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Saturday, August 30, 2008

Life Goes on in Thailand


Sawasdee Ka.

It seems like ages...I left the Philippines a week ago half-hearted about coming to Thailand for school. I was then about to be 15 days late from the first day of classes. I will be pen pushing in the next 2 years to complete my masters degree in Urban Environmental Management, and only God knows how much I miss home.

Things are still hazy the day I left. If I had been dying to leave in the past year, I am so hesitant this year for so many reasons. Among them is quite economic....I have been making substantial money online in the past months, more than enough to pay my bills, and I am so worried I will not be able to do it while away.

One of my fears just happened. I had to drop one client since my internet was so uncertain in the first 4 days from the day I arrived in Thailand. All students will have a login and password to the network, and since my documents were partially processed, I had to wait until yesterday when I finally had my username and password to get online.

True enough, online commerce proves so much benefits to me, even while I will be schooling. In fact, I am now writing again for my clients, although at a slower pace due to my poorly running laptop. My internet is stable, although I do not know yet if there would be any policies that would prevent me from getting online for this purpose. I will probably avail of the subsidized laptop for students by coming Tuesday so I can work faster than how I am right now.

Next check was my funds from online...I was troubled with my online payments, as I had a local bank in the Philippines, courtesy of BDO. It's a savings account with ATM (debit card) which is Mastercard affiliate. Luckily, when I tried in one of the ATMs in Future Park, Pathumthani, Thailand, my BDO card was able to inquire balance! That's a good thing since not all ATMs in Thailand will read Philippine bank card even if it has the Mastercard Logo. I'd probably look for a machine that can read my card that is just inside the campus.

My only mistake is not being able to request for an international Visa credit card from Metrobank. I tried to swipe it in the grocery and the cashier said 'THAI...(pointing to the card)'...she barely meant I need to swipe a credit card that's readable in Thailand POS.

But then again, life goes on in Thailand...My BDO still tied up with Paypal...and I could still get my payments online through BDO all the way from Philippines and withdraw the funds here in Thailand still through my BDO Savings account ATM/debit card by Mastercard.

Did I open a Thai Bank? Yes, SIAM International Bank has a Mastercard Debit card for ATM accounts, but Paypal does not recognize it when I attempted to register to my Paypal account... But, I would certainly appreciate if there is any Thai who can help me...and allow me to say in advance, 'Ka Phun Ka'.

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