Any international move can be a daunting task and moving to Asia, specifically Bangkok can sometimes feel overwhelming due to the size and pace of the city. Bangkok or ‘The Big Mango’ as its commonly referred to is a great city to live in, once you’ve navigated your way around not only the city but the language and the many nuances that are the building blocks to living in Thailand.
So to make transitions easier, we asked some of our BKK Kids community “what did they need to know when they moved to Bangkok?” or more importantly; what did they wish they had known before they arrived!
1. Schools, Schools and More Schools!
There was no surprise here! The number one priority for all families moving to Bangkok was which school will be the best fit for their kids. The school you choose depends on many factors from cost to curriculum and which location will be the most convenient for you. Your choice of school will definitely be a determiner for where you live and possibly socialize as Bangkok traffic is deceiving. Lucky enough here we have you covered as we happen to publish the most popular English language International Schools Guide in Bangkok and you can download it for free.
We also have a great school selector service helping you find the perfect fit for your kiddos and if you’re still in the process of looking for a school from afar, you can visit our virtual schools summit. Annually we host a virtual schools summit where you can sit back and relax in the comfort of your own home and hear directly from some of the top international schools in Bangkok, watch live Q&A sessions, hear from learning specialists and watch the schools virtual tours.
2. Housing & Location
This can be a big beast to navigate and as we mention above, this really does depend on where your kids will go to school. On this issue there are two trains of thought; you find the school and then travel to your place of work or you find a school close to your office (which can obviously limit your school options), and the kids travel to the school you select. This decision is very personal and definitely not one size fits all. A question we are frequently asked is “what’s the norm” and from feedback we receive, most families prefer to live close to the school. Struggling through traffic during rush hour, rainy season and peak times can be frustrating to put it mildly and one hopes adults have more tolerance for this than our kids! It’s also easier for adults to jump out of a car and use the BTS, MRT or faster methods of transportation, it’s not so easy juggling school bags & toddlers!
3. Doctors & Hospitals
We are very lucky in Bangkok to have some world class hospitals to suit all budgets and while we have mentioned the top 4, there are plenty of other options.
Bumrungrad International Hospital located in central Sukhumvit just off Soi 3.
Samitivej Hospitals have two locations, central Sukhumvit soi 49 and one in Srinakarin.
MedPark Hospital is one of the newer hospitals to Bangkok located on Rama 4 Road.
Bangkok Hospital located off the New Petchaburi Road.
For a full list of the top hospitals in Bangkok, listed in alphabetical order not in order of ranking click HERE
4. Kid Friendly Dentists
Let’s be honest this one is more for the parents than the kids as we all like gentle, kind and patient dentists and you would be surprised how many adults also attend their child’s dentist!
Click HERE for our list of recommended kids dentists in Bangkok
5. What To Do With Kids In Bangkok
At first glance, living in Bangkok or a visit to the city might not seem like the most suitable place for kids. That’s a huge misconception. Bangkok or ‘The Big Mango’ as it’s known locally, offers a vast array of amazing activities and camps for kids. From soft play centers to wild water parks, there are plenty of places to enjoy some family fun and keep everyone from toddlers to teens happy and occupied. Once you settle into life in the big city you will discover many hidden gems, check-out our list of TOP 25 Things to do in Bangkok with Kids and our FREE Activities & Camps guide with over 200 kids activities and recommended kids camps.
*This list is not created through any paid advertising, it’s an organic list of recommended places from actual positive feedback received from within our community and the list changes every year.
6. Learning Support
Finding the right school for your child in Bangkok is difficult enough without having the extra challenge of trying to find a school that specialises in individual types of additional learning support. Some students may need extra assistance, guidance or support in order to better access a mainstream curriculum or in addition to regular classes. More and more both schools and students are learning that inclusivity is key to building empathy in early childhood development. Being accepting of others who have learning challenges fosters not only acceptance and tolerance but can make school a better experience for those who don’t fit into a typical mould.
We have fully updated our Learning Resource category
7. Supermarkets & Food Delivery Options
Life in Bangkok is made so much easier by the various grocery and food delivery options that are available. Many of the major supermarkets all have their own home delivery services but there are also delivery services that offer specialised products.
…where would we all be without our favourite food delivery services?
8. Parks and Outside Play Areas
Bangkok offers a great selection of public parks spread out across the city and a few sneaky unique ones featuring everything from local street art, to kids play areas and free gym equipment. Whilst Bangkok residents don’t normally brave the parks during the sweltering June temperatures, sometimes the kids just need some green space to let off steam and there are more than you may originally imagine.
9. Quick Out Of Town Get Aways!
Here we are looking more at overnight stays for a quick get away from the heat and traffic of the of the big city. We asked our BKK Kids community which locations were their favourite go-to places for a long weekend or a mini-break and this is what they told us:
10. Where to go for Kids Mental Health Services
When the stresses and strains of everyday life start getting too much, it’s important to always remember to reach out and ask for help.
In Bangkok, there are a range of counseling services that children, adolescents and families can turn to for specialist support and guidance. While each of your individual schools will no doubt have their own counseling departments you will often find they may refer your child for outside assistance. Many anxious teens feel more comfortable discussing their problems and fears outside of the school environment which is perfectly normal and the schools will actually encourage this. Here is where to find mental health support in Bangkok.
Once you have digested the above and there is a lot to go through here, if you feel we’ve missed something vital we value your feedback so please do drop us a message to [email protected].
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