Hi Everyone. My name is Alberto from Spain. After 6 years living in China and travelling all around Asia, my girlfriend and I would like to use our savings to open a hostel renting a place somewhere in Asia. We have some options in mind with advantages and disadvantages. I hope people interested in opening a hostel in this part of the world can add some other aspects and share information about it.
- Myanmar: Since it opened to tourism about a decade ago, the number of tourists has increased exponentially and it is a very exotic country with Indian and South East Asian cultural influence. There is not too much competence but I do not know too much about the requirements for a foreigner to open a business there yet. Cheap and poor country.
- Philippines: We have spent many holidays in different places in Philippines, and we think Bohol/Siquijor area is a good place to open a hostel. More and more European and American backpackers come to this area. There are a few hostels run by foreigners already. Nice beaches and sunsets, great jungle with waterfalls, people speaking English and Spanish colonial heritage. Cheap country. Disadvantages: You can not own the land (for those who want to buy the place) and need a local reliable partner who will be the majority partner (51% I think).
- Japan: It is not a surprise of course, because it has been receving tourists since long time ago but they are still beating records these days (Kyoto, Tokyo, Nara...). The thing is tourists are spreading the route to other places lately, like Hiroshima or Fukuoka, places where we are thinking about because the competence is not so high. It is a more expensive country for sure with some requirements like choosing between investing a minimum of about 40000 euros or hiring at least two japanese, in order to get the business visa. The good thing is you don´t need to have a local partner so the business can be only yours.
- Taiwan: It would be great for us, because even when is not exactly like Mainland China, we could make use of all we have learnt through our experience living in different parts of China, for example the language (Although they used the traditional Mandarin). It is a mix of Japan and Chinese culture, less chaotic and more organised than China (Western standards). Nice beaches and mountains and big and interesting cities like Taipei. There has been also a tourist increase lately and the competence is not high yet. More and more people go around the island by bicycle, backpacker style. I have to get more information about the government requirement to start a business.
I hope this will be good information for all of you. Looking forward to your point of views.