There are many jobs that Cambodian people can choose to make money. But lots of people don’t have a choice and do not have enough money to do a big business for their job.
A lot of farmers come from the countryside to the city to find the good job to support their family. But the problem for most of them is it’s very hard to find a good job here in Phnom Penh, because here a person needs to have a high ability from school. So they can’t find good jobs because most of them finish school very low. Also there are some students that would like to carry on their education and they also come to Phnom Penh. But at first they don’t have any job to get money so the only job they can do is rent a cyclo for 2000 Riel per day (about a half dollar) to work and make money by taking passengers some place.
I usually see the cyclo drivers more around the market. For most of the cyclo drivers, they usually wait for their customers at the market, and also they do drive around looking for customers. They don’t need to speak much English, but it depends on where they do their business. Because if they work somewhere around a foreigner’s place, they need to speak English well so they can make good money. But they usually have Cambodian customers. They know how much to charge the customers by where the customer has to go (far or close), but the customers still can ask for discount if they think it is too expensive.
There is a teenager I know that came from the province to continue school in Phnom Penh. His job now is cyclo driver. He said he can make between 5,000 to 10,000 Riel for a day (which is about $2-3). At night he has his cyclo to use as a bed to sleep on. For many cyclo drivers here they say they really would like to find a better job but they can’t, so they have to do this.
Phnom Penh Blog