Regarding my post: traveling to develop your internet business, Claire asks:
That being said, I have to say your blog post on how to reduce your living expenses by going abroad is very well thought out. However, if you donâ€™t happen to be a citizen of that country, wonâ€™t they eventually kick you out? I would like to do this in two or three years and I am now investigating my choices but I am finding that my best choice may be in the U.S.!
My experience only extends to Asia but I believe there a number of countries in the world which let you stay for periods beyond a short vacation period.
Generally poorer, less developed countries allow foreigners to live for extended periods without having to hold down a job, or run a business, particularly in South East Asia. The governments of these countries welcome foreigners, often to stay as long as they want, as they believe that they bring in valuable foreign currency and investment.
Since local people’s salaries are so low, it is unlikely that foreigners will be taking away jobs from local people. Immigration officials basically assume that all westerners are rich and let anyone in.
Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and India allow foreigners to apply for visas that are longer than the usual one month tourist visas, that most countries seem to offer. Generally there are no special requirements to get a visa for people from most western countries. As Lonely Planet says, “if you have the cash, they have a visa”.
Cambodia offers a 6 and 12 month business visa. Once you have the visa you are basically free to work, start a business or lay on the beach for as long as you want. Thailand has become stricter in allowing people who do not have proper business visas to stay in the country long term. At one time Thailand was the place for foreigners to escape from the western rat race.
The big disclaimer to this post is that visa conditions and regulations can change at anytime. Immigration officials are corrupt and can change fees/rules at anytime they see fit. It is important when dealing with officials in any country, but particularly Asia to stay calm, don’t argue and to dress conservatively. Follow the laws and rules of your chosen country and you won’t have a problem.