Known as the land of smiles it won’t take very long to realize why. The people are as friendly and warm as the temps here. Ornate temples and beaches with towering cliffs and waters as blue and green as you’ve ever seen before are almost taken for granted after a while as there is such an abundance of beauty everywhere. The sharp flavors of Thai food with a spicy kick go so deep they touch your soul. Learn to give up order and time and let go of control as you step into this beautifully chaotic country. I called this place home for 6 months and while my relationship with it is a little complicated, I am forever grateful for how much it taught me.
Drinking water: Not safe for drinking
Plugs: Type A, B and C (See photo below)
Fully vaccinated travelers who have been in one of the approved countries for the last 21 days must have a test on arrival and wait in a government approved hotel for the night for the results.
Fully vaccinated travelers coming from countries not on the approved list must stay in a government hotel for 7 nights in a “blue” destination. It is not required to quarantine within that hotel, just within the city limits.
Those unvaccinated are required to stay in an approved hotel for 10 days.
Official currency: ฿ Thai Baht
Budget: $25-$35 USD (฿800 – ฿1000) /day for the budget traveler, but more expensive on the islands. A large Leo or Chang (beer) from 7-Eleven is around ฿80 and expect to pay 200-300 baht /night in a hostel dorm. Make sure to stay away from touristy food, the best Thai food will be at a hole-in-the-wall joint and generally cost less than ฿70 – ฿100 where the same dish would cost you ฿300 at a tourist spot.
Credit cards: The places to eat mentioned above will usually only accept cash. Hotels and hostels, many bars and large restaurants take cards no problem.
Tipping: Not customary
Argentina, Brazil, S. Korea, Brazil, Peru and Chile can enter Thailand for 90 days visa free.
Hong Kong, Laos, Macao, Mongolia, Russia & Vietnam have a 30 day visa waiver.
51 nations have a 30 day exemption including many European countries, Aus and NZ, US and Canada, Japan and a handful of Asian & African nations.
**Always check with your government for the most up to date information on visa requirements.**
**Assuming you are current on routine vaccinations. Always check with your government for the most accurate and up to date information on required vaccinations specific to your home country**
Exercise Normal Precautions
**Always check with your government for the most accurate and up to date information on safety**
Official Languages: Thai
Women end with ka (kah) and men with krup (kh ruh p). You’ll also see various different ways to pronounce things because the letters don’t always directly translate to the Roman alphabet.
Hello: สวัสดี (Sah-wah-dee ka/krup)
Thank-you: – ขอบคุณ (kop-kuhn-ka/krup)
When to go
High season: November – February, due to the cooler temps.
Low season: March – June brings fewer crowds but is unbearably hot (it’s worth noting I am also uncomfortably hot in “cool season”).
Rainy Season: Mid June – Mid October
Burning season (Chiang Mai and Northern Thailand): January – March has extremely poor air quality and not recommended to go to that part of Thailand
Songkran (Buddhist New Year) falls in mid April, though, and is one of the most fun festivals you’ll ever attend.
Elephants- Under no circumstances ride elephants. Because of both their size and intelligence they have been used for labor and entertainment. They are beaten into submission using a variety of tactics to break down their spirits until they are left a shell of their former selves. There are several responsible places that rescue and care for these gentle giants where you can interact with them and learn more about the industry. Make sure to research before you go. I have left resources throughout my various pages on Thailand of responsible sanctuaries.
Tiger selfies- Watch Tiger King. Taking selfies with full grown tigers means they are drugged out of their minds -no matter what they tell you.
Long neck tribes- Not all traditions are good ones. The reason it is still practiced today is solely for tourists. You can support villages in other ways but to go gawking at other humans like they’re in a zoo and to encourage the continued practice of this tradition is inadvisable.