Best Cities in Asia to Work as an Expat

Best Cities in Asia to Work as an Expat

It’s a new year and you are probably thinking about setting your plans and goals for this year and making it happen.  Or you probably set these goals last year but failed to do and now swearing to do it?  Well, nothing to be ashamed of.  Been there, done that!  A new year is like a new page on a book that is not yet written but you know pretty much what you want to write.  You just have to make it happen.  If one of your goals this year is to work abroad and couldn’t figure out where, then, this might help you.  We listed down the top 5 Asian Cities to Work as an Expat this 2018.

Before diving into it, you should know what you’re getting yourself into.  This is a big move and careful planning should be done.  But, what exactly are you looking for in a country to be your next home?  High quality of life?  Higher compensation?  Picturesque environment?  Diversity?  Good track record with Expats?  Or all of the above?  There are many things to consider when choosing the country you wish to work in.  It is justified to be choosy because your future depends on it.  Also, it is important to know whether you’re in for a short or long term.

READ:  Advantages of Working Abroad


Overseas Filipino Worker


I am a Filipino and an expat in Macau for ten years now (those following my blog already know this), and the transition I would say was difficult but moving was one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life.  But, I got to be honest.  It was an abrupt decision and I knew little about Macau.  Back in 2007, information and tips about working abroad were scarce and I’d just rely on pure instinct and faith.  I was just lucky that I landed a good job that helped support the needs of my family and my travels, too.

If you haven’t made up your mind on which country you would like to settle in, then read along.  This could help you fire up those desire and start taking the first move.


Best Cities in Asia to Work as an Expat


  1. Singapore


Singapore has opened its door to thousands of expatriates around the world.  With the boom in economy comes the need for manpower.  The locals won’t be able to fill up the jobs so they require expats to perform on all available jobs.  Singapore also has one of the strongest economy in the world and the marketplace is far from saturation.

Expats can perform different tasks such as working in a Financial Institution, Construction, Engineering, I.T., and call centres.  Many people come to Singapore with a tourist visa to look for a job.  Once a job is found, the company will then process the working visa and all necessities.


Why Work Here?


Compensation is one of the highest in Asia and is comparable to other western countries.  Depending on position and salary, an expat can also bring his/her family to settle in Singapore.  The minimum salary for an entry level is already at USD1600.  That also depends whether you are hired by an agency or direct.

Singapore is a tiny but beautiful city and working here can also be like traveling.

How to Apply:  Ways to Apply in Singapore




  1. Tokyo, Japan


Japan used to be the first one on the list of dream places to work abroad, but over the years and because of the difficulty of landing a job, people started to look for another.  If you are lucky and have background with Electronics, I.T., or Engineering, and found a job, then you are in for a lucrative compensation.

There are many local agencies in the Philippines that are accredited to find employees and talents to fill in the job availability in Japan.  It is still one of the richest countries in the world so job opportunities will still be there.


Why Work Here?


Who wouldn’t want to work in Japan, right?  Perfect weather, admirable culture, nice working environment and good compensation are what attracted expats to try their luck.  Also, the country is one big tourist attraction.  Working here can still feel like vacationing.


  1. Macau


Years ago, many people didn’t know where Macau is on the map.  Macau was not the first thing people looking to work abroad had in mind.  But, over the years, Macau has accepted thousands of expats and has provided jobs from people of different nationalities.

Macau is the Las Vegas of Asia and the home of the largest resort casinos in the world.  Its economy is one of the most stable economies in Asia.  It has seen a significant increase on tourism as tourists continue to flock the city.  It doesn’t hurt that it is one hour away from Hong Kong, too.


Why Work Here?


With the number of casinos that are currently in operation and some other waiting to open, Macau will be needing expats.  Hotel jobs are the most common jobs in Macau and is open for everybody.  No experience is required nor a background in Hotel and Restaurant Management is needed.  The salary depends on positions and department.  For Housekeeping the minimum salary is USD1,250 a month and for Front Desk it can be as high as USD1,800.  Oh and, free meals, free transportation and other benefits for employees of big hotels.

How to Apply:  Jobs in Macau:  Applying Online




  1. Seoul, South Korea


South Korea same with Japan is somewhat harder to penetrate.  Though, online and local agencies have successes in employing expats, it isn’t as easy as finding jobs in Singapore, Macau, and Dubai.

Work in Sales, Education, and Electronics are the common types of jobs expats can apply to.  The government has good relationship with expats and companies seem to have great benefits for successful candidates such as free accommodation and free meals for some.


Why Work Here?


You get to live your K-Pop dreams.  Kidding aside (or not), South Korea’s stable economy means more opportunities and more jobs.  The weather is perfect that can be a factor for a good performance of an employee.


  1. Dubai/Abu Dhabi


Dubai is one of the, if not the most diverse cities in the world.  When you go to Dubai you will know that people working and living there came from different nationalities.  The city has been the home of expatriates finding jobs abroad.

The modernisation has only survive its infancy and is continue growing.  Skyscrapers and magnificent structures are what populated and will continue to populate Dubai.  Though, the salary for non-skilled workers are quite a bit low compare to salaries from other cities, many still choose to work here because the jobs are in abundance.


Why Work Here?


With its continued growth in economy and its boosting tourism, jobs are stable.  If you are skilled and can work in Engineering, Hospitals, or can score a high-position jobs, then, salaries are high.

Another good reason?  Diversity itself.  It is good to get to know people from other nationalities and be familiar with other cultures and traditions.  It can be good for the betterment of our social skills.



Honorable Mention:


Teach English in Beijing and Hong Kong:  A teaching job offers great benefits and high compensation and a chance to travel abroad.


Working abroad can provide means of supporting your family back home and can help secure your future, financially.  It can also mean being introduced to another culture and another environment.  You can take this opportunity to explore the place and feel like traveling at the same time.

We are lucky that countries abroad are opening their doors for expatriates who wanted a big change in life.  In exchange, we must make sure to perform well and respect the country we’ll choose to call our second home.



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Written by

Carlo has started working in Macau in 2007 and two years after, he met his destined-to-be wife, Lorna and they started exploring the world. Together.


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