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4 Days / 3 Nights
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5 Days / 4 Nights
6 Days / 5 Nights
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8 Days / 7 Nights
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4 Days / 3 Nights
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5 Days / 4 Nights
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8 Days / 7 Nights
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14 Days / 13 Nights
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Travel Information
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Tourist Tips & Guides

 

 

Tourist Tips & Guides
Kingdom of Thailand

GENERAL INFORMATION

Climate
We enjoy a tropical climate with 3 distinct seasons - hot from March through May, wet from June to September, and cool from October through February. The average annual temperature is 28o C (83o F), ranging from in Bangkok, for example, from 30 C in April to 25 C in December.

Clothes
Light, loose cotton clothing is best. Nylon should be avoided. Sweaters are needed during the cool season evenings or if visiting mountainous areas or national parks. Jackets and ties are required in a few restaurants and nightclubs. Neat clothes are required for entering temples or palaces.

Health
There are no required vaccinations, unless you are coming from an infected area. Yellow fever certificates are required for those who are coming from an infected area. Please check the latest regulations with your local health office.

Local Time
GMT + 7 hours.

Business Hours
Most offices open from 9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday, except on public holidays. General banking hours are Monday to Friday 9.30 am to 3.30 pm. Many stores open 12 hours a day, seven days a week.

Currency
There are 100 satangs in 1 baht. (B=baht) Notes are issued in denominations of B1000 (gray), B500 (purple), B100 (red), B50 (blue), B20 (green), and B10 (brown). There are 10, 5 and 1 baht coin, and 50 and 25 satang. Most foreign currencies and travelers cheques are easily changed at banks, hotels or moneychangers. All major credit cards are widely accepted throughout the kingdom.

Electricity
The electric system is 220 Volt AC (50 cycles). There are many plugs and sockets in use. Travelers with shavers, tape recorders and other appliances should carry a plug-adapter kit.

TRAVEL TIPS

Visas
Visitors to Thailand who hold valid passports or traveling documents issued by any country included in an officially issued list of eligible countries are permitted one-month visa-free visits. If planning a longer stay, a Tourist Visa valid for 60 days must be obtained from a Royal Thai Embassy or Consulate abroad. Visa extensions can be applied for at the Immigration Department in Bangkok.

Tipping
Tipping is not a usual practice in Thailand although it is becoming more common. Most hotels and restaurants add a 10% service charge to the bill. Taxi drivers do not require a tip, but the gesture is appreciated.

Bargaining
Fixed prices are the norm in department stores, but at most other places bargaining is to be expected. Generally, you can obtain a final figure of between 10-40% lower than the original asking price. Much depends on your skills and the shopkeeper's mood. But remember, Thais appreciate good manners and a sense of humor. With patience and a broad smile, you will not only get a better price, you will also enjoy shopping as an art.

Language
Thai is a tonal language belonging to the group of Ka-Tai languages, the five tones are monotone, low, falling, high, and rising. This can be a rather complicated language for the visitor; however, English is quite widely understood, particularly in Bangkok where it is almost the major commercial language.

DO'S & DONT'S

The Monarchy
Thai people have a deep, traditional reverence for the Royal Family, and a visitor should be careful to show respect for the King, the Queen and the Royal Children.

Religion
Visitors should dress neatly in all religious shrines. They should never go topless, or in shorts, hot pants or other unsuitable attire.

It is acceptable to wear shoes when walking around the compound of a Buddhist temple, but not inside the chapel where the principal Buddha image is kept. Each Buddha image, large or small, ruined or not, is regarded as a sacred object. Never climb onto one to take a photograph or do anything which might indicate a lack of respect.

Buddhist monks are forbidden to touch or be touched by a woman, or to accept anything from the hand of one. If a woman has to give anything to a monk, she first hands it to a man, who then presents it.

Social Norms
Thais don't normally shake hands when they greet one another, but instead press the palms together in a prayer-like gesture called a wai. Generally a younger person wais an elder, who returns it.

Thais regard the head as the highest part of the body, literally and figuratively. Therefore, avoid touching people on the head and try not to point your feet at people or an object. It is considered very rude.

Shoes should be removed when entering a private Thai home.

Public displays of affection between men and women are frowned upon.

CUSTOMS & IMMIGRATION

Visa
All visitors to Thailand must be in possession of a valid passport. Thirty-day visas can usually be obtained at the point of entry into Thailand. However, it is best to check, in advance, as restriction applies to some nationals.

Persons meeting the above conditions are exempted from a visa and are permitted to remain in the Kingdom for a period not exceeding 30 days, except for the nationals of the Republic of Korea, Brazil, and Peru who are permitted to stay in Thailand for a maximum of 90 days from the day of entry.
Customs

Prohibited Items
All kinds of narcotics (hemp, opium, cocaine, morphine, heroin), obscene literature, pictures or articles. Firearms: Importation of firearms and ammunition can be done only after a permit has been obtained from the Police Department of the Local Registration Office.

Personal Effects
A reasonable amount of clothing for personal use, toilet articles, and professional instruments may be brought in free of duty.

Cameras
One still-camera or one movie camera can be brought in without duty. Five rolls of still-camera film or three rolls of 8 or 16 mm movie-camera film may be brought in free of duty.

Tobacco and Alcoholic Beverages
Cigarettes, cigars, or smoking tobacco each or in total must not exceed 250 grams in weight. Cigarettes not exceeding 200 in quantity. One litre each of wine or spirits may be brought in free of duty.

Household Effects
A reasonable amount of used household effects, accompanied by the owner on change of domicile are also free of duty.

Plants and Animals
Certain species of fruits, vegetables and plants are prohibited. Please contact the Agricultural Regulatory Division, Bangkhen, Bangkok, Tel. 02 579-1581 and 02 579-3576. Permission of entry for animals coming in by air can be obtained at the airport. If entering by sea, the application must be made at the Department of Livestock Development, Bangkok, Tel. 02 251-5136 and 02 252-6944. Vaccination certificates are required.

Buddha Images
Buddha images, Bodhisattva images or fragments thereof are forbidden to be taken out of Thailand. A license must be obtained from the Department of Fine Arts in order that such objects of antiquity or objects of art, irrespective of whether they are originals or reproductions, may be taken out of the country. For a license application, contact the National Museum, Tel. 02 226-1661 and 02 281-0433.

 

 
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