Living in Cambodia guide for expats

All the information you need to relocate and live in Cambodia.

Our selection of articles for expatriation in Cambodia

Opening a bank account in Cambodia

As a foreigner living in Cambodia, opening a bank account is relatively straightforward and can save you quite a few hard-earned ...

Healthcare in Cambodia

It used to be common advice for any foreigners in Cambodia to simply go to Bangkok or Singapore if they required medical ...

Work in Cambodia

Opportunities are aplenty for foreigners who fall in love with Cambodia after visiting this magical kingdom, or who've heard ...

Discovering Phnom Penh

After endless hours of personal research, you decided to take the plunge and move to Cambodia. Congratulations! Your incredible ...

Adjusting to the culture in Phnom Penh

One of the best ways to enjoy being an expat in Phnom Penh is to embrace the local culture and do as the locals do. In this ...

Things to do on weekdays in Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh is rapidly developing into an international capital city. While it used to be a literal ghost town, it now plays host ...

Things to do alone, with family and friends or with a partner in Phnom Penh

There are many things in Phnom Penh that you can do alone, with friends and family, or with a partner, but they aren't as ...

Sports in Phnom Penh

Sports and fitness are generally very popular in Western countries, but they are not as big of a priority in Cambodia. Gyms are ...

Eating out in Phnom Penh

Cambodian food tends to get overlooked in favour of its much more famous neighbours, Vietnam and Thailand. Many foreigners think ...

Developing your social circle in Phnom Penh

Moving to a city where you have no friends or family can be daunting. Thankfully, Phnom Penh has a large and very open ...

Developing your professional network in Phnom Penh

When you move to a new city or intend to, for work, one of the most important aspects is networking. Read on to learn about ...

Phnom Penh's networking etiquette

As every country has its own culture and business environment, you need to understand the proper business etiquette to excel in ...

Studying in Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh is not much of a university city, but there are some quality universities in the city that teach in English. While ...

Student life in Phnom Penh

Adjusting to life as a student can be difficult. Even more so if you are trying to do it in a new country, but with some prior ...

The labour market in Phnom Penh

As a new expat in Phnom Penh, one of the most important things you will need is a job. Continue reading to find out what work ...

About Cambodia

Moving to Cambodia can be a very enriching experience. In fact, over the years, Cambodia has been attracting many expatriates, namely for its safe and pleasant environment along with beautiful landscapes, quality accommodation in terms of prices, the ease of obtaining a visa, the absence of taxes and other duties, as well as its proximity with Bangkok, Hong Kong and Singapore.

But before you actually relocate there, you are advised to make several short trips there so as to get acquainted with its environment, its people's lifestyle, etc. You can as well inquire about these on the Internet, especially on expatriate forums if you wish to settle there on a long term.

Geography and demography

Located on the Indochinese Peninsula, Cambodia is bordered by Thailand, Laos in the North and Vietnam in the South and East. Stretching over 181,040 km², it can be compared to the State of Missouri, in the United States of America. The country's landscape consists of large alluvial plains, mountains, not to mention the famous Mekong River which is found to the east, and the Tonle Sap lake which is its natural storage basin. During the rain season the river Tonle Sap flows upstream, filling the huge Tonle Sap lake. Around November the river flow turns around and becomes downstream.

Phnom Penh, which is its capital city, hosts around 1.55 million inhabitants. Most of the Cambodians speak Khmer, but you also have some Vietnamese, Cham and even Chinese and Thai speaking communities. The national currency is the 'riel', but many important transactions take place in US dollars.

Good to know:

Cambodia is a Kingdom which is governed by a constitutional monarchy. Its inhabitants live in a multi liberal democracy.


You will probably be moving to Cambodia in the context of a job transfer or in a job quest. Note that the unemployment rate in the country turns around 3% and 3.5% among the active population, which is relatively low compared to many European countries. In fact, Cambodians are quite qualified and skilled in many fields.

Cambodia's economy is mainly based on agriculture, including rice, maize, tobacco, meat, sugar, coffee, flour, dairy products, etc, as well as fishing, forestry and mining. Moreover, the country is rich in natural resources such as timber, gemstones, iron ore, bauxite, gas, rubber, and even oil. Over the years, the country became famous in terms of raw materials and textiles, shoe manufacturing, cement, cigarettes, etc.

Following more than two decades of strong economic growth, Cambodia has attained the lower middle-income status as of 2015, with gross national income (GNI) per capita reaching $1,070. Driven by garment exports and tourism, Cambodia has sustained an average growth rate of 7.6% in 1994-2015, ranking sixth in the world. Economic growth reached 6.8 percent in 2017, according to preliminary estimates by authorities, and is expected to remain strong over the next two years (6.9% in 2018 and 6.7% in 2019), as recovering tourism activity coupled with fiscal expansion compensate for some easing in garment exports and construction growth.


The climate can generally be described as tropical. As the country is affected by monsoon, it is hot and humid with an overage temperature around 27.C (80.F). There are two distinct seasons: the Rainy Season and the Dry Season. However, the Dry Season is divided into two sub-seasons, cool and hot. These seasons are:

The Rainy season:
From June till October 27-35.C (80-95.f)

The Dry season (cool):
From November till February 17-27.C (80-95.F)

The Dry season (Hot) :
From March till May 29-38.C (84-100.F)


The Cambodian population consists of Buddhists (Theravada), which are deemed to be the majority, as well as Muslims and Christians.

Useful links: ' Cambodia Forum
Cambodian Information Center
World Bank ' Presentation of Cambodia (English)

Quick Information

Capital : Phnom Penh
Official Languages : Central Khmer , French , English
Currency : Riels
Area : 181040 Km2
Population : 14453680
Calling Code : +855
Timezone : Asia/Phnom_Penh

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