Work and business in Thailand. Starting business in Pattaya

Owning a Bar in Pattaya

It’s easy to sit there sipping your Singha beer, watching the girls dance on stage, and think, “I could own a place like this.” And doesn’t it sound like a cool thing to say when you go back to farangland? “I own a bar in Thailand!”

You don’t have to spend too long around the bars in Pattaya before you get word of mouth about one that’s up for sale. Looks tempting, doesn’t it?

Beer bar in Pattaya

Firstly, ask yourself why you never see realties advertising bars for sale. Simple reason – the majority of bars are non-profitable. Secondly, look at the other farang owners. How are they coping? OK, some make it work for them, but they’ve been expats for years and know the game inside out. But many end up wrecked from their dreams as they see their investments dwindle rapidly, and curse themselves for ever coming to Thailand in the first place.

If you’re here on a two-week vacation and you’re thinking of taking the plunge, you’ll have to do a lot of homework first. Location. Theme. Refurbishments. Stock. Prices. Wages. Competition. Consider these things and much more. Ask yourself how you can improve it on the previous owner, how many employees to have and how to get the nice girls working for you that will bring your customers back time and again.

Most expats buy bars in their Thai girlfriend/wives’ names, which can become a real game of trust. If you’ve done it this way to cut out all the red tape hassle, you’ll see whose wearing the trousers now. Should it all go pear-shaped, the bar’s in her name. Yes, she can sell it and disappear while you’re still counting your losses.

If you met your Thai darling in a bar, you will be expected to provide everything for her financially, and very possibly her extended family also. Then the girls you have working for you – the lovelies who seemed so much fun on your vacation – are now just wining, catty, depressive bores, who you suspect of stealing your meagre takings.

This is a seven day a week business, so be prepared to graft on little sleep. Ask any bar girl what time the bar closes, the answer is almost always the same: “When customer leave.” Obviously you won’t have a work permit, so should the Boys in Brown pop their heads in make sure you’re on the right side of the bar.

Bars in Pattaya

The lease can be a real headache. Should your bar do well, certainly expect your rent to increase. Some leases are even renewed on a monthly basis.

If you’ve got money to burn, and your just looking for a little hobby to keep you occupied while you laze away your days in the Land of Smiles, go for it. You’ll probably have a grand time.

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