Thailand is a wondrous kingdom, featuring Buddhist temples, exotic wildlife, and spectacular islands. Along with a fascinating history and a unique culture that includes delectable Thai food and massage, Thailand features a modern capital city, and friendly people who epitomize Thailand’s “land of smiles” reputation. Here are the lists of what you should know once you visit this country. Remember to know some of the below information to further make a nice stay in Thailand.
- Entry Requirements & Customs
Generally, a foreign citizen who wishes to enter the Kingdom of Thailand is required to obtain a visa from a Royal Thai Embassy or a Royal Thai Consulate-General. However, nationals of certain countries do not require a visa if they meet visa exemption requirements as follows: Nationals of certain countries may apply for visa upon arrival in Thailand. Travelers with this type of visa are permitted to enter and stay in Thailand for a period of not exceeding 15 days. Foreigners entering Thailand are not permitted to work, regardless of their types of visa, unless they are granted a work permit.
The currency of Thailand is the Thai Baht. Baht come in both coin and banknote form. The size of Thai currency, both coins and bills increases with value and varies in color. ATM is readily available in any part of the country not unless you will go to rainforests or wildlife conservation centers which is hard to find this machine to do some cash withdrawals.
- What Things Cost
Seasonal travelers complain that Thailand is not cheap compared from what the hearsay and other travelers told once they come back from their travel. However, Thais are very wealthy, wages average around 3 Euros a day, and in rural areas a lot of people earn even less. You will find that generally in Thailand every extra baht you spend is rewarded with considerable extra comfort, but at a certain level taxes kick in. Most sights and attractions operate dual prices, with foreigners paying up to four times as much as Thais. Foreigners should expect to pay some extra baht for attractions compared to locals who can have discounts.
- When to Go
The weather in Thailand is generally very hot, particularly between March and May. The monsoon season runs from June to October, when the climate is still hot and humid with torrential rains. The best time for travelling is November to February (cool season), although the southern islands are best from June to September. Generally speaking, Thailand can be divided into three seasons: “hot” season, rainy season, and “cool” season, though Thailand’s geography allows visitors to find suitable weather somewhere in the country throughout the year.
- Festivals & Holidays
1 Jan: New Year’s Day
Feb-Mar: Makha Bucha Day: Buddhist holiday on full moon of fourth lunar month.
6 Apr: Chakri Memorial Day: Honoring the dynasty of the reigning royal family.
13-15 April: Songran, Thai New Year’s celebration
May: Royal Cultivating Festival: To celebrate farming season; date determined by royal astrologer
May: Visakha Bucha: Buddhist holiday on full moon of the 6th lunar month
1 May: Labor Day
5 May: Coronation Day: Commemorating the coronation of present King of Thailand
July: Asanha Bucha Day: Buddhist Holiday on full moon of 8th lunar month Vassa: Beginning of Buddhist lent on first waning moon of 8th lunar month.
12 Aug: Queen’s Birthday – Mother’s Day
23 Oct: Chulalongkorn Day: Honoring a former King of Thailand
Nov: Loy Kratong: Festival of Lights
5 Dec: King’s Birthday – Father’s Day
10 Dec: Constitution Day: celebrating the kingdom’s first constitution.
31 Dec: New Year’s Eve Other important holidays:
- What to Pack
If you’re willing to spend your first day or two on a mission in the city, you’ll find great deals on personal items such as sunglasses, shoes, and other things you’ll need on your trip. Rather than risk losing or breaking your expensive brand-named items from home, you could opt to help out the local economy and have a little fun in the markets. Bring one jacket or fleece and even conservative clothing. Wear comfortable closed shoes or running shoes throughout journey in Thailand. Bring or buy over the counter medicines in case. Packed stuff like sunscreen, mosquito repellent, flashlight and toilet paper. Also, bring some memory stick for backing-up your captured photos, hand sanitizer, power adapter and guide book for a safe trip.
- Insurance & Health
Use only bottled or boiled water for drinking, brushing teeth or making ice. Unpasteurized milk should also be boiled, although pasteurized or homogenized milk is available. Tinned or powdered milk is safe as long as it is reconstituted with sterile water. HIV is rife in Thailand, especially among prostitutes in Bangkok and Chiang Mai. Amoebic and bacillary dysentery and hepatitis E may occur. Hepatitis B is highly endemic. Japanese encephalitis may occur, particularly in rural areas, and precautions should be taken to guard against mosquito bites. Dengue fever is also becoming increasingly widespread, particularly in central Thailand, and is also transmitted by mosquitoes. Travelers to Thailand are unlikely to be affected by avian influenza, but should avoid visiting live animal markets, poultry farms and other places where they may come into close contact with wild or caged birds; also ensure poultry dishes are thoroughly cooked.
- Traveling Safely with Children in Thailand
Though Thailand is lacking of child-oriented attractions, there’s plenty of places that is appealing for families, on land or underwater. Hold on tight your children when in crowded areas like market, malls or parks in Thailand. Always have them in pocket a specific number to contact or person to find once in any case your children get lost. On water surface specifically in beaches, keep an eye on them as lifeguards are rarely seen in nearby area of beaches. Most of rural Thais would not go for swimming for fun as most can’t even swim. As parents, remember to check first the water level of the sea or the pool to know if it can be safe for your kids. Might as well, never let them go near the sea or pool. Find a hotel or resort with kiddie pool.
- Mobile Phones
The Thailand Data SIM card is pre-loaded with 7 days of unlimited data at 3G speed. It’s super easy to use, just insert the SIM when you arrive and start surfing! No activation or registration needed. It’s ideal for use in your USB router, tablet/iPad or Mobile WiFi device. The data package is active for 7 days from when you first start using it. If you want to stay reachable on your usual cell phone number when in Thailand, just choose one of our SIM card packages and then add Call Forwarding time to your order. That way, HolidayPhone will forward all incoming calls to your normal number to your new SIM card for a fraction of the cost that you would pay with your home operator.
- Landline Phones
The Thai phone system is both modern and widespread, with comprehensive coverage for reliable pay phones found throughout the kingdom. Purchasing a second-hand Thai phone is inexpensive and convenient, and calling from Thailand on a public phone is easy with a phone card available at most convenience stores. Emergency numbers are often three or four digit numbers, including Tourist Police, which is 1155.
- The Internet
The internet industry in Thailand boosts speedily. The report also reveals what the vast majority of Thai people spend their time doing when using the Internet, be it on their PC, tablet or mobile phone. Out of the 23.9 million active Internet users in Thailand, each user spends on average almost 5 and half hours per day using the internet from a PC or tablet and just over 4 hours per day from a mobile phone. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Thai people spend an average of 3 hours and 46 minutes on social media each, which compares to just 2 hours and 46 minutes spent watching the television.