What is your housing like? What are typical housing sizes, locations, and commute times for expatriates?
Overall good, nice apartments downtown, and even for some families. Houses spread out in south between downtown and the embassy. From downtown during rush to embassy can be 30-40 minutes, but usually less. Lots of people have a 10-minute commute. - Sep 21, 2017
The houses are very large, as well as the apartments. Every house has 3 levels, including kitchen, dining room, living room, extra rooms in the basement and bedrooms upstairs. Closets are unusual. The layouts can be strange or even awkward. Every house is decorated to the extreme. Our curtains are a ritzy shimmery gold, a chandelier in EVERYBODY'S bedroom and every ceiling has dramatic sculpture and detail to the woodwork. Nobody enjoys the style of their house, but they are nice houses and very spacious. Certain aspects of the houses are cheap- baseboards might fall off the wall easily from bumping into them, if you need to wipe something off the wall- suddenly the paint is all washing off on your rag, etc. Everyone's bathrooms smell like the sewer and it's gross. Somehow there is no blockage to the smell from the sewer and it therefor smells often. It is gross. Commute is around 20 minutes, unless traffic is bad. - Jan 16, 2015
We rented an apartment both times we lived in Bishkek. There are a wide range of houses and apartments in different parts of the city. We prefer apartments in the center. The U.S. Embassy is a little out of the city which is inconvenient, in my opinion, if you're working there, but the traffic is never horrible and it's a pleasant drive out to the Embassy. - May 13, 2014
The maximum commute would be 25-30 minutes, if you deliberately live far from your office and leave at the peak of the rush hour. But traffic densities are visibly increasing from year to year. Housing is easy to find: Soviet era apartments, modern apartments and modern houses are all on the market. The critical thing is to make sure that the utilities are working reliably, especially heating. - Dec 17, 2011