Tips For Traveling In Thailand

After 5 weeks of traveling throughout Thailand here are our tips for enjoying and sometimes surviving in Thailand:

  1. Toilet Paper. Bring some toilet paper, tissues, napkins, whatever, with you everywhere you go. Thai people do not use toilet paper, instead they use a bidet system. So, if you are accustomed to toilet paper bring your own.
  2. You can not flush toilet paper down the toilet in Thailand. You must use the trash can to get rid of it.
  3. Learn how to squat and pee if you are a woman. Many places only have squat toilets available. These are porcelain covered holes in the ground. You will have to squat over them to pee and most often put water in them to flush. It is definitely different so don’t be shocked when you see them.
  4. Wipes. These are a must. Most public toilets (including restaurants) do not have soap. So, in order to maintain a western ideal of sanitation, bring your own wipes.
  5. Get comfortable negotiating. Tuk-Tuk drivers and Taxi drivers will always try to charge you the highest price possible so learn to negotiate until you feel you are getting a good price. We tried to ask around first to see about what it should cost so we knew where to start with our negotiations.
  6. Remember you are in a foreign country. Please don’t expect the Thai people to speak your language, accept your currency, or do things the way you are used to at home. Be patient with them, our experience is they will always try to work with you to make sure you get what you are asking for, or find the information you need.
  7. Vegetarians bring alternate protein sources. After living on almonds and protein powder for most of our 5 week trip it is so important to have alternate food options. I do not eat fish so most dishes were not an option for me. Ask if there is fish sauce, or even more so these little dried shrimps they use in all the sauces.
  8. Bring something for upset stomach. Regardless of whether you like the food or not more than likely your body is going to go through some if not a lot of adjustment to Thai food so be prepared.
  9. Don’t be afraid to talk to the Pharmacists. Usually someone at the pharmacy speaks pretty decent English or through pointing and hand gestures you can help them understand what is wrong and they can help get you what you need, even if it is only aspirin or saline.
  10. Go to a few night markets. We chose to go to the markets in Ayutthaya, Chiang Rai, and Chiang Mai. They are not all created equal but are a fun way to see the culture, find some interesting food to try (unless you are a vegetarian), and even find some souvenirs if you want.
  11. Be careful of Tuk-Tuk scams in Bangkok. They like to pick tourists up and then try to get them to go to certain jewelry stores, clothing stores etc. because they get gas coupons or money to take you there. BE FIRM about where you want to go.
  12. Temple burnout. It is easy for this to happen so try to find a balance between the temples, museums, and other activities. Or, remind yourself you are only here for a little while and power through, most of them are definitely worth seeing.
  13. Don’t be afraid to take the buses. We took the Green Line buses and the red buses and never had a problem. The Green Line VIP bus is air conditioned with a decent bathroom while the red bus is air conditioned but the bathroom leaves a lot to be desired. You can book ahead using 12GoAsia.com.
  14. We flew Bangkok Airways many times in our travels. If you fly with them and join their rewards program you get an extra 10 kilo of luggage weight per person who joins. Definitely worth it!
  15. While AirAsia may be cheap be sure to check all of the extra charges to make sure it is still cheap for you. We ended up paying over 100.00 in baggage fees one trip!
  16. Call your bank and credit card company to let them know where you are going. If you are going to use your ATM card find out what your daily limit is and what they charge you for foreign transactions. Check with your bank at home to see what their exchange rate is for Thai currency, it may be a good idea to get some before you travel.

2 thoughts on “Tips For Traveling In Thailand

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    1. Thank you. I see this a lot in my travels. It is so important to remember it is not the locals obligation to speak our language. It can be frustrating when we are trying to communicate but the locals of any country can’t learn every language just to suit the tourists….

      Liked by 1 person

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