10 Blissful Thailand Traveling Tips

by Eric
(Chiang Rai, Thailand)

White Temple aka Wat Rong Khun

White Temple aka Wat Rong Khun

If you understand some of the Thai customs and beliefs, it will make your home stay with a Thai family or traveling in Thailand a blissful experience.

Thais smiles are easily disposed when they meet strangers or friends, and also emphasize on good manners and politeness. However, it will make your home stay with a Thai family or traveling in Thailand a blissful experience, if you understand some of their customs and beliefs. To the visitors -- remember, a contagious smile than a scowl will help fix most problems.

1. Do not point or rest your feet on/at anyone or things to relax, signal or communicate. When you are welcomed to a Thai home or temple, please remove your shoes because it is not only a religious custom, but has logical significance.

2. The King and members of the Royal Family are highly revered by the Thais, hence due respect is required. Do not put your feet on any objects bearing the King's image e.g. the Thai currency (Baht). Maliciously damaging the King's image or royal family, slandering or bad-mouth is severely punishable in the court-of-law. At least 15 years of imprisonment was recorded in the past.

3. Singlet, shorts, revealing blouse or skirts are not acceptable when visiting temples. Insults to Buddhism, Buddha icons or images, are seriously punishable in the court-of-law. It is strictly taboo to touch any part of a monk or his robes. Buddhist monks in the Theravada sect cannot have physical contact with females. This includes patting on the head of a Thai (whom you are unfamiliar with).

4. It is customary for a Thai to 'wai' by paying respects or greeting another person. A 'wai' is when both palms are clasped in front of the face. It has many meanings and visitors are advised only to reply to a 'wai' than to initiate. It is never appropriate to 'wai' to servants, children or someone junior (age/status) than you although it is polite to return it.

5. Travel with common sense and extreme caution with your money and passports. Shoulder and hand bags are generally vulnerable to snatch-thief. Another caution is jewelry and tailor scams that are notoriously common.

Read about it here...How to Avoid Being Scammed (opens in a new window)

6. Generally, tap water in the country is inefficiently processed. It is advisable to drink bottled or carbonated water that are cheaply available in many convenience stores.

7. When traveling in a taxi or tuk-tuk, it is not the norm to settle the fare before beginning your journey.

8. It is impolite to clap, snap your fingers or whistles to beckon waiters or anyone. Do it with your palm down and fingers straight with an up and down movements.

9. In conjunction with #5, do not accept offers of food, drinks and candies, free trips from strangers or taxi drivers.

10. To involve with narcotics or illegal drugs is a very serious offense in Thailand.

For more activities information visit A Thai Village Homestay

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