How I made $3000 USD this month playing video games


Hi friendly readers, it’s been a while since I’ve written a new post. I blame Covid. It’s hard being a travel blogger writing about retirement spots, if I can’t travel.


Earth2, launched in November as a brand new up and coming game. They are a tiny little start up with a lot of big names on their team. Game link

The goal of the game is to create, a sim city style game, with users building up a brand new Earth to play on. Imagine, megacities, pirate islands, nightclubs etc.

BUT HOW DO I MAKE MONEY? There are a lot of ways.

  • Land income taxes
  • Sale of property
  • And eventually resources
  • And eventually micro transactions from new players

This month, playing Earth 2, I made $3000 USD and $32000 in earth2 tiles.

FOR REAL? Yes, some people including me were really sceptical. But this game has paid me $3000 and it’s happily sitting in my TD bank account in Canada (I used it for a lump payment on my mortgage, knocking 5 months off the amortization).

WAIT YOU SAID YOU MADE $3000 AND $32000 IN TILES. WHAT IS A TILE? Earth2 works like this, there are phases in which the game is being built. The first phase, players buy a tile. A 10×10 tile when I started in the game was .10 cents USD. You can fund this payment with PayPal.

I started with an initial buy of $20. After watching the price of those tiles increase, I bought another $1000. At this point, I was a little nervous. $1000 is a whole months budget for me. (Remember our mutual goal is to find the best countries to retire cheap for $1000 a month.)

So…..a week passes, and these $1000 worth of tiles that I’ve bought has grown in value to $4000. Soooo, I’m like….sell sell selll! I’ve got to see if this whole thing is a giant scam.

To cash out, you HAVE to sell your tiles to another player. To make it easy the game has a market place. You list your tiles for sale, and wait till someone buys it. I listed my tiles for 30% off what they were worth and sold $1600 worth! I was all like “Muhahhaaha, off to the bank I go.”

The withdrawal process isn’t as easy as hitting withdraw from PayPal. You have to provide a lot of banking info to the game via credits@earth2.

Your full legal name, current address, account name, email address (which should match your account email address), exact bank account name, account number, phone number, amount you wish to receive and any relevant information for international transfer to your bank account. Also confirm that your bank can received USD as all payments will be sent in USD. Please note to have these details correct before sending. All payments are processed via a filtration service with financial licenses and those services do run checks for us on all provided details as we do not want Earth 2 breaking any AML or financial compliance laws. If you provide incorrect information and the payment is rejected, there may be additional costs.

Aha! That’s where the trick is! Like every other project, there are jerks and jackasses who play a game who try to exploit glitches. The withdrawal process takes a while to process because they have to check that your withdrawal is legitimate.

It took me two weeks, and my withdrawal kept bouncing and not arriving in my TD bank account. (Let me point out this was 100% not Earth2 being jerk bags. It was me.) I have no idea, what my IBAN or Swift code is. In fact, the first time I think I even gave them the wrong bank account number (….you know how you have a short number and a long number for your account.)

… after 2 weeks I was like, screw this. There has to be an easier way. That’s when I learned about Transferwise. Transferwise is the easiest way to wire money internationally. And it’s what Earth2 uses. So…..I got the free Transferwise (It’s like PayPal).

So, I wrote Earth2 and said….hey here’s my Transferwise. Boom! Money in my account in 4 days. START HERE FOR YOUR FREE TRANSFERWISE. YOU GET $500 FREE TRANSFER. So, yes, if you plan to withdraw, get that Transferwise, or you also might get stuck in bank limbo.

So now that I’ve explained what Earth2 is, and how to get the money out, lets talk about some of the most crucial parts of the game.



BUYING TILES: There are 2 ways of buying tiles, on the marketplace and directly from the map. If you buy from the map you’ll pay what the price of a new tile is. Each country is a different price. For example you might get a tile in Canada for $6.76 or East Timor for .41 cents.

WAIT WHAT?! WHY WOULD I WANT TO BUY IN EAST TIMOR? CANADA IS THE BEST! Well the reason for this is that, it’s up to you. Remember at this point the whole city building part of the game hasn’t been released yet. You are speculating at this point. Will people build a whole mega city in East Timor? If they do, then you’re going to make serious coin. Or will people stick to what they know and build in Canada/USA/Italy/Japan?

Nobody knows at this point. But one thing that is VITAL for new players to know is that ALL man made structures on EARTH will be wiped out before the game starts. So if you buy a giant stadium, you are not buying the stadium. You are buying the land the stadium is on.

DOES THAT MEAN I SHOULDN’T BUY STADIUMS AND MONUMENTS? According to the developers “ We are not sure what will happen when building starts in Earth 2 and we are very excited to see how things pan out, essentially people could build a city in the middle of the desert (like Las Vegas) which could be very interesting we feel! Having said that, we do have future plans which will “bridge” a link between corresponding places in the real world and Earth2, these links will, in our opinion, offer more revenue opportunities for popular locations visited by people in the real world.”

WAIT. SO. THE ANSWER IS MAYBE? Kinda, maybe yeah. Remember this is all speculation.

There are only 2 certainties.

1. Your land tile you buy will go up in price as people buy. In the month I’ve been playing I haven’t seen any price drops. If the price does drop it lasts at most a day.

2.You need to buy smart.

WHAT IS BUYING SMART? If I were you starting the game I’d buy the following combination.

SO I SHOULD JUST LOTS OF RESOURCE LAND? Yes….but with 1 caveat. Remember to always buy Class 1 or 2. Do not buy Class 3 or Class 4. Another way you can make money in this game is Land income tax (LIT). At the time of writing this most places in new tile are class 2.

WHERE ELSE SHALL I BUY? I’d also recommend buying in megacity areas. A megacity is an area where a lot of users have bought in a certain area, versus all over the place. The reason for this is during phase 2, it might be easier to mine resources from areas where there are a lot of properties near by. Also having people nearby means they will also buy and develop properties near you. Having a tourist attraction in the middle of nowhere might not be that useful. Again this is all speculation as nobody knows for sure.

ANY MORE ABSOLUTELY IMPORTANT RULES? Yes use a referral code. Mine is EYD2O9KDM4

The reason for using a referral code is that it gets you 5% off ALL new tile buys. (I get a 5% bonus too!)

WAIT! I JUST TRIED TO BUY IN DUBAI BUT IT SAYS NOT AVAILABLE. Yeah for religious religions some areas are locked down.

Last important rule. WATCH out for Scammers. There are some real scumbags, who try to trick newbies. I’ve already told you to ALWAYS IGNORE MARKET PRICE AND LOOK AT NEW TILE PRICE. The other common scam is they will change their name to “JerkyMcgee is bidding $5900” so you might get a bid notification on your property. And you’ll think, whoa someone is bidding $5900 on my property worth $200. They aren’t, the real bid is $0.01, you can see that if you read carefully. But because they’ve changed their name, you might be tricked into thinking they are bidding $5900. My advice is NOT to accept any bids until you are comfortable in the game.

Hopefully you all have success in the game. Remember not to put in more than you can afford. And if you have any questions feel free to message me! My current properties are there for you to look at so you can have a good idea of what a portfolio looks like.

Good luck and remember if you want tips on the best countries to retire cheap HEAD HERE

How I made $3000 USD this month playing video games2021-01-30T12:09:14+00:00

Can you retire cheap in Lima, Peru?

Lima, Peru rarely shows up on the retirement cheap websites. There’s a really good reason for it.

It’s not cheap.

After one month here, I can safely say that it’s not going to make my list for best countries to retire cheap.

What was my cost of living here for one month (all prices in CDN)?

  • Average cost of a meal at home with groceries $2.50
  • Average cost of a meal out in a restaurant $6
  • Movie theater $6
  • Cabs $4
  • Rent $300
  • Pisco Sour in fancy place $10
  • Anticucho $5
  • Alcohol $10 for a 26 of rum

It’s possible to survive in Lima for $1000 CDN a month, but it’s not a great life.

The city itself is really large.

It reminds me a lot of Toronto. One of my qualifications for a city is how it feels. I DIDN’T like Lima pretty much instantly.

It’s not it’s fault though. I just realized, I personally like small cities. This place is huge. And because of that it has some benefits. Lots of food choices.

But it also has detractors, lots of costs…..and really really bad Chinese food.

If you want to retire cheap? Stay away from Lima, Peru and check out these other cities.


Can you retire cheap in Lima, Peru?2019-07-29T13:49:32+00:00

District 7 and Why I Will Retire in Saigon, Vietnam

As you know, I’ve been travelling the world looking for the best place to retire cheap. Thailand, Colombia and Ecuador, have all been explored LINK TO BEST PLACES TO RETIRE IN 2017. The biggest question I get all the time is, “Can I retire for $1000 USD a month in X city?” The answer is almost always a big resounding YES. You just need is the ability to live within your budget, no splurging .

And the second part to that answer is that, it’s also possible to not just live, but to live well for that budget. has a mission of finding a place where a $1000 CDN works. And it’s all about finding the best bang for the buck.

So, how does Saigon in Vietnam hold up? After being here two weeks, I can tell you it’s amazing.

With a $1000 CDN budget, I’ve actually been saving money.

Food is cheap, booze is cheap and entertainment is also cheap.

Here’s my daily routine

  • Get up, grab a coffee 17,600 Dong ($1 CDN)
  • Read some news, play on my Ipad
  • I’ve tried to give up smoking, but it’s been hard so I’ll usually have a smoke with my morning coffee. cigarettes are 25,500 Dong ($1.50 CDN) a pack.
  • I then head off to the gym 260,000 Dong ($15 CDN) a month.
  • On my way home I’ll usually grab a Vietnamese Sub, AKA Banh Mi, AKA delicious 15,000 Dong ($1 CDN). The funny thing about Banh Mi’s is that there are several stands all around my apartment. All of the Banh Mi’s are slightly different but they are all uniformly 15,000 Dong!
  • Then back to the apartment which I share with two other Expats. The apartment is 4.4 million Dong ($250 CDN ) a month for high speed internet (43 Mbps), a maid once a week, power, water etc.
  • Dinner will usually be a bowl of Pho 40,000 Dong ($2 CDN)


  • I subscribe to Kindle unlimited that costs me .32 CDN a day
  • Internet tv service .17 CDN a day
  • Movies are 75,000 Dong on Wednesdays ($4.25 CDN)
  • Grab taxi to District 1 (the fun area) 140,000 Dong ($8 CDN)
  • Grab Bike to District 1 (if you’re ok with riding on a motorbike) 40,000 Dong ($2.50)
  • Save up for my flight to my next destination $4 CDN a day (I’m saving $1000 CDN for flights every 6 months).
  • Beers are 17,000 Dong ($1 CDN)
  • Cheap Vodka 50,000 Dong ($4 CDN for 26 ounces)

My daily cost is $8 a day! So with a $1000 CDN budget, instead of the $33 a day that I’ve allocated, I’m saving around $20 CDN a day. That $20 is usually spent on days out where I go for fancy meals (400,000 Dong, $22 CDN), taxi around and drink at bars.

The article though is called why I love District 7. The way I’m getting this crazy price is that I’m living in the same area as the locals.

If you want to be an expat, living in the heart of the city with other expats, you’ll want to live in District 1. There rent will be about 10 million dong ($600 CDN) a month.

I live in District 7, not only because it’s super cheap, but I like living with the local feel.

There’s a farmers market around the corner that’s always open.

My gym isn’t fancy, but it works (a fancy boxing gym is 1 million dong a month, $60 CDN a month). Everywhere I go, it’s locals. (I pretty much see one or two foreigners a month.)

Everywhere I’ve stayed in the world, there are little enclaves of expats where the rent is insanely expensive compared to the local rates. (For example in Medellin, Colombia it’s Poblado)

But, if you don’t want to spend a crazy ton of money? Stay where the locals are, and just go to the expat areas, when you want a fun night out.

So far, I love Saigon, Vietnam and it’s one of the cheapest places I’ve ever lived. (Yes….seriously it is).

Hope you liked the article, and I’ll keep on writing if you all keep on reading!

Want more articles? LINK TO TRAVEL BLOG

District 7 and Why I Will Retire in Saigon, Vietnam2018-05-23T16:50:29+00:00

How much does it cost to retire cheap in Bangkok 2018?

Bangkok! The land of smiles, torrential rain and blazing heat…what does it cost to retire cheap in 2018 here?

Today, I woke up to the sound of torrential rain beating down on the roof of my building. If you’ve never been in a thunder storm in Bangkok, you might never have seen rain.

I love this city, and you can read my 2016 review of it on this site here. BANGKOK vs MEDELLIN REVIEW

Since it’s all rainy out I’ve decided to write this blog for all of you fans!

The cost of my private room in Bangkok was 10000 THB/$400 CDN a month. This is a little more than I like to pay (usually my budget is 6250 thb/$250 CDN)AND more expensive than getting a private apartment.

Why pay more for semi privacy in a hostel? I’ve gotten way too old to stay in hostel bunks, but still like meeting new people WHY STAY IN HOSTELS LINK .

I spent 30 days in Bangkok 2018 and still love this city.

How much is life here? What’s it like?

Waking up in the rain I go for breakfast at Siam Paragon. (For Canadians it’s a big air conditioned mall). There I pick up a cash card for the food court. These cards are what most malls use. You buy one, load it with cash and use it at a kiosk. Don’t worry, whatever you don’t use, can be refunded after your meal.

I buy a omelette with curry and rice. It’s 60 thb /$3 CDN. After breakfast I see my friend, Manuel from Portugal on the BTS. He’s just gotten back from buying smokes at 7-11. A pack of smokes is 60 thb/$3 CDN. (The BTS is Bangkok’s Skytrain system. It costs about 80 thb/$3.50 CDN for a round trip ticket.)

I’ve got to say, he looks as hungover as I feel. The cheap Thai Hong Thong whiskey we drank last night (240 thb/$6 CDN for a liter) is still working through our bodies.

I’m deciding what to do today, besides writing this blog. Should I go for a massage? It’s 200 thb/$8 CDN for a Thai massage or 300 thb/$12 CDN for a normal oil massage. Those are the prices at a normal massage. No happy ending. This is the low end price though.

My friend Sidney loves the luxury life, so when she was here, she went for super fancy pants massages, with oil, aromatherapy etc. This was 4000 thb/$160 CDN for 4 hours.

I can’t go for a movie today because yesterday we had already gone to see Avengers in 4DX. 4DX if you don’t know is 3D plus other effects. A ticket plus popcorn drink was 600 thb/$24 CDN. I also saw Rampage last Wednesday for 100 thb/$4 CDN because it’s cheap Wednesday in Bangkok for movies.

Honestly, I might just do nothing today. The fast internet at my hostel and the air conditioning, plus my broken brokeness, might make today a good day to recuperate, mentally, physically and monetarily. BUDGET TIPS LINK Having only $1000 CDN a month for my retirement budget, is easy to maintain, but it means having recuperation days after party days.

I’ve got only a few days left in Bangkok so I might hit another massage, or maybe a big buffet? The buffets are awesome at about 1000 thb/$40 CDN for unlimited steak/lobster/oysters/shrimp.

Either way, I love Thailand and would definitely consider retiring cheap here.

But I’ll see how it compares to Ho Chi Minh city in Vietnam (where I’m heading in a few days).

Want to see how that compares? Keep reading! And don’t forget to follow/like/share this article on social media! Keep on planning those cheap retirement plans fans! And if you want more great articles here’s the best place to start your cheap retirement plans START HERE TONS OF ARTICLES

How much does it cost to retire cheap in Bangkok 2018?2018-05-03T06:36:06+00:00

Surprise trip to Banos de Agua Santa

Looking for the best countries to retire cheap, I’ve made up a list of must haves. Wifi, a gym and good quality of living are all essential for my life. What is nice to have in a place to retire though, is a close proximity to neat places.

Living in Cuenca, Ecuador one of the coolest things is that it’s just a quick bus ride to other parts of Ecuador. Why is that important? Let me tell you a story about my weekend. I woke up (at noonish) and found out that there was an opportunity for a guided tour of Banos de Agua Santa. Alejo who runs the Blue Door Housing Quito & Cuenca (where I’ve been staying) Stay at the blue door, had a guided tour booked for one of his clients in a private car.

His girlfriend Belen lives in Cuenca, and was going to take the bus to Ambato (where they were going to meet her). Did I want to go?

Remember I was still in my sleep pants, and super groggy…..”Why the heck not?” I thought.

And that was how my weekend adventure started.

A five hour bus ride from Cuenca (we got on a bus, that was slightly better than the last donkey bus I was on)

LINK Bus from Quito

By the way the best BUS company in Ecuadot is Flota Imbabura.

Then we arrived in Ambato, where we drove to Banos de Agua Santa.

The air bnb we stayed in, was $18USD a night. Staying at the Blue door, I’ve gotten really spoiled. It was a a beautiful view, but there was no wifi and only one bathroom for all the rooms. Eek! Luckily it was only for the night.

That night we explored the town of Banos de Agua Santa. At night on the weekend it’s packed with people out for a good time. Think of the Las Vegas strip but full of Ecuadorians. There weren’t very many foreigners around on the weekend. And strangely enough there were no girls either. (I counted 20 guys to 1 girl was the ratio.)

Staying out till 1am, I was asleep by 3am….which was really late considering we were planning to start our adventures at 830am tomorrow.

Here’s the guided tour we did

  • Ziplining , suspension bridge & rock climbing. This was at Parque Aventura. $15 USD paid for the whole thing. Getting pictures was $5 USD for 55 photos and some raw video. I’m super cheap, but I think having somebody following you around taking your picture is worth the $5. They give you a cd with the images on it after you’re done. (If you want a physical copy, its $2 per shot). Also they’ll email you the photos too on Google Drive.  ) They did speak English, (it was right along the lines of my poor Spanish.
  • The Zipling was fun, but I definitely was exhausted after the 92 steps over a suspension bridge, and the rock climbing. My quads were killing me.
  • Its not hard, but the tension I was carrying, kept my legs tensed the whole time.
  • We went to the swing at the edge of the world, it was a giant swing, and it was a $1 (tip….go early….). The area for the swings, there are a whole bunch to choose from. The famous one is the one we did, but they all looked fun from what I saw. The swing is perfect if you wanted a fun view and a neat picture, not scary at all.
  • At the swing I found a craziest souvenir. There was a guy who was hand cutting words out of keys. I have never seen anything like this while travelling the world. I had him make a few for me.
  • Then lunch. Wow. I cannot believe we hit a 5* restaurant, where lunch and a coffee was $8 USD. The view of the mountains was the best I’ve seen.
  • Now after lunch, we went to see a majestic waterfall. My companion and I decided that we really didn’t want to do an hour long hike, and we were driven up there to the view. (I’m so lazy)

After the waterfall we were all exhausted, and Belen and I still had a 5 hour bus ride from Ambato to go……. and that’ a different story. All in all Banos de Agua Santo was 100% worth it. Taking the tour with Blue Door Housing was great because Alejo and Belen speak both English/Spanish. BEST PART? Having a private car driving around all day? Priceless.

I hope this article helped you with your quest of finding the best country to retire cheap. Scroll to the bottom of the page for more tips and articles on finding the cheapest places to retire. And if you liked the article, please share on social media (I’d love it if you did!)

Surprise trip to Banos de Agua Santa2018-06-20T19:10:50+00:00

How to take a cab in…Quito, Ecuador

Zipping around the world looking for the best countries to retire cheap, teaches you that cabs are different all around. How are cabs in Quito, Ecuador?

First there are a lot of them. Not as many as in Bangkok, but more than most cities in Canada. Quito is split into three very distinct areas. The downtown (partying/bars), Northside (malls,high rises, modern) & Old town (churches, architecture)these are all very different. If you’re scouting out Quito to see if it’s the best place to retire in, you need to see all three areas.

Here’s the best way to do it. 

Start by downloading Cabify

Once you have the app downloaded, go to promotions and enter my code SAMSONC1. Now you get $6 in cab rides (and so do I….which would super useful if I was in Quito, lol).

Now you can use Cabify to go anywhere in the city without having to speak Spanish. (Also Uber is coming soon.)

Returning from your trips can be always tricky, because you might not always have WIFI. To get back, you’re going to want to flag down a normal cab. (Don’t worry it’s safe.) And like I said before, there are a lot of them

Now here’s where it gets interesting. 

After flagging down a cab, negotiate a price. DO NOT USE THE METER. I know this might go against every instinct you have. And I still don’t believe this is the better deal in Quito, but it is.

Going from Old Town to downtown costs rougly $4 by Cabify, and that’s the same price you can negotiate a cab for. It really isn’t a problem. If you totally disregard my advice, you’ll pay $6 minimum. That’s 50% more.  (How do you know how much to negotiate for? Well, I’m assuming you’re going to use Cabify ahead of time to get a good estimate.)

Also by negotiating a price the cab drive actually takes you to the address. (Whatttt?!) That’s right. TWICE I’ve had cab drivers get “Close enough” and want to drop me off when using the meter. When you have a negotiated price, you don’t even have to worry. You just tell them, this isn’t where we negotiated for.  And they keep driving till they get you to the right spot.

I hope this article helped you with your quest of finding the best country to retire cheap. Cabs are great, but sometimes a pain! Scroll to the bottom of the page for more tips and articles on finding the cheapest places to retire. And if you liked the article, please share on social media (I’d love it if you did!)

How to take a cab in…Quito, Ecuador2017-07-12T23:48:26+00:00

Ecuador Customs Form

I’ve traveled the world  looking for the best place to retire cheap, so I’ve wound up seeing a lot of customs forms. The one from Ecuador is the craziest I’ve ever seen. Luckily I didn’t have to fill it in because I took the bus in from Colombia. If you take the plane you’re filling one in.

The main reason for the customs forms is to prevent tax fraud. 

Be warned. Ecuador is very expensive for electronics. And behind the times. As of this writing , July 10, 2017 the IPhone 8 is about to be released. In Quito, Ecuador they are selling the IPhone 6 still at $1200 USD.

The current price for an iPhone 6 in America is $750 USD for a fully loaded one. 

So you can make money just bringing in high tech items and re-selling them. They obviously don’t want you doing that. So, if you’re coming to Ecuador. Careful of how many gadgets you bring. And make sure they are used, not new, or new looking.

Ecuador Customs Form2017-07-11T01:01:13+00:00

Retiring Cheap? Becoming a Digital Nomad? 10 Tip Checklist

Retiring cheap and living your life in a foreign country was my goal a year ago. I sold all my stuff, said goodbye to my friends and family and started my journey. Was it scary? Yes. Was it amazing. Yes. I began my quest to find the best countries to retire cheap over 365 days ago, and while I haven’t found the best place yet, I’ve definitely narrowed it down. Are you ready to retire cheap? What about not retiring but giving up your life in Canada, and become a digital nomad? Here’s the checklist I wish I had before I had left.

  1. Do you have the money? It costs me $1000 a month to live. That’s a pretty spartan lifestyle. My life consists of working out, playing on the internet, and going out for fun once in a while. I’m not living like a king, but it’s comfortable. My daily budget is $5 a day for foood $10 a day for fun and putting away $250 a month for emergencies/sundries (all my prices are in Canadian dollars because this is a Canadian blog). You can read my monthly summaries for exact costs per month per country. For example buying a chicken drumstick/thigh in Medellin, Colombia is $1. Massages are $6 an hour in Bangkok, and sun tanning on a beach in Bali is free.
  2. Do you have the mindset? It can get very lonely if you’re by yourself. If you like uproot yourself away from your community you’ll miss your friends and family. Facebook messenger and Whatsapp are super handy to have. But you’ll still be super far away. And going to the local Boston Pizza for a beer and Perogy pizza just doesn’t happe
  3. Are you ok with change? You’re not going on a vacation. You’re going to be dealing with horrible internet, bad customer service and strange cultural customs. For example 5 minutes in Colombia, is anywhere between 5 minutes and 30 minutes. Most of your friends and family will think you live on a beach sipping fruity drinks. That’s not the reality of it. You’re not buying thirst and souvenirs. You’re spending you’re life in this very foreign country.
  4. Can you shake it off? You’re going to make mistakes. Can you cope if you lose your passport? My friend lost his passport in Hong Kong, and it was a whole separate story. If your world explodes right now when Netflix doesn’t have as much content as in the United States, you are not ready.
  5. Can you work overseas? You might think it’s no problem, but payment, time zones and internet are the 3 headed hydra that you’ll have to slay. I’m lucky in that my clients understand that sometimes I’ll be in an internet dead zone for 2 days because all of the internet has gone down for the city. Seriously. It just goes Kablooey…..
  6. Love. Will you be retiring with your partner? Or is it just you? Yes those girls in Cebu will tell you they love you, but chances are they really just love your huge bank account.
  7. How are your language skills? English is the international travellers language, but depending where you go, you might need to learn a whole new language. South America speaks Spanish, and I’m struggling daily. Duolingo is my best friend, but I have to take Spanish classes. Will you want to do that? 
  8. Are you a strange size? If you’re large or obese in Canada, you’ll be gigantic in the rest of the world. Think “Biggest Loser” gigantic. Clothes won’t fit, and you will hate the tiny little jeep things which are the local transport in Thailand.
  9. Safety. Unless you live in the ghetto right now, like East Hastings in Vancouver, or Millwoods in Edmonton you may not be ready to watch out for your safety. In Colombia, every 5th traveller I have met has been mugged, or pickpocketed.
  10. Do you only eat Canadian food? A can of Campbell’s mushroom soup is $5 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Are you going to be ok eating what the locals eat? Food is delicious around the world. It just might not be your cup of tea (like literally my ex-gf went nuts because she couldn’t get her favorite cut of tea in China.)

Don’t despair though! Finding the best country to retire cheap is amazing. You’ll lose weight, spend less time stressed and open up parts of your mind that you never thought possible. I don’t regret my choices at all!  I miss my friends, but I fly back to Canada once a year. 

I miss my memory foam pillows and 5.1 Surround sound movie theater, but I can deal with it. I sometimes have a huge craving for fully loaded nachos and a Moosehead beer, but Arepa todos “garbage burgers”, are something you can only get in Colombia. I hope you follow your desires too. Travel the world as a digital nomad or retire early, don’t those 10 things stop you. 

Retiring in the best countries to live cheap can be pretty great, but just make sure you are ready (that’s why I wrote the guide). If you have any questions feel free to message me! I hope this article helped you with your quest of finding the best country to retire cheap. I spend a year religiously looking for information before I made the big plunge, and I hope helps your goals!

Go to the website for more tips and articles on finding the cheapest places to retire. And if you liked the article, please share on social media (I’d love it if you did!)

Retiring Cheap? Becoming a Digital Nomad? 10 Tip Checklist2017-06-26T21:32:47+00:00

Is Medellin, Colombia the best place to retire cheap? 1 month summary

I’ve been living in Medellin for over a month now so I can officially tell you it’s one of the best countries to retire cheap. After a year in South East Asia, I was a little hesitant to start this years tour of Central and South America. My biggest fears? I don’t speak Spanish, and I really hate salsa music.

Landing at the airport, I had a really pleasant surprise. They have airport buses that run you right into town for cheap 9000 COP ($4.50 CDN). Or you can take a taxi for $70 000 COP ($35 CDN). I took the cheap bus, called a collectivo…. and then took the taxi from the bus stop. Much much cheaper.

The first thing I can tell you is that cabs do not speak English. And they don’t seem to understand maps either. They do not however, try the “no meter” trick. They all seemed super honest. (I’ve had worse cab rides in Richmond, BC. Worst cab company in Canada). An average cab ride is about the same price as an Uber here. They also have a local app called Easy Taxi.

If the cabs are honest and the relative same price as an Uber, why Uber? With Uber, you can put the exact map pin in where you’re going. Remember the cab drivers here don’t speak English, and don’t know how to read a Google Map. If you’re going somewhere that really requires English speaking, you can pay 50% more and order an English speaking Uber.

My first night here, I went to the tourist area. Lleras park. It’s the place to be if you like partying. Bars, nightclubs, restaurants & hookers. It’s fun, and doesn’t shut down till about 4am. (I always like a little danger and chaos in my party zones). You can buy drugs, beers or tacos here. All super safe, as there is a very heavy police presence. I also liked the fact that there were locals that partied here too. It is more expensive than any other part of town though.

After a few nights in Poblada and Lleras Park, I wanted to find the “real” Medellin. Now, I’m completely different than most people here. I don’t want fancy restaurants and safety. I want street food, and a little hint of chaos. I love street food, and you’ll have a hard time finding it Lleras park. The local food is mostly rice, with beans , a protein, and an inedible hockey puck called an arepa. Delicious (except the arepa)!

68% of the people I’ve met here in Medellin, are Digital Nomads. Not a lot of fat tourists, or backpackers here. And out of those 68%, about 90% of them live in two areas. Poblado or Laureles. These are the two parts of town you’ll want to stay, if you want to hang out with your Digital Nomad peeps. It’s a great community here. Literally the best I’ve seen in the world.

Me? I found a haunted afterhours/bar party hotel to live in. It’s deep in the heart of Centro. And just like the downtown in Edmonton, Alberta, it’s full of crime, not the safest and crappy if you want to drive.  My room is 15000 COP ($7 CDN) a night. Living in Poblado a 1 bed room furnished apartment is roughly 1,200,000 COP ($600 CDN) a month. Poblano is expensive, but nice.

If you want food that costs half the price of Poblado, or to live in the heart of Medellin, Centro is the place to go.

Centro is dangerous. My roommate was mugged. But saying that, he was out in a park at 4am in the morning and kind of drunk. Here in Medellin you’ve got to stay hard and sharp.
Even though there’s crime, the people are all super nice, putting up with halting attempts at Spanish, and welcoming me to Medellin. I really am the only Chino (Chinese person) here. I get big smiles everywhere I go. And they seem like they do care that you’re having a good day.

My typical day is pretty great. I wake up, work on the blog a bit, and then head to the gym. There are gyms everywhere here. Free gyms made of concrete blocks in the park, old school 80’s iron gyms (where I work out) and high tech fancy gyms.

The most expensive gyms I’ve found were $140 000 COP ($70 CDN), my gym is $60 000 ($30 CDN).

After the gym, I’ll go grab a meal for about 6000 COP ($3 CDN) or a tasty meat pie for 1800 COP (90 cents CDN).

There are bars everywhere here in Centro, and barber shops. I don’t know why there are so many barber shops. But literally I counted 5 in a 3 block radius. Get a haircut here . It costs 10 000 COP ($5 CDN) but it’s one of the best haircuts I’ve ever gotten. They start with clippers, go to scissors, and then a razor! Worth it!
If you want to go grab a beer in a bar it’s about 8000 COP ($4 CDN), or you can buy them at the grocery shops for about 2000 COP ($1 CDN). Remember nobody really speaks English here, so if you are going out for a beer, you might feel a little shut out.

Me? I’ve spent a month in Medellin, Colombia, and I love it. I’m going on the rest of my tour, but I’ll be back!

I hope this article helped you with your quest of finding the best country to retire cheap. Scroll to the bottom of the page for more tips and articles on finding the cheapest places to retire. And if you liked the article, please share on social media (I’d love it if you did!)

Is Medellin, Colombia the best place to retire cheap? 1 month summary2018-06-20T19:00:42+00:00

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