How is Phnom Penh for digital nomads?

I couldn’t find any threads on Phnom Penh so thought I’d start one.

Has anyone lived there as a DM? What were your experiences like? The good, the bad?

I visited PP for a number of weeks as a tourist, 8 years ago, back then the internet was slow and by the sounds of things, not much has changed. It’s cheap but not female friendly.

Thanks. I’ve been there but over 10 years ago now so have no idea what it’s like now.

Tbh, I really don’t know what ‘not female friendly’ means.

I was genuinely considering moving to Phnom Penh for a bit myself after I visit Thailand in January next year. I was there this time last year for about 4 weeks, however I was travelling not working. Phnom Penh seemed to be the exception but there seemed to be a lot of power cuts throughout the whole country, including Siem Reap. The internet speed seemed decent enough when I was there, I was only browsing using my phone though. There was an American university lecturer staying in my dorms who was doing work while he was there. Although, I suppose it depends on what kind of work he was doing :stuck_out_tongue: on the female friendly part, I met a bunch of girls travelling alone throughout the country and I didn’t hear anything bad from them or any horror stories (that’s not to say it isn’t an issue - just something I didn’t hear of). And yes, it’s cheap :slight_smile: I have a friend who’s lived there for about 2 years now and he pays 420 USD plus bills of around 30 USD a month for a 3 bedroom flat and I’m fairly certain that includes a cleaner as well. The best place to try and find accommodation is probably facebook, there’s a bunch of groups for Phnom Penh housing / expats etc and there’s always someone advertising rooms to rent on there.

Thanks for the information. That’s really helpful.

I’m a writer so don’t need constant high speed internet to work. I’m probably going to stick mainly to Phnon Penh since I’ve been to Siam Reap and other parts before.

Hi kathrynoh - did you go to Phnom Penh in the end? If so, what did you think? Our plans are suddenly in disarray and we are now considering basing ourselves there for a couple of months.

I lived in Phnom Penh for several years so here are my thoughts on the city.


  • It’s cheap. You can get a nice apartment for $500-600 per month
  • Most people, especially young people, speak English and friendly
  • You’re only about 4-5 hours away from the coast and some amazing islands (Koh Rong Samloem)
  • Weather is great Nov-Feb. Not too hot and low humidity (compared to the wet season)


  • The city is quite dirty and the traffic can be bad (very little public transportation)
  • Crime is an issue, mainly bag snatching. Most of my female friends had been robbed, some violently.
  • Some Political unrest this past year, and elections are coming up this summer, so keep yourself informed of the situation as there may be demonstrations.

Yep, I ended up spending a month there :slight_smile:

I started in a guest house through Airbnb which wasn’t super cheap and could’ve gotten a hotel room for around the same price, with access to a swimming pool etc. But definitely a cheap place to hang out especially if you avoid places aimed at Westerners esp the wealthier expat crowd.

I’m not sure of the name of the district where I stayed, it was near the Aeon Mall. I only went to the riverside/backpacker area once and that was pretty seedy but around my area was pretty nice. You still have to take common sense precautions of course. People say everyone gets robbed there eventually but I wasn’t there long enough for that to happen, thankfully. I thought my hosts were being really paranoid about house break-ins but apparently it is a huge issue too.

Even in Feb when I was there, the heat was too much for me. Long termers thought it was on the cold side though :slight_smile: You pretty much can’t walk anywhere. Even without the heat, the footpaths are pretty much non-existent.

I didn’t do much touristing when I was there because I was working to a deadline and didn’t get out much but there are some nice cafes and bars. Booze is really cheap. People are generally friendly and easy going although the tuk tuk drivers seem to have no idea where to go! I did head out of town to the bear sanctuary which was a cool day trip. From my experience, it’s much more of an expat crowd than a DM scene (or maybe I just didn’t find it) and it’s easy to meet people.