 miles away in Cambodia getting drunk by 3 p.m. every day.

Yes, your mother will know what you’re really doing in Cambodia. You might as well just send her a Mother’s Day card that says “Thanks for raising me and all that, sorry I haven’t seen you in a few years, it just turns out that I enjoy drugs, alcohol and hookers much more than spending time with you.”

And what if you eventually have kids in Cambodia? Are you going to deprive your mother of the pleasure of seeing her sickly, under-educated, half-brown grandchildren because you’re raising them 8,000 miles away from her? That’s a cruel, selfish thing to do to your mom. She may justifiably respond to this affront by cutting you out of her will. And since you’ll be working for peanuts in Cambodia, that inheritance would have been your only chance of acquiring any real money during your lifetime.

6. You’ll become an alcoholic and have to make friends with gossipy, alcoholic expats.

Cambodia has long been a haven for fugitives and fuck ups, deadbeats and deathpats. And those are just the St. 136 bar owners.

There are a lot of Western bar owners in Cambodia, because there are a lot of Western bars in Cambodia. Excessive drinking is by far the most popular pastime among Western expatriates. You will probably end up spending a lot of time drinking in these dingy bars, since there’s really nothing else to do for fun in Cambodia.

Because Cambodia only attracts certain types of expats, you will end up making friends in bars with the kind of undesirable people that you would never associate with back home. Junkies. Whoremongers. Journalists.

Even though you have little in common with these people, you will become friends out of necessity, because you need someone to drink with and they need someone to drink with. You will end up spending a lot of time with them, but you will never be able to trust them like your real friends back home. In fact, your new drinking buddies in Cambodia will never even bother to learn your last name. You’ll just forever be known in expat circles by your first name, which is always preceded by an additional descriptive term. Back home your name may be Robert Jenkins; in Cambodia you’ll be “NoseHair Bob.”

Most importantly, your expat friends in Cambodia will not help you at all if you begin to spiral out of control. If you start routinely binge drinking in your home country, your true friends back home will express concern for your well-being and try to stop you from destroying your life. Your expat friends in Cambodia will hand you another beer and try to introduce you to their meth dealer.

7. Your Thai girlfriend will absolutely hate it.

It’s not just Westerners who are getting caught up in the craze of moving to Cambodia. During the last few months, several new posters have actually joined the Khmer440 discussion forums to ask about getting visas for their Thai wives and girlfriends to move to Cambodia also.

We all know that opportunistic young Thai women have been marrying or shacking up with older Western men for decades. But the unstated agreement in these relationships is that the Western man is supposed to improve the poor girl’s standard of living. The impoverished Thai woman reluctantly allows the older Western man’s unsightly, wrinkled penis to enter her vagina from time to time. In exchange, the Western man moves the Thai woman to a proper Western country, or he builds her an oversized house in her home province that is the envy of all her slutty, gold-digging friends. Then she waits comfortably for him to die. That’s the deal that your Thai wife or girlfriend signed up for.

Moving a Thai woman to Cambodia does not improve her standard of living. It’s a shocking downgrade. It will seem to her like a cruel joke, not unlike bailing a black friend out of jail and then driving him straight to a Ku Klux Klan rally. The words a Thai woman longs to hear from her farang boyfriend are “Pack your bags dear, we’re flying to Paris.” Not, “Go buy some Purell, we’re moving to Cambodia.”

Just the idea of setting foot in Cambodia is truly horrifying to many Thai women. You need to understand that all Thais look down on Cambodians, in the strange way that the poor bastards who live in Cleveland still look down on those losers from Detroit. Even the most open-minded Thai girlfriend is probably going to ask some skeptical questions about moving to Cambodia. “What’s Cambodia like?” she will ask. The correct answer is, “It’s a lot like your village in Isaan, except the people are poorer, everyone’s skin is darker, no one speaks Thai, and the food sucks.”

So if you’re a struggling expat in Thailand whose meager foreign pension can no longer keep up with the rising Thai baht, please don’t punish your innocent Thai girlfriend by moving with her to Cambodia. There is a better solution. Do the noble thing that troubled expats in Thailand have been doing for years – break up with your girlfriend and then leap to your death from the balcony of your Pattaya condo.

Gavinmac is a regular contributor to Khmer440 who is considering moving to Cambodia in early 2014. His other “7 Reasons” articles can be found here.

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447 Responses to 7 Reasons Why You Really Shouldn’t Move to Cambodia

  1. pete says:

    you can’t be serious.

    • falcon randwick says:

      Yes, that’s gavinmac being totally serious…

      • Sorya says:

        some of these comments are so fucking stupid. i’m khmer and i’m 16 and i’ve lived here all my life. the only things this article focuses on are sex,drugs and alcohol.
        what about the untouched natural environments, what about the angkor wat and the temples, they blame the place but you’re the one making the decisions of doing what u do.

        and then someone said asians are fake and impolite to their elders? i’m deeply offended- we’re not allowed to talk back, touch an elder’s head, raise our hands to say hello, we’re expected to take care of our parents (there ar no fucking pensions here). asian children are pressured to do what the parents want.
        seriously some people are just so ignorant and racist.

        • M says:

          Please pardon me my ignorance if you can..

          What do you mean by “untouched natural environment”? Do you refer to that disgusting and overwhelming rubbish and stench continuously laid everywhere over Cambodia? Or perhaps you refer to diminishing forests, might say symbol of greediness?

          What about Angkor Wat? Hmm, do you refer to its double pricing which discriminates foreigners? If foreigners are requested to pay a special fee for being foreigner, just don’t go in, it’s that simple. Do they have a fee for being black when you go to visit Disneyland?

          • K says:

            May I know how much u pay for a cinema ticket in ur country? $20 for a whole day for temple pass is not expensive at all. If u think so maybe ur well paid salary is just not well enough.

          • M says:

            Such boring activity is usually $5 to $8.

            And no one will check length of your nose: no additional charge for being a foreigner or other race.

          • W says:

            Hey, come on, give the kid a break! He’s 16 years old and makes some very good points. Believe me, I know, I’m an expat living in Vietnam for the past 6 years and I see almost everyday the low-life circling around these parts, shitting everything up and making those of us here making an honest living look bad too. And as for entrance charges, don’t look at it like it’s doubling the price for foreigners, it’s more like a discount for locals. It costs a lot of money to maintain these archeological sites and are you really pissing about someone who makes about US$100 a month getting charged a lower price to see something in their own country? Really?

          • Emma violet says:

            you sound like such an overall shit person. I stayed in Cambodia for 6 weeks and loved every minute. I am planning to work in a hospital there in a few years. You have no idea what you are talking about. people live until their 50? are you dumb? I met so many people that were in their 90’s. Cambodia is a struggling country but they are trying their hardest to improve it. do you think they like having rubbish on the streets? no, they have no control over it the government does and Cambodian people are not to blame or their corrupt government. Not every country in the world is polished clean and rich. Cambodia needs help and support from the western countries. People like you make me so angry because you have no idea what Cambodia has been through. and how dare you be so disrespectable to a 16 year old boy, that lives there?

          • Reach says:

            fuck you brother..shut up..I don’t want to know your fucking idea. Cambodia is a great Country for us.

          • Thomas says:

            You’re right about dual pricing though. It’s racist and unacceptable. It’s especially offensive if you’re an expat foreigner living in Cambodia or any other country that practices it because as a tourist you experience it, tell your friends about it and never have to come back. It’s almost worse if some deadbeat, ignorant apologist foreigner says it’s OK to practice it. But yeah expats certainly feel it more than the average tourist as they can’t just walk away from the country.

            I don’t have a problem with the average noodle seller trying to extract a little extra because either I can just bargain it down or walk away, but institutionalized discrimination, as practiced by temples such as Angkor Wat is unfair.

            Imagine the outcry if Khmers were charged more than white, black, Mexican or other “real” Americans for entry to national parks in the USA. Haha. Well maybe they should be.

            Well, it should be the same thing in Cambodia. But of course in Cambodia every foreigner is just a walking ATM and racism is acceptable, so it’s OK, right K?

          • Thomas says:

            Hey BTW W, did you realize that Vietnam has eliminated dual pricing for foreigners? So actually you don’t know what you are talking about. Vietnam is actually a very fair country these days – of course you get the odd local trying to squeeze some extra cash out of you but that can happen anywhere. But what you don’t have anymore is institutionalized discrimination where a tourist attraction, hotel, transport etc. can charge you more based on the color of your skin. Unfortunately, this still happens in Cambodia but has been stopped in Vietnam.

            Also, no one who earns US$100 a month in Cambodia will have the time or money to visit any tourist sites, subsidized or not – tourist sites in Cambodia, like in any other country are made with middle class visitors in mind. Most Cambodian tourist sites don’t even see any western or other foreign visitors at all (there are far more sites than just Angkor Wat BTW) so it’s not up to foreigners to subsidize the costs for locals. Foreign visitors can’t be taken for granted and in fact, a higher price for foreigners is actually an indication that you’re not welcome. It’s like saying: “we don’t really want you here, but OK if you pay us a lot more you can come in”.

        • Kazinski says:

          His comments are more directed at the problems Westerners bring with them when they move to Cambodia. Very few westerners move to the pristine places in Cambodia, and they don’t treat their elders as well as you do.

          You and your generation will make Cambodia a better place, despite all the westerners that come here to try to drink themselves into an early grave.

          • anonymous says:

            There are already lots of problems, ie pollution, decadence, war, filth, immorality in Asia before the arrival of Westerners.
            It is pointless for Westerners trying to solve those too many disgusting Asian problems.

        • bigj2 says:

          hmmm make it 8, you forgot infestation with jumped up, two bit, snotty brats

        • Michael Sells says:

          Many Asians, especially Thais, are racists. I currently live in Bangkok, Thailand. I am a Black male who keeps being rejected for work as a teacher, because of my skin color. Despite me being a native English speaker, Thais rather be educated by teachers with white skin, whether they are native speakers or not. I noticed that many Black Americans rather live in Cambodia than Thailand. Why is that? I am one of very few Black Americans living in Bangkok. Since living here, I have met less than 10 Black Americans out of a population of 8 million. Several Africans live here, but Black Americans do not care for Thailand.

          • KKK says:

            Now if only what you say, were true in the USA.

          • Jim says:

            You are not getting a job as an English teacher because your English is not good enough – “less than 10″ ?? Try “fewer than”.

          • what says:

            If you’re black and try to pick up a girl in Cambodia good luck, you’ll be paying 3x the price if she’s pro and probably laughed at and denied if she’s not.

            Azns in general don’t like black people because
            – superstitions “omg, black like darkness he bad luck”
            – the darker you are, the poorer you are in most asian countries because it means you work outside and do farm labor
            – reputation of 3rd world scamming Africans that migrate to Asia and cause problems just read any Bangkok news and type in ‘nigerian arrested’

            Philippines might be different they are more muricanized

          • George Rockwell says:

            That’s very true. Black men, especially Black men that like money and like getting laid on a regular basis by attractive women, should probably steer clear of Asia. I speak from experience, did time in Japan and Taiwan.

            Cambos and Thais are ugly as fuck anyway.

          • charls dixi says:

            I lived in BKK for many years and I know why people do not like black Americans. I asked several people what they were telling me is that black American they do not respect their law , for example in subway they just cut the people in line to enter the train, or the same situation in supermarket, they like to listen to loud music (like rap), the music that Thai people do not like.I know that you might not be like this or may be many black American might not be like this but already few bad apples screwed up big time.

          • Bmc says:

            I agree with u 100%, Thai people are racist to darker skin people.

          • len crowley says:

            I love Thailand , but any place that sells as manny lotions with dye in them as Thailand to have some issues…. Thais are too proud, but at the same time very uneducated . THEY ARE VERY CONFUSSED ……Still in Thailand ?

        • anonymous says:

          It is not only Asian have parents. Westerners too have parents to take care of. Asians are so selfish. Westerners are expected to pay so much for everything in Asia that is so shabby.
          I think it is wrong for Asians to presssure Westerners to waste and spend so much and unneccessarily in Asia.

          • bob huey says:

            You leave me speechless…

          • kanchanburilady says:

            Who asked you to come to Asia? It is the law of the land – pay more if you are farang and here in our land. No need to pay extra, if you stay home. Enjoy with you big cow!
            Take care na.

          • Thomas says:

            It’s not like that you are being a bit too general. Kanchanaburilady (what is she doing on a Khmer forum BTW I thought Thais hate Cambodians?) is a racist and of course you can easily pay what you’re supposed to except when dealing with national parks, some museums and temples that have official dual pricing.

            Simple – don’t visit. And maybe encourage your own government to implement dual pricing for Asian visitors – LOL. Maybe it will work.

        • [email protected] says:

          Sorya, congrats on your honesty and courage to rebutt. I was born in Singapore, moved to Canada for 25 years and now retired from my Hospital career to teach English. Firstly for 9 months in N. Thailand and recently moved to P.P. to help a Singaporean Canadian friend’s new NGO training village young people culinary skills and English to get jobs in the F&B Industry.
          Yes, most expats come for the booze, easy sex, young wifes/girlfriends etc…too bad…..
          Then there are the rest who come wanting to learn the Culture and hope to contribute to helping Cambodians esp the young ones to get skills so as to enable them to live a better life in the future.
          I admire your insight and perspective on Life.

          Keep kicking Young Person!

          ‘Jackie Chan’ Wannabee

    • Chinamite says:

      Ha ha very funny,bitch.

    • GK says:

      Go fuck yourself! Who ever talk bad about Cambodia. Hey, every countries have crimes, poor people and uneducated like u. Cambodia is the great plase to raise the kids. We raise the kids to appriciate their parents, family and the country. We teach our kids to be a good person and the value of hard work. We are Cambodian, we love each other. We are always put our family first. We are always stick together no matter what happen as a family. We are not selffish like some people who think it is all about them. May be some people doesn’t know what a family is that is why they are such hater. Hater is a Bitch. One more thing, fuck u.

      • Sarah says:

        I would be offended, too, if I lived in Cambodia. Clearly the article was not intended to be kind or complimentary so it makes no sense to defend it or cause further insult. It is racist. There are problems in every country, but people remain in those countries because there are other aspects they love. No one enjoys having their country represented solely by its problems. The additional insults and name-calling is simply showing your immaturity to the Cambodians. It is not making Cambodia look bad, it makes the rest of the world look intolerant.

      • Rita says:

        My Dear JK,

        Please show your true and real Cambodian Noble qualities by avoiding bad words such as fuck, bitch. Let us show the nobleness of Cambodia to the world by good deeds and words.

        • Paul Pot says:

          Fuck you bitch !! Maybe it is because Khmer people are so damn kind and polite that they’re always screwed up by foreigners. Your noble qualities make you weak and fuckable susy sunshine. I’m french. Come to my country, I’ll show you politeness. Don’t fuck wit us !!

          • Srey Nec says:

            Come on, Paul Pot!You don’t have to come to this page to curse. You can actually do it on the street! Ok Ok Ok, before you throw a bunch of curse words at me, I surrender!

      • CG says:

        Dear GK, dear Sara and others! I trust the author of this article had completely different idea – he is trying to protect Cambodian of influx of useless, unscrupulous and even harmful people who do not bring with any quality, any new skills, any new opportunities for the country that will help khmers, but even more troubles. Do you need more bars, more drunk people, more drugs traffic, more old westerns, hungry for having sex with your young hungry people?

        I’ve lived in your hospitable land for four months last year. I got to know the land and the sincerity and warmth of hearts, your way ot thinking and the real causes of many of problems. I had the opportunity to be a guest on the Khmer home, to be invited to weddings and funerals, eat and talk with local people most of the time. Im not blind – I can see and understand why it is as it is now.

        And Im worrying every day – how to protect this wonderful country, and the fragile beautiful inhabitants against attacks of neglect, abuse,against invasion of the brutal world …….how to keep in safe all this good you have in your land? I dream to come back – but first I must to find what you need really what I can bringwith me…. Dont ask whoever to come to your country, Keep yourself in safe.

        • LENG says:

          I acknowledge you deep understanding about Cambodia. We don’t deny all the author wrote, but he don’t actually well understood the difficulties through which Cambodian have passed. We warmly welcome those who come with heart to make this land better and this land may not be very good place for you sexual purpose.

        • george says:

          GC…i think you are the second coming…

      • alan says:

        you are very well cambodia educated it seems
        i dont want my children to trash talk like you

      • HS-Gulla Havlo says:

        I would never move to Cambodia – Reason your Goverment is Completely appalling, stealing from your own citizen, making the guilty become the innocent/ making the inoccent the guilty. how can you properly raise a child not Born in cambodia ? i know you remember before the activity was outlawed , about child SEX SLAVES in cambodia , and police did not do anything ? now they say outlawed, but still there are child sex workers…no thanks, your country woman only belive in make up , and part party, but most complain of beaning poor or living in poverty , then stop wasting your money you need on fun party’s every night , i know thier is poverty in cambodia and i feel sad for the ones who actually live in poverty and cant help it , most Cambodians can change there poverty status yet they have many excuses, only reason why foreigner go to cambodia is to , FUCK, DRINK, DRUGS nothing ells, your country has no Stability, dont get me Wrong Cambodia is a beautiful country and rich in Culture , and your government is leading you to further problems , solution , put down the drink, get up look for a job , dose not matter what it is (keep it legal of course ) and don’t quit the next day , keep doing it , don’t start a family if you cannont support them i have many Cambodian friends they tell me don’t come here, because Cambodian men only like wealth , and Cambodian woman seek only wealth from men , Cambodians education some areas is great i have to admit , but the younger children from grades 1 – 8 not sure why they bother going to school? if they are not going to be instructed well, i feel sorry for Cambodian children all time and pray for them, they should not live a life , like that …..these are my thoughts i have nothing against Cambodia …

    • Ed says:

      It’s so obvious the writer of this article actually knows very little about Cambodia. I wonder if he’s ever even been there. This article is so inaccurate! Please do not make “any” decisions about Cambodia on anything written by this guy.

    • Charlie says:

      Fucking outstanding so so true but some of us are gluten for punishment.

    • Cynthia says:

      This article is a LOAD OF CRAP! I have lived in Cambodia…. I am a female professional; I was the manager on a cruise ship traveling the Mekong. I would disagree with 95% the statements made in this article. I had few expat friends my friends were Cambodian, and they are some of the nicest people of know. The food was great with lots of selection, there is lots to see and do in Phnom Penh. There are private clinics with Western Doctors. Good shopping and if you are an expat ….with kids ….of course you would send your kids to private school! What expat living in any developing national would send their kids to a local school???? It is quite obvious from the article that you are a stupid American! Stay in US where you belong… watching your brainwashing TV shows, eating your processed GMO food and taking your prescribed medications!

      • kanchanburilady says:

        Excellent Cynthia! I am also a female 40years, ex-gogo bar girl. Today I own two disco clubs. No shame in talking about my past, I worked hard for what I have now. I do pay tax as employer now. Managing my clubs for last 8years and taking care of 2 more of my friends’. Traveled to US, Oz and Europe too besides others. Food there simply sucks, they are ignorant of taste. Only food I could appreciate was in Mexico.

        Why farangs are in Asia? Is it not for happiness? But they need to pay. If you are afraid of living shorter, go back to your ‘safe den’.

        Leaving out this article, let me tell one bare, bottom-line truth: Farangs cannot live without Asian ladies. Simply cannot. Leave out the reasons, but that is fact. If it is false, all hotels, airlines other scores of business would have crumbled long ago!

        If couple of ‘cheap charlies’ or ‘cannot pay’ farangs hate or write something false like this – nothing happens. There are millions of other farangs find their happy zones in Asia!

        Power of Asia ?? ‘LOVE’

      • Jan G says:

        Thank you Cynthia, Sorya and others who shed some realistic, positive light an Cambodia. I have been there twice before, on short visits, and loved it truly. Sure there are problems, it’s still recovering from the atrocities of civil war, which wiped out an entire generation. I, for one, am going back shortly, to help the impoverished get an education, free medicine and food. Even though I am older, and see many of my generation fall into the abyss of drugs, sex tourism and alcoholism, it’s hardly fair to generalize the intent of all who wish to remain useful to their fellow human beings, even after they are retired. I, for one, cannot stand the idea of sitting behind the geraniums, while the world is standing by and does very little to alleviate these problems.

    • Cynthia says:

      The person who wrote this article is an idiot! I have lived and worked in Cambodia. I did not work for an international company I worked for a Asian owned Cruise Ship Company. I made the same salary I would make in Canada. I agree that the health care is not so great but you are a quick & cheap flight to Bangkok. I loved Cambodia and would highly recommend it to anyone thinking about moving there! Here are reason to move there!

      1. Safety – Cambodia is very safe compared to North America
      2. Cost of living is cheap – A really nice furnished apartment costs about $800 to $1000 per month.
      3. Cambodian Staff are a “dream Team” the culture is one where they work as a team and help each other. They are very friendly and eager to learn.
      4. Cambodian Culture – Much better than Western!
      5. Natural Beauty – The country is really beautiful
      7. Food – non GMO fruit and vegetables

      I think your comments about drug use and prostitution is absurd because if someone was going to live this type of lifestyle is doesn’t matter where they live they will die young!

      • Bmc says:

        I agree 100% with u Cynthia, the person who wrote this article is being racist to Cambodia. Cambodia is full of kindness people even tho they are poor. I see most young people in America joined gang and selling drugs. In places like Los Angeles and so on!

      • valdo says:

        Cambodia is “safe”till something happens.Neighbour in hotel where I stayed was robed so violently that he had to be transferred to neurosurgery in Bangkok.And it was me who called his embassy Owner was threatening him and just wanted 800 dollars for his uninsured motorcykle.Beautiful country where many poor guys have many weapons.See Angor wat?Yes.But to move in?

    • ensithan says:

      what do you thinks about about the guy who writing this ?? he so fuck up .. he love drug he stupid by him self and he complaining to other ..

    • phnom penh says:

      come and visit cambodia .. there is the county of moving on and everything is improving ..we dont care what are guy look badly on us ..but we always keep moving every body do things to build the life better and better everyday .. is you not believe me you came try come to see phnom penh try to get aways 6 monht latter you will get lose … because things are changing really fast ,, the guy write this 7 shit reason am sure he just been in lake side or around street 51 sorya golden male having shit job and stupid ugly one …you can see anything s better because you fuck up … i am cambodia woman i am work very hard ready for stand up for our future and do all my best to goiving a great life for my lovely 2 smart chirdren ..

  2. Vibe18 says:

    Yup true, if you’re dumb as fuck.

  3. JK-47 says:

    Not sure on the raising a child part. I enjoyed the rest though. I can’t wait for the Khmer women on their (prada) high horses to get wind of the article.

  4. chris says:

    QUOTE: ” If you start choking in a restaurant in Cambodia, the locals will all stand around dumbfounded and stare at you until you turn blue and collapse on the floor. Only then will one of them spring into action and attempt to revive you by vigorously rubbing tiger balm on your forehead.”

    ABSOLUTE CLASSIC, LOL!! ;-)

    Best post yet!

    • lee hafford says:

      They do the same in Thailand,my sister in law got run over by a truck and the whole village stood around while 1 rubbed tiger balm on her head,i put her in my truck and took her to hospital.

      • Mike says:

        Do you live close to the Cambodian Border? Maybe its influencing the behavior.

        • smallmoon says:

          hey man , u are so rude.

        • pig-rabbit says:

          I don’t say what u said is all wrong. But it’s too much to think of it as behavior. Well most people in Cambodia don’t know how to do first aid but that doesn’t mean they intend to just stand and watch. Don’t you know doing first aid without having been trained is dangerous?

          Moreover, many many developing countries in this world are mostly the same since education and training is limited? Don’t you dare to say only Cambodian that do so!

      • Michael Sells says:

        I agree with you. I have never been to Cambodia, but I live in Bangkok, Thailand. Thais are so backwards and evil people. First and foremost, they are racist ass fuckers who hate dark skin. Second, they are very ignorant and intolerant just like whites in Western countries. Third, Thailand is no better than Cambodia when it comes to education, infrastructure, quality of life, and financial security. Thais are becoming just like Americans. I am Black American who was born in the 70s. I watched my country decline morally and financially, so I left. Cambodia has the opportunity to not fall into the same trap that Thailand is falling into. When ASEAN takes effect in 2015 and Asians from all over SEA will be able to descend into Thailand, especially Bangkok, not needing a visa or work permit, lets see how high minded and proud Thais are then. ASEAN is going to cripple Thailand just like NAFTA did the US. Even after reading this dreadful posting by an obviously racist, ignorant, drunken (takes one to know one), white male who had no intentions on making positive contributions to Cambodian society.

        • brian says:

          ^5! Well said. His article was deliberately demeaning. All of his comparisons referred to blacks, how convenient. A lot of Cambodians have dark skin.. Hmm I think you honed in on his racist overtones.

        • Amokaxen says:

          Michael Sells, I’m completely agree with your opinion. The greater racist in the humanity has found in North America and Europe. All these freeloaders and Western drunks come to Thailand and Cambodia for sex with young girls, because not women like them in they countries and their souls are rotten and service of Satan.

          Very few as is your case comes to educate, help youth either Thai or Cambodian and of course adapted to the model of life and customs of the country as is my and your own case. God bless you in every instant of the day!!!

          • anonymous says:

            If you all racist and supremacist Asians don’t know how to educate your young ones, please don’t breed so many of them.

          • Starre says:

            Amokaxen, take your generalisations and racism about white people and shove them where the sun doesn’t shine. When travelling around SEA and the world, I’ve noticed all races with the problems you speak of and more. I’ve also noticed many decent people trying to help the lot of indigenous populations through health care, education and charity. It’s a global community in the 21st century – get used to it, you racist cockhead

        • Pet.th says:

          You can find all the bad and all the goods anywhere in the world or even in your own family. Ones having great nice experience here and there will say something really good about it and ones having bad experience saying something opposite.
          People are good for some and also are bad for some but it does not mean that the white or western people are much better or civilized than the color people. Comments over something true are good for those who seek info for their consideration buy please do not blame the whole country. I do not understand why you had such a very bad experience in Thailand and so I wonder how you behave there; a well educated American or a rude and junk rubbish from US.

        • Pet.th says:

          Michael,

          Not sure if you are still in Thailand, or if you happen to come again, please let me know.

          I will show you something in Thailand that you have no clues at all before.

          Your hometown is Bronx, New York, right? It’s so so so good, I’ve been there quite often.

          Cheers,

        • Thomas says:

          You are wrong. ASEAN will NOT allow freedom of movement of labor. Only for a few skilled professionals. It will change almost nothing. You’ve got a lot of good points but you’re kidding yourself if you think that AEC 2015 will allow European Union style freedom of movement. With Singapore being one of the richest countries in the world and Cambodia one of the poorest located in the same economic block, you can rest assured that freedom of movement will still be far, far away because Singapore certainly doesn’t want nor can it absorb 15 million poor Cambodians.

      • philyate says:

        And then blamed by the police for causing the accident simply because you are farang!

    • Tim says:

      Funny? I suppose a little bit. Also extremely racist, and a huge generalisation.

      I assume (from the name gavinmac) that this article is written by a Westerner who is living/ has lived in Cambodia.

      I can’t help but feel this article is written from a first person perspective, and that all the negativity in it is really just a diary from the sort of person that the author implies emigrates there.

      If you live in a foreign country, at least show your host nation a modicum of gratitude for letting you stay there?

    • Norm says:

      I agree, fanatastic – Cambodians are a useless bunch of people

    • kt says:

      ahahahahaha this did make me chuckle…..so true!!! :)

    • Joker says:

      That is funny LOL, you have such a good joke.
      There is a not quote: When I was aboard, my bag was stolen. Some don’t-give-a-shit-atitude chic westerners saw the actions, nobody gave a damn to scream or to stop a thief till I figured out and asked if they saw a thief and they replied they saw the action and thief walked to a direction… (thank to them :x)

      Absolute individual….

      The sarcasm of joker

    • WTF says:

      it’s call culture shocks bitch……

  5. pedro says:

    Genius, pure genius.

    Face it baby I don’t want to live for ever.

    • Bousong says:

      No, this article related to some of fake news which make Cambodia’s face become worst. It’s so WRONG! Try to find another news beside this one.

  6. Dermot Sheehan says:

    It’s a very astute take, I hope the word spreads.

  7. williagra says:

    The Mac is back! In prime form. So funny because it’s so true. Makes me feel guilty for returning next month.

  8. Sweeney Todd says:

    Getting sorted for one’s Brit-pension is a breeze.

    Simply contact

    pension ([email protected]/

    and pay off all your arrears and pony up the dosh to cover the
    future – 30 years’ worth of contributions in total
    is the requirement – and there you are!

  9. ket says:

    interesting… but don’t forget that the EU is on a death bed right just awaiting for the break-up … can’t hide a dead elephant behind a tray… the US is no better shape the moment the federal reserve decides to quit printing the devalue dollars the whole economy will collapse and riots will ensue and that is why DHS have been buying 2 billions [ yes a B ] ammo and a hundred of armor trucks….

  10. Jordi says:

    Hilarious, and so funny if it weren’t so true. But you forgot one other all-pervading odour – durian, which sadly smells of a very uhealthy shit.

  11. Logos says:

    Vintage Gavinmac, thanks for the laughs. My favourite lines are “Some have even started a Yahoo group called the “Cambodia Parent Network,” where they exchange tips on how to raise their doomed offspring in a country where no responsible Western parent would ever voluntarily raise a child. Cambodia Parent Network? Good grief. That’s like starting the Chernobyl Gardening Club”.

    I will be eagerly waiting for the inevitable sequel : seven reasons why you should move to Cambodia. I guess it will be somewhat easier to find consensual reasons. And I am willing to bet that sex and booze will rank highly among those.

  12. Vlad says:

    LOL, all true, but it begs one question: why is gavinmac here? He must know that there’s no cure for his advanced Russianmarketitis by now, right?

  13. Sweeney Todd says:

    Honesty requires an admission:

    Brit pensions can only legally be sent to a limited number of countries.

    A certain bit of fast-footing (and lying) is needed to send your pension from its billet in a bank in Ruritania to the ANZ in Snookyville so you can continue your good work providing food and drink to bargirls.

  14. Jeff McNeill says:

    Brilliant, brilliant!

  15. Aleks says:

    Some good points. However:

    *If one establishes a small business that brings stable income (no less than $2000 p/month), you can afford a comfortable lifestyle and there are a couple of decent hospitals in town.Who says your only option is teaching for $9/hr???Even then PROPERLY qualified teachers can make over $2K in places like ISPP.

    *Agreed.If one already has a Thai gf – best to break up, and perhaps settle down with a Khmer woman, once you’re there?

    * Far from all of the people I met in Cambodia are drunks/junkies. Many decent,intelligent and pleasant people.

    * Dying at 57? Exercise. Don’t do drugs/drink excessively/smoke. Find several hobbies that’ll fill up your day.
    *Get a decent Khmer lady to fill in the night, or…..ok whoremongering isn’t too bad imo.
    Plus, tbh ,I’d rather die in an exotic country, having lived an exciting life, that dying as an 80 yr old wreck at an elderly home in a Western country!….”More porridge,Mr. Smith?”…..ewwwww

    • paul says:

      I agree with Aleks 100% I am a Canadian thinking about moving to south east for a while and Cambodia is one of the top choices.

      • Khmer291 says:

        Cambodia is a developing country that has just been through wars recently so if you expect it to be as good as a third world country(developed country) it can’t be the same. Clearly it shows that this article was written from a subjective perspective of a person and if you’re really planning to move to Cambodia you should do a bit more of research on this topic. And one thing that bugs me about this article is that it only stated the negatives of Cambodia; furthermore, not everything he said is true. Such as life expectancy (63% not 57%), becoming an alcoholic (really depends on the person. Ex: you lose all your money to a casino, it’s you who decides to go), dying from disease (One of the well-known hospitals ‘Kantha Bopha’ cures thousands of kids each year with free of charge) etc..
        Of course everything has the bads and goods, from my experience as a Canadian-Cambodian I’ve heard so many things about my country through different people. I have many anglophone friends and teachers who have asked/told me why Cambodia is one of the countries in poverty, but what got my attentions was that why people are still going to Cambodia? then I asked one of my professors in my college who had traveled to Cambodia. He told me, Cambodia is a place for people who love nature, it has the beautiful beach that takes only about 4 hours from the city by driving, mountains, Angkor(One of the wonders of the world). and a hot weather all year. And if you’re a type of person who likes to do hiking, mount climbing, there’s also a calm place in the rural area ‘Ratanakiri’ and ‘Mondulkiri’ where it’s full of mountains everywhere with clear blue skies and birds singing. he said one of the main reasons that people keep going/going-back to Cambodia is because there’s no tax and everything is considerably cheap. FYI: in ‘Siem Reap'(province 5hrs from the city) you’ll find 50% tourists and 50% cambodians and it’s far less likely to see accidents than the city, and tourists actually go to Siem Reap more than going to the city (Phnom Penh)

        • Brad says:

          @Khmer291

          “Cambodia is a developing country that has just been through wars recently” – yes this is an argument being used for 30 years, perhaps “recently” is a little outdated and I wonder for how many more decades would this be the major point of defense for all Cambodians.

          Your arguments lack validity – there are no logical links between what you use as for supporting your claims, and your claims. E.g.: “…so if you expect it to be as good as a third world country(developed country) it can’t be the same. Clearly it shows that this article was written from a subjective perspective of a person…”

          What what? What does show that the article was written from a subjective perspective? How come a third world country is called developed country (in brackets)?

          Sorry, your set of sentences make no sense in the effort of sugar coating the obvious and defending your country even against hard evidence.

          The author has done his research and gave an insight that matches the experience of most, however you are right at least partly – he has not provided us with a link to the life expectancy data – just as you failed to do so.
          But at least the author does know that life expectancy figures come in years and not percentage – so before calling for more research, try to do your own.

          I am surprised that you don’t understand a simple thing: if an article is about seven reasons why NOT to move to Cambodia, why on Earth one should write about positive things? Have you ever seen positive things that would make people consider NOT staying in a country? I for one haven’t. But okay, call this semantics.

          I would like to see at least some reference when you state something is not true, such as a quote from the original article with the challenged part (see my quotes above). No one said in the original post that people will become alcoholic in Cambodia, even though you have good chances to become one.

          My favourite one is this: (you say its not true) “…dying from disease (One of the well-known hospitals ‘Kantha Bopha’ cures thousands of kids each year with free of charge) etc.”

          This is friggin great, so tell me how can I pretend to be a toddler and be admitted to this fantastic hospital if I need the world class quality and free services of Kantha Bopha?

          “Cambodia is a place for people who love nature, it has the beautiful beach that takes only about 4 hours from the city by driving…” You got to be kidding, man. You can drive from the Thai border to Phnom Penh and see nothing but rice fields. While at times they are green, they are not even close to anything that is considered nature. 2/3 of your forests disappeared since 1990 and have been transformed into Lexus and Ranger Rover cars and what not.
          That’s the real Cambodian nature that one can see everywhere.

          Beautiful beach? Well, perhaps in Canada there are not many beaches – so your ignorance about a beautiful beach is forgivable. Only 4 hours from the city? Great for a day trip, 8 hours on the great Cambodian highway just to have a dip in the sea on a less than appealing beach.
          Try to travel in the region to have an experience about nature and beautiful landscapes.

          “he said one of the main reasons that people keep going/going-back to Cambodia is because there’s no tax and everything is considerably cheap” He said that from the perspective of a well paid professor in Canada who surely could afford the usual 3 day trip to Angkor and wont mind paying even 2$ for a can of beer.

          Has it ever occurred to you that your fellow (non-Canadian) Cambodians make 70-100$ a month? If anything is cheap in this country is because these underpaid people should survive. So what they eat is cheap by Western standards. But eating that is not always advisable for foreigners to follow unless they have good antibiotics at hand.

          It’s really amusing how you observed the obvious: “and tourists actually go to Siem Reap more than going to the city (Phnom Penh)” And do you know why? I tell you. They want to see Angkor Wat – for 2-3 days – then escape back to civilization. Google up the data, it’s there. 2-3 days, not more.
          And by the way there is tax – while not a very high one. Just enough to make a 9$ hourly pay 8$ net.

          So there is only your ultimate question in your post remain left to answer: “….why people are still going to Cambodia?”

          If you have read the original post carefully, there are answers to your question. And there is no single answer. People come here for a number of reasons. Some shift from Thailand due to the cleaning up operations of the Thai immigration. Not sure this does any good to your country.

          There is a simple general answer though. The immigration policy is pretty simple and straightforward (and quite Cambodian I would say): pay and stay. If you speak English, you can find a teaching job, regardless your thick accent that no student will understand just smile at you like idiots. And you can make 9$ with that per hour. If you have some teaching qualifications then you can earn more than that and you still won’t have to be a college graduate. How cool is that?
          Some other people come here to get volunteer experience and a paragraph in their CV-s that would look cool one day in a future job interview.

        • brian says:

          I completely agree. My wife is Cambodian American who escaped the Khmer Rouge as a child and much of her family still lives there. They have thriving businesses, multiple houses and are not living impoverished lives. While the countries facilities, infrastructure, etc., may not be up to Western standards, they are holding their own. Korea is investing a lot of money into this country, who only recently started to impose some taxes. They are a war-torn country without an abundance of natural resources and tax revenue from citizens and businesses. Much of the Cambodians I know, family members included, are kind-hearted and caring. Every country and every culture has it’s good and bad points, so doing research before you move anywhere should automatically be part of the normal decision making process.

          Instead of pointing out only the negatives and contributing to the problem this country is facing, the author who I assume is speaking from His personal failures and lifestyle experiences, should have included some of the positive aspects of living in the country and be part of the solution to improve it and not simply focus on the problems. Much of what he said may be true, but the way in which he presented them were very demeaning and insulting.

          • anonymous says:

            Why should foreign tourists from non-asian countries being forced to pay so much just to visit their horrible asian country? I know they make people who have litte money to spend feel uncomfortable and unwelcome. Everything is a rip off. They charged so exhorbitantly just to sit in their riketty tuk-tuk. Yes, they are a war torn asian country but still they should not behave that way.

    • gary says:

      I agree with Alex, the seven reasons is a bunch of sensationalist garbage, that you can regurgitate because you are probably on some sort of payroll from a western government, to dribble this crap.

    • Korn says:

      Good points.

    • KKK says:

      Good comment, and great observation. I applaud you!

  16. NoseHair Bob says:

    Well observed.
    Didn’t know we’d met.

  17. Kakynologyst says:

    Haha.. this is really funny

  18. Sweeney Todd says:

    “Dying as an octogenarian wreck in a ‘care home’ back in Blighty?”

    Better to end it all by jumping the fence in a crocodile farm in Southeast Asia.

    Or a simple overdose.

  19. Sweeney Todd says:

    Aleks obviously has a five-star British care home in mind.

    More likely to be heard is – Filipina-accented –

    “Has this one had his porridge yet?”

    • Chic-FIL-a says:

      Excuse me? I’m a Filipino care giver and not all Filipinos have this what you call “Filipino Accent”? Without us Filipinos you probably are nothing.. We are everywhere coz’ we ain’t losers baby! There is at least 1 Filipino in every corner of the globe, guess why? Because we work it shawty!

    • Brad says:

      You know why? Bcoz all the fat ass girls from UK prefer “volunteering” here instead of taking a honest job in an elderly home. :) (replace volunteering with any 4 letter words of your liking)

  20. Gabiris says:

    In the EU there r countries where u would be really content 2 make 9 USD per hour teaching English… present rates are 6-7-8 USD per hour in: Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Slovenia… :(
    A great cartoon of a sort, more than slight exaggeration skills though!
    :D

  21. LTO says:

    A sound warning to potless, under-skilled, uninsurable drunks with young kids, no impulse control, Thai girl friends and a penchant for local transportation, don’t move to Cambodia. It is not the land of milk and honey portrayed in the guide books.

  22. olol says:

    Its funny cuz its true!

  23. derek says:

    Lived in the outbacks near to the border for 20 years and it is kmen speaking . been a few time to Cambodia and it seems to be OK

  24. Pinnochio says:

    You say bad thing about Cambodia. You bad person. I no like you.

    • robert says:

      I like the way you said YOU BAD PERSON you say bad things about Cambodia. I really had to laugh. But I have to admit, I wouldn’t like to live there permanently. I have been to Phenom Phen 3 times, I find it very dusty and really the only time one can go out, is at night due to the excessive heat.

    • Bobby Borisov says:

      Yes, this person its a bad shit. Cambodia is a easy going country, the people are smiling there are friendly as well. You can easy stay in Cambodia, sure for backpackers is different . I like Cambodia and have been 20 Years . And who dont like Cambodia invite him to kiss my ass and straight to the airport !

  25. graceMOMof4 says:

    Hi, it is obvious you hold bitterness and resentment with Cambodia. Maybe a few bad experiences along the way that pierced your heart and scarred you for life? However, I have to disagree in areas that stood out to me. First of all your article really shouts out to “lets go to Cambodia for booze, drugs and women/men” for a good time type of people. I am a mom of 4,have lived here for 10 years. Yes,some of the things about the medical issues are true,but they are improving in areas that you probably haven’t cared to check into, coz you have already made up your mind on how you view this country. The education here in international schools are actually more advanced in their curriculum, but u probably don’t know that coz u probably have no kids? I would raise my kids here again if I had to do over. You have enough nerve calling parents who sacrifice the comfortable living and amenities of the western world to come to this lost country,TERRIBLE and SELFISH. Yes Cambodia has a tremendous amount of years to recover and rebuild on what they once had, but my family and I are here because we believe this country has hope and we are just one of the many here who want to help the people help themselves.

    • JimInCambodia says:

      You (and all the rest who take offense to this article) truly are idiots who are unable to distinguish an encyclopedia entry from a witty poke-fun-at-stuff article. And your poor grammar, punctuation and spelling skills do not help you convey your point at all.

      • llyallanshaw says:

        what a westernised prick you are! go back to the usa with your mc’d and kfc! and leave the natural preserved country that has not been deformed by dick’s like you ALONE! the Western world is full of rules and leaves people without choice…my biggest hate is how control is used…and to live a life of freedom and choice is happiness…. money is just a shitty piece of paper! oh and FYI….Depression is more likely to strike in high-income countries than in poor ones! FACT! Negative wankers! why are all people from the USA pricks! and i have been exploring the world for many years, i have lived in Cambodia and many other places in asia!

        • Jocentaur says:

          I am an American who loves Cambodia. You are correct, most Americans are xenophobes (a.k.a. pricks) and would do well by experiencing life in a less isolated country. Perhaps many Americans would learn something about the world at large and most importantly, about themselves and gain a degree of humility. My partner (a Cambodian and naturalized American citizen) and I have a small home in Phnom Penh. Presently, we live in one of America’s most corrupt states, Florida. Believe me, Cambodia has a brighter future than Florida or the rest of the United States! My son attends The University of Cambodia. Cambodia IS having growing pains, but I am optimistic about the future of this nation. I HAVE traveled, unlike most ignorant Americans (who actually BELIEVE what they hear on cable news channels.) Materialistic, shallow and ignorant Americans… pity them for they know few facts!

          • Jan G says:

            Thanks for pointing this out. I am D
            Dutch, lived in the US for thirty years and am now volunteering as an English teacher, moving to Cambodia next month and looking very much forward to it!

      • Saren says:

        Maybe it’s not that easy to distinguish between the two, especially when your right brain works faster than the left one. And if you were a Cambodian who has heard a lot about all kinds of shitty descriptions about the country and its people, you might just as well internalize it that maybe it’s true that we’re nothing, but pathetic survivors of the bloody Khmer Rouge who are not capable in making any progress at all.

        Maybe people who write “poke-fun-at-stuff article” should do more research on their topic beforehand in order to make sure they are not making fun of something/somebody who is made fun of so many times already.

        • sreyneang says:

          i am a cambodian girl, i am not a rich girl that can get high education as you guy but i have reason and understand about the fact in the daily life. you guy live in good life have not met anything as khmer people like about the poverty, education and war. we knew all these, how about you? you were born in good society have good leader with high education bot our country is completely different. think if you are educated or knowledgeable.
          this khmer girl idea
          for anonymous especially please think of our difficulty by helping us if not do not deceive other

    • getagrip says:

      ” The education here in international schools are actually more advanced in their curriculum”

      Yes….at $15k a year…..your reading comprehension sucks as much as your sense of humor……

      • sreyneang says:

        yes,because in public school we don’t have good teacher yet coz during pol pot time educated people were killed so now we have to start again from zero level

  26. xenon says:

    Grace… Gavinmac exaggerates. Probably for effect. Probably to elicit a response.

    Pardon me but you, however, are something else entirely. Nobody asked you to “sacrifice the comfortable living and amenities of the western world”. You call Cambodia a “lost country”. Are you some kind of messiah? “…help the people help themselves”? Get off your patronizing high horse. Cambodia does not need help from people like you – people who take more than they give.

    My apologies. I am sure you would find my comment unpleasant. If its any consolation, our kids are probably in the same school. ISPP? They probably also have the same doctors at Royal Rattanak. I have to thank people like you from NGOs, missionary groups, embassies and international organizations who enroll their kids at ISPP and have them treated at Rattanak. Otherwise, these facilities would not survive long and I would have had to leave my boy behind.

    Gavinmac is presenting one part of a colorful and much larger narrative. Yes. He paints a bleak picture (that of Sisowath Quay, Street 51 and Wat Phnom).

    That said, there is an even bleaker picture – that of the greed, selfishness and corruption in the NGOs and international organizations and their abject failure to help Cambodians.

    Myself, I am probably part of a much darker picture. That of foreigners who have come to Cambodia to take without giving anything back. The job pays well though, I get a subsidy for my son’s education and we have an international health plan that includes med-evac and, most importantly, I get along with my boss, who is also a foreigner.

    You, Gavinmac, myself and a lot of the readers here are part of this larger narrative. You do what you do. Let Gavinmac do what he does. I will keep on doing what I do. No need to be bitter about it.

    Why don’t you write an article about BKK1, St. 240, your hairdresser, your favorite spas, and boutique shops? Contribute to the discussion. Why not list 7 reasons why you should move to Cambodia or that sort of thing.

    I can only thank the Almighty Lord that there was no UN, UNHRC, Oxfam, Amnesty International, etc. during our westward expansion (killing Indian wholesale and pushing the survivors into reservations) in the 18th and 19th centuries otherwise the United States would not be as large as it is now or as powerful.

    Yes. Why don’t you bring your good work to Pine Ridge in South Dakota?

  27. Although i can found myself in a few things, 10 years of living here as brought me much more than the 7 reasons above… I have 2 kids here, one of them emergency hospitalized when he was 9 months old. Doctors did a great job, and yes, they were all local. All of the above you can waive. It all depends on your attitude. School will be expensive but isn’t it in the west also? So i raise my kids here, who are Cambodian/Dutch. So it means I am selfish. Perhaps i considered the choice but my government wouldn’t allow my wife to enter the country so taking them out of Cambodia would mean they see their mom only 6 months a year. Perhaps i analyzed my kids’happiness and found they are way more free, less restricted and happier in Cambodia then they would be in a country where camera’s catch your every move, where it rains 300 out of 365 days and where people rape children in day care all the time. Sorry dude, you’re full of shit on that one. Has nothing to do with bad parenting, all to do with choices we make that would make a family happier. And that choice of being happier for us is in Cambodia and you have not a single right to judge that. You found yourself 7 great reasons, so i suggest you follow them and stay away.

    My parents couldn’t be prouder of what we do here. Maybe your mother is just disappointed in you… I agree with point 6 and 7 though. We lost quite a few people to that kind of behavior, a lot actually. but that was their choice. They chose to get bored, get drunk and get laid with the wrong people. They died because of it. Country had nothing to do with that. Their own stupid perception of how beautiful life would be in paradise doing nothing killed them. I know, cause i knew all of them…

    • Jan G says:

      Nice Daniel, and thanks from a fellow Dutchman..moving to Cambodia next month to help the poor with free food, medicine and education, and not through some self serving NGO, mind you.

  28. Malcolm says:

    If you want an exciting and interesting life, you have to take risks. Otherwise you are doomed to a boring life.

    It strikes me that the post is mainly about life in Phnom Penh. PP isn’t Cambodia. I live in Siem Reap and I love it. I just hope that too many westerners don’t come and spoil it with burger bars, fish and chip shops and Irish theme pubs.

    • Mr Natural says:

      too late

      • Gavinmac says:

        Right, it would a real shame if Siem Reap got a crappy non-Irish owned Irish theme pub.

        • Panha says:

          @Gavinmac
          Base on your article, I think you are a very negative and uneducated person. You cannot generalize Cambodia based on your bad experience in this country. There also are many foreigners out there who come to Cambodia and they love it. If you want to compare Cambodia and Thailand. I think you forgot the fact that Cambodian people are much friendlier than those in Thailand who see all of you as walking dollar. If you go to the countryside in Cambodia, people will welcome you and even invite you to have meal with them too while in Thailand people just see you as idiot walking dollars. One more thing, if you compare Pattaya and Phnom Penh, I think Pattaya is much worse than Phnom Penh. There are a lot of drug dealers, gangs, prostitutes, alcohols and more importantly Pattaya is known as the prostitute city. I think you should do more research if you want to compare Cambodia with Thailand.

  29. mr.norway says:

    God stuff. A lot of he same reasons I use for moving to norway. God schools, god healthcare, money and so on.
    Thanks

  30. Roger says:

    I almost drifted away from K4… then GavMac woke up! and it all got entertaining again. Your a funny guy “smiles”

  31. Roger says:

    Go Gav…. your a legend

  32. father says:

    Gav, you are too much! Much of what you say is true, but a lot is totally over the top and serious crap!

    Go home please and leave us dying in peace!

  33. UKKY says:

    Good read, love the adverse comments, you can almost see their hair moving as it goes over their heads.
    The item that does ring too true is the mum bit, I would be back in Cambodia now except its not fair to leave an 86 year old mum behind with no one. Tricky situation, but family first.

  34. sidneywho says:

    You hit the nail on the head. You forgot to mention the weather is freaking hot. I was born in Cambodia and have been living in California for 25 years, but I would not move back due to what you’ve mentioned above. I visited Cambodia in 2009 and I was shocked to see the price tag of a broom at the supermarket for $7, when I could buy it here in California for $2. I make $6000 per month here as a computer programmer and the programmer in Cambodia makes $300. How could they afford to buy a $7 broom? No, I did not buy the broom. I gave money to those starving kids instead. I could not swallow the food there. They’re unhygienic there. It is funny to read your article and other people’s comments. You make me laugh. Keep telling more joke about Cambodia.

    • sreyneang says:

      sidneywho
      i can’t believe that you are a cambodian,it is my first time to see a person like you. don’t ever think you still cambodian, but i am a cambodian. i live here i have to protect my homeland, i really don’t want to say something with you coz i felt useless with person like you don’t event have the feeling as a human.

      • Srey Nec says:

        sreyneang,

        you are being a little too defensive.

      • Thomas says:

        sreyneang is defending the practice of charging US$7 for a broom? I don’t get him, he is just babbling incoherently or is just a troll. sidneywho makes a point – Cambodia is nice for a visit, but living there would be a big pain. But of course you can always eat western and other foreign food to avoid getting a stomachache. I’ve almost never touched Cambodian food – it just doesn’t do justice to what you’ll find in Thailand or Vietnam. In any case the only Khmer food that I can think of is fish amok, which is pretty good. For everything else, you have so much variety in Phnom Penh, such as pizza, pasta, Indian, Chinese, SwissfoodCam, Tou Le Jours for bread and Joma for sandwiches etc. all of which is pretty good why bother with Khmer food?

  35. dotty says:

    maybe for some, living abroad is not about “improving” lifestyle, but to *change* it…

    its easy to go to cambodia (visa) and has plenty of opportunities for people, that want to open some guesthouse, bar or whatever…

  36. Gavinmac says:

    I’d like to take this opportunity to apologize to the following people whom I may have offended with this article:

    Cambodian doctors
    Shifty-eyed sexpats from Thailand
    E-book authors
    St. 136 bar owners
    Stupid accident prone children
    The Ku Klux Klan
    NoseHair Bob
    The Walkabout Bar and Hotel
    Opportunistic Isaan girlfriends
    Alcoholic expats
    Cambodia Parent Network
    Those losers from Detroit
    People who live near Russian Market
    Pedophiles
    The makers of tiger balm
    Pattaya balcony jumpers
    Journalists
    and The Chernobyl Gardening Club

    • andy says:

      Apologies accepted ;-)

    • Lord Playboy says:

      I am sure that list is incomplete…

    • Dirty Expat (Dirty for short) says:

      Guys… Why all the negativity? Amid all of this tension and ATTENTION I have to make just one plug for one of my favorite places in all of Phnom Penh. Rory’s Irish Pub, Guesthouse and Tattoo Parlor (St 178 near National Museum) is one of the most authentically shitty places I have ever been too but you have to respect the glum atmosphere. A guy named Rory from Ireland but don’t worry because he is long gone. Now it is run by two creepy Americans who collectively have the personality somewhere between sandpaper and serial killer. I recommend you don’t make it a regular spot but it definitely isn’t bad for one drink and a sick laugh. It is a truly fucked up place, especially for the unsuspecting backpackers that end up staying there.

    • Sattrey Khmer says:

      You cannot just leave an apology. Your article has already defamed Cambodia. You’d better remove your article.

  37. Happiness Here says:

    Scant mention of Cambodia’s true treasure: the people. For years, I have been integrated with a Khmer family and gradually have become to know larger and larger numbers, now close to 100. I help them financially when problems occur, often too often I know, but the government is impervious to their grief, they say.

    The people are warm, funny, courageous, intelligent, resourceful, and respectful. They are all doing what they can to survive, but find they live with a lot of malignant forces operating to keep them subdued. They learn nothing about the outside world and are fed the party line as to what is happening to their own country.

    Certainly, there are times when I have been exploited, lied to, etc, but that has also happened to me travelling throughout Europe. This country is a three-legged elephant struggling to stand again and not being helped so much, despite all the press about aid. The stories of the poor people are horrifying and reveal the powerlessness they feel.

    As I write this, I am regaled for ten hours a day at ear-blasting political music and speeches smothering my neighborhood. Banks of loud speakers have decided what I shall listen to all day long, starting at 6.30am. As with so many aspects, others decide, and not often in the best interests of the Khmers being affected.

    But despite the problems, the resilience of the people is outstanding, as is their display of their nature. They are warm people but cautious, for they have little and are always fearful they will lose it all at the whim of an official. How can they endure yet remain happy and smiling? They learn to let things slide.

    • Soi Dog says:

      quote ” For years, I have been integrated with a Khmer family and …. I help them financially when problems occur, often too often I know”.

      Help me out financially “too often” and I will pretend to like you, too.

    • Peter Hogan says:

      “I help them financially when problems occur, often too often I know….”

      So…Mr Money Tree, do you honestly, for a fleeting second, think that this gang of spongers would give a rat’s ass about your welfare if you were potless?

      • anonymous says:

        That is the problem with most selfish Asian societies. It is usually very unstable and very hostile to people who need help. Most Asians only like to help those well-off tourists. That gives a false impressions about their often cruel Asian culture. It is very difficult to get help even from well-off Asians when you are in need or in distress even though you were generous with those Asians in the past.

        • Thomas says:

          You have a point but it’s very general. What you say is fairly true about developing societies like Cambodia, but in Singapore or Malaysia, Hong Kong and other fairly developed places you will be helped.

          Even in Thailand depending on the circumstances. Actually my friend was helped in Cambodia too, but then again it’s not as if he couldn’t have helped himself in that instance (after a minor motorcycle accident).

  38. Rob says:

    I’ve lived here for 7 years. I work online and make $2,000-$4,000 a month. It’s enough to take care of a large family, send the children to school and pay medical expenses. I don’t have many Western friends because getting blind drunk and/or stoned every day isn’t my idea of a good time. It’s made up for, though, by my lovely family and the few friends I do have. Even with all my responsibilities, I have a better lifestyle than I’d have in Australia on my own, where rent, taxes, food, transportation, etc. would eat up my income.

    That said, I agree that moving to Cambodia is a bad idea for most. You have to be able to adapt if you want to stay happy.

    • Soi Dog says:

      Apparently “adapting” on this forum means giving lots of money to locals.

      • Bernhardow says:

        Great read and comments, Thanks GM …

      • sreyneang says:

        it’s not true, i have many friends who worked in Cambodia they are enjoyed with their life in Cambodia. you guy just stay outside are you sure that you can see it is the real or fake. do not say something that you are not clear enough with it and try to tell someone that is true, but you not sure either.

  39. Kim says:

    Best article I have ever read in a long long time on any topic….Your writing skills are exceptional….

  40. Free_Willy says:

    And the alternative is to stay in this war-mongering police state? No thanks, bring on the Dengue.

    • Marco says:

      I so agree with you. Came here to escape becoming a robot in the West. I’m so sick of Western culture and the fact that basically all Western countries are adapting U.S. culture blindly. Here I can actually write whatever I want on the Internet and not be scared of having 100 secret agents watching what I’m doing. There’s freedom here, a lot of shit here, but it’s all worth the freedom. If you want to be a nice little robot the West is great, just follow the rules and you’ll have a great life. I personally would rather be poor than have my life pass as a wretched robot.

  41. Jamie says:

    Seriously… this article had me pissing my pants. The best line was, ‘jump off your Pattaya condo.”

    What a fuckin’ way to sum it all up.

  42. Bacon says:

    absolutely brilliantly written and so true.

    must read.

  43. Dean says:

    Hilarious article ! Had me giggling for its entire length
    I do wonder why so many people have taken your words so literally rather than reading it as I have done.
    Well done,thanks for the laugh !

  44. Friend of Crazy Jimmy says:

    Anyone know of Crazy Jimmy (American)of KO KONG town ? He’s been living their since Pol Pot made his last stand. Just wondering if he’s OK. Last I saw he was working for food and tips at a restaurant on the outskirts of town to keep busy/sane. If your ever in Ko Kong ask any taxi driver or COP were Crazy Jimmy is. For the price of a meal you will get some unbelievable stories and quite the local travel guide. Don’t go to the Chicken ranch without him. He will save you $$ and possibly your life.

    • Peter Hogan says:

      That’s utter rubbish. I spent some time in Koh Kong thirteen years ago and there were precisely three expats at that time and none of them were Americans called Jimmy.

      There was a stoned and very smelly Dane called ‘Bo’, a bearded young Englishman called ‘Cactus Jack’ and that intense German guy who owns a restaurant and has been there forever.

  45. CHAN HORM says:

    Dear all,
    Thanks for your visit to my country.Cambodians are friendly,honest and they love all visitors. Best wishes,

    • nobodyatall says:

      We appear to be friendly. In fact, we’re not.. that friendly. Honest, nah.. not really. And we love visitors because they’re helping us, economically. BTW, don’t be TOO proud of yourself.

  46. Dave Perkes says:

    Where did Gavin get the idea that life expectancy is 57.4 years.Ive been living here for 10 years.
    I must be in heaven for the last 1.5 years; or I’ve been in paradise for 10 years.
    If I’d still been in UK; I might been a suicide case or had a heart attack due to stress!

    • MoniiVann says:

      Last time I checked, the life expectancy was 62.

      • Annonymous says:

        What is the point of arguing about it?
        Those Cambodians, like other Asians, tend to treat their elderly people like garbage, just like they treat poor people.
        I am very sure I don’t like to grow old, even if one life expentancy grows abit higher, in cruel Cambodia or any cruel Asian countries.
        As it is us poor young foreigners and not so young foreigners are being treated shabbily at every turn by those exploitive Asians/Cambodians.
        Cambodia, like other Asian countries tend to treat young and old people shabbily. As such, given a choice, there is no point wasting time or money or growing old in Cambodia and only to end up being treated shabbily by mostly inhumane Cambodians.

        • Soi Dog says:

          I’ve see a million times more respect shown to elderly people in Asia than I see in the West.

          • Annonymous says:

            The Asian never give real respect. Everything about Asians is fake. Those Asians have very low standard of care, tend to make fun of elderly people, those Asians commonly abuse or mistreat elderly, they provide very poor facilities and very poor care in elderly home(that turn out more like an abusive slum), compared to the mostly high standard of elderly care in the West.

            Furthermore those Asians only show some respect to elderly people who are quite well-off or rich. Otherwise, they kept their elderly people imprisoned, looking at walls in their home day and night like they do to any disadvantaged people. That is another horrifying aspects of Asian shabby societies.
            I definitely don’t like to grow old in Asia after suffering so much in Asia.

          • steve says:

            i have read through lots of comments but this one made me respond. If you have spend time in south east asia then you will know the family bond is 100 times more than (i will say western countries but really uk because thats where i am from)
            What do most prostitutes do with a good portion of their money? They are meant to be the low of society.
            I agree with lots of things about western people moving to south east asia but i will defend the family bond of most south east asians.
            I accept that there are financial pressures that make people do stupid things like selling their kids etc, however i would like to point out we in western society do lots of stupid things with really no financial pressure. Everything is relative, in every society there are good and bad and i guess the only difference is the culture and tolerance of the society.
            Fix you’re own society before criticising others.
            If you are a cambodian I will listen otherwise i dont think you have the right to comment on there society. You have the right however to express you’re experience as an expat of course.
            Sorry for the rambling but back to my point don’t criticize the cambodian family bond unless you are cambodian.

  47. Annonymous says:

    Thank you for the very informative and realistic account of another manipulative Asian country who are mostly only interested in gullible foreigners who can afford to waste money on them on their substandard goods and atrocious services. I agree Cambodia(like other asian countries) is not a humane place to live in and I certainly will not recommend any foreigner to move there on a permanent basis. I have visited Cambodia a few times out of a sense of being adventurous and I have to say that I certainly don’t like their typical exploitive Asian attitude or the way they treat poor tourists.

    Anyway, how they live is their problem. I still don’t envy them, even though many of them in the city live in sumptious villas because most of their Asian attitude stinks.

    I noted that they like most rude asians are extremely obsessive about making more money, to the point of being creepily aggressive, and that is why those tourists on tight budget should be extra cautious when dealing with them.

    I know they will never treat poor foreigners any better even when so many
    poor foreigners have contributed a lot and have helped them improve their life in one way or another. Those rich foreigners who have extra cash to waste on them may find their stay more pleasant.

    I am just so worried about my husband(a foreigner in that strange land) who may still be there and he is definitely not getting any younger.

    • Soi Dog says:

      Quote = “I am just so worried about my husband(a foreigner in that strange land) who may still be there and he is definitely not getting any younger.”

      No, your absent husband is not getting any younger….but the bar girls he is shagging while away probably are.

  48. Pinnochio says:

    Dear Chan Horm. Why do you stereotype “all cambodians” together as they are the same people ? Each person is unique and different. I have many Cambodian frinds who like gangster lifestyle, drugs, stealing, violence and they and I find your oversimplified, broadly classified comments to be egregious and upsetting. In the future, please have more consideration for the diversity and individualism that we all possess as human beings coexisting on this planet.

  49. QED says:

    It’s true, the sidewalks really are impassable.

  50. Rainman says:

    Another reality check and well done Gavinmac.
    It won’t be long, with condo’s getting higher, they’ll have their own Flying Club.

  51. Benda says:

    > Only then will one of them spring into action and attempt to revive you by vigorously rubbing tiger balm on your forehead.

    I prefer coining – its way more effective than the Heimlich Maneuver

  52. Che Guevara says:

    Brilliant piece! Too true and too funny. Thanks.

    Btw, I find that many of those who are attracted to such a shit hole tend to be a disenfranchised and disgruntled lot of westerners who realize to themselves what a mistake they have make, have little choice than to make the “best” of it. Good luck … you’ll need it.

  53. Che Guevara says:

    Brilliant piece! Too true and too funny. Thanks.

    Btw, I find that many of those who are attracted to such a shit hole tend to be a disenfranchised and disgruntled lot of Westerners who realize to themselves what a mistake they have make, have little choice than to make the “best” of it. But as the authors suggests, we have to feel for the children, both native and foreigners.

  54. Che Guevara says:

    Brilliant piece! Too true and too funny. Thanks.

    Btw, I find that many of those who are attracted to such a shit hole tend to be a disenfranchised and disgruntled lot of Westerners who realize to themselves what a mistake they have make, have little choice than to make the “best” of it. But as the authors suggests, we have to feel for the children, both native and foreign.

  55. Che Guevara says:

    Brilliant piece! Too true and too funny. Thanks.

    Btw, I find that many of those who are attracted to such a shit hole tend to be a disenfranchised and disgruntled lot of Westerners who realize to themselves what a mistake they have made once there and have little choice than to make the “best” of it. But as the authors suggests, we have to feel for the children, both native and foreign.

  56. Che Guevara says:

    Brilliant piece! Too true and too funny. Thanks.

    Btw, I find that many of those who are attracted to cheap but deplorable living conditions tend to be a disenfranchised and disgruntled lot of Westerners who realize to themselves what a mistake they have made once there and have little choice than to make the “best” of it. But as the authors suggests, we have to feel for the children, both native and foreign.

  57. Che Guevara says:

    Brilliant piece! Too true and too funny. Thanks.

    Btw, I find that many of those who are attracted to countries which are cheap but offer deplorable living conditions tend to be a disenfranchised and disgruntled lot of Westerners who realize to themselves what a mistake they have made once there and have little choice than to make the “best” of it. But as the authors suggests, we have to feel for the children, both native and foreign.

  58. Gordon Sharpless says:

    Thanks, very enjoyable read. Just returned from my first visit back to Cambodia in nearly two years. As much as I enjoyed my ten years living in Siem Reap I do not regret the move back to the US and the visit back there was a gentle reminder that my decision was the right one. As stupid as America has become I still find it far preferable for raising my two children (now 8 and 3).

    Cheers
    Gordon S (Siem Reap 2001-2011, ex-talesofasia, ex-Two Dragons, now residing just outside San Francisco, CA)

    • scoffer says:

      G’day Gordon.
      Good to hear that things are OK for you.
      Regards
      Kev

    • gavinmac says:

      Thanks GorShar. Good to hear from you. Your website was one of the first I ever read about Cambodia.

    • kalakala says:

      Gordon! So THAT’s where you went! Good to hear you’re still kickin’ around. I take it that the Tales of Asia website is as dead as Deadfish, though. Too bad. A great source of info and the chat boards were quite good. All the best to you!

  59. Crash says:

    What a great article dud – and in addition – get out your wallet as the cost of living is through the roof these days in Phnom Penh. Try $7,400 per year for your kids to learn “Old MacDonald had a farm….” Plus $4,000 p.a. for basic medical insurance for your family, plus all the losers who borrow money from you and then welsh on the deal…Cambodia is 85% full of expat scumbags – the other 15% of us who have real jobs and are actually here acting in the role of “international public servants” aim to provide a degree of international solidarity and capacity building through working with our Cambodian counterparts. My advice is that if you come to live in Cambodia – make sure you are well heeled, insured to the hilt, NEVER loan money to anyone, have return ticket home and pay a monthly retainer to a high ranking General or Ok Nyark to cover your arse when shit hits the fan….Next time I hear some Australian winging about how much tax they pay in Australia to cover social services I am going to BBQ then in the jugular with my taser torch.

    • Annonymous says:

      At the end of the day, it is just not worth it, considering the risk of being stuck there(for how long?) and having to face and suffer all the ugliness of Asia.

      If one have a choice, get out as soon as possible and move back to a more saner and more civilised Western societies.

  60. Bobby Borisov says:

    Cambodia is a open and easy going country. I have been 20 years already.
    The shit guy who wrote this above is PISS OF SHIT. He is welcome to kiss my ass and staght to the airport if is still in Phnom Penh. Friendly people, smile all the time….Many foregners get drunk and drive cars, bikes, and not a problem at all!!! Do that in Europe?! USA? Australia? And so on…..Honestly if I see the mother fucker righter will kick his fucking ass, NOT WELCOME AT ALL!

    • Leap says:

      I second that Boby, I lived in the US and France and I can afford to live anywhere in the world but i am very happy in Cambodia.
      1)My cholesterol dropped when i moved to Cambodia and I am happy Mc Donald has not made it here yet.
      2)I don’t have kids so I can’t comment but I’m not impressed by the US school system.
      3)I’m back in LA on business and the 6 lanes of traffic freeway / parking lot are not much better that PP traffic. Yes they should do something about the garbage collection but it is not citywide and there are as many rats if not more in Bangkok or Saigon
      4)I have open a support operation for my company in Cambodia and I am able to save with a competitive labor who needs opportunities.
      5)My mother knows I live in Cambodia and is not disappointed. I guess i am not one of these under-educated loser you may be addressing. I would agree that if you are a drunk looser that cannot make it in your own country then don’t try to make it in Cambodia or Thailand.
      6)I have a few alcoholic friends most of them are in the US. You don’t become an alcoholic in Cambodia. Alcohol is cheap in Cambodia so it attracts alcoholics.
      7)Guess what my Cambodian girlfriend does not really like Thailand.

      I appreciate that life is cheap in Cambodia and it is my responsibility to share the benefits and improve the life of a few Cambodians. Mr. Gavinmac what are you doing to improve the life of these “Cambodian looser”? Are to busy complaining about how little is provided to you in exchange for the cheap price you pay?
      Yet Cambodia and the world does not need alcoholics and pedophiles so please take them back home with you.

  61. jerry76 says:

    Sir,

    an other reason why ambulances or any taxi or even a motorbike do not want. to take dieing people is that it is bad luck for them. if someone dies while in transport the vehicule becomes not usable any more and nobody will ever buy it later on.

    i lived in cambodia for 2 years but there are far more negative points than positive ones. i have moved back to the west after the birth of our son because og security and health reasons.

    and i dont like the corrupt government gangsters, they will do with yiu whatever they want, its like total anarchy.

    cheers

  62. The new and improved superman says:

    Don’t bother coming to the best place in Asia Gavimac…we’re full.

  63. Annonymous says:

    Such a cruel country don’t deserve any aid.

  64. Annonymous says:

    I mean a cruel country such as Cambodia that is filled with mostly cruel Asian culture don’t deserved to be admired at all.

  65. soyita says:

    A person who wrote this topic must be a crasy man, all his words like shit. If he is a person who is high educated he cannot spell out all that fucking words.If i were his mother i would kill him since he was born. He is a poor man.

    • Toma says:

      Dear Soyita – I don’t think you should angrily reacted to such a pessimistic person. Just let him/her say! Please calm down – our culture of speaking is not like that!
      Regards,
      Toma

    • Bird245 says:

      If you burst out for someone’s right of speech, specially if you are a Cambodian yourself – others would agree to author that we Cambodian are truly ignorant scums.. PS. I am Cambodian.

      (Thanks dear Toma “below” for his/her wise manner)

  66. Sam says:

    A lot things in this article are trues and some are not. Cambodia is a poor country, and everything are different from the norm of western standard. Something that is good for the goose may not be good for the gander. Anyone consider moving to Cambodia, should go to visit first, absorb information from many different sources, visit many different places not just expat bar or Angkor Vat. And you must hold on tight to your passport, return ticket and your sanity. You might heard some groaning from disgruntle expat who have been living in Cambodia or SE Asia for years, and that make one wonder why that person still here, or still possess the passport, can afford a return ticket ( a discount 3rd. class ). I guess for those who discourage others Westerners from moving to Cambodia because they might want to keep the stay pristine for themselves and all the bar girls stay cheap and less VD.

  67. Annonymous says:

    I think Cambodians is not a poor country. It is just that Cambodians like many other Asian countries tend to exploit foreigners for money. Even those living in countryside have land. It has alot of land to grow food and other natural resources. I think Cambodia like many other Asian countries have very rich and socalled poor living in a terribly polluted, degenerate and immoral environment. I think one should not pity those bar girls who fished for pity and who greedily exploited those foreigners gullibility. I think Cambodian problem is not poverty. It is more to do with Cambodian sickening immorality, that is perpetuated by Cambodian society but often those Cambodian find it convenient to blame those well-intentioned Westerners.

    • CG says:

      You hit well! Taxi drivers,guides and other hospitality workers normally teach a newcomers:”You must be very sweet, you must cheat very sweet to tourists, talk to them very sweet words to get more money.”
      One simpleminded example: Lonely female tourist had dinner in one Cambodian restaurant. It was lovely night – warm, full of soft music and lights, good food and coffee…. Beetween courses she was chatting with the waitress. And then in one moment this girl asked: how old the tourist is? – She was in her 50thies – Waitress said that lady looks fabulously young, despite the fact that she is so very old!
      This waitress was clean, friendly, smart, had quite good skills, and got good tips after dinner.
      Next evening all waitresses on this restaurants street where lined up on the doors,and from everywhere sounds: ” Good evening, lady! You look soooo beautiful and good, even if you are soooo old Would you like to have dinner? Please come have a look! “

  68. Miroslav says:

    The article is true. And it doesn’t mention you’re used to be treat as a human in your country in past. Now you’re degraded to being ATM only.

    Cambodians are not poor, it is total bullshit. Truth is they are lazy and they always spend everything. Price is no object for Cambodians. They want to spend, spend, spend. They’ll stare to someone who is saving, they consider someone who is saving to be a fool and they want to spend his savings also.

    You CAN’T make a friend in Cambodia. All they want from you is currency only. Some step away bored soon, as they see you are not willing to pay for their drinking parties and karaoke.

    Others build your trust long time. For example, only to borrow with no intention of paying back, to start any kind of project together, BUT ALWAYS REMEMBER: ALL THEY WANT IS CURRENCY ONLY! They’ve no mercy with foreigners nor signs of being guilty for any of your losses ever.

    Very big difference between Cambodia and Western. Big difference, which foreigner may not be able to comprehend or even imagine, therefore is usually vulnerable to exploitable practices of Khmers.

    • Annoymous says:

      I agree with you. They treat people like money machine and tend to exploit us poor human travellers, who are looking for a temporary or permanent home. I just wish I never went there, even though my (another) Asian country of origin is as bad. Cambodia or any other Asian countries is not a place for any foreigners who are homeless, have little money in the pocket or destitute because Cambodia will do all sorts just to make you feel even more homeless, unwelcome and more vulnerable. I don’t expect them to provide a palatial accommodation for the amount that I paid for, but I do expect a certain basic reasonable standard or basic habitable, decent standard. I am not being unreasonable, but I noted that most of their guesthouses are shabbily run and that they have no consideration for us guests or travellers who have to cope and put up with their mostly shabby attitudes. So, therefore, I don’t look forward to going there again for whatever reason.

      Cambodia is a place like other greedy, manipulative, cruel Asian countries, will suck you dry, and let you rot there, if you are not careful.
      They like other Asians will have no qualms lying to you, just in order to avoid helping you. Those Khmers and other Asians have so much and yet they are not satisfied.
      Many Westerners are in fact poorer and yet those Asians(who are surrounded with all sorts of luxuries imaginable) think they are entitled to harrass you and to have more aids or extra dollars for giving nothing decent in return.

      Asia have too many shabby characters(leaders or otherwise) and therefore, don’t be surprise that Cambodia are also full of shabby, abusive, intolerant characters, that prey on any unfortunate foreigners.

      • gavinmac says:

        Annoymous- I advise you to stop whinging, and cheer the fuck up.

        • Annonymous says:

          Thank You for the advice. I just wish I am back in UK. I just can’t stop myself from moaning about all those brown people that made our life even more miserable.

      • Srey Nec says:

        OK, OK, OK, Annoymous, we get it! Cambodia is such a shitty place! You poor poor thing! Thanks for letting us know. Now let somebody else talk!!!

        • Annonymous says:

          You don’t have to be so rude, even if you don’t like me talking about some of the worst aspects of Cambodia.
          Am I not allowed to talk? I guess you all Cambodians/Asians only allowed rich people to talk. Honestly, you all Asians/Cambodians are so inhumane.

          • Srey Nec says:

            I didn’t dislike anybody. I enjoy reading Gavinmac’s articles and especially comments that are coming from all sort of people. After awhile, i just get tired of seeing the same comment from the same person over and over again.

            You can talk all you want, dear, but moaning about the situation is not gonna help you much.

        • Annonymous says:

          Srey Ney, perhaps. you may learn better manners in the near future. But right now, your tone of reply was extremely rude. I suppose you all cambodians think you all are entitled to be rude and abusive all the time while foreigners are not allowed to talk about how bad Cambodia is to foreigners?

          • Srey Nec says:

            “you all cambodians think you all are entitled to be rude and abusive all the time while foreigners are not allowed to talk about how bad Cambodia is to foreigners?”.

            If you pay just a little more attention, you’ll realize that most of Gavinmac’s articles is never about how wonderful cambodia is or cambodians are. The fact that i still enjoy reading his articles, it means i can handle the truth.

            So was my tone of reply rude or i just didn’t validate you emotion enough?

          • gavinmac says:

            Thank you Srey Nec. I didn’t think I had any Cambodian fans!

          • Srey Nec says:

            Don’t generalize, Gavinmac ;)

    • Claptrap says:

      I agree with you Miroslav. I have witnessed all of those aspects you mention myself. For example, if you save by fixing something yourself, it’s because you’re stingy. If you can pay for someone else to do it you don’t do it yourself. And oh yes, they even enjoy trying to coerce you to spend something you don’t need or what you buy at a cheaper price… As long as money is spent, they are happy, but even happier if they can spend it on themselves.

      Everywhere people like money, but in Cambodia it is the only thing that has meaning. People that can control their feelings marry partners they don’t really like if that partner can provide financial benefits, it is only the super rich that can afford to follow their heart – as long as the spouse comes from a suitable background.

      As for nature loving Cambodians or beautiful, untouched nature – what rubbish! And I mean it. The The whole Cambodia is just a huge rubbish bin, I admit I haven’t traveled that much, only some 13 countries, but I have never seen people treating their own land and homes with such a filthy and disrespectful manner, both in cities and in countryside (to my experience, people have marginally cleaner habits in towns): Cambodians must hate their country to treat it like that. None of the people in neighboring countries have half as much rubbish all over the place as in Cambodia. And I’m not talking about the rubbish that lays on the street side, which ensures a good home for pestilence.

      Also, not all the begging elderly are without sons and daughters or the ones at home treated with respect, but some are beaten or they have to linger in they urine soaked pants or sarongs for hours, ignored by their offspring who are too busy to notice.

      Cambodia has its charms but it also has its (very) dark side and Gavinmac is right to point them out, all true more or less except perhaps the age (but then how many long-term ex-pats have died here at a ripe old age?) even if peppered with a bit of humor: anyone considering about moving here should be aware and consider all the facts behind the scenes. It’s a different thing to live here than have a great time in a short period. As someone said, this is an article about why NOT TO MOVE TO CAMBODIA, i.e. the negative points and not those that entice people to stay (the reasons being more than cheap women, beer and drugs)

      • Anonymous says:

        Cambodians like most Asians are very harsh people and they are especially harsh towards foreigners who can’t afford to give them more.
        Their Asian societies revolved mostly around money and exploitation of foreigners. I am sure their so called family bond will just soon disintegrate or deteriorate as soon as money from foreign sources dried up.There are so many rich Asians around. Why can’t those rich Asians help their own? Those Asians are never going to improve if they can’t even accept criticisms or facts or humor based on facts.

    • Toma says:

      Do you refer to ALL Cambodian people? Think TWICE please! Western and Cambodian people are human-beings. Sorry I didn’t attend any primary school as you all did.

  69. the new and improved superman says:

    If you are considering coming to Cambodia ignore 90% of this bullshit article. Come and see for yourself and you’ll agree with what I’m saying. Only the healthcare and Ambulance service is correct but Raimsy will fix that won’t he.

  70. KKY says:

    Thanks for the warning. I was about to sell my worldly possessions and move to Cambodia. Whew – dodged that bullet.

    BTW: Sincerely, hilarious article.

  71. sweenie says:

    Lol! i agree with the writer very much! the standard of living is very low there. Medication in vietnam is not so good, but i find many cambodian come to vietnamese clinics for treatment. Noise pollution is one of horrible things living in asia. Drugs, drinks, prostitution happen more often due to living so far away from family, people dont care about their own reputation. Once we are stuck in such evil temptations, we ruin our life for certain.

  72. the new and improved superman says:

    @KKY Good. Cambodia is only for people who want to live on the edge, take a risk and live a fascinating life as a result. It’s definitely not for people who believe everything they read before actually experience a place.Have you been out of your suburb yet?

  73. erhed says:

    Some places are good to visit, and some are good to reside. I have always liked my visits to Cambodia, but I don’t think it is a good place to live. Reason #8…too many guns.

  74. Nameless observer says:

    This article is hilarious, and some of the (dead serious) responses here even more so. Well done, Gavinmac!

    • Marco says:

      It’s hard to tell whether gavinmac really thinks this, or is this a joke ? Probably the former, exaggerated a bit to make it funny. However this is only one perspective coming from a guy relating everything to his material Western ideas about life. Other people have different stories and different perspectives. For example, I would much rather have my kids grow up in the friendly culture of Cambodia than in the bullying, impersonal, unfriendly culture of U.S. schools. I’ve been through it, I hated every moment of it. It all depends where you’re coming from.

  75. James says:

    Brilliant piece of writing Gavin. A wonderful combination of wit, irony, truth and sarcasm. It speaks a truth of many expats worldwide who gravitate towards underdeveloped countries for selfish reasons as predators rather than for altruistic motives. The only reason they are not alcoholics at home is they cannot afford to be. If they mouthed off in their home countries, in the same way they do in the bars and streets of Cambodia, they would quickly find themselves toothless.

    This type of expat sets a horrible example for the simple, uneducated natives. This degenerate expat species is generally of inferior social and intellectual status and feels the false euphoria because they think they are a giant in a land of dwarfs.

    I also believe that westerners who bring western born children to live in such countries (long term) are guilty of willful neglect and are irresponsible parents. A short term experience for children could be good but definitely not long term.

  76. Des says:

    He forgot to mention the annoying tuk tuk drivers & moto drivers. Those scum take years of a persons life due to their persistent, annoying conduct. They need to be curtailed!

    I agree with much of this but it does seem like an attempt to keep people away from moving to Cambodia. It is possible to make $15 or even $18 an hour teaching & theres other opportunities too.

    I lived there for years & left, mainly due to the tuk tuk drivers & general existence there. Many do fine & do not suffer health issues etc as stated. A lot is down to the individual.

    • Dermot Sheehan says:

      I moved to Cambodia because the taxi-drivers back home kept trying to talk about football to me. It was unbearable.

  77. Idan Kapon says:

    Sorry to say that was one of a hell great piece of writing!!!!! you’re a genious

    I’m Living in Siem Reap… running a NGO

  78. Mike says:

    It all comes down to what you want in life, if you want to be a robot and do the same shit day after day while paying ridiculous tax and be part of the huge consumer base, I’d say stay in US/Canada or Europe. If you are not falling for all that marketed BS and want to have and easy going life, Cambodia is a great place to live. People are friendly unlike those in Vietnam or back home, cost of living is low – unless you are one of the idiots who has to live in a crazy mansion to feel good about their life…

    As far as healthcare goes, you can easily jump over to BKK and get professional help. Not living in a place just because of the possibility of needing a medical attention is just crazy… You can get hit by a bus and die on spot when your number comes up in any country…

    Is the western government sponsoring your article trying to keep people from leaving their ‘Paradise’??? lol

  79. Chenda Angey says:

    You came to Cambodia, and you were expecting Cambodia to be like a country in the west? Even French people are different from English people. and arent the expat ESL teachers supposed to help improving our kids’ education? if you are seeking for pleasures exactly like in the west, stay there…dont come and criticize.

  80. Bastiaan says:

    I disagree with 95% of the article (or actually you can’t even take 95% seriously), as the perspective doesn’t make any sense. I think Cambodia is a wonderful country with the most lovely people. For a much younger expat as myself, its a great place to gain experience and see life from another perspective.
    But I still LOVE this post, as I don’t read it as a message to bring down Cambodia and their people, but as a message to all of the way to many, disgusting,pathetic old man who come here to abuse the socio-economic status of a lot of Cambodian people. GO HOME AND PLAY BRIDGE or something! All of you guys KNOW its just inappropriate what your doing, so stop it!
    Hope there will be more messages like this to tell those pedo’s to leave and never come back

  81. sam says:

    I agreed and disagreed some reasons this article states. Cambodian people have lived here for their entire lives. They face many more serious issues that you might not think of. You can’t point one finger to us “Cambodia and our people” This is a very selfish-oriented article. What about your life arrangement, preparation and management on daily basis. Living in a new place does requires a lot of personal leadership and initiatives to deal with diverse culture shocks and many other issues. Last question: who invites you to come and live here.

  82. Tithsathea says:

    Ive bet your 7 reasons judged by ur emotion!
    Cos most of them r really nonsense!

    M glad that u r not really into my country or else she will be polluted by ur negative energy !

    PS: I like criticisms on my country, but not this unreasonable moody 7 SILLY reasons! Thanks

  83. Nou says:

    I can see that the person who writes this has a very bad impression about Cambodia. I personally believe that the writer shouldn’t be this bias; both good and bad sides should be mentioned. Cambodia also has its good side, in fact it’s a very promising country to live in.

  84. Bousong says:

    Cambodia is not bad like what it is saying! This is a trick that bad guy say to force Cambodia down. Try to believe this one is causing bad to your mind. Please, try to find another news and other resource, and keep this one away from you.

    • Brad says:

      @Bousong – is this a trick? Tell me one reason why somebody wants to “force Cambodia down” with a “trick” like this article. Or tell me which part is not true. The smell? The quality of health care or education? Or what?

      He must be a Vietnamese agent, right? :)

      The real question is which is better: to put your head in the sand and never listen to anything “bad” about your country – or listen and think, then try to make it better?

      You do the first and you are not alone. Most Cambodians do nothing to make the place better. Then blame the “recent” past as a reason for everything.
      A few weeks ago a large number of foreigners cleaned up the surroundings of the Siem Reap river as it looked like a waste dump. And you bet, it was not the foreigners who threw the garbage all over the place.

      • Panha says:

        Hey Brad, you might be one of good influence on Cambodians about keeping clean. On behalf of those who trashed in the river and carelessness of government, I feel ashamed. I think somehow we like good expats. I have tried hard for better from keeping country clean to politics.

        Back to the article: I wanna say we live by love and inspiration. The article is more intended to insulting than information. Imagine if you are insulted : Why are these foreigners in Cambodia? Is it a nice country to stay? Of course, they don’t think so. But why? They came here for a job as they couldn’t find a job in their country or their boss sent them. Why not other country or capital like NY, London or Paris…but Cambodia? They are the least qualified…. damned cheap guy.

        SORRY it’s just an example of imaginary insulting. I bet you are descent guy, Brad. ;)

  85. Ren says:

    I have never known such a serious things like this in Cambodia…It is only a small part in countryside… :(

  86. Dada says:

    khmer440.com is warning and informing all those foreigners who are willing to come to Cambodia, which i think is right. U found a place full of shits, u tell your family and friends not to go there. seems legit! but i just want say if there’re any cambodian reading this, this is what WE deserved (the world is looking down at us), from all the chaos and atrocities which had given by our ancestors. im not blaming them though, it’s not important who fucked up this country. i dont care. All i care is how can we do to resurrect this country. Everyday people discussing problems here and there, but have we forgotten about the solution??. what im trying to say here is accept what we are and start helping ourselves.

    • dat@ss says:

      > “but i just want to say if there’re any cambodian reading this, this is what WE deserved[…]”. danggggg girl, are you for real? so you’re saying, an innocent baby deserves to contract AIDS because its dad had a little sum-sum with a harlot? or that a baby deserves to have birth defects because its mother was an alcoholic and/or a drug addict even during pregnancy? better yet, do you think you deserve to be ugly just because your parents are? [lol] what a silly acclamation. no hard feelings (except the ones down there), couldn’t help myself. XD

      > pertaining to the article, the sense of burlesque is what captures my attention. thought it was quite witty.

      *i’d like to thank:
      justin beiber
      nicki minaj
      obama bin ladin
      wikipedia
      the internet
      and most importantly, my love for rice.
      without ya’ll, i wouldn’t have been able to post this.*

  87. Flora says:

    So don’t come to Cambodia

  88. Luke says:

    I cant stop reading all your articles, such a great writer, I’m going to look for some published work. Excellent Stuff.

  89. JMT says:

    I must say that I’m a little bit confused. Smelly city? Drunk sexpats everywhere? …
    I’m a German national and I’ve been living and working (NGO) in Phnom Penh for quite some time and I strongly disagree with most points mentioned in the article.
    I never hang out in bars to get superwasted because there are a lot of other things to do and to see (cupcake and coffee shops, pool bars, rooftop restaurants, fitness classes, day- and weekend tours by ship, cycling through the town…). I am totally enjoying my life here and I had the great opportunity to meet a lot of good, decent expats/tourists/nationals.
    Also, making any judgment on parents who decide to raise their children in a developing country like Cambodia is really none of your business. In fact, I am planning to do the same. I was born in the Brazilian favelas, came to Germany when I was only a few months old. Since then, I made a lot of experiences in developing and emerging countries. And trust me: you and your children will understand the REAL sense of life once they stay away from the quantity of life (cars, flat screens, expensive clothes, etc) and start to understand the quality of life. Speaking about the quality of life: I don’t know which hospitals the author visited, but Phnom Penh offers a wide range of good hospitals which are led by mostly French, Dutch, Aussi, Kiwi or Scandinavian doctors. So what’s your problem?
    To sum up, this article is very rude, disrespectful and upsetting (and I’m sure you would make your mother wayyy sadder with this piece of crap than going to another country) and, if I may make a guess, maybe the author made some bad experiences here. I mean, maybe none of the Khmer girls wanted to go with such a dumbfuck.

    • Brad says:

      @JMT

      While you are a “German national” you are not German, are you? Btw, loved the way how you described the way you became a German national. “…came to Germany when I was only a few months old.”
      Obviously you didn’t come to Germany a few months old, someone took you there from the favelas – this sounds like an exciting story itself.

      Also this explains why you don’t drink beer and don’t visit bars – so its obvious why you don’t see the drunk sexpats -perhaps they are not into enjoying cupcakes.

      It is not difficult to assume that you see this country through the pinky window of a well-paid expat (German national on NGO salary could not be worth 300$ a month) and have enough to avoid reality by spending time on activities, such as “pool bars, rooftop restaurants, fitness classes, day- and weekend tours by ship”

      To sum up, it is understandable why you find this article very rude, disrespectful and upsetting.

      Get a cupcake and don’t read stuff here. Or hike the next rooftop restaurant, you will be better off. :)

  90. [email protected] says:

    I just read this blog and I honestly have to say that I really have to wonder about the blogwriters oppinion. I am not an expat but stayed a bit in Cambodia and know some expats and NGO workers. I dont know what you are talking about. All healthy, smart, hard working non alcoholics.

    Furthermore I think you are very unfair. Cambodia has a difficult/horrible past and still has a long way to got, that is true. But I LOVE to spend every Dollar here because every Dollar counts to built up this country. People are amazing friendly, I enjoyed busrides, I am going to fix a teeth (what they have dentists??) on western standard.

    I got dengue fever, but guess what, not in Cambodia but in developed Thailand. And I am sorry that I have to tell you, that you can get dengue already in europe, as well as typhus, hepatitis, parasits …

    I just have been on PP – did not recognize any bad smell … I could go on and on …

    I get you point what you wanted to say but please do it next time a bit more fair in respect of the country and khmer people!

    • Brad says:

      The problem with dengue is not where you get it, the problem is where will you get treatment. Therefore you can consider yourself as lucky if you had it in Thailand and even more if you get in Singapore where it is endemic at times and the government posts maps and data about the affected areas / communities.

      Parasites and hepatitis are a whole different league as they are closely related to the overall hygiene of a country (and with certain types of hepatitis the presence or lack of prostitution).

      Dengue in Europe? Well, since Madeira is geographically part of Europe – you are right. On the other hand the mosquitoes that spread the disease will never survive in colder climates, so most of Europeans will still have to visit SE Asia if they want to get dengue.

    • Arnaud says:

      U are totally right> i live in Paris and i went to Cambodia in 2011 for a holiday and i did really enjoy the country . Talking about the teeth, In Paris, i have to wait 6 months after making an appointment to get treatment and i have to pay a fortune to get the treatment. But in Cambodia , it just took me 2 hours of appointment for the very reasonable price . the clinic is very modern, hygienic and the doctor is very professional. What else we ask more????? I paid like 10 TIME LESS expensive than In paris for the same quality. Nobody is perfect and I think Cambodia has a long way to go but his country is in the good way.

  91. abby normal says:

    The Khmer comments to this masterpiece illustrates why it is difficult for me to live in asia. the concept of humour is completely lost on these people. they universally (they= se asians) laugh non stop at predictable ‘funny’ costume and face paint type low brow humour- the kind of humour that you’d think perhaps an infant, ground squirrel or mollusk might get a chuckle out of. 5th grade slapstick 90% watered down 3 stooges stuff. Anything that requires no thought= funny…. really funny- and apparantly NEVER gets old. Recycle the same bit for the 2,000th time… STILL funny. wtf.

    whereas sarcasm and wit are not only misunderstood, they are met with the types of reactions in this comments section. you can actually take the time to explain that this is observational humour and equate it to similar comedy about a western nation- they’ll never get it. exceptions to the rule? sure, but very few and very far between.

  92. abby normal says:

    oh, and after reading the comment above mine, the same seems to hold true for some German’s too! lol. Granted, German’s are know for their keen sense of humour about as much as…. ummm…. the Swiss. Still, this guy’s complete miss that this was written with tongue in cheek deserves a Darwin award. Lighten up Francis.

  93. Crischo says:

    LOL – I promise: I will never move to Cambodia !

  94. Regin says:

    Living in Cambodia for quit some time is great to experience the beauty, nature, and culture of the country.

  95. jonno says:

    Germans may not have much sense of humour but their logic can be incisive:
    “if I may make a guess, maybe the author made some bad experiences here. I mean, maybe none of the Khmer girls wanted to go with such a dumbfuck.”

    QED!

  96. nika says:

    too Pessimistic and fake!! ignore this informations!!

  97. paul scott says:

    Outrageously funny, I was just doing some research on the Mekong River, and I fell in here. 7 reasons
    “Moving a Thai woman to Cambodia does not improve her standard of living. It’s a shocking downgrade. It will seem to her like a cruel joke, not unlike bailing a black friend out of jail and then driving him straight to a Ku Klux Klan rally.”
    “It’s a lot like your village in Isaan, except the people are poorer, everyone’s skin is darker, no one speaks Thai, and the food sucks.”

    OK it is facetious story but this story has real kick, and very funny

  98. travelblogger says:

    so, i am not asian, not defending anyone. But even if this was written in a sarcastic, tounge in cheek sorta thing, it’s still incerdibly racist, and rude! Third world countries are always gonna have their fair share of problems, from uganda to egypt, to chile, to cambodia, i don’t know why the author has a problem with skin colour, but he has pointed that out more than a few times, and considring you’re a travel blogger,writting for a cambodian website, may be you shouldn’t let out your inner KKK untill your down in the pub with your fellow pale beer drinking pals. Second, half if not more of these diseases listed can be contracted in europe, third. Garbage is everywhere, get used to it. And also, if you don’t like cambodia so much, why would you even go there? Also, if you go/live/work in a thirdworld country, get used to shit being fucked up all the time, its how it is. Also, i think you(the author) don’t really have the right to judge anyone raising there kids in cambodia or anywhere else, you don’t know why they made that choice, why are you being so judgemental? It saddned me to read this article, ay first it was funny, then bam it took a racist typical white man nagging turn real quick. Grow up.

    • M says:

      If someone writes Japanese are known as hard workers, it is justified. But if I write I’ve never seen so many lazy people like in Cambodia, it is racism.

      If someone writes that Germans are precise, so their cars are known to be of superior quality, no problem. If I write that Khmer have no idea what is responsibility so they do not manufacture whatever, just another reporting, I’ll be hated, I’ll become a racist.

      If someone writes that prevalence of HIV in Europe is lower, he is only stating the facts. But if I write Cambodia has highest prevalence in region, because you can find prostitutes everywhere and married Cambodian men sleeping with a karaoke girl is a nature, I’ll be marked as racist.

      So reporting is politically incorrect, because some people are sensitive to the truth. Writing about rubbish and stench: incorrect, censored. Writing about stealers and cheaters: incorrect, consored…

      “War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength”

  99. Borosit says:

    Haha so funny, so dont move to this kingdom and you will lost your halflife. I”m Khmer living in Mekong delta, old land of Khmer but Vienam invased it. I dont feel comfortable with vietnam people; government, they so negative like this author.

    I”m now happy to live in Cambodia, KINGDOM OF WONDER, DEVELOPING EVERY CORNER!

  100. RLong says:

    I can see some of the validity on some of the statements made in this article. However, while reading the article I was a bit confused at times as to what the author is trying to portray. The intent of the article is supposed to advise why foreigners should not move to Cambodia. However, the tone of article moves it away from its purpose because it is rude and offensive. It almost felt like a personal attack towards Cambodia, its people, and the foreigners who are living there rather than an informational advisory. That being said, Cambodia does possess some of the problems and risks as stated in the article. However some of the statements are subjective and very opinionated. If a foreigner is to decide whether or not to move to Cambodia it should be based on facts and not personal opinions of the author.

  101. Doc Mark says:

    Well that was interesting reading. And yes many of the things you wrote are some what true. Unfortunately u are talking about the expat bums of PP. I have lived in PP cambodia for over 14 yrs. And yes i like to have a hi-ball or two, go out and meet people, go dancing, etc. But besides the night life in PP there are alot of things to do. And yes the infrastructure sucks, but its getting better. and yes the traffic cops are dickheads, and yes the hospitals suck, but u are so close to thailand for hospitals its not a big deal. what u really dont know is other places thru out cambodia, the west, the north, the east, the south. those regions are great for doing motocycle riding, hiking, waterfalls, fishing, etc. The old ruins are all around cambodia, and seeing them is a great way to relax and get out and about. Cambodia is similar to thailand but poorer. Thailand , Cambodia, Laos , Viet Nam all have their positive things as well as negative things. U probably have not spent much time in those countries like i have and u will never really understand them, the culture, the history, the people. Basicly u are an idiot, and your reading is a laugher.
    I totally disagree about most of your stuff u wrote so negative about cambodia, but glad u did. I would enjoy seeing less expats enter cambodia and less tourists as well. Back in the old days cambodia the 1990s and beginning of 2000s it was considered the real wild west.
    Doc

  102. Kennzo says:

    Another classic article from the master of ‘7 reasons’ – looking forward to what I hope will be the follow-up, balancing article on 7 reasons why you SHOULD.

    Keep at it GM.
    Kennzo

  103. Nara says:

    Hey you ! if you don’t like what we have as Cambodian then don’t ever come to our country. This is what we have and how we are like it or not it your choice but no mocking about my country. I don’t know what you want exactly writing this horrible and over-true article. We admit our country is suck , under developing and security is bad . So what ? you are just clueless what we had been through in the past . not an excuse but rather you take your small pity brain to think and respect other nation like us. take it or leave it you idiot!!!!!

    • Rasy says:

      Hey Nara. Calm down won’t you?

      The author did write “7 reasons NOT to move to Cambodia” no? So do you expect him to write about possitive things?

      As a Cambodian myself, I find that some issues he mentioned are, to most degree, quite true and I could probably list several more. It is up to people’s choice to make up their minds whether to move here or not. Either way, I have been in Cambodia all my life and living here has its pros and cons.

      I think his article is funny and way less offensive than the movie “Borat” or some racist and highly stupid posts on Facebook by the so called “I love Cambodia” page.

  104. wtf says:

    The food sucks?! Fuck off. The food is FANTASTIC and CHEAP in PP.

    ‘Nose hairs’? How about the hair growing inside your grandchild’s mouth and his shriveled testicles after 3 generations of eating unlabeled GMO food in that corporate-bankster dictatorship called Amerika. Also, the Cambodians aren’t stupid enough to allow fascist Coca Cola to put diabetes type II inducing high fructose corn syrup in their Coke. They use real cane sugar.

    Bad health care? You’ve obviously been living in Cambodia and out of the loop for way too long to keep up with that steaming turd Obamacare.

    >>Internet connections are relatively slow<>The job market is extremely competitive these days in most Western countries.<>leap to your death from the balcony of your Pattaya condo.<< You're an US embassy Jew in your mid thirties, aren't you? Instead of 'Gavin', you ought to call yourself GAVNO-big-Mac. That's Russian for shit.

  105. wtf says:

    ‘The food sucks’?! Fuck off. The food is FANTASTIC and CHEAP in PP.

    ‘Nose hairs’? How about the hair growing inside your grandchild’s mouth and his shriveled testicles after 3 generations of eating unlabeled GMO food in that corporate/bankster dictatorship known as Amerika.

    Atleast the Cambodians aren’t stupid enough to allow transnational fascist Coca Cola to put diabetes type II inducing high fructose corn syrup in their Coke. They use real cane sugar.

    Bad health care? You’ve obviously been living in Cambodia and out of the loop for way too long to keep up with that steaming turd Obamacare.

    ‘Internet connections are relatively slow’ – Not as slow as in Mandalay.

    ‘The job market is extremely competitive these days in most Western countries.’ What job market? You mean tocking shelves at Walmart and living on food stamps?

    ‘leap to your death from the balcony of your Pattaya condo’?! I’d prefer to watch you swan dive from you PP guesthouse window and splatter on the pavement. We could adjust the expat mortality rate down from age 57.

  106. Paiman says:

    You sound like a troubled soul. There are many good things to be found in Cambodia. I am saying this after having been robbed a few times in the nearly 6month i have been here.. People here are much more friendly and welcoming than in Thailand. People in europe make me sick they are angry and negative. I want my children to know the quality of a positive life.. I dont creep around bars like you to pick up depesing storys and i will never buy a condo in the worlds asshole Pattaya.. As for being a rasist calling out bad names for mixed races i can only feel sorry for you. If you like a long waiting list in the hospitals or old age homes that feed you crab and when you get sick it kill you without informing any relatives be my guest and be a westerner.. I have permanently moved away from one of the best economys in the world and i love it here in Cambodia.. I could never have a Thai girlfriend becouse i am not stupid. The way you let out your negativity is perfect for the westetn world.. Please stay there and tell your storys to your mother…

    • M says:

      When I was in Cambodia short time like you, I had the same impression. I thought they were friendly. I thought they were not angry.

      Until I understood it was all fake. Although not a rule, in general it is not friendship, but love for your money only. They are indeed angry each other for no reason. Even if you know the reason, you won’t understand why they are angry.

      According to my observation, most dominant attribute of Khmer is selfishness.

      But as you say, the first half year is really wonderful; I talked with 2 other foreigners whom I met, and they told me roughly the same. I don’t expect you to agree, but half year is very short time to make a conclusion.

      • D says:

        You’re a negative thinker,dude! Use your Western lens and view them and that’s what you see!

      • anonymous says:

        It is true Cambodians or Asians are generally horrible, angry, selfish people. They will find a reason to be angry with you if you can’t afford to continue to spend so much on them. In fact the dollars don’t stretch much because things are generally so expensive and so shabby.

  107. Johnny says:

    Well, some don’t get the “tongue in cheek” humour of the author, others do …. There is some truth in what he says about Cambodia. The losers that get lost in PP get significantly more lost and fall through every crack. At least they die faster than at home and may enjoy the experience!! Others who have a Khmer wife (or husband) and half-half kids can live in PP well on a more modest salary than at home. However the moment things go wrong and you can’t afford the International School it is back home to Australia or wherever …. keep an exit fund from Cambodia in a separate account. Not a bad place if you have your head screwed on (and avoid pitfalls like screwing too many young girls and serial drinking/drugtaking). And avoid the people who have come to Cambodia to die in this way! Point number 9: Cambodian in-law families to be kept out of the front door of the house and always ignore their financial needs …. hard for the Khmer spouse to abide by though … just don’t ask how much money disappears this way, you don’t need to know …. she (he) should do this in private on their own “Khmer-family” budget.

  108. D says:

    Just browse the Internet and stumble upon sth absolutely ridiculous. It is such resistible admiration for the writer who came up with this. You can be a comic writer. Seriously, I appreciate your time and effort in writing this stuff. But, sometimes things seem to be exaggerated and stray onto the bad part of Cambodia apparently due to the writer’s own pessimism and experience (May be from his friends and surrounding). I saw the problems of those Westerners who came to Cambodia. They are alcoholic and arrogant. Moreover, their carefree attitude blinds them to good life people enjoy here. I am a Cambodian and most of my friends who study with me think like I do that most of those alcoholic or sex driven Westerners are not good people. From our perspective, they are gangsters. However, I have many friends from the West, but they are good and they enjoy the life in Cambodia. You have to think again before you write. Let’s think that way. Tell me the name of your country, and I’ll go there and write 8 Reasons Why We Should Not Live in That Country.

  109. Moods says:

    Yay! Someone can write – thanks. Perhaps the place is conducive to writing as well. We all have different muses – even if for some of us they are more like gargoyles

  110. Western Shit says:

    Gavin is working for Thailand and being paid for being a shit head. Thailand wanting to have amazing monuments from Cambodia such as Preah Vihear and Angkor Wat. Cambodia is building their infrastructure, health system, and other necessity for the Cambodian. Cambodia was resurrected from the dead (Khmer Rouge Regime) and doing a great job.

    Fact about Westerners:
    1) They like to live lavish life style on borrowed money. Look at the U.S.A is $16 TRILLION in the hole.
    2) By 18 years old they left home and their parents/children cohesion.
    3) Consumed more Cocaine and drugs then other countries. (Columbia, Mexico, and other Latin Countries the beneficiary).
    4) They have welfare system for the Red-neck due to their drugs, alcohol, and smoking habits.
    5) The wealthy 3% controlled the 97% (the poor) of their society.
    6) 97% of the westerners don’t owned anything but living from pay-check to pay-check. Everything in their lives are financed: i.e cars, homes, clothes, even toilet papers are purchased with their credit cards.
    7) Health systems in the U.S. are crap. The poor submitted to hospital are going to get treated by interns.
    8) So many to list here and can take days.

    4)

    • ES says:

      I was trying to find the way to post a direct reply to the article but instead found it much more convenient to “reply” to the somewhat skewed tabulations of “western shit” (apropos).

      first i’ll start by commending Gav for writing this great little article and tid bits that had me enjoying every word :) you’ve got balls brother and frankly that’s all you need sometimes to climb up on a soapbox, but there is true insight here as well.
      this article is not called “why we love cambodia” and is clearly aimed at the traveler and/or expat. No offense was meant to Khmer people or their culture or whatever version you’d like to deem it, instead I believe the communication gap has become even more apparent in their very defensive responses on here.
      yes we all have the “good list” and the “bad list” for each of our countries problems, but don’t distract us with comments about some other country (ahem western shit) and think that that will obscure the very real references that Gav has made about living here and his insight into his intended audience.
      I would love to be able to post a big sign at the borders of Cambodia saying “no assholes allowed”, but unfortunately (and as has been so vividly displayed on this never ending thread) just who is an “asshole” is pretty darn relative. Some of you need to seriously re-assess the meaning behind words like “progress” and “civility” before shoving it down other people’s throat with your pretensious assumptions choking their way around the abnormally large foot in your mouth.
      Meanwhile, I can only say that there is no reason to play “kill the messenger” and blame Gav for saying what most of us only mumble to each other behind closed doors and after a few enlightening drinks. So without making this some big personal diatribe, like most here have done, where I prove how western or smart or cultured i am or how many Khmer friends i have or who i fuck or whatever b.s. faceshmook info you people need me to say to qualify to have an opinion…i will instead say to Gav that I think you could have come up with 8 or 9 instead :P
      My biggest complaint is the weather! now how in humid hell could you have forgotten to mention the weather in this article/ list!? you should be ashamed of yourself lol

  111. Johanna says:

    I’m in Phnom Penh at this moment. I have to say I’m not loving it! As a decent looking blonde female I get stared at by men and women all the time. And yes, despite the hot weather I wear long skirts and shirts with long sleeves. However I haven’t felt that uncomfortable. I think it is more curiosity than being simply creepy. I walk 500 meters and I get asked if I need a ride by 15 different tuktuk drivers. And some of them find it really hard to believe that I would prefer to walk to the grocery store just across the road. Right now I don’t even want to leave my guesthouse. I’m a patient and friendly person, but even I have my limits. I also hate it when you walk into the store just to check out shoes the staff follows you everywhere not respecting your personal space. However I guess they think that it is a sign of good service. I haven’t met that many people that are genuinely nice to you and not wanting something in return. Phnom Penh is very hectic, dusty and dirty. The traffic is quite horrible and I feel like everyone is just after your money. I ended up on this site just check out if there were others who don’t like Phnom Penh.

    I enjoyed my time in Siem Reap and I think this country has a lot of history and interesting places to visit. Tomorrow I’m going the coast and I looking forward to see the nature part of Cambodia. I hope to meet real Cambodian people, I feel like getting to know the real person is almost impossible. Tourists are only seen as walking wallets. In Thailand and Laos I met a lot of locals who did favours for me without expecting anything in return. For example I got lost in Surat Thani and these friendly locals took me to the pier and even paid for the tuk tuk and refused to accept my money when I tried to pay them back. In Laos I was playing pool in the bar and these local players (men and women) were impressed that a western girl can play so they bought me a drink. I also felt much less uncomfortable walking the road as a solo traveling female.

    Anyways I haven’t given up….. yet!

    • Bird245 says:

      Johanna! From what you wrote, I do understand and can put myself in your shoe. I am holding many of the facts why some Cambodian are exposing them-self very negatively in Cambodia. I wish I can be a Cambodian who can explain you the reasons why are you developing such horrible experiences from my country. Hope spend time together if you are in Cambodia again, and I am sure to open you to a new perspective over my country which could halt you from being scare of getting out of your apartment.

  112. Ed Muffin says:

    Thanks for the dose of REALITY. I found your post as I was contemplating leaving my life in the USA and moving to Cambodia. I won’t do that, however I have friends that have. They have a good retirement fund and the funds to live there comfortably.

  113. WM says:

    I agree with most of your points. I am living in Cambodia myself and am horrified by what I see and experience. I can understand there are those who are living here and are not in it for the drugs, alcohol or sex tourism. I myself am not privy to this lifestyle at all. What I would however like to point out is that it comes across as slightly racist to suggest it would not be nice for a grandmother to have a “half-brown grand child”. I find this offensive and sincerely . But for the hope this was just a typo. For the rest, thank you for bringing the harsh realities of Cambodia to public attention. I personally feel it is both heaven and hell on earth.

  114. Non country in the world has not disadvantages, hasn’t it? Cambodia is one of the country in the world , so there is one in this country as well. Please have a look at your home country, does it satisfy for all. You can simply answer this question by yourself. You said the hell of Cambodia, which encourage people not to come to this country and develop this small country, and now you are part of the person who destroy the world development. You create inequality in Cambodia, are you happy to do that? If someone insult your family, will you be happy with that? But, thank for giving criticism for politicians in Cambodia to rethink about these harmful viruses to Cambodian economy hellishly.

  115. Kiwi06 says:

    OMG I laughed so hard while reading this I almost needed a change of clothes! Love your zany sense of humour, and if po-faced people want to take this seriously and be offended, let them. I’ve visited Cambodia, loved the place but wouldn’t live there long term for all the reasons you point out. Westerners need to take off our rose coloured specs and get a reality check when it comes to relocating to a developing Asian country (especially with a family). I completely agree with your view that it’s irresponsible to take a young family there unless you’re very well off and can educate them at an international school and pay for 24 hr medical evacuation. Keep writing!

  116. Theana says:

    one short word to the writer is IGNORANT !!!!!!

  117. Claudia says:

    This is a terribly cruel and ignorant article. To claim that the only reason people come to Cambodia is to drink and find prostitutes clearly indicates that you haven’t gotten out of the worst social circles. I’m here with my boyfriend as a couple and we’re enjoying the country very much. We love going to the small villages and exploring Phnom Penh on foot to see how Cambodians live today. If you get past the worst tourists and meet some real travelers, you will find there is a lot more to see in this country.

    I’d also like to point out that in terms of finances, there are many options other than teaching English or opening a bar for $8/hour. I work from my computer as a software engineer with a company in San Francisco. I can live much better in Southeast Asia and still make the same exact salary that I do back home.

    • M says:

      So you can not do in Cambodia any decent job as well. You depend on the job from USA. That means you only confirm what has been written above.

      Then you pay taxes in USA to buy all those facilities for USA citizens around there while you live in Cambodia having no roads, no hospitals, outages, very poor educational system and dust-stench-rubbish everywhere.

      Seems to me you are very smart indeed!

      • davy says:

        yeah but the money she has left over after paying all those taxes back home goes ten times further in Cambodia

      • anonymous says:

        In other words, you are bringing money from the West to live in a horrible Asian environment.

        • anonymous says:

          It is extremely difficult for a foreigner in Asia, with little money to settle in horrible and cruel Asia. Still, I think it is a terrible life and uncomfortable to live in an unstable Asian society that eg, withhold foreigners money or expect or demand foreigners to pay more for almost everything.

  118. b.s says:

    A+ article, would read again.

  119. Leang says:

    Don’t judge people at outside look! You must never learn this that’s why you wrote such discriminated and insulted article. Who you are to judge something? No one or place is perfect, there’s always pro and con, and if you only raise the negative side, it’s not only unfair for the one you judged but you yourself live in the pessimistic world. Finally, you’ve never got the real happiness, harmony and peace. Be fair on everything, we all want peace, so don’t benefit yourself and harm others if you have sense of human!

  120. DEVIL MAY CRY says:

    1. If you are planning to come to Cambodia and agree with this article. Stay where you are now. Don’t come. We don’t want people like you anyway.

    2. Author, next time, be more professional.

    3. Khmer440.com, I can’t believe you use the domain name like that and you allow such article featured on your site.

    ————————————————————-
    X. PERSONALLY, TO THE AUTHOR: GO FUCK YOURSELF WITH CACTUS!

  121. anonymous says:

    I am sure once more and more people have more choice, they would stop coming to Cambodia or other Asian countries.
    It is good to highlight all the real and true bad points of a country such as Cambodia.

  122. Don Kong says:

    I never read something more stupid about Cambodia than this. Yes, it is true that over here are a lot of western loser around but everybody creates his life alone, this is not the fault of the country. I am German and I live since 6 years, with my Thai wife and our son, in Cambodia. We are not sick, we don’t drink alcohol, I have a good job, our son goes to a good private school and we are happy, “including my Thai wife”!

  123. anonymous says:

    I think there is nothing stupid about Asians or Cambodians. I just think they are extremely arrogant and extremely exploitive. Without the Westerners aid, the life of most Cambodians would be even bleaker. I just observed from my numerous trips there that they behaved as if they are the greatest people on the planet even though in reality they are not. In the end, it is the Cambodians or Asians that are the loser for treating people and their environment so shabbily.

  124. anonymous says:

    With all respect to Cambodians and other Asians, I just think Asians or Cambodians should not be too proud of their run-down Angkor Wat or their shabby Asian country or their shaby attitude towards poor foreigners and should instead learn to give a bit of respect to hygiene and to poor foreigners. Do not take offense of what is being said about those haughty Cambodians or Asians. It is true there is too much evil in Asia and it would take centuries and a lot of hard working Asians to clean it up.

    • Kakada Khath says:

      Anonymous – go get a life. You are so racist and bigoted against Asians. Why do you bother going to Asia or read anything about Asia if you feel it’s such an awful place.

      Please don’t bother answering this, because I don’t really care for your useless drivel.

      • anonymous says:

        In fact I am one of the very few non-racist asian who is unfortunate to experience the too many horrible asian hospitality and should be free to say what I experienced and and saw. I am just fed-up with being treated shabbily by mostly fellow asians.
        It is true Asia is an extremely awful place, especially when one happen to fall into an unfortunate circumstances or when one happen to know it better and not many people are aware of that. That is why one need to read to share experience and opinions about Asia in order to prevent others from attack by people like yourself who have no regards for others and prevent others from falling into those extremely disgustingly racist awful and dangerous asian trap. By the way, this a reply to all nasty and intolerant racist asians. The fact that you can’t accept crticism of asians just proved that you are somewhat racist.

      • anonymous says:

        Of course you all Asians think that you all are so great and anyone else who criticised Asian bad points are useless. Of course your asian mentality deemed everything or anyone that you don’t like or any comment that you don’t like are useless. The fact is you all Asians are even more useless in running your own country.

        • Pet.th says:

          anonymous, can you tell me or criticize the goods and the bads of your country, please I like to observe the way you make some critics over your own country, Not sure whether your country is somewhere by Mordor / the black volcanic plain, sorry if I am wrong.
          As one of Asians people, I do appreciate any critics to our bad points because with that will help us to develop and improve our country to be at the same level of yours sometimes somehow.
          But with my respect, your critics to me is like something so insulting and contemptuous to all the Asians. Please go back and try to read it again and again

  125. Yooda says:

    Hmmmm

    Mark I think you are upset or angry about something? You need a hug and relax :)
    I agree at some points and I would newer, newer fucking ever raise my child there… It is po or, but you have been there fora long time? NOT a surprise!? What changed your mind? I still Love the place!!! but only been there twice on vacancy

    If you don´t like it you can always go home? To hot beaches, warm weather and you can do what you want to do…

    I hope you get a grip… Travel around a bit, do something different think about it… What made it so bad? Cheer up!

    Cheer up!!!!
    Find a Solution You Will
    //Yooda

  126. Julia Colterjohn says:

    The original article is true in places and very funny also. People should settle down and realize that it was written with tongue in cheek. I hope most of the westerners who might take it seriously DO take it seriously, because if everybody comes here and it gets too civilized, the rest of us will have to move. There are already too many expensive coffee shops.

    • anonymous says:

      Once those Asiatics get richer, those mostly uncivilised Asians would not want civilised Westerners around. Those mostly uncivilised Asiatics prefer slaves.
      I doubt anyone would want to settle in a place that is so fake, inhumane, ugly, dangerous, filthy, nasty and chaotic.

    • Panha says:

      We do love seeing you westerners to come here. Experience the good, not just coming to spoil! We do smile, no price tag. You drink your coffee and we have no tradition of tippppppppp… and don’t bring it with you!

  127. Lucy says:

    Where’s 7 reasons you really should move to Cambodia? Don’t leave me hanging !

    • gavinmac says:

      Lina Goldberg covered those on her Move to Cambodia website, you should check it out. My next article will be a little different, I hope you like it.

  128. Colsie says:

    Positive. If you are a young person, with aging parents, ambitions of having girl friend and a family, prefer new cars, modern infrastructure and have a drink problem, Cambodia is probably a place you shouldn’t move to.
    Negatives. 1.Die younger, no factual evidence. 2.Raise a child, I hate kids. 3.infrastructure, adapt or go live in a sterile environment. 4. Financial future, I have more money than I can spend in my lifetime. 5.Mother disappointed, parents been dead 10 years 6 . alcoholic, I don’t like beer or alcohol 7. Thai GF, don’t have…
    So Cambodia with its low cost of living, friendly people, excellent nightlife has 7 reasons why I SHOULD MOVE THERE

    • anonymous says:

      I think you are mistaken. Most Asians are not NOT friendly and not genuine, that is not in the real sense, as Westerners communicate in the real world. Their asiatic friendliness is so fake, that is when they are not being openly horrible or outwardly hostile. Most Asians are very good in pretending to be friendly, for no good reasons. One have to be on your guard all the time. Those Asians are only trying to trick you or mislead you or pressure you to part with your money or recommend one of their asiatic sluts. I think Asia with its mostly filthy environment and high cost of living together with their extremely low standard of living, have too many extremely scary people. I guess one have to be very brave to live among those scary asians, if one is stuck there temporarily and hopefully not permanently in their asiatic hell. It would be even much more scary if there are no other Westerner foreigners around. I think one should not move there blindly, even if one have no other choice.

    • Panha says:

      Thank you Colsie. Sweet and kind of you. We need friends like you.

  129. SeaMonkey says:

    “You say bad thing about Cambodia. You bad person. I no like you.”

    Now GM, aren’t you ashamed of yourself? You really offended this person.

    Now, say you’re sorry, OK?

  130. Vichny says:

    really some ideas are true, example, health care, infrastructure. but end us as achoholistic person is your choice. and one more thing, there is one european guy say that Cambodian teen can be consider the nicest teen in the world for they didn’t gone crazy like western teen.

  131. fghgfgfghhg says:

    As an Asian American Cambodian guy there is one thing I really have to say:
    I FEEL SO UNCOMFORTABLE IN CAMBODIA… I said it, second generation Cambodian American, and I am not very prideful to be one by saying that.

    Judging a whole country in general just because of the people is pretty stupid. Why? Most people say this:

    Americans are stupid and bad.
    Cambodians are poor.
    Or western men have wrinkly soggy penises lol.
    Stereotypes make complete sense. Yeah. Let’s eat hamburgers for saying that.

    I don’t really make myself the smartest or wisest person in the comments but opinions are opinions people.

    That’s all I have to say because I am no where near proud of being a certain race, I am prideful of being someone who is different than others and enjoys being himself. And thanks and good luck to all good of mankind, spirits, and animals.

  132. Nose hair Bob says:

    I resent the Nose hair Bob moniker and much prefer wrinkled penis Bob instead.

  133. Nose hair Bob says:

    *Disclaimer
    I am neither a Bob or have an excessive amount of nose hair. However, I have at times hung out with bloated drug addled alcoholic sexpats ( usually from the UK) in Sihanoukville and I must say that they are not all bad before 10:00 pm. A lot of what Gmac says rings true when
    broken down and simplified. But beauty is in the eye of the beholder and while some of his observations made me openly laugh I know they are made tongue in cheek because he’s obviously spent a lot of time in the kingdom to come to his conclusions. Bottom line is that’s some funny shit so keep it up I love a good laugh especially at someone else’s expense.

  134. The Sun Shines Out My Ass says:

    Your view of success is flawed. First off, let us look at who is happiest in this world. I have lived in Cambodia for a while and never have I seen so many happy people living so simply. I have yet to meet a rich person who is truly this happy. Possessions are just things. If they create emotions of happiness or elation it means you are addicted to money and addicted to things. Also, that blonde bombshell of a wife is going to get old and saggy just like the rest of us. Finding realness in your life- real relationships real conversations real love. That is success.

  135. Daniel says:

    Im an aussie 24yo

    worked in an ngo , had girlfriends, never paid.

    Saw currupted aid, left,

    got a khmer wife, older than me, only speak khmer with her,

    im typing this on my big tv remote so sorry for the grammar but got 3 cars work sixty hrs a week put the kids in childcare all the rellys in a paid of villa, paid shit tonnes for visas etc… since importing the missus, and havin two kids its been bad

    getting messy but basically, single full time worker supporting a cambodian family beats the shit out of raising a 4 person family in australia. single i would have estimated disposable income of around 30 000 / annum. dual income plus weekend business id estimate disposable income at 10000

    my suggestion is to get your dick snipped find your soulmate in a cambodian wife. and i tell you that khmer partner is the best. go work your arse off and live in paradise half the year whilst travelling with a1 travel insurance

    50000 is enough money in the bank to generate enough for living expenses if you own your own house. 8% at acleda. then you can concentrate on working hard to buy a newer lexus and more gold every time you return.

    prejeea jun khmai art roua baan srewl bersen yeurng twer bpon, geroup krooasa yeurng gom twer gum baok gay baok barang, gom puk, gom layng lbang, barang klah gay keurng yeurng la or, gay jooey yeurng hi. gom taa gay art yooul yerng baan, doit knyom mon nung jeh peesa nyom jeh merl jet gay baan. gom merl ngeea baik.

    (Just a reminder that you dont need language to see a fuckhead)

  136. Daniel says:

    correction gom taa barang min art keurng jet yeurng baan, gay merl baan doit kneea, samaki twer jomnueung kneea meeun baan jeeung baok gay.

  137. Daniel says:

    and screw all you oldies whom fork out cash, cambo is the bomb because my house in siem reap costs 30000 to buy whereas in australia the worst houses are 300 000. take the good of whateva you can get, i say. western insurance and wages, cambodian culture and family, cheapest beer and property is also a plus.

    just dont dilude yourself into a quick marriage because someone like me will be sticking my young shaft into your missuses orafices whilst she brags about it to family and friends laughing behind your back.

    be warned just like anywhere else choose carefully and things will go right. even on the farm my missus has earnt 30 times what her visas and other incidentals cost, and she cant speak a bar of english. imagine how good it would be if you could get a lawyer or doctor to love you, set for life…

    alright spoke enough,
    to someone elses experience.

    ohh sorry, P.S ive not got much love for phnom penh. siem reap is where its at

  138. ForeverTraveling says:

    This article is exquisite, and the comments the like. I stumbled upon this little gem whilst searching for my next travel destination, and possibly a retirement spot near the beach, and it’s very clear that this article is in fact written with an ingenious combination of truthfulness, exaggeration, and relentless comedy value. With that being said, I’d like to thank the author who is truly skilled in the art of communication. I do believe that I will make a small incursion into Cambodia to take a gander the next time that I find myself in that region. Thanks again, good Sir.

  139. Sean You says:

    The person that wrote this is such an idiot. Comparing third world countries
    to Western is one thing. But trashing the Kingdom of Cambodia in his manner is ridiculous. Just by reading his blog (which is not even a creditable source) shows this is guy is uneducated and probably has never even left America.

    • M says:

      And have you ever thought why Cambodia is 3rd world country?

      Selfishness, stealing, cheating, greediness, adultery, laziness, never ending parties, drinking, wasting, …

      Why foreigners leave their good jobs, come to here to volunteer? Cambodians don’t need to travel 10000 km and pay for their staying. They can do the same just instead of doing nothing. But they will not do it. Because no profit! Party and sleeping is of much more priority than teaching their children.

      Do not exchange consequences for causes, do not excuse yourself. The ugliness is not the consequence of Cambodia being 3rd world country. It is the cause.

  140. William says:

    I like this article and I can see the fun and truth in it, what would be classy, is: if gavinmac did not attack people who write their views on this page, I do find khmer440 admins and contributors do like their power on khmer440. There is no real need to swear at people who find the time to participate on khmer440.

  141. pooh says:

    I didn’t bother to read all the comments here,but clearly this is sensationalist trash journalism. And many of the

    Cambodia is less developed than western countries and this entails certain problems. True. But many westerners are degenerate gamblers, alcoholics, and whoremongers back home who waste their lives away. Is it fair to blame Cambodia for people engaging in that kind of lifestyle?

    Then, Charles Dickens himself goes on to proclaim with his exquisite writing that there’s “nothing to do” in Cambodia except get drunk with assholes. Can you read books in Cambodia? Can you take a walk in nature? Can you have a normal family life in Cambodia?

    The author takes every negative stereotype of Cambodia (and maybe some true stuff) and every stereotype of the worst expat living in Cambodia and combines it, presumably to get more “hits” on his site.

    And other imbeciles on the thread chime in and blame Cambodians or “brown people” in their own country for ruining their lives. Of course YOU have nothing to do with how good or bad your life is or how miserable you are. It’s the shitty infrastructure that’s to blame.

    Some of what say has some truth to it, but you’ve clearly painted the worst case scenario in an effort to make your points.

  142. RS says:

    Just moved to Cambodia four days ago. So far it seems fine. The way to come is to be sent here by a company, government or NGO. Or, if you’re young with no kids you could do the volunteer English teacher thing for a while until you move back and get a real job. No harm in globtrotting for a while before the kids come.

  143. Annonymous says:

    Racist, I sense only racism here. If every of you foreign has this mind set, why in the world can we move forward ? Something has to be done, this particular author is gonna pay.

  144. Ray says:

    I spent two weeks in PP with friends who live here now. I met some really nice people who were not on the make but who were very helpful and fun to be with .

    Just avoid extwat loser bars filled with arseholes , Oh I did meet a really sweet lady who I shall be seeing soon .

    • Toma says:

      Hi Ray – I wish you spend more time in Cambodia. But be careful when you stay with girls, especially in the clubs or other entertainment places – Most of these girls are NOT Khmer girls – Mind your pocket ($) and camera while traveling along the streets.
      Good luck

  145. Andy says:

    Is Gavinmac right or wrong? Well, i will find out on my first Trip to Cambodia in March 2014 and will let You all know! I have been living
    in Thailand for the last 17 Years…..and, believe it or not, Pattaya
    is fucked up and quite expensive, but still the best Place with an
    extraordinary Infrastructure if You are looking for exciting Nightlife,
    no doubt about it, absolutely not comparable to any other Place in the World!

  146. anonymous says:

    Those Khmers do try to be difficult according to their whims and fancies, ie those haughty Khmers are known to make it problematic for anyone, who appear to be vulnerable and happen to have crumpled or even slightly old US dollar notes, while us poor tourists are forced to accept change in filthy riels or crumpled old US dollars from those Khmers.
    Those Khmers want us poor tourists to accept all their asian failings at a high price. That is very unfair.

  147. vual grimoire says:

    Nice tongue in cheek space filler. I guess you had nothing else to do. Next time come up with 7 reasons why you ought to stick your head back up your ass.

  148. billy says:

    i think the article was originally titled 7 reasons why I’m a prick. I’m an american trying to learn Khmer and I think the author should too.

  149. RobertDeMist says:

    Hahahah I’m Cambodian but I find this article hilarious (not offensive).

  150. You think you are so perfect.

  151. kezley says:

    Im really disappointed in this article and a lot of these comments. I have close friends that live there and I visit. Cambodia is where my heart is and its not ok to make a joke out of it. I plan to move there someday

  152. sokunthea says:

    who are you?It’s true that Cambodia such a poor country but you’re not a Cambodian why you so clear about Cambodia.Do you know how old is Cambodia starts? I warn you if you write stupid writing more about Cambodia you’ll regret for it.

  153. Kosol says:

    Dear all,

    you all are trying to make a war. It is a matter of an integration of one culture to another and where you live. This article is just an opinion of an individual trying to share their experience from their holidays.

    Of course, Cambodia is a developing country. People work so hard day by day to fill up their stomach. Comparing to those who have born and lived in Europe or the US…etc. Westerners might feel it’s sorry about how we are. With their few days traveling in Cambodia, they observe and record what shock them such poverty and the dark sides, which are fun for them. They go to any bar and find their greedy baby girls, of which these girls’ job is to get rid of their money. Then, they sit down and complain about bad Cambodians. We most of Cambodians are kind, smiling, and caring…. those who observe would recognise (my friends and my coworkers).

    I’m a Cambodian who have moved to Europe for 2 years (it’s just an example of me for you to read and think…) When I mean people it doesn’t mean everyone (Of course, I also make friends with a lot of nice europeans).

    Two years living in Europe, I have been a victim of all kinds: racist, employment…etc. Here people are cold like the weather and individual. They scare that we might come and take their bread. They never smile at people as they never know how. They never take care of their parents but I do for them (i am a red-cross volunteer). If I am nice and try to be gentle with them, they take advantages of me and put me down. Is it the same in the US?

    $20 for foreigners and free for Cambodians for entrance of one day pass – temples? Yes, who has money to pay. it’s the same ideas here for students (half price or non) and adults who works (full price) for museum… ect.

    The 7 reasons that the guys wrote this blog don’t exist here but their unwelcoming system and people might kill you with depressions (but I never take alcohol till 3 AM to relief the depression like the way the guy who wrote this blog usually does, my mum is proof of it). I have thought about moving away. However, with some support of good european friends and the result from my integration and understanding… it keeps me alive and still be me. I’m not going back home to Cambodia now but surely I will return.

    I do apologise that I brought an example about Europe. Honestly, there are good and bad Europeans / good and bad Cambodians/ good and bad people everywhere in developed and developing countries.

    To Cambodia: “Years ago, Cambodians have valued the guys with the length of the nose. But we recently got to know them and found that they are humans as we are. Their salary might be higher and they speak a bit louder but it’s doesn’t mean they are smarter to write a blog or speak many languages…etc. We should not fight to make them live in Cambodia, we should create our country a better place to live… it is where Cambodians live… soon nobody would like to live in a cold country.

    Last but not least to the bloggers, it’s a choice to choose where to live – Cambodia or anywhere in the world, please think before you write. insulting or information?

    • M says:

      You made some interesting observations. How many times were you cheated in two years in Europe?

      Cambodians say they love you but they hate you for irrational reasons. Cambodians say they love you only with prospect to cheat you at the first opportunity. Yes, they speak nice but their souls are so evil. They promise whatever, but never have intention to fulfill.

      Well, I agree, in Cambodia they are warm. But it is fake as everything in Cambodia, they don’t mean it at all.

      • al says:

        I live in the uk for the last 10 years,and i have never seen such double faced fuckers like this people in here…dont get me wrong i am here only cos i work here.I do understand Cambodians they have to live too.

  154. Atithrasmey says:

    it seems like, i have read a bitch’s article that keeping himself know more than Cambodian people. Foreigner is just a foreigner. I agree that there’re many problems in Cambodia but there’re not as worse as you wrote in the article.

  155. Jenny says:

    I think the author should put 7 reasons why he can’t stay in Cambodia and any other place except his home town.
    His view is so pessimistic and thought he has been from the perfect heaven country and know every aspect, i wish. So, he should back to his perfect thing.
    What did you expect from a developing country? hey man check it out, how long cambodia has gone thru her ways up to today. You should not compare it to EU or US, unjust comparison.
    Anyway, you can’t in Cambodia, go to live where you can live. Don’t think every one think like you

  156. Tim says:

    It’s pretty simple to understand…you get in this life what you accept. If you accept a shit job, you get it. If you accept surrounding yourself with drunks and losers you get it. If you come to Cambodia and are not switched on enough to afford a fantastic life style in a beautiful country spilling over with opportunity for those who are not pissy wankers named Ian or Nigel, then ya, you are gonna have a shitty life. But you are going to have a shitty life anywhere because you are just a douchebag with proper King’s english and bad teeth. Stay home, we don’t want you or need you here.

  157. suleiman says:

    Get a sense of humor y’all.

  158. phil says:

    well i have heard some shit in my life and this so called blog,,is just pure shit from an uneducated idiot,i lived in siem reap an Englishman and well traveled,he says all Thai women are whores, maybe this is why he is angry about life,, he must have been raped by men as well, this why he is so,so, sick,, his mother and sisters must be whores, where is he coming from siem reap has the most friendly people anywhere,clean streets,if you are sick you can have blood tests get any medication over the counter you want,if health is bad, go to Thailand, whats the problem sick mother fuker,,i wonder where the sick fuker lives who wrote this very sick blog,he has no idea about life at all,there are countries like Somalia where they have nothing,go write a blog there you fuking idiot..you are so sick,with no education at all,what everybodys alcoholics in asia,they cant have a nice wife because he says all whore like his mother,the man should be shot

  159. kim says:

    excuse me for being rude “M” or whatever. you ever lived in cambodia? if not, stop saying trash and shut your damn mouth. what are you talking about saying that people died young? then how come my greatgrandmother died at age 95. are you people stupid or something? I’m not denying that my home country is dirty but you should give us our pride too. You guys are just so conceited thinking that everything about you guys so perfect. I wish you guys would be worst than us and BAM!! you know how it feels to be criticized as a citizen of your own country!!!!

  160. GER says:

    Re the original posting, Yes things can be difficult in Cambodia but only if you make them so. If you drink to oblivion everyday life can be difficult regardless of where you live. There are prostitutes in every country. Alcoholics are everywhere, by the way there is not a drink culture in SE Asia, Cambodia is no exception, it is the western expats who ran away from there own countries with a headful of issues, bring these problems with them and then continue to drink to blot them out. Cambodia is a beautiful country and her people are very hospitable. If you can’t or won’t adapt them go home. It is mainly expats from from the USA who mess things up here. They expect to find a little America here at a cheaper cost. Get stuffed Mr Alcoholic American we don’t want you here. I am proud to live and work in Cambodia and I love her people.

  161. LuckyLuke says:

    @Gavinmac: Interesting article and more interesting comments. However, It is one-sided, like a divorce lawsuit, nothing pleasant only sadly pungent.

    Not everyone has the same goals or wants to an accountant, lawyer or scientist want to have an iPOD or wants to be successful in the capitalistic sense of the word. When my friends looks down at other cultures or nationalities I ask them whether they would they think the same if they were born there – unfortunately few human can think that far and are hard coded by their narrow education and parenting – this nor different in the developed world the shear arrogance has made many blind to reality.

    In fact, some of us actually like extreme vices and danger (I have lived all over but found West Africa the happiest part of my life (UK the unhappiest)), some like to be different and have a new experience not play it safe and always listen to mummy. It is not for joke the Chinese have given each of us an animal trait, or like a particular color.

    In my opinion civilizations and countries in general have a pace and cycle of development. With war, malnutrition, poor education, and lack of democracy people find it more difficult to focus on long term goals. Cambodia nor better nor worse. Unfortunately some in the West have not read history or have “forgotten” how their grandparents raped third world nations and exported slave labor or how they “developed” so fast.

    The west has developed tremendously and hats off for that. However said that they are also greedy, selfish and self centered: why did one million Iraqis (and 3000 marines) have to die – oil, arms sales, politics or 9/11?

    There article would have been balanced and meaningful if you had used less racist slur, gently warned readers about ground reality, and give more practical advice if one had had to go there. I think you have instead offended a lot of good principled people not necessarily your type or liking. It is like kicking a beggar in the face instead of genuinely helping out – cowardly and counter productive. In analogy, etiquette has taught us to use the word washroom but you have chosen the word shit-hole instead – your choice.

    Also, to keep a balance I encourage you to write a similar article on YOUR country (USA) or state and why not to move there. It would do justice especially to those many already educated and well-to-do Europeans, Asians (including Cambodians and Thai) Africans, hoping to move there.

    Ohh, also please stay from Cambodia, and stay as long as you can in your cheap, clean and safe country so that you can save a few bucks on the burgers, cinemas and stuff like brooms (most imported from cheap exploited labor in china?) and listen to mummy (Uncle Sam)

  162. what says:

    Satire:

    the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people’s stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.

    That’s exactly what this article is, stop taking it so seriously lol

  163. Rosie shaw says:

    Hey I love the Russian Markets

  164. Anon says:

    These comments are bias, and un-true. No real research has been done. Images provided show the development, but not how it is now.

  165. Marcus says:

    Just another journalist who knows nothing at all except to make up shit to make him self look good…………….ALL JOURNALIST ARE LIARS….he should go work for CNN (communist news network) or ABC ( ALL bulshit channel)

  166. SingaporeCowboy says:

    What a Hoot!

    It’s all so subjective……

    It is like ‘Buyers Beware’ Right?

    Been here close to two weeks from N. Thailand.

    Much of what is written is so true, but then it is a very prejudiced and narrow observation….PP/Siem Reap do not = All Cambodia guys!

    I have encountered cranky tourism business operators same same as in Thailand and also find others friendly and generous….50/50.

    Why are you here for, go ask yourself?….It is not where you live , it is ‘How you live where you live’ someone just said to me a week ago today!……

    Have a good long and healthy life…Happy Khmer New Year to all…my first here!

    SC

  167. jamie44 says:

    What do you expect- the author is a yank casino lawyer from Las Vegas.

    And they rouse on junkies who stole the odd moto/ bottle of whisky while they themselves are the epitome of moral rectitude.

    Blame it on the parents.

  168. Bird245 says:

    I can differentiate four certain types of People for a valuable information to all readers of this article.

    In Cambodia, I have seen :

    1, Expats (refer to all races) are making themselves less-respected by their own manners for : looking for drugs, passing it on to their fellows. Looking at poor Cambodian women as sex objects. Looking down at Cambodian for seeing Cambodian as cash suckers and illiteracy.

    2, Locals (Cambodian) are not earning enough to put foods on tables and to seek for education, therefore they choose to look for job out of their physical-capabilities. Like: sucking money out of foreigners from the jobs to which they prefer(since they were born and taught that foreigners are from a moderner and richer countries, therefore they are holding more $$$ and knowledge).

    I believe that there are others like:

    3, Expats (all races) who are looking to deliver Cambodia their knowledge or sympathy in order to help this poor country developed.
    4, cambodian(the good medium+high class) are seeking to improve standard of our country with the help for improvement of knowledges, infrastructure…etc.. *therefore, they do not value or respect foreigners who arrive Cambodia to do drugs, Sex or spreading culture of enjoying their owndepressed-life.
    5, Cambodian(evil & corrupted: they just don’t care what or who the hell is messing or bringing the mess in Cambodia, all they do is to structure bigger system of corruption , sucking $$$ from their own poor people and taking bribes from foreigners for whatever reasons which even pushing Cambodian to an even more messed up situation.

    I am Cambodian myself, and trying put facts for readers in non-offensive manner to all readers or commenter. You read what I wrote, and consider yourself who is the good or the bad, what makes the country look bad when the country itself has nothing to do with it, but evil-minded people who turn it into one.
    Cheers!!!

  169. Rathergood says:

    Your take is sensationalist at best.

  170. Marcus says:

    Dont believe shit this guy says he is just another asshole the US Government pays to say nothing but lies and BUllshit….. Be ware of these types of trolls most of the time they dont know shit just like all the news TV CNN( communist news network) ABC ( all bullshit channel) NBC ( Nazi BUllshit ChanneL ) CBS ( communist bull shit)

  171. Tommy says:

    Quote – Cambodia still has a notorious reputation, and it’s hard to get a good job when the hiring manager who reviews your application says, “This candidate has a fascinating resumé. I wonder if he’s a pedophile.” – End Quote.

    Paranoia. I’m guessing the writer of this article has romanced the idea of relocating to Cambodia himself but lacks spine. I mean, you’re either a pedophile or you’re not and if you’re not, why should you live in fear of being stigmatised as one? Oh yea that’s right. I forgot. Defamation; slander; character assassination. It’s what, power tripping, smug, self-righteous, status quo mongering evil-arse-holes in Western countries who are well practiced at clambering up the food chain, like to do. Just another good reason for wanting leave such places.

    So, see it for what it is and take courage. Why wouldn’t any self-respecting person who can’t find the work/interests/lifestyle they’re seeking or isn’t promoted or compensated according to their worth or similar in their home country’s expensive economy want to leave it? The above quote is more an indictment of a smug and pervasive Western mentality rather than people who are attempting to better their lives (for one reason or another) by relocating to Cambodia.

  172. Lyhor Mom says:

    no way! i agree with you for some reasons, but are you coming for your job, daily living, having fun and said nth to do? Then you shouldn’t come! In this country, people respect their family so much, like me 18 years old never have girl friend because they said i don’t get girl friend. I’m happy to helping the other kid who really want to study, collecting fund raising, and other more. You’re born in a situation you don’t know the world of fighting for their life in this country. We are staying together and helping each other for every situation. If we are able to raise the whole family, we raise. Maybe you don’t believe, you can check the previous history of Cambodia in 1950s. We are the top in ASIA at that time

  173. RDS says:

    I really hope you don’t consider yourself as an author of some kind because to write this stupid article you really can’t be one …

  174. Cecco says:

    Well, regarding the societies. One youngster, with bad language, is correct. Asians care for their parents (the young man didn’t say “mothers”). I noted the author writing a bigoted morality regarding “mothers.” What about fathers? Do men become any less needy as we age?

    Secondly, the author addressed bringing our “Thai girlfriends and wives.” Quality Thai women would not be interested in leaving Thailand. Men asking those questions are very unlikely to be with quality Thai women, and since 80% of the Thai’s of today have college degrees, we are talking about expats who are the bottom of the barrel. Most expats are living on very very little in Thailand.

    Thirdly, when the wife of Cambodia’s leader gave the Sampeah to Obama, my respect for Cambodia and the courage the Cambodian leadership showed in putting America’s Kenyan fraudster in his place rose a great deal.

  175. Nit Ron says:

    7 Reasons You Should Never Listen To This Negative, Gavinmac.
    1. This person is a scary cat.
    2. This person never experience life to the fullest.
    3. This person afraid to explore the new world.
    4. This person promote negativity.
    5. This person is very negative.
    6. This person is afraid to die.
    7. This person is the one who will die early.

    You are only live ones, so enjoy life where ever it maybe. Everything has it +/- side. It maybe seem worst to ones but not to others. Experience life you want to be and like to be. Live life to the fullest doesn’t mean you have to stay in one place in order to be save. You can die at young age with full of happiness. Live your life, enjoy it and die happy.

    Nit Ron

  176. Gunluvr says:

    Reads like a snooty civilian review. Have you ever been a soldier or a Marine who lived in the field under tough conditions? If not, save your condescending remarks for high living aristocrats. This country is for those of us who want to rough it. In general, we’re going to live there for the lust, the girls and for the rustic, uncivilized conditions that prevail. I’ve had a lifetime of “civilization” and I don’t like where the US is headed as a country. It took Rome 1000 years to fall and the United States will disintegrate within 200. Countries like these are pure and basic.

  177. zombie says:

    I understand it is meant to be satirical,
    my friends dad fell off his moto while drunk, and i tried to see if he had injuries, they put tigerbalm on the edges of his open wounds
    but what i dont understand is you did not know about legend cinema movie business at city mall?
    its biggest problem is it has those stupid 3D movies,
    curses and a pox on 3D cinema!

  178. Fisto says:

    I’ve been here in PP for about 10 days. Everything he mentioned is present, and also totally avoidable.

    While I’ve only been here a short time, I’ve been to a lot of “shit holes” and just like all shitholes there is opportunity.

    He goes off on the English Teacher pursuit quite a bit, well right now, the Khmer people are still genuinely interested in Barang. The upper class as well. Do you know who pays good money to learn English? The upper class Khmer.

    If you have your shit half way together you can make connections in a place like this and improve your station.

    If you’re a tattooed, drunken fuckup, you will be that in any place, and since whatever you’re looking for is cheap, Cambodia is a good place for that too.

    It always get’s on my nerves when someone like this speaks in absolutes, especially when it appears that it’s all based on research and not on the ground knowledge.

    The guy strikes me as the type of person that can spend months here and never learn to even say “thank you aunt” in Khmer.

    • gavinmac says:

      Ten days and you already have a Khmer aunt? That’s moving fast.

    • Falcon Randwick says:

      I think you’d be wrong there. While I’m not exactly sure how proficient he is at the language, I know gavinmac has been studying Khmer for around ten years now, so I suspect he can say a little more than “thank you, aunt”.

  179. Khmerican says:

    Negative points are placed by its own people everywhere in the world including developed countries, do you think so? If you don’t use your brain to think or to balance the bad and good points, you are still not being aware of what is going on. You will be like “a poor frog in the well”.

    I believe everybody has its own bad and good attitudes, so if you are educated (no need to be well-educated), you know how to use your brain to judge.

  180. 1. You will live longer in Cambodia
    According to Gavinmac’ article, I am statistically deceased (i.e. older than 54.7). However, since I moved to the tropics nearly twenty years ago, I’m feeling a lot better and younger than when I was living in cold, wet Europe. And probably have a better chance of surviving here longer. The climate is beneficial most of the year. I have a lot less problems with arthritis and colds. I haven’t felt a single problem with lower back pain, which bothered me most o the time living in Europe. Psychologically it’s also a better environment: instead of being regarded as old, useless, and better dead, you’re approached here with respect for your white hair and older age.
    When holding up hygiene standards a bit, and living in a city, you’re not so disease-prone as you would think. Gently taking in some of the more dangerous microbes is probably adding value to your immune system as well. Beyond a few cases of flu and a broken collarbone, I’ve been pretty healthy, despite some 400,000 km of traveling on a motorbike in S and SE Asia during the last twenty years.
    Traffic is quite slow and spread out in Cambodia, compared with e.g. India and even Thailand. Having a small population and bad roads probably helps too.

    2. Cambodia is a fine place to raise a child
    Good, English spoken education doesn’t have to break the bank. While the fees of some International Schools are exorbitant, it doesn’t have to be that way. There are quite decent schools around for a affordable fee, at least for a foreigner. Yes, local schools are abominable, but what loyalty and interest can you expect from a teacher earning $100-125 per month. Even to local standards, that’s not enough to survive with a family, much less living up to the expectations of your surroundings.

    3. The infrastructure is fast improving
    While it will take a few more years to fix the big national roads (currently very bad at places due to massive road works), quite a few of the B-roads are pretty good. Even a lot of ‘dirt roads’ are in not too bad a shape, certainly on a two-wheeler.
    Power outages are still frequent – and will increase in certain urban parts because of the fast growing consumption – but it’s rare that a power outage takes more than 10-30 minutes to fix. While living ‘off the internet’, with the battery power of my laptop + a mobile internet connection as back-up for my fixed line, I can almost always bridge the power outage gap. Keeping a few battery-powered tube lights charged, we even have little problems with outages in the evening or night.
    The riverside in Siem Reap provides for some nice shaded and pleasant walks, and is being expanded to the south side. Decent shops, little malls and good bookshops are available, as well as an excellent choice of restaurants and bars, all within about 300 m from Pub Street. Quite comfortable, particularly if one chooses to have one’s living quarters just outside that zone. I rarely have to bear any form of noise pollution. Even if there’s a lot of construction going on, most of it is done by hand, not machines. OK, people start working early, but so am I, so it really doesn’t bother me.

    4. Living in Cambodia is good for your finances
    Teaching as a foreigner isn’t that bad either. Even at $9 per hour. If you teach 6 hours per day and 5 days a week, you still make about $1000 a month, a princely sum in this country, on which you can certainly live decently. While not teaching, I’m living quite decently on about the same budget. I pay $100 rent for a small but very comfortable apartment. Add another $60 for power and other facilities (which includes modest A/C and nearly continuous fan use), $500 on groceries and $250 on restaurant costs, and I’m good for the month. With a local wife and 1 kid, that doesn’t sound too bad to me.
    Going out to a (Western type of) restaurant with the three of us rarely sets me back more than $25, which we do two or three times a week. Can you afford that in Europe on a medium salary?
    Just bought a new scooter ($1700), a new big fridge (|$250), a simple combi-microwave ($100) and a huge 40” flat-screen TV ($350). Try shopping for that price in Europe.
    By the end of the year we plan to have a holiday abroad. $500 for return flight tickets to Manila, $200 for a two-day ferry trip to the south of the Philippines (including a stateroom and meals on board) for the three of us, Add another $300 for working ourselves up the slow way to Manila again and max $1000 on living expenses, it all will probably boil down to less than $2000 for a four-week holiday with a family of three. Again, try that in Europe!
    Have some money on a savings account? Up to 6.5 % interest rates (36 months fixed deposit) doesn’t sound too bad either for an account in USD.. If you’re savvy, and you like to play the stock markets, there’s a lot more to earn. Most Asian stock markets are doing pretty well. And a lot of listings of stable companies have a yearly swing of 50 to 100%. If you play it handy, it’s quite easy to make a yearly 50% profit on your investments.
    All this is quite OK, on the condition that you don’t plan on saving enough to return to a Western country. Consider yourself an immigrant, not a long-term holiday maker. So yes, you’re stuck in the region. But wasn’t that the big idea in the first place?

    5. Your mother will be happy for you too
    Your mother will congratulate you for making a wise choice, living in a good and friendly country (after all there’s little violent crime here compared to many other countries), the people are super-friendly and still surprisingly screwed up by westerners, even if in certain spots they’re not seeing the best of breed of them. Invite her over for a holiday, so see can see how happy you are with a great wife and a super kid.
    Of course, you have to live sensible, and make wise choices. If you’re 50+, an 18 y.o. bargirl who’s on alcohol and drugs isn’t a wise choice. But a decent out-of-town girl of 40, whose husband has abandoned here, or drunk himself to death, can be an excellent choice, even if she has two or three (lovely) kids. There’s nothing wrong with having your own little orphanage, and (within reason) taking care of some extended family. They’ll take care of you. While it will not pay for any hospital costs, but will certainly pay back in nursing care.

    6. You’ll become a social anchor
    There’s a lot of bad and bad-ass expats hanging around. Avoid them. There’s plenty of nice chaps around too. Ever since I settled down here, I have gathered a good circle of close friends around me from different countries (Belgium, Netherlands, France, Austria, Australia, USA, India, Brazil) that are all hard working for a company or owning their own little business, often but not all married locally, without any alcohol, drugs or violence related problems. Contacts are much more regular compared with my experience in Europe, and often also deeper. Yes, there’s even some kind of common feeling and culture, integrated in, yet distinctive from the local way of life.
    And, while being extremely selective, I have a few solid Khmer friends too.
    It’s all about your own choice and your own level of decency.

    7. Your Khmer girlfriend/wife will absolutely love it
    While having a foreign husband/friend seems to be less elevating for her social status than in some surrounding countries, she’ll feel moving up the ladder by a few steps. OK, you’ll pay for it: she likes to go to the manicure and hairdresser, and will spend more money than before on clothing and cosmetics. But all for a good purpose: looking good for you. But in return, she’ll pamper you beyond belief. If you’re half a decent fellow in loving and caring for her (and her off-spring), and accept your social duties to her family – which shouldn’t be very expensive after all – like it is built-in in the tradition of most of Asia (actually not much different from our own Western countries 100 years ago), you’ll earn a lot of honour and gratitude for the rest of your life.
    Living in one of the poorer countries in the region, any trip abroad is going to be like a honeymoon vacation for her. Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines,… it’s all pretty close, flights are cheap, and are going to be a revelation for most Khmer, who before have never seen much more than the next village.

    Whether poor (in Western terms) or not isn’t all that important. What counts is your decency. If you behave like a gentleman, keep your manners, dress appropriately and know how to behave in an Asian context, living in Asia is very much like living in paradise. Become a bad-ass and your life can turn into hell. It’s all up to you.
    I know what I have chosen for, and am more than happy to live here happily ever after.

    • Borito says:

      Your numbers don’t add up. You will never get 6 hours per day teaching every day as no school has such a schedule.
      You may get close to that if you teach in 3 schools and lucky with the timing but usually all of them empty in the morning and full in the evening when you might have 1 or 2 classes only.

      Or if you teach that much at one place they will give you a full time job for much less. And you don’t live in a one room studio with a wife and a kid or if you do, good luck with your soon to be busy shrink.

      You don’t buy all the stuff you listed even from a $1000 wage, let alone going out 3 times a week and pay $25 at a time which would set you back $75 a week or $300 a month.
      You pay zero for your wife, ha? I can’t see that in your books.
      Cheap one for sure.

      Cheap flights anywhere in the region?
      Cambodia bullshit air flies Saigon for $350, Cebupacific $400-500 to Manila and AirAsia sometimes makes you lucky with cheaper KL or BKK flights at times.

      You draw some handsome pension money or social welfare from your government which allows you all what you say.
      That way it’s easy to enjoy this “cheap” country. So shut the fuck up.

    • M says:

      Well, let us sum it up. You can not have a car and own home like everyone in Western has, but you still can afford a scooter and renting a rat hole for $100. And you have a TV and fridge. You claim that saving at 6.5 % (36 months fixed deposit) is a big deal when every year almost everything gets 10 to 25 % more expensive.

      Btw., scooter is quite convenient during rain and when travelling in provinces, isn’t it?

  181. sreyneang says:

    felt that it is a place for some uneducated guy complain about cambodia because if they are educated they have understood Cambodia situation and they will pity and want to help Cambodian avoid from bad situation.

  182. Will says:

    At the end of the day, no body has to anywhere they don not want to. If you dont like how a country is, you have the God given right to get on a plane, train, bus and get out. I have heard a lot of complaining about this or that, but nobody asked to to go there or live there.
    The guy who wrote this, I would like to ask where have you been and lived for any amount of time? Apart from Cambodia? I have spent thirty years travelling. Cambodia might have its problems, but so does every country.
    If we all came from somewhere that a lot better, why do we not want to live there?

  183. Sothy says:

    It seems the author has seriously lived a sad life!!

  184. JR says:

    “Thanks for raising me and all that, sorry I haven’t seen you in a few years, it just turns out that I enjoy drugs, alcohol and hookers much more than spending time with you.” CHEERS!! :)

  185. Grim says:

    I don’t know…part of the article are true and some are not. They’re mostly facts. I’m a local. The last part of the first fact is true. They’re all mostly just gonna stand their looking at you dying. The ambulance, doctor and medicine can’t really be trusted. If you’re lucky you might live. Second, The attitude of the locals are even worst. You could just walk out there and die from thugs. If you’re moving there and don’t have a relative, I suggest you get the shit out of there

  186. John green says:

    Cambodia, land of the poor & land of the free. (if you have some spare cash of course) It attracts the outside world(only a selected species from worlds of many other cultures, that Cambodians in general will never see or understand).
    I enjoyed the harsh ride this piece points to and it’s opinion of many who have come to rid themselves of rights and wrongs from a clean cut culture of the west. The choices people make to live in a free(er) country when choices are your own not that of a society who behind closed doors are no better than a drug addict, sex addict or alcoholic.
    Living in the UK everything goes on behind closed doors, the stigma culture of the uk where you receive a name it’s usually sticks for life unless your a celebrity of course and go for the help and pay your nice Dr the huge sum to cure your acute alcoholism or your sex addiction with models while using a pound of cocaine to ease the pain your suffering from stardom.
    This article is about why you shouldn’t move to Cambodia, for health and care reasons not disregarding local cultures or beliefs. We are all humans and we all have our different needs apart from the obvious food and water we choose different foods and beverages and we choose to use many different drugs from thyroid replacement drugs to cannabis for health reasons(anxiety, adhd)to alcohol to Valium for the buzz?
    If Cambodia like Thailand closed it’s doors to the many who choose to live as free spirits of their choice? What’s left, where is our freedoms? UK.. No! USA.. No? Europe..(maybe Amsterdam?) No? Thailand.. No? Where is there left to feel you have the choice to live as you please, for better for worse?
    We are living in a plastic world of fast cash on credit cards, buying what we don’t really need, giving only when it’s a moral statement of our wealth to unfortunate countries run by past dictators to be ruled by future dictators?
    History always seems to repeat itself, The Vietnam war….Middle East war? Counties invading other countries over centuries, Do we really all want to be the same color one day? A beige or a grey or just a milky brown? Who breeds racism and it’s fear, everything has the power of money behind it, everything from international sports to what your child wants for their birthday or Xmas. So when a man or woman walks into Cambodia it’s the last shop on the old road that sells everything, at a price of course. Not the squeaky clean west that sells everything perfect in perfect presentation wrapped to make you believe it’s good for you. While behind closed doors is the (Wild) West where all your dreams and nightmares are being made, is it any better than Cambodia who leaves it’s saloon doors swinging for the lost souls on their dusty trek seeking a new dreams and beginning.
    I won’t touch on child trafficking or child prostitution as we all know that’s someone else’s job/problem to erase??

    • M says:

      I think you are pretty mistaken if you compare freedom of Western countries with Cambodia. You have to spent year or two to understand.

      Yes, if you think that if you are rich you are free to kill anyone, that if you are rich the court will rule the verdict in your favor regardless the law, then welcome to the country of freedom.

      You can even loose land, there is no law anywhere. There is some law on the paper but the law serves to whom can afford it.

      You can not do business (I do not mean a shop) in Cambodia unless you sleep with government in one bed. It is all about bribing. They live for corruption. The corruption in Cambodia is not in billions like in Western but it is much more spread and killing progress. Try to follow the law with your business and you will loose everything.

  187. Thomas Janek says:

    You are so right. This country absolutely sucks. I’ve been living in Sihanoukville for a year now – time to go now. Cambodia is shit. That’s it.

    1) No way to find a quiet house. I checked a hundred. Everywhere (!) there’s loud music or noise.
    2) The food is really, really bad. It will kill you. Full of bacteria or forbidden medicine. I get sick every month on a regular basis.
    3) If the food won’t kill you, traffic accidents will. Khmers drive crazy. Absolutely crazy. They have no respect for the street traffic and funnily don’t even care for their own well-being. Traffic is really scaring here.
    4) Everything is undeveloped – it’s like Africa. No good medical facilities, no high speed internet, broken streets are garbarge everywhere. The air is polluted by garbage.
    5) Cambodian girls suck. Don’t know what’s wrong with them, but many are simply crazy. Thai girls are great, on the other hand.

    And many more things, like paying 3 USD for a small bag of biscuits in the supermarket.

    Thailand is sooo much better.

    • DK says:

      I’ve been planning to move to Sihanoukville for at least 6 months. I have a ticket to Bangkok for next month. I was in both places in 2012. Do you have any advice for me? Seems like you hate it now, but what about the past year? How was it? My requirements are very low, just to live cheaply and not get killed basically.

  188. Sophalin says:

    Gavinmac,I hope I spelled your name correctly. Well, as I don’t have much different from the other comments, I just want to tell that It’s been 25 years now since I was born and raised here in Cambodia, and this is the first time I see someone so vividly describe his personality. You are what you repeatedly do. Tell you the truth, I’ve never been to those bars and nightclubs. And, I’ve never talked to those foreigners who seem to enjoy themselves so much, the alcohol, the drugs and the hookers. I believe those things exist, and I believe they are especially made for the kind like you.

    I’ve gone through the education system provided by my government from the 1st grade through to the university. I have graduated with double major degrees, and I had an opportunity to teach English in an international school (well that was what they said) in 2010. I quit teaching in 2012 as I was offered an ACCA scholarship award. I then became an Auditor. I met with westerners, who most of them were just like what you have described, teaching at daytime and wandering around for girls, sex, drink and drugs at night. They were enjoying the earning from $10 or $15 rate teaching hour, which is 5 times higher than that of the local English teachers’, and they say they are not saving anything. You have perfectly elaborated in your article the reason that they don’t save a penny.

    It is no difference by any Southeast Asia Countries you go to if you are looking for the same things. Most of you guys look for girls, sex, drinks, drugs and troubles. No doubt, you’ve got troubles. We are poor and we admit that. Our government is corrupt. And our country is polluted by carbohydrate, noise, waste, and foreign culture.

    We are trying to be attracted to through you, Westerners. We are welcome people to help us from being deprived and poverty. Many Westerners have good intentions, while others are not. Bad things and bad name travel fast, you should know that, and thanks for sharing your experience.

  189. ryan morris says:

    You are a fucking idiot.

  190. DJE says:

    I have visited Kampuchea six times in the last 12 months.
    The people and culture I find,are both fascinating and addicting which explains why I go back.I now have a flat in Phnom Penh which I call home of my second family who I assist both financially and pay for their English lessons one hour a day, five days a week.The Kymer people are “richer” than most people in the US that have money.They have a contentedness about them that radiates and their spirit is amazing.
    I agree in part to many who have contributed on this article,but on the contrary to the author,I feel if your considering living in Cambodia,try it!If you don’t like it;leave!

    See you again November, 2014!

    DJE
    California
    USA

  191. Nalin says:

    I’m living in Phnom Penh and I find this offensive.

  192. Jim says:

    I found the article poorly written, but find it hard to take any of it to heart. I think that the author was attempting to be humorous. Obviously, you get what you pay for. What did you expect for free, Mike Meyers?

  193. lester says:

    I have lived here 11 years and I absolutely agree with the original writer. THANK YOU FOR WRITING THE TRUTH AND POSTING IT.
    What was written was not exaggerated or untrue.
    I object to the glossy write-ups about Cambodia that promote books or hotel etc warn potential retirees and tourist of the dangers.
    So many tourists come here get their GH rooms broken into, bags stolen both from their moto basket or on the beach, drinks spiked in the bars, women raped and on and on and on. Try and find “official stats” about crime here, there are none. Tell me how many crimes are ever solved including rape and murder, I know of not one. The police are in the pocket of the criminals.
    Khmers themselves do not report crime because they know the police are corrupt and worthless.
    Its understandable that Khmers will defend their own country but unfortunately its through ignorance. Please educate yourself, if you afford it then travel or at the very least go to Poipet and walk across the border and notice at the fence line the dirt and filth stops immediately. Westerners are no insulting you we are expressing frustration, we would love to help you help yourself but you must first recognize the desperate need for change.
    Go Home??? Yes that is exactly what I am going to do when my daughter finishes her final year of private schooling this year. The country will not change until the government is thrown out and the last corrupt election proved that is not possible.

    • Borito says:

      I agree with you mate – except for the last part about the government.
      Do you seriously think any of the issues mentioned in the article would be solved by changing the government?
      No f..ing way. It’s the cambos who should be changed or something in their minds.
      To any other poster. Call me racist – it’s so simple. Wiping off any arguments and just saying “racist” is the easiest thing for someone incapable of listening, observing and forming opinion could do.
      And please no KR to blame for everything – rather think why one of the biggest genocide of the modern history just happened here and not somewhere else. Because of those few leaders? Seriously?

  194. Soumy says:

    Being a Cambodian , i felt really offended after read this senesless articel. Who do you think you are to say such things. We cambodian don’t care if you are going to move to cambodia or not. We still can live our live happily without you guys. i admit that cambodia is not a nice country according to what you have metioned, but it is not that really bad. i have few foreigner friends who have been settling down here years, they all love cambodia, and enjoy their life here. You are the only foreigner that have such a stupid comment about cambodia, beside that you are absolutely a racist.

  195. O says:

    Totaly true. Cambodia is a bad place.

    If you do not have many choices and you choose bad ones, that is bad. Just bad. But if you are using your talent for humiliating people, that is shit. Just shit.

    • sreyneang says:

      a bad people? wow sound like you have met one person in cambodia and disappointed you. i agree with that.but where you from O? do all people in your country are good and kind? you should notice that when you go to others places you will meet new people and they might or might not honest with you. i really sorry if during you were staying in cambodia you meet bad person, but if you met a good person will you say this shit.

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  197. Trebor brown says:

    I am one of those “old” 71 guys that married a 34 year woman with two boys. A nine year old and a 12 year old. You might not be aware of the fact that a number of young women marry much older men from their own country and culture as well. Not just white guys. They only ask for a couple of things: do not leave me, treat me well and respectful, in return they will take care of all your needs. You provide a roof over their head, they have food to eat, decent clothes to wear. You treat them with respect and love them. Everybody wins. We older farts are more mature, treat the girls better, are more patient, have a lot more experience in bed, , and have a lot more money then you. Simply put we are a better deal. And the girl know it. Are you a little jealous? My heart bleeds. And yes they are awesome in bed.

  198. Richard says:

    I have lived in Thailand for a long time and also Cambodia I am a Australian it’s simple Cambodian people are not so bad they are more loveable but the country is shit ,Thailand the country is better but the people are shit. the women are so very sick with greed no money no honey so true,all trying to make them look white stupid people ,why don’t you come down to earth,sitting outside a bar showing a leg that’s the only way they know they can make money because their dumb.and yet they also spend a lot of time for making themselves look beautiful but come the age of 35 their ugly as sin.yes the Thais hate everybody except for themselves could be a great country as they still have great culture as Cambodia have none.If Thailand wants to move forward they must change this stupid attitude .

  199. sreyneang says:

    i started to know that the well educated people can think only cambodia bad like this and that, but most of you never think about the causes and who make it. you guys might have good leader who want your country develop and really work for people, how about us? you lived in good condition three meals a day but most of us not.please before say something put yourself in our situation and if it still make you think that Cambodians or Cambodia is worst, let’s say it. and if it any solution to so the Cambodia problems please send me. [email protected]

  200. pep says:

    “Let us agree that the hallmark of a successful life is living as long as possible while simultaneously acquiring as many material possessions as you can.”

    This just about sums it up. This guy is just so full of shit.

  201. Nita says:

    I think that this phara graph is looking down Cambodia ! Cambodia also has many good points! I really really disagree with ur point that living in Cambodia will make u die younger! Life is life! We cannot know first how long can we live!!! There are so many factors !!!

  202. Lots of accurate information in this article, but I don’t think all these reasons qualify as to why you shouldn’t move to Cambodia. I live in Cambodia and it’s great :)

  203. Tom says:

    First of all thank you for writing this post, it shows to everyone how messed up the people of this world are, and by this i mean you.
    Many of the things that you have said havent got all the information. Before critizising a country please inform yourself. Cambodia has had a terrible past. before the khemer rouge, cambodia was asia’s pearl. When the khemer rouge rose to power, 1/3 of their population was killed. The population they killed were people That were considered intelligent(doctors,teachers, engineers,etc). The remaining population was forced to work on the countryside in appauling conditions. The children from the regime were forced to kill their families and they lived in terrible conditions(drugs,alcohol,rape…). Some of those kids turn out to be the parents That are living now in cambodia.
    An important fact to take into consideration is that the man who is in power now in cambodia, was a khemer rouge. This man rules the government by his own benefit. The government expropiates many families land in order to sell it to the highest bider. Moving the families to another poorer zone. Do you know how much does a policeman in cambodia earn? (70$)
    A part from all this, cambodia has become an attraction for many stupid asshole foreigners who go to cambodia to buy drugs alcohol and have sex with girls. When i say girls i mean girls who are 15,16,17 years old. Many of this girls are forced to become prostitutes by their parents. And when a stupid asshole foreigner goes to cambodia to look for prostitutes, he promotes this things to happen. And this is only a little from the big problems That exist.
    Now, having all of this information, i will express my opinion.
    Cambodia is a beautiful country. Not only it is beautiful because of it’s landscapes, its temples and many other things, it is beautiful because of its people. Cambodia it is known to be the kingdom of wonder, but i would call it the kingdom of happiness,the kingdom of smiles, the kingdom of hospitality…
    Cambodia’s people are the best kind of people that i have ever met. Not only they are kind,respectful,smiling, but also they are really sharing. Even if they are really poor, if you have been kind with them in some way, they will share what they have with you no matter what.
    One part of me has stayed in cambodia because of this. I really don’t know in what part of cambodia you have lived or with what kind of people you have hang out, but your article doesnt show what cambodia really is. I really thank all cambodian people for being what you are. It is people like this(the author of this article) that really wants you to lose faith in humanity.

    • Soumy Phan says:

      Thanks Tom for educating this author. On behalf of other 14 millions Cambodian I do appreciate what you had written here. i gueess, you must have been visiting and living around in Camboida for years. You do know about our history, culture and people. i hope that a lot more people will see cambodia as you are. :)

  204. gavinmac says:

    It sounds like you are saying that Cambodia is a corrupt, impoverished country full of murderers and stupid asshole foreigners, but it’s a great place to live because people will smile at you and share rice.

  205. kaz says:

    I am a 30 year old expat living in Cambodia. Don’t drink. Don’t party. Married a local girl.
    Opened a successful business and I am making an absolute killing.
    Probably about 4 or 5 times what you would make in Australia working as a sales rep for a pharmaceutical company. .
    I travel 3 times a year with my wife and don’t get sick because I choose to look after myself.
    Who ever wrote this article is a very negative person with a very simple way of reading life.
    Start finding the positives my friend and you might actually achieve something in your life.

  206. Serious Man says:

    Hi folks, I’m so happy Gavinmac disgusted you all from going to Cambodia. I don’t want to see your white badass fat bellies and your satanic behaviour in my country.
    I also like his article about “Foreign Dude Problem”, very informative.
    Of course, not all expats are like this… lolx10
    Best regards,
    Serious Man

  207. P says:

    Gavinmac, you heartless asshole why don’t you wake up and smell the roses Cambodia has to offer and I hope you choke

    Fair enough, we all know that Cambodia has it’s problems but I believe it’s a beautiful country althrough I haven’t been their but I don’t go around judging people or their countries, you need to really check out your own country before you slander another country I am sure you have lots of sex workers (young & older), drugs, violence and drunks and so on this happens throughout every country in the entire world so your country isn’t innocent just like mine in Australia but I still love my country as I was born here and it’s still a beautiful country to me

    How do you think the Cambodian people feel when they are reading this? They love their country and it’s not up to you or anyone else to judge them for it’s problems regardless I would love to live in Cambodia or any Asian country as I love their history, culture and the Asian people are really great people to really get to know

    Get a life you heartless asshole and stop judging other peoples countries and start judging your own

  208. mathew jin says:

    i think the ones who wrote this 7 reasons is completely stupid. he/she does not know about how wonderful Cambodia is . he/she might be crazy.

    • WA says:

      Asia is full of crazy, inhumane people, whether they are educated or not. Perhaps, if more people knew about how horrible Cambodia really is, less people would want to risk their life savings there.

      • N says:

        You monster. Where ever you are from, i think you are rude and more inhumane than some bad guys here. You, mother fucker. Bending your tongue hundreds times before making any suggestion. I think You have lobster brain. so i don’t need to explain anything to you.

        • WA says:

          Indeed you did not need to explain or ask anything. Your foul mouthed Asiatic assault was enough to turn any visitors off. This just reinforced that Cambodia is indeed a horrible inhumane place that is full of extremely monstrous, horrible, nasty, pretentious, noisy, intolerant Asiatic people. Honestly, your swearing is so uncivlised. No wonder Cambodia is cursed from people like yourself who cursed irrationally, nonstop.

        • KKnight says:

          This guy talks down to Asia and acts like he so superior but the only thing he proved is his ignorance… LOL

  209. s says:

    Yo you fuck up piece of shit
    here’s 7 reasons why you should suck your own dick
    1. You will die younger
    Mainly because you’ve sinned so bad and become consumed by the internet, thinking it’s okay to post about my country. Okay, maybe being biased towards religion won’t do the trick but I hope to the very least, you’ll get ebola. Or just disappear from this earth, because we don’t need fags like you around.
    2. You are going to be a horrible husband anyways
    Fuck you. I feel bad for the mother who has to carry your child. Fuck wherever you move, you’ll be a scumbag towards your kid anyway. Ah yes the educational system oh my… although I partially agree that we have bad educational systems, doesn’t fucking mean we’re not caring about it. Yes, i’m cambodian and you didn’t think i’d find my way through this. Well I did, you spawn of satan. You’re probably way too busy ranting about Cambodia to care about your child anyways.
    3. The infrastructure sucks
    Yeah because we’re a developing country asshole. Bitch have you heard about the Pol Pot regime? That impacts us Cambodians and we’re just slowly recovering from the dark past. Shit man, I can’t even explain how stupid you are. All our knowledge was lost yet our cries weren’t as valued to the world. So fuck you and live with it. I hope you get polluted by the infrastructure in developed country and get lung cancer you twat.
    4. Your financial future is corrupted
    Dear god, I wish you’d all of a sudden be stripped poor and live the life of Cambodians. We work through our tears and sweat to be paid with decent amounts of money yet we’re still happy. Unlike your greedy little ass. Why don’t you go tell that to your rich western friends who own a fucking porn video? Yeah go spend it on your little whores.
    5. Your mother is disappointed
    This article is evident. I hope someday you’ll show this to your mother. As a kind woman, she supports you but deep down inside, i guarantee she wish you were an abortion
    6. Seems like someone’s described their friends
    On what note would you know this? Suspicious how you are able to write about these cheap westerners in so much detail. Listen buddy, if you go to a bar anywhere and you meet with a stranger, chances are something dangerous is going to happen. So stop narrowing it down to just Cambodia. I can’t believe how bias you are it makes me want to kill myself just to forget your stupidity. I hope your friends will be there when you’ve finally stripped poor and rotting in the streets.Maybe someday, you’ll actually learn not to go to places like that and go visit the cultural places available in Cambodia because someone is just a little know it all.
    7. Go fuck your thai girlfriend
    We don’t want you to bring your thai girlfriend anyways. Go to paris and fucking jump off the eiffel tower yourself.
    Goodbye you son of a bitch.
    On another note, I’m sorry to those of you who are reading this. I’m just irritated about this fucking little rascal and if this offends anyone, I apologise in advance. But fuck your opinions Gavinmac. I hope you’ll be filed to the police anytime soon.

  210. KKnight says:

    Gavinmac, I respect your views of Cambodia BUT you have only mention the worst about Cambodia. The life I’m living is no where near the level how you are stating it to be… YES you get Cambodians who can be rude and illogical about things but overall, Cambodians are generally nice people. This is how we are looked upon by a lot of Koreans, Vietnamese, Japanese, European people… I was born in Cambodia but I was brought up in America. I love it in Cambodia especially with all these new developments going on. Brand new apartments are way cheap compare to America. Food here is awesome. The brand new mall “Aeon” is better than most other malls I’ve been to around the world.. You got two other BIG high end malls opening up. You have a new building similar to Marina Bay in Singapore being built here by Thai. You get a lot Japanese and Koreans investors here. Phnom Penh is one of the safest city compare to cities in America. There’s gonna be lots of foreigners moving here and yes, you do get a lot of the trashy westerners who come to Cambodia BUT are they really bad people? No worst than hitting up bars in America. I’ve met a lot of great European people here. If you see a foreigner who is in need of help (getting robbed, mugged, etc), the local will do what they can to jump in to help them. All I can say is either your article is very biased or you are a really negative person… BUT I’ll respect that.

    • WA says:

      This article is not biased at all. In fact it is very true.

      While I see nothing wrong in praisng your fellow Asians, I do think it is wrong to give a misleading picture of Asia or Cambodia to any first time traveller.

      The traffic in Phnom Penh is horrendous(if one is not extra careful, one can get easily knocked down by extremely chaotic traffic or haphazardly parked cars at every corner) and there are no proper public transportations. And almost everyone tried to take advantage of visitors in this grasping, oppressive Asiatic environment.

      The Asian traits and culture are horrendous though some part appear to be superficially Westernised but nonetheless still unpleasant to those without deep pockets.

      And the fact that Cambodians Asians are generally extremely rude and can’t take criticsm in the right way made it even more an unpleasant and ugly destination to be avoided.

      Furthermore, the quality of life in Cambodia(even though it may be cheaper) is almost non-existent.

      • KKnight says:

        “This article is not biased at all. In fact it is very true.”

        Oh really. Tell me your experience in Cambodia.

        “And the fact that Cambodians Asians are generally extremely rude and can’t take criticsm in the right way made it even more an unpleasant and ugly destination to be avoided.”

        Care to give me an example?

        “The traffic in Phnom Penh is horrendous”
        Agreed but amazing that accidents are RARE in Phnom Penh compare to that in SoCal.

        “Furthermore, the quality of life in Cambodia(even though it may be cheaper) is almost non-existent.”

        Not the life I’m living. Hell, lots of my friend would love my lifestyle right now who I might add, live in poor/rich places in SoCal.

        • Thomas says:

          Traffic accidents or at least near misses are extremely common in Cambodia. Just because you don’t see any at every single intersection doesn’t mean driving in Cambodia is safe. Forget about comparing it to SoCal. There are probably at least 20 times as many cars in LA alone compared to the whole of Phnom Penh and with 1500 miles (2500km) of freeway and tens of thousands of miles/km of other roads the road infrastructure in SoCal is a million years ahead of the dirt roads and potholed streets of Phnom Penh, so there’s no comparison really. But I can guarantee you accidents are common and probably far more so than in SoCal – I’ve seen many in Cambodia, despite only being a visitor and not a resident. There could be a major accident 2km away but without any traffic news radio in Cambodia there wouldn’t be any way of knowing where accidents occur and even if there was, most accidents are probably not reported anyway.

          Malls are getting better yes. Aeon is not bad but not incredible either – it’s simply the first acceptable shopping mall in all of Cambodia but it’s neither big nor amazing. It simply offers a supermarket and the same chain restaurants/coffee shops as out on the streets all in one place. It’s much smaller and less significant than any Central department store in upcountry Thai cities such as Ubon Ratchatani or Udon Thani or Vincom in Ho Chi Minh, but OK it’s heading in the right direction.

      • Srey Nec says:

        I agree with you that the article is very true. However, Gavinmac’s articles often stay on the extreme side. I think it is intended for amusement (I think).

        In stead of complaining about it, I highly suggest you running a blog informing foreigners to avoid Cambodia.

        Regarding the traffic issues, I just Googled the pictures of “traffic in Phnom Penh”, plenty of results are found on the page. In short, if the traveler doesn’t do his/her own research before spending over $1000 for plane ticket, it’s not really Cambodia’s fault.

        I don’t even speak English as a first language; I can figure it out. It shouldn’t too difficult for traveler to seek out info.

  211. Jim says:

    How can Cambodians say they are a good people and then write these comments? Not an ounce of humour or decency amongst the whole lot of them. The comments section here is #8 on this list.

  212. Daniel says:

    Gavinmac, you are an ignorant racist dick who doesn’t know shit about Cambodia. All you say is biased nonsense.

  213. William says:

    It is high time Gavinmac is shown the door on khmer440, the site is better off without him, why does the new owner not rid this site of the fool who alienates so many people?

  214. Neil says:

    I have to laugh when i read this post and information. You clearly have no idea of the things that can be done in this country and have obviously only spent your own time in bars here on 136 with the types of people that you are referring to. To say that as a westerner you will not make money in Cambodia? Really? As a 36 year old English man living here owning my own business i can assure you that you could not be more wrong. I know a lot of expats here that have very successful companies and live a very nice lifestyle. I also know some bar owners that would be very happy to meet with you face to face to discuss your description of them.
    You are clearly one of the few idiots that has spent some time here and achieved nothing and now blame the country itself for your downfalls.
    I just hope that not too many people with any common sense will listen to any of your stupidity.

  215. Dave says:

    Just want to explain in few lines about this article,,,
    Really its 99% stupid thinking, and i have been there and stayed for 9 months, NOTHING WRONG, because some people go there for under age/sex and looking around, pay ur big $$$ making them lazy too…
    cambodia people are warm ofcourse some rude but majority people try to come up themselves…JUST WHAT U CAN HELP OR NOT ,,, BUT DONT SPOIL THEM… u mentioned some western go there, open bar and blah blah, why they opened bar? Instead they can give job for locals in nice manner except bar girls..coz they wanna enjoy the girls and make money at the same time..sucks….
    nearby cambodia 1 small country with infrastructure and hospitality have but STILL IF YOU CHOCK ON THE ROAD SIDE, THEY WILL WALK ON THE OTHERSIDE OF THE ROAD . Cambodia is still improving..

  216. Dave says:

    you really stupid,, do you know Cambodia is how rich in OLDEN DAYS,, GO BACK TO HISTORY TURN UR MIND,,,,Its still Developing, the rice won the Worlds best rice award during 2012, and 2013…They also feeding so many people in this planet,,,, U GO AND DIE , I THINK U LIKE ONLY BAR AND BAR GIRLS, U MUST BE BEATEN BY SOMEONE IN CAMBODIA HAHAH

  217. AmericanWomanGetAwayFroMeeee says:

    Yup, this article was most definitely written by a college educated American woman who just lost her boyfriend to a sweet Cambodian girl (you know the one that feeds you with her own hands).

    She is clearly bitter because her man forgot to do the dishes after baby sitting her children all day while she was busy with her career. On this one day that she screamed her head off at her man one too many times, this was the day that he left her.

    And so she had to reach out to us to provide us with her two cents.

    Yes Cambodia has its issues, but it surely beats being Mr. Mom in a feminist ruled country where we men have the value of a used pair of sneakers from PayLess shoes to the local women.

  218. Nivorth says:

    You are shit guy to say that. You are not Cambodian. Cambodia not bad as like that it’s so beautiful country Bullshit!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  219. Chea hy says:

    Who the fuck post this!!! Fucking bitch please care about your country!!!
    Mother fucker!!!!

  220. Duda says:

    Reasons to Live in Cambodia:

    #1. The western world is going to collapse financially and everyone there with their money, pensions, and jobs will have absolutely nothing.

    #2. Western people are ignorant, lazy, and worthless.

    #3. The western civilizations have laws upon laws dictating your way of life. Live free or die.

    Real Reason not to live in Cambodia:

    #1. China is likely to take over and rape Cambodia once the western civilizations collapse.

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