International Studies Abroad ®est. 1987

Culture Corner


The currency of Thailand is the Thai Baht (THB) which consists of 100 satang. There are three Copper coins used: the 25 satang , 50 satang (rarely used) and the new 2 baht coin. Silver coins are in denominations of 1, 2, and 5 Baht, while the 10 baht is silver with a copper center. Banknotes are valued at 10, 20, 50, 100, 500, and 1,000 baht.

Conversion Rates

The exchange rate is linked to the US dollar and so does not fluctuate much compared to other currencies. As of this publication, 1.0 USD = 31.84 Thai Baht. For current exchange rate information, visit

Cost of Living

Former students have given us some idea of what you should expect to spend per week while in Thailand. Due to the change in exchange rates and vast differences in individual spending habits, we can only give you estimated figures. However, most students seem to spend around $150 - 200 per week. This figure does not include extra traveling, heavy shopping, or frequent restaurant dining. Please keep in mind that some students spend less and others spend more.

When budgeting, keep in mind that it is always better to overestimate than to underestimate. To give you an idea of common approximate expenses and commodities a typical student will incur, please see the brief list below.

  • Single metro fare: $0.50 - $1.5
  • Public Transportation: $35/week (by taxi) and $12 (by bus and metro)
  • 3 Meals per day: $10 - $15
  • Dining Out: $50/week
  • Groceries: $30/week
  • Cafés/Coffee: $1.50-5/cup
  • Laundry: $20/month ($2/time in the dorm)
  • Local Calls: $5-10/week
  • International Calls: $10-20/week
  • Nightlife: $10-50
  • Entertainment: $3-5/movie, $5(local)-100 (inter)/concert
  • Most museum entrances: $4 - $8
  • Hostel: $10-20/night
  • Hotel: $20 - $40 per night
  • Gym Membership: $20/month (off-campus gym)
The general cost of food in the cafeterias at Mahidol University run between $1-1.5 per dish, free drinking water is available and other refreshments can be purchased for $.50 – 1.00

Additional Estimated Expenses

The ISA program cost includes items such as tuition and fees, housing, insurance, and more. To view what is included in your program price, please visit the "What's Included" section of the ISA Bangkok program page.

The Additional Estimated Expenses sheet in the "Accepted Students" section of the ISA website has the following estimated expenses listed:

  • Airfare
  • Books & Supplies
  • Meals (if applicable)
  • Visas/Passports
  • Passport (new/renewal)
  • Student Visa (if applicable)
  • Personal Travel


The ISIC card is an internationally recognized student ID card that gives students thousands of discounts worldwide from travel to cinema, meals and more. ISA students who purchase a flight through STA are eligible to receive an ISIC card. Visit for more information.