Why I’m Trading London For Thailand

The great appeal of affiliate marketing, besides scratching my balls in bed at 10am, is undoubtedly the ability to do my work anytime anyplace anywhere. For 18 months now, I’ve been preaching the harsh realities of running your own business. How the dream is not always what it’s cracked up to be. How it takes hard work, a lot of patience and no end of creativity to remain successful.

Well, it’s easy for me to sell the problems. But what about the rewards?

Make no mistake. If you succeed as an affiliate marketer, you’ll have one of the greatest freedoms a job is ever likely to afford you. It’s like having, quite literally, the world at your feet. I’ve been laying down the foundations of my business for what feels like an eternity now, and it’s only next month that I’ll finally begin reaping the rewards.

This December, I’m leaving London and embarking on some serious air-miles to see as much of the world as I can. I’ll be moving to Thailand and basing myself in Bangkok.

Now I know what a lot of you think when I say that I’m moving to Thailand.

It’s normally either:

1. Are you Justin Dupre’s new mystery housemate?
2. Are you moving for the ladycock?

The answer is no and no. Though I bet I could find both at Justin’s house. Come on, man. You don’t have 5000 friends on Facebook without at least a few gender benders slipping through the net. It’s the law of error.

The truth is, just two weeks ago, I was searching for a flat in Central London. There aren’t too many cities more expensive to rent in than London, believe me. I was staring at prices of $3000/month for a small two bedroom squat that a hooker probably died in.

I think it took me witnessing the smarmy look on an estate agent’s face as he insisted I wasn’t going to find any good deals at £1500/month before it dawned on me. What’s the point in even looking? I can afford to pay the premium to live like a king here in London if I really wanted to, but I’d have to be pretty retarded to make that decision. The grass really is greener away from the capital.

As affiliate marketers without office jobs, we have the luxury of moving anywhere in the world and still earning the same money. I’ve been operating with a disadvantage compared to other affiliates for the sheer fact that I live in a city where they charge you 30p to take a piss in a train station. The prices in London are sky-high and my cost of living is probably much greater than what other young affiliates are having to deal with. Obviously I’m discounting those of you with kids and families to support.

I want to get full value for my hard work. Given the choice between frosting my bollocks off in London or stomping around a five bedroom house with a private pool in 30c December heat, it’s pretty much a no-brainer. I hate frosty bollocks.

So I plan to work from a laptop and travel around Asia, experiencing different cultures and living on beaches while the rest of London skids on ice. It’s something I’ve wanted to do ever since I quit my day job. And after months of posting about the brutal home truths of surviving as an affiliate, I guess I should re-address the balance. The rewards of succeeding are totally fucking worth it.

I realize most people don’t come to this blog to read about my travels or to know which corner of the earth I’m currently festering in. So don’t worry. This is just a notice to expect less posts over the next six weeks or so. I will be busy smearing suncream on my titties and getting traditionally burnt to shit like any self-respecting Brit on his travels.

About the author

Finch
Finch

A 29 year old high school dropout (slash academic failure) who sold his soul to make money from the Internet. This blog follows the successes, fuck-ups and ball gags of my career in affiliate marketing.

42 Comments

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  • That’s awesome, Finch. I have those same aspirations of moving to Thailand. At least for an extended period of time. The idea of renting an apartment in Bangkok for less than $200 a month and eating authentic Thai food for less than $10 a day is truly enticing. I’m eager to hear more of what your plans are in the coming months. Cheers!

  • Nice one!!
    Good call – London is too much for me and I’m only there 2/3 days pw.
    I’ll stick to Devon for now but 30c is tempting.

  • Nice job.
    Best thing i ever did was moving my butt out of the uk.
    Didnt fancy all the ladyboys and i only got as far as Marbella but i am sure you will love it.

  • Enjoy your travels man. Really enjoyed reading your blog the last year or so, and fully think you deserve some time out of the trenches of London. Live in London myself, and can see why you wouldn’t want to endure the baltic conditions we had to go through last winter!

  • The question that comes to mind after reading this post is…”So why is he trading London for Thailand?”

    You stated that the expensive prices in London are why you aren’t getting an apartment there. But why Thailand? There are plenty of nice places in Europe with cheap living.

  • Thailand rocks. Been there twice for 3 or 4 months a time. Check out some of the smaller islands like Koh Tao, we used to rent small huts on the beach there for like a pound a night. The food is awesome and the people are amazingly friendly. Well jealous, but Spain rocks too.

  • you are living the dream man. i am new at affiliate marketing and i am chasing a similar dream. Congratulations and have fun

  • As much as we don’t want Finch Sells to turn into a travel adventures blog I hope you will tell us some of your adventures and keep us up to date on truly living the dream as a successful Internet Marketer. Have a great trip!

  • Nice one! I left London for Bangkok last year.

    You’ll have to come round and show me how to do affiliate marketing properly!

  • I did the same thing last December, lived in Bangkok for 3 months, did the rest of Thailand, South East Asia and i’m currently in Australia!

    Bangkok was mint, want to go back myself before i head back to the UK!

  • It’s nice to hear so many others have had good experiences out in Bangkok.

    I’ve been swamped with emails and messages from people who’ve been to Thailand, live in Thailand or simply plan to go there. Sounds like quite the affiliate hotspot!

    @shawns – I won’t be there in time for that meetup. I think I’ll be flying out on December 7th. But it sounds good if there’s another one in the future.

  • Yes, from what I can observe Thailand is super popular among affiliates. I also read several Russian money-makers blogs and many of them operate from Thailand as well

  • I just started reading your posts a week or so ago. New to AM and just started testing the water. Would be great if you come over to Penang, Malaysia – a charming island not too far south to Thailand – the place where I’m staying at right now. Enjoy your dream-like work style!

  • Finch, what visa are you using to stay in Thailand? I want to move too but I don’t want to get a student visa like justin did.

  • @kc – Yep, I’ve heard about that. I’d like to visit Malaysia at some point too.

    @Eddi – I’m hoping to use this site – http://www.thaiwalen.com/

    They offer a one year visa if you enroll in their Thai language classes. It’s only one day per week and it costs £510 for a whole year’s worth of lessons. Considering I was planning to learn Thai anyway, it makes sense to use that for my visa.

    If not, I’ll be traveling every 60 days anyway so I’ll just renew the visa every time I re-enter.

  • About a year before I knew that affiliate marketing even existed I was standing around a burn barrel drinking with other fishermen in Dillingham, AK. Ironically, it was just after working my ass off for four weeks in perpetual daylight fishing on the Bering Sea that I first learned about lifestyle and income arbitrage… from a bunch of fishermen.

    One boat captain, in particular, had a story that piqued my interest. He owned his own boat and was a hi liner- which is to say, he runs one of the best paid boats in the fleet. After expenses in a bad year he’d leave Alaska after 6 weeks of work with about US $70,000. He’d then fly home to… you guessed it… Thailand. Some years before he had married a former prostitute and had what was, by all accounts, a pallacial house on the coast.

    What I loved about the people I met fishing in Alaska was that ALL OF THEM were like this to one extent or another… the captain I fished with last year owns the last USSR America’s cup Yacht and lives on his summer-ly earnings while sailing between San Francisco, his house on Vashon Island, WA and Fiji. The other deckhand saved all his earnings for the first few years of employment, bought a 4 unit small apartment complex in Homer, AK and collects checks while splitting his time between surfing in Bali and snowboarding in Alaska where he lives.

    Lifestyle and income arbitrage (getting paid in dollars or pounds and spending bahts or pesos) was around long before Tim Ferriss, and it surprises me that more affiliate marketers, since they aren’t tethered to a location or office, don’t engage in it.

    I think what you are doing, Finch, is awesome- and totally necessary. You live once- do it well and maximize the value you get on every dollar you spend.

    After all, what’s the point of making a pile of cash if you can’t afford to live a life worthy of your time and efforts?

  • @Phillian – It definitely helps to be exposed to people who’ve already taken that life path for themselves.

    I think one of the reasons so few affiliates pursue the kind of lifestyle arbitrage you talk of is because they’re chained to the expectations of the people around them. I think that’s been the case for me.

    I’ve known for a long time that I can afford to go off and live that dream. But when your friends and family are in such different situations, I think you can become almost trapped by the expectations and standards of those around you.

    It’s refreshing for me to read some of the comments here because it shows that it’s not a giant leap in to the unknown.

    I guess having lived a much different kind of lifestyle before I struck success, I’ve always been super cautious about not throwing it all away. I haven’t been exposed to that many other entrepreneurs and most of my friends are racked in student debt.

    Being so young and so different to most people I’ve grown up with…I think it’s taken me a long time to realize the amount of control that I have over my own life. I’m hoping a clean slate and a blank airline ticket to Destination Anywhere will help me free my mind somewhat.

  • Good luck Finch!

    Remember to keep an open mind when you visit other cultures. Also if you can avoid the tourist traps go for authenticity.

  • Grats on the future move!

    Best decision I’ve ever made was to leave Denmark… It’s a different culture, cost of living are usually lower and you get new opportunities that you wouldn’t have had before..

    thumbs uP!

  • I heard with thaiwalen and those private schools, you have to renew every 90 days but anyway keep us posted. good luck!

  • Congrats on the big move! Having the flexibility to live wherever you want really is one of the biggest advantages of being an affiliate marketer. Looking forward to future posts about your travels in Asia.

  • @Finch

    Like you, most of my friends are not entrepreneurs and are “racked in student debt”. And, like you, my friends and family can’t fathom why I’d want to live abroad again (my last foray was far less glamorous than yours will be… Egypt, ha!).

    But living abroad, especially in your early 20’s as you are about to do, is so incredibly eye-opening. When you come back to GB in a few months it will be as if you are living with the volume turned down. You’ll be so accustomed to having to translate what you want, where you want to go, and basic new experiences that returning to the ‘same old’ is only novel for about a day before it begins to reek of sameness and settling.

    Fortunately, that is – was for me- and is still- the best lesson to take from being an expat for a while as an entrepreneur. It is a tangible, everyday experiential reminder that YOU control your destiny and settling is only in your daily life if you allow it to be.

    Then, when you return- or if you don’t return- you can continue to apply that lesson and use your newly expanded open mind in business and life.

    I have never met anyone well-traveled who hasn’t said their lives weren’t richer for the experience.

    Have a good trip, Finch.

  • Yes, absolutely do this. Good for you.

    My wife and I lived in Phuket for about a year back in ’08, just fighting and training full time and I’d do some stuff online. Only came back because my Dad got sick.

    You’re going to love it. Definitely take advantage of not having to be tied down to any location.

    I agree with Phillian, the volume will be turned down when you get back home. People will think you’re nuts, but they’ll still be stuck in their rat race.

    When you get back home people will be happy to see you, but after a couple days it’s back to routines for them. Life is so much slower and laid back in Thailand… well in Phuket anyway, I wasn’t really a fan of Bangkok. Either way, good on you.

    We’ll be heading back asap. At least for a few months each year.

  • As a fellow internet entrepreneur who said goodbye to his day job and the United States of Boredom, I’ve been calling Thailand my home for the past 4 years.

    A bit of advice, skip Bangkok, it’s gets old fast unless you like traffic and pollution. It’s ok for shopping and some of it’s nightlife isn’t bad but there are much nicer, more livable places in Thailand. Try Phuket, Samui, Rayong or even Pattaya and it’s surrounding towns. Chiang Mai is nice as well. Spend a good 6-8 weeks bouncing around the country before you go leasing an apartment in Bangkok so you can see what’s what; you won’t regret it.

    Also, Thailand can be harsh on falangs working here without work permits so be careful who you brag to about running your business while you’re here.

    Shoot me an email when you’re over here and I’ll buy you a beer. Also, check out the Meetup202 for affiliate marketers in Bangkok, good group there. There’s actually quite a few internet marketers living over here so welcome to the club.

    And to Kevin Douglas, you don’t want to live in a $200 a month apartment here. Trust me, you have to spend at least $300 to get something decent 🙂

  • Lady boys not allowed on my property. Strict policy.

    But thanks for the brand-wrecking shout out anyway.

    Nah but you should have a blast here, young, ballin’ and wrestless. That’s the only way to live here.

  • Very good news, I’m happy for you!
    As soon as possible, I’ll leave France for Thailand too (I’m currently living in the north of France, same fucking climate as London).

    Hope you’ll enjoy your trip and don’t forget your vaccine 🙂

  • I can’t say I’m not jealous! You’re going to have a blast, just try to maintain focus on your AM’ing while fighting off hundreds of Thai women.

  • Good for you man you deserve it with all the hard work you have put in I love seeing people like you reap the results. Affiliate marketing can be a tuff game but its for the people that know how to push it and know what its like to throw money at something that seems like a waste of money until you become an expert. The day you wake up and check your email and discover sales over night is like christmas and then it happens daily and you become used to it.

  • I’m looking at moving to thailand myself. Any tips on finding quality low cost apartments? Where are you going to live?

  • Haha, feels good when the cash finally starts to flow. Been in Asia 2 years and the UK can get to f*%k! There’s nothing quite like the freedom AM gives, god bless the internet.

  • Check out the Phillipines while you are in Asia. on Luzon you should check out Tagaytay Highlands.. pretty bitchen.. also the beaches in Cebu are breathtaking…

    Also Puerta Princessa if you are into Hiking and Exploring

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