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Paying for electricity and paying for water.

Living in Chiang Mai, like anywhere else, unfortunately involves paying for living expenses like rent/mortgage and utilities such as water and electricity. This post is a shortie to give you a little useful information about the latter two.

I am only speaking from my own experience living in a Moo Baan, or gated community, in Chiang Mai. The process may be a little different in other situations or locations. I know it is in Si Bun Ruang but the goal is the same i.e. money out of your pocket into someone else’s!

In our Moo Baan every house has a small plastic “postbox” attached to their outside wall. This is our house and you can see it under the light.

The utilities postbox on the right.

The utilities postbox on the right.

A closer view.

A closer view.

The meters are read once a month here and separately for water and for electricity. You then get small printed invoices put in your postbox usually with the ends showing so you know they have arrived. They look like this:


Water on the left and electricity on the right.

Now all you have to do is take these invoices into any 7/11, and there seem to be one of these every few hundred meters in Thailand, hand them to the cashier and pay your money. All good until next month. Now the time you have to do this at 7/11 is very limited. If you look at the bottom of the invoices above you will see as date range, which I have enlarged below:


This for water 13 – 19 September


A bit longer for electricity 17 – 26

This is the period during which you can pay via 7/11. Miss this date and you have to pay directly at the utility company, which is a bit of a pain. In Chiang Mai the water company is on the super highway 11 while the electricity company is on Route 106, the road I wrote about in detail HERE. A Google map with their locations can be found HERE.

For your interest our water bill for this month was 175 THB or around A$5.50. The electricity for August was around A$17.00 but we were away in Isaan for much of that period. The highest electricity bill I have had here running an air conditioner full-time at night is around A$55.00.

UPDATE: 15 Sept. The guy has just come around to read our electricity meter and the bill for the last month was 1,200 THB or around A$40.00. We have been running an air conditioner in the bedroom overnight every night. As we were away in Hong Kong for a week this sounds about right.

Thanks for reading.