Phu Quoc Expats

Learn about the expatriate lifestyle on Phu Quoc.

Your Phu Quoc Expat Guide To Living On The Island

There is a growing community of expatriates (“expats”) from all over the world and across all demographics living in Phu Quoc Island. These expats enjoy the beautiful weather and scenery that Phu Quoc has to offer, the relatively low cost of living, and some of the best beaches in all of Asia. Some of these expat occupations include project managers, architects, hotel managers, consultants, scuba dive instructors, bar tenders, English teachers, chefs, etc. Then there are those expats who own a business on the island such as bars, restaurants, tour guide services, resorts etc. or they are just plain old retirees. Regardless of where they are from and what they do, most expats are a great source of knowledge to tourists who have just arrived and are always happy to share a beer and few stories. However there are some expats who have been living on Phu Quoc for a long time and are opportunists, ready to take advantage of newcomers, so it is best not to be too trusting. Usually you can tell who the good ones are from the bad if they are trying to sell you something and/or subtly promoting their own business, so it is best to be vigilant and alert.

If you are considering moving to Phu Quoc for work or pleasure, below you will find some information and benchmarks that will assist you in your decision making process.  If you are interested in learning more about the expat lifestyle on Phu Quoc Island, join the official Phu Quoc Island Facebook Expat & Local Group

Cost of living

Vietnam is a relatively cheap place to live in comparison to the west. However, the cost of living is increasing due to a strong US dollar and inflation, which is currently running at approximately 7%.  Phu Quoc is a destination that is isolated from mainland Vietnam and things need to be imported to the island which makes some goods and services a bit more expensive.  Expatriates observe a big difference in the price of Vietnamese and western food here. The local restaurants are extremely cheap and the majority of local people eat out on a daily basis because it is cheaper than cooking at home. The price of western food, however, will largely be on a par with the price of food in the west. Wine is very expensive here but beer and local spirits can be purchased at a very low price.


There is varied accommodation available to suit all budgets, from up-market apartments to modest houses and villas.  Most expats stay in a hotel upon arrival to Phu Quoc before upgrading their accommodation later if they decide to live here. Some even remain at their hotels/resorts while working here. The main long term accommodation areas for expats in Phu Quoc are in the alleyways around Duong Dong Town and along Tran Hung Dao Street. You will see signs that read “Nha Tro“, “Apartment for rent“, “Long term housing” or “House for rent”.  You should be aware that housing is in big demand and the island is currently facing a housing shortage.  As such a lot of expats are now living outside of the main town of Duong Dong.

Sample cost of housing:  Prices for a bachelor apartment with a bathroom start at $150US/month, depending on the location and condition and can be as high as $400US/month.  1 bedroom to 2 bedroom apartments with bathroom and kitchen start at $200US and up.  You can rent entire homes/villas which start at $400US and up. Water and Wifi is usually included  but you do have to pay for electricity, which can be around $25US to $100US per month depending on if you use an air conditioner.  Learn more by reading the “Phu Quoc Apartment Guide“.


Co-op mart on phu quoc island
The cost of food is relatively cheap, especially if you buy your groceries from the various markets found in and around Duong Dong Town, the main one being the Duong Dong Market.  If you prefer to shop at a grocery store, there is a Co-Op mart on the island located along Tran Hung Dao Street.  You will not find fresh meats at this co-op mart, but you will find eggs, cheese, liquor, fruits and vegetables, pots and pans, etc.  This co-op market is more like a larger version of a Family Mart convenience store.

Surprisingly seafood is relatively expensive here, especially tuna, cobia, king fish, crabs, shrimp, etc as they are normally shipped to mainland Vietnam, but fresh herring (rich in Omega 3-6-9’s), black anchovies, clams, scallops, and squid are relatively cheap.  Beer starts at $0.50US and up depending on the brand.  Eating from the street is usually cheap and there are cheap Vietnamese restaurants found throughout the island – Read our “Phu Quoc Street Food Guide” for more information about cheap street food.  Good coffee is hard to find on the island, especially if you  like western coffee, but there are some hidden gems – read our “Top 5 Coffee Shop on Phu Quoc” post.  Fruits and vegetables are affordable, just make sure you thoroughly wash your produce as they are inundated with pesticides.


The Vinmec Phu Quoc International Hospital in Ganh Dau Village is a WHO standard hospital that brings quality healthcare to Phu Quoc. The hospital is 19,000 square meters, 150 rooms, and has six floors.  This is the go to place for any serious health related issues.  There is also a local hospital located in Duong Dong Town as well as many small clinics.

vinmec phu quoc international hospital

Pharmacies are abundant on Phu Quoc but most do not carry western medicines so make sure you bring your own.


Vietnamese (official), English (increasingly favored as a second language), some French, Chinese, and Khmer.

Working on Phu Quoc Island

Most jobs on Phu Quoc Island for expats are in the hospitality industry.  You can find details about it here: Phu Quoc Jobs

If you are considering being an English teacher you will be required to have qualifications. Bachelor degrees and TESOL certificates are preferred.  However teaching English on Phu Quoc is difficult as there is no demand for it at the moment. Other typical expat types on Phu Quoc include: Scuba dive instructor, working at a restaurant, and in the renewable energy industry.

Sports & Fitness

In the center of Duong Dong Town there is a Sports and Cultural center that has a gym, tennis courts, basketball courts, play center for children, and even a cafe.  You can also find dedicated gyms in and around the Long Beach area.

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