By Marianne Stenger on 24 July 2015

As you'll see below in our Thailand travel advice and traveller guide, from lush rainforests, pristine beaches, to a vibrant nightlife and wide range of adventurous activities like scuba diving and rock climbing, there’s no shortage of reasons to travel to Thailand. With an affordable cost of living and laid back lifestyle, it’s no wonder travelling to Thailand has become one of the most popular pastimes and holiday destinations for Australians.

Before you read on, please make sure you're aware of our disclaimer.

If you’re considering travelling to Thailand, read on for tips and recommendations on what to see and do, as well as how to keep yourself and your belongings safe whilst you enjoy all that this tropical paradise has to offer.


1. Before You Go: Smart Traveller Thailand - Travel Advice

  • Visa requirements
  • Travel insurance
  • Accessing travel money
  • Health and vaccination considerations
  • Personal safety and security
  • Travel warnings

2. Best time to travel to Thailand

3. Where to travel in Thailand

4. What to see and do in Thailand

5. Travel Packages to Thailand

6. Travelling in Thailand: Guides and Transport

  • Getting around in Thailand
  • Using travel guides in Thailand

7. Is it safe to travel in Thailand?


Smart Traveller Thailand: Travel Advice

Being a smart traveller means planning ahead, so here are some of the most important things you’ll need to consider before you pack your bags. You can also consult the Smart Traveller Checklist before you leave to ensure that you’ve got all your bases covered.

Smart Traveller Thailand

Visa requirements

Passport holders from designated countries including Australia are not required to obtain any visa in advance, as long as their stay in Thailand won’t exceed 30 days.

You may be asked to provide proof of your return or onward journey, though, so make all your travel arrangements in advance and check that your passport will be valid for a minimum of six months from the date you intend to enter the country or you could be refused entry.

If you’re planning to stay in Thailand for more than 30 days, you will need to apply for a visa from the Thai embassy or consulate in your city before you leave.

Travel insurance

Accidents can’t be foreseen and overseas medical treatment or hospital stays could end up costing you hundreds of thousands of dollars, so if you can’t afford travel insurance, you can’t afford to travel.

A basic travel insurance policy for Thailand should cover accidents and emergency medical treatment as well as theft or loss of valuables, but other benefits may include cancellation and curtailment, delayed baggage, missed flights or certain legal advice and expenses.

Certain policies are better suited to certain types of trips, so it’s important to read the small print and understand exactly what will be covered. For instance, if you’re planning any activities like scuba diving or bungee jumping or have a pre-existing medical condition you may need extra coverage.

A few important questions to ask before you settle on an insurance policy include:

  • Where are you going?

If you’re travelling to any other countries before or after you visit Thailand, you’ll need to make sure you have coverage for each one, and it’s important to be aware that some regions may not be covered at all.

For instance, DFAT (the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade) currently advises against travel to or through the southern provinces of Yala, Pattani, Narathiwat and Songkla, and should you choose to travel to these areas despite the travel warnings you likely won’t be covered.

  • How long are you going for?

You will need to know in advance how many consecutive days you plan to be abroad for. The maximum period of travel allowed for a single trip is generally up to 365 days, but annual multi-trip insurance may have a 30-90-day limit for any one trip, and staying abroad for even a day or two more than this period of time could invalidate your insurance. Fortunately there are plenty of options to choose from, so do your research and find a policy that meets your travel needs.

  • What do you plan to do?

The type of policy you’ll need depends a lot on what you plan to do. For instance, if you plan to teach English or volunteer for a year, you’ll need to be aware that most standard travel insurance policies will not cover manual labour, either paid or unpaid. Additionally, if you’re planning to undertake higher-risk activities like abseiling, bungee jumping and scuba diving, you may need additional coverage in the form of a sports and leisure activities pack.

If you plan to drive a car or motorcycle when you’re abroad, you should also check if your policy covers you if you are injured as the result of an accident, if you injure someone else whilst driving, or for accidental damage, loss or theft to the vehicle. Other conditions may apply dependent on the policy including whether you are qualified to drive a motor-cycle or moped, the engine size (many policies will have a limit) and whether you were wearing a helmet.  You will also need to check out licence requirements.

Regardless of what you plan to do, however, you’ll need to check that each activity will be covered rather than simply assuming it will be. If you’re unsure whether or not a standard travel insurance policy will cover a specific activity, it’s best to contact your insurance provider for advice.

  • Are you bringing valuables?

While it’s best not to take too many valuables with you, some items such as cameras, phones or laptops may be essential to your trip, so you’ll need to decide if you want these items to be covered in case of loss, damage or theft.

Be aware that the definition of “valuables” varies depending on the insurer and certain conditions will apply. For instance, if you don’t take ‘reasonable care’ of your valuables, by leaving your camera in the car for example, you probably won’t be covered, and theft must usually be reported to the police within 24 hours. You’ll also be asked to produce proof of ownership such as an original receipt.

  • Do you have any pre-existing medical conditions?

If you have any pre-existing medical conditions such as asthma, heart disease, diabetes or even pre-existing injuries, you may need to purchase extra coverage. Failing to disclose any such medical condition could result in your claims being rejected, so be sure to contact the insurer well in advance to find out if it can be covered or if you can choose to exclude it and keep your premium low.

  • Do you require cover for pregnancy?

Although pregnancy may not be considered a medical condition and you’ve been given the all-clear to travel during your pregnancy, most policies won’t cover complications or unforeseen events related to your pregnancy, so it can be a good idea to consider extra coverage if you’re an expectant mother.

Pregnancy travel insurance may cover things like premature birth, emergency medical care and any expenses you may incur if you need to change your travel dates or cancel your trip due to unforeseen complications with your pregnancy which prevent you from travelling

Most insurers won’t cover you if you’re planning to travel after your 28th week of pregnancy, however, and multiple births often won’t be covered either, so do your research and make sure you know what will and won’t be covered.  Also be mindful of the fact that once you are in your third trimester of pregnancy, airlines may ask to see a doctor’s letter stating that you are fit to travel before they allow you to board.

Accessing travel money

Making a plan for accessing your money while in Thailand will help you avoid spending more than you intended due to foreign exchange rates and transaction fees. There are a few different options and each has its pros and cons, so your best bet is to have a few different methods of accessing your money.

  • Traveller’s cheques

Traveller’s cheques have always been a secure option thanks to their unique serial number, the ease of replacing them if lost or stolen, and the fact that a photo ID is required when cashing them. However, they are becoming less common, which means that finding places to cash your traveller’s cheques in Thailand may be a challenge, and the fees for cashing them have gone up in recent years.

  • Cash

Having some cash on you is handy for things like getting a taxi or shopping in the marketplace, but carrying large amounts of cash on you is not very safe.

  • Debit and credit cards

Debit and credit cards can be a good option for larger purchases or online bookings. You can also use them to make cash withdrawals at local ATMs, but be aware that you’ll be charged a fee for every withdrawal and won’t know what currency exchange rate you’re getting.

Before leaving, check that your ATM card will work in Thailand and notify your bank of your travel plans to avoid having your account blocked while you’re away.

  • Travel money cards

A prepaid travel card is more secure than a debit or credit card as it isn’t linked to your bank account. It also allows you to lock in an exchange rate in advance to avoid unexpected currency variations, and you can usually check your balance and top up online, which makes it easier to keep track of how much you’re spending.

Health and vaccination considerations

Before leaving Australia, it’s a good idea to schedule a doctor’s visit to get detailed advice on which vaccines and preventative medicines you’ll need based on the time of year and which areas you’ll be travelling to, as well as your style of travel and length of stay.


The main health risks for Australians travelling in Thailand include Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B and Typhoid, all of which are vaccine preventable. Some adults may also need boosters for routine childhood vaccines including measles-mumps-rubella and tetanus-diphtheria.

Preventative medicines

Although the risk of contracting malaria in most parts of Thailand is minimal, you may be advised to take malaria prevention tablets if you’ll be travelling to some remote parts of the country. A travel-sized first aid kit containing treatments for things like insect stings and bites, rashes or sunburn, cuts, scrapes and traveller’s diarrhoea can also come in handy if you plan to be off the beaten track.

Carrying medications

If you need to bring any medications, leave them in their original packaging and make sure they are clearly labelled. If necessary, you can obtain a signed letter from your physician that describes your medical condition and any medications, syringes or needles you may need to bring with you.

Traveller’s tip:

Although most guidebooks and websites err on the side of caution when dispensing travel advice and warnings, Johnny Ward, long-time traveller, part-time Thailand resident and owner of the travel website OneStep4Ward, notes that things like malaria or food poisoning in South East Asia are extremely rare.

“I know a lot of people who come to Thailand are first time travellers and it can seem kind of scary, but it's really not,” he says.

“I think the best way to stay as healthy as possible while travelling is to take multivitamins with you, drink plenty of water and don't ignore your fruit and veg. It's so easy to eat, and drink, awfully on your travels, so it's super important to try to stay on top of your health.”

Personal safety and security

Thailand is generally a safe country to visit, but just like at home, you’ll need to use common sense and exercise caution in some situations, especially when alcohol is involved. Here are a few pointers for keeping yourself and your belongings safe.

  • Store valuables in a safe at your hotel or hostel

The fewer valuables you have on you when you go out, the less risk there is of losing them or having them stolen, so use your hotel or hostels safe whenever possible and never leave your bag or other personal items unattended when out in public.

Scan copies of your passport, visa or any other important documents and store them in an easily accessible location such as your email in case the originals are lost or stolen.

  • Drink responsibly and keep an eye on your drinks

Knowing your alcohol limit is important at home, but even more so in an unfamiliar place where being a foreigner and obviously drunk could make you a target for robbery, assault or arrest. If possible, fetch your own drinks from the bar and don’t leave them unattended. Also keep in mind that your insurance claims could be rejected if a medical or police report suggests that alcohol may have been a factor.

  • Avoid taking risks you wouldn’t take at home

If you don’t drive a motorcycle at home, Thailand is not the best place to start learning, and if you wouldn’t walk home alone at night in your own city, why do it while on holiday? Keep your guard up and avoid rationalising potentially dangerous situations with the “I’m on holiday” excuse.

Traveller’s tip:

Michael Turtle, journalist, travel writer and founder of the Time Travel Turtle website, notes that while there is a low risk of violent crime or petty theft in Thailand, one problem travellers often face is people trying to overcharge them or deliver something different to what they've promised.

To avoid this, he advises that you always ask for prices in advance and double-check exactly what you'll be getting for your money.

“In Bangkok, for instance, make sure taxi drivers use the meter rather than going with a fixed price, and tuktuks will likely try to take you to shops where they can get cash or commission for bringing in tourists, so either make it clear that you don't want them to do this or be prepared for it.

If you're organising short tours with an agency on the street, look at a few options and ask other travellers for firsthand recommendations.”

Travel warnings

Due to the May 2014 military coup and nationwide imposition of martial law, the Australian government has amended its travel advice for Thailand. Although nationwide martial law was lifted on 1 April 2015, martial law remains in place in certain districts throughout the country.

Australians travelling to Thailand are advised to exercise a high degree of caution in the country overall, and to avoid all travel to the areas of Yala, Pattani, Narathiwat and Songkhla. Travellers should also avoid any demonstrations, political events, rallies, processions and large scale public gatherings. If you’re thinking about a trip to Thailand, make sure you check the latest travel advice before you book.

When travelling, you should monitor the local media for information about possible new safety or security risks and register your travel plans through the Australian DFAT website so that you can be contacted in case of an emergency.

Best time to travel to Thailand

Thailand enjoys a tropical climate and has three main seasons; hot and dry season, cool season and monsoon season, although the northern part of the country really only gets a hot and cool season. The best time to visit depends a lot on your travel plans and how flexible you’re willing to be.

Cool season

The cool season between November and February is generally the best time to visit Thailand, as the temperatures will be a more pleasant 18C to 32C. In the north it gets markedly colder at this time of year, though, with temperatures ranging between 8C and 12C and sometimes dropping to below freezing at higher altitudes. This time of year is also high season in Thailand, so be prepared for large crowds and higher prices.

Hot and dry season

The hot and dry season is from March to June, and while temperatures generally remain around 34C in central and south Thailand, they can reach up to 40C in some areas, with April being the hottest month. The beaches tend to be less crowded at this time of year, though, so if you can deal with the heat it can be a good time to visit.

Monsoon season

The monsoon season between June and October can be unpredictable, but the up side of visiting at this time is that there will be fewer tourists, which means cheaper airline tickets, more affordable hotel rooms and none of the overcrowded beaches that you’d have to deal with in the high season.

On the downside, water sports might be more difficult due to choppy waters, so if you’re hoping to go scuba diving, snorkelling or surfing, it may be better to visit during the hot or cool season.

Where to travel in Thailand

Thailand’s most popular tourist destinations include islands like Phuket and KohSamui which are home to some of the world’s finest beaches and a lively nightlife all year round. But since there is nothing quite as satisfying as venturing off the beaten path, we asked four seasoned travellers to share some of their recommendations on where to travel in Thailand.

Johnny Ward OneStep4Ward:

I think Chiang Mai is the most beautiful place in the world, and also I'd encourage travellers to give Bangkok a chance - and not just Khao San Road. Also, if you're keen for the islands, Krabi for me is the most scenic.

Michael Turtle Time Travel Turtle:

For an easy overnight trip from Bangkok, I would recommend a stay in Ayutthaya. The city is full of ancient temples that you can cycle or walk between for a day or two. You can get the train there from Bangkok or go with an organised tour.

Further north, there are some wonderful cities outside of Chiang Mai. Places like Nan or Pai have great cultural offerings for tourists and some wonderful local food. They aren't full of tourists, which is a real bonus. The downside is that the attractions and activities aren't as obvious so you'll need to do a little bit of research in advance to decide what to do so you can make the most of your time there.

Anna Phipps, Global-Gallivanting

Most travellers begin in the capital Bangkok and even though it’s hardly authentically Thai most backpackers congregate around the Khao San Road. There are loads of cheap accommodation options, shops, bars and restaurants here and it can be a fun place to hang out for a few days and meet other travellers but make sure you explore other parts of Bangkok too.

Some of Thailand’s islands have been rampantly over developed and over commercialised so my advice would be to dig a bit deeper and go a bit more off the beaten track to find that idyllic, paradisiacal island experience.

The North of Thailand is stunning too. It’s much cheaper and you get a better feel for Thai culture. Check out the ruins of the old capital Ayutthaya, not far from Bangkok and stop at UNESCO heritage site ruins of Sukhothai before heading to the ever popular Chiang Mai.

Also make sure to check out the mountain village of Pai. Go trekking and don’t miss the incredible White Temple near Chiang Rai before heading down to the islands.

Marek Bron, Indie Traveller:

If you are not just after a beach vacation but are looking for cultural experiences or adventure activities as well, then the north of Thailand is not to be missed. Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai and the little town of Pai are the main tourist destinations here, but it’s also easy to go off the beaten track.

You can rent a motorbike and drive past beautiful rice fields, visit temples and waterfalls, or go trekking in the mountains. The Mae Hong Song loop in the northwest is a wonderful area far from the tourist crowds, with some incredible river caves in the jungle that you can tour by foot or paddle through by kayak.

What to see and do in Thailand

When it comes to things to see and do in Thailand, the possibilities are endless; there are all the obvious activities the country is famous for, of course, like swimming, sunbathing and enjoying cocktails by the bucketful, but if you want to get to know another side of this diverse and beautiful country, try to fit in a few of these other experiences and sights that are unique to Thailand.

Take a cooking class

Taking a half-day cooking class can be a great way to immerse yourself in Thai culture. You’ll be able to find cooking classes in most of the bigger cities, and they’ll usually include a trip to the market, an introduction to Thai flavours and cooking techniques, and of course, a chance to try your hand at cooking one or two famous dishes like Pad Thai or Tom Yum Gung. 

Trek through the Chiang Mai Mountains

Chiang Mai province is home to Thailand’s tallest mountains which make for a perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of city life or crowded beaches during high season. Aside from hiking along lush jungle trails where you can spot tropical monkeys and birds, it’s also a great place to get into zip lining.

Visit one of Bangkok’s floating markets

Although they’re more touristic than they once were, Bangkok’s floating markets are still a great place to watch the city’s residents go about their daily routine or even do some haggling of your own. The best time to visit is in the early morning when vendors are coming and going in long boats piled high with fruits and vegetables, spices and freshly cooked snacks and dishes. Some of the most popular floating markets include Damnoen, Amphawa, and KhlongLatMayom.

Eat your way through Chiang Mai’s Sunday walking street

If you want to get to know Thai cuisine, there’s no better place to start than Chiang Mai’s central avenue which is closed off to traffic every Sunday to provide its visitors with a more leisurely shopping experience. Along with nearly every Thai delicacy imaginable, you’ll find many other authentically Thai goods ranging from hand-made jewellery to musical instruments.

Stop by one of the ancient capitals

It’s well-worth trying to visit at least one of Thailand’s three ancient capital cities on your way from Bangkok to Chiang Mai. Made up of Buddhist and Thai ruins, both Ayutthaya and Sukhothai once served as capital cities of Siam, while Lop Buri is one of the oldest inhabited cities in Thailand and the current capital of Lopburi province.

Learn to scuba dive on Kao Tao

Kao Tao or “Turtle Island” is known for being one of the best scuba diving locations in Thailand due to its affordability and the multitude of dive sites, diving schools and instructors there. But aside from being cheap, it’s also a beautiful place to explore the ocean and you’ll find everything from giant barracuda to green sea turtles and even whale sharks.

Take a lazy boat ride along the Chao Praya River

While Bangkok’s Chao Praya River isn’t much to look at on its own, many of the city’s major tourist attractions, including the Grand Palace, China Town, and the Gem Stone Market, are located right along the river. For just 100 baht you can get a day pass and hop on and off the boat as many times as you like, making it one of the most leisurely ways to see the sights in Bangkok.

Travel packages to Thailand

Since Thailand is such an incredibly diverse country, a travel package may be a good way see either a little bit of everything or just the things you’re most interested in.

Travel packages to Thailand

An all-inclusive travel package can also greatly simplify the planning process as you won’t have to worry about booking every flight, tour and hotel separately, and depending on your style of travel, it can often end up being cheaper than if you had booked each leg of the trip separately.

Here are a few important things to consider when choosing a travel package to Thailand:

  • Decide what you want to do

Before you even start looking for package deals, think about what sort of things you’d like to do and see, as this will help you narrow down your options.

For instance, if you want to see ancient ruins or visit rural communities, a package deal that focuses on cultural activities might be perfect for you, whereas if you’d prefer to lounge on the beach all day and party by night, a package that includes visits to popular party islands like KoPhangan and KoSamui might be more suitable.

  • Research the company’s reputation

Once you’ve found a few travel companies you like, do some research to find out what their reputation is. Do they follow proper safety regulations? Are they environmentally conscious? Travel message boards and forums can be a good place to start your search, but check their Facebook page as well to see what others are saying about them.

Another important thing to check is the tour company’s target demographic, as this will help you find one that suits your style of travel. For example, some may cater to large groups and older retirees while others might be more popular with singles or families with kids. 

  • Find out what is meant by “all-inclusive”

Travel packages that claim to be “all-inclusive” rarely cover every expense you’ll have on your trip, so it’s important to find out what will and won’t be covered. For instance, your flights to and from Thailand may not be included and meals might only be provided during scheduled activities or outings.

Traveller’s tip:

If guided tours aren’t really your thing, Anna Phipps, self-confessed travel addict and blogger at Global-Gallivanting, points out that in Thailand organising each leg of the trip yourself is quite doable and will also give you more freedom and flexibility. 

 “Travelling in Thailand is so easy and you’ll always meet other people doing the same thing to make friends with,” she says. “I arrived in Bangkok alone on a one way ticket with just three nights of accommodation booked and I never had any problems.”

“I loved the freedom and flexibility of it, and it was so easy to find buses, trains and internal flights that I never had a problem getting from A – B. Many hostels and guest houses can also arrange your onward transportation.”

Travelling in Thailand – Best guides and transport

Thailand’s main airport is in Bangkok, and thanks to its wide range of transport and accommodation options, the capital makes a great starting point regardless of what your travel plans may be.

Getting around in Thailand

Getting around in Thailand

Travel in Thailand is generally inexpensive, and from Bangkok you’ll have a number of options from flights to buses to trains to auto rickshaws known as tuk-tuks. Since most travellers end up using more than one mode of transportation, here’s a quick look at each one.


Buses are probably the cheapest and most convenient way to get from place to place in Thailand, although their level of comfort will depend a lot on whether you choose to purchase first class, second class or VIP tickets. Tickets can usually be booked on the bus or from departure terminals, although for longer distances it’s best to book a day or two in advance.

Be aware that buses are not the safest mode of transport, as Thailand is notorious for having the second-highest traffic fatality rate in the world, and accidents involving buses are not uncommon.


Trains are a bit more expensive, but generally much safer, especially when travelling longer distances. You’ll be able to find trains to many of Thailand’s popular destinations including Chiang Mai and Kanchanaburi, and most trains run from Bangkok’s main Hua Lamphong station where you can make reservations days or even months in advance.

Ferries and boats

If you want to get to any of Thailand’s major islands, you’ll have little choice but to take a ferry or boat. Tickets can generally be bought on board and are quite reasonably priced, although the price may vary depending on the season and speed of the ferry or boat.


You’ll find flights from Bangkok to most major destinations including Chiang Mai, Krabi and Phuket with airlines like Thai Airways, Bangkok Air, Air Asia and Orient Thai Airlines. Although a flight will save you precious travel time, you may actually prefer to take a bus or train which would allow you to see more of the country along the way.

Taxis, tuk-tuks and motorcycles

When getting around Bangkok and other cities in Thailand, taxis are usually more affordable for longer distances, while tuk-tuks or motorcycles are great for shorter trips. To avoid being overcharged, insist that your driver turn on the meter. With tuk-tuks and motorcycles, the first price the driver names will be an inflated rate, so be prepared to negotiate.

Using travel guides in Thailand

Using travel guides in Thailand

Although exploring on your own can be fun, hiring a guide for short trips, outings or adventures will help you get more out of a place you’re unfamiliar with, especially if you’re interested in learning about Thailand’s culture, traditions and nature and wildlife.

Here are a few pointers for choosing a reliable tour guide in Thailand:

  • Look for experience, local insight and language skills

One of the most important things to look for in a guide is experience. For things like sightseeing and exploring, an enthusiastic and knowledgeable guide will make your trip more enjoyable, and when it comes to activities like climbing or diving, having an experienced guide could even save your life.

  • Find out what qualifications they have

The tour company you are booking through should be able to tell you what qualifications their guides have. Guides should be certified for the activities they are assigned to, especially the more risky ones.

  • Ask for referrals

Capable and experienced tour guides will have a good track record, so don’t hesitate to ask if you can contact some of their previous clients to get a referral or vote of confidence. Trip Advisor is also a good place to find both good and bad reviews about guides or tour companies.

  • Choose someone you feel comfortable with

When choosing a guide, you should listen to your instincts as well. If you have a bad feeling about someone or just don’t mesh together, you shouldn’t go along with it just because they’re cheap. At best, having a guide you don’t trust or get along with will put a damper on your trip, and at worst it will put you in harm’s way.

Is it safe to travel to Thailand?

Is it safe to travel to Thailand

After months of political unrest, Thailand’s military seized control of government in May 2014, making it the country’s 12th successful coup since 1932. Naturally, the situation has left travellers with questions and concerns about how safe it is to travel there.

But despite sensationalist headlines extolling the dangers of Thailand, most experienced travellers will tell you that as long as you use some common sense and avoid potentially risky areas or situations, it’s unlikely that you’ll run into problems or even notice any evidence of the coup.

“For the average tourist, absolutely nothing has changed since the recent military coup. It's certainly not a reason to avoid a trip and there's no need to behave differently,” says travel writer and journalist Michael Turtle.

He does advise keeping an eye on any specific travel advisories in case protests or political demonstrations arise in a particular location.

“If that happens,” he adds. “Just avoid that area as it will likely be isolated to a few blocks in Bangkok but the rest of the city will be fine. There is usually no problem in other tourist areas like Phuket or Chiang Mai.”

Aside from keeping an eye on the local media, it’s important to check DFAT’s website for updated travel advice before and during your trip. Also be aware that most travel insurance policies will not cover you in any of the “Do not travel” areas listed on the DFAT website.

Here are a few other things you can do to stay safe in light of Thailand’s current political situation:

  • Avoid criticising the government on social media

Although for most of us voicing our opinions publicly through social media is as normal as brushing our teeth, it’s best to avoid liking or sharing posts that criticise the coup while in Thailand. Many active social media users have been detained and forced to sign an agreement stating they will not criticise the military government.

  • Avoid gatherings that might be seen as a form of protest

Because publically speaking out against the coup is risky, Thais have adopted some rather more subtle protest techniques, which has led to the criminalisation of some truly absurd things.

For instance, after pro-democracy activists organised silent picnic protests during which they handed out sandwiches, the government deemed that eating sandwiches with anti-coup intent would be seen as a criminal act, and using the three-finger salute popularised by the Hunger Games movies as a form of protest has also led to a number of arrests.

  • Carry a copy of your passport with you at all times

In Thailand you’re required by law to have a valid photo ID on you at all times, and there have been reports of tourists in Bangkok being stopped and asked to produce their passports. But since it’s not convenient to bring your passport with you everywhere you go due to the risk of theft, loss or damage, one way to get around this is to simply make a copy of your passport along with your details and visa page to carry instead. 

Traveller’s tip:

Anna Phipps, who visited Thailand in April of 2014, points out that like anywhere else in the world, it’s important to keep things in perspective.

“[The coup] didn’t have much impact on my travels and I found Thailand a very safe place to travel, even as a female alone,” she says. “I think most incidents involving tourists there are self-inflicted – either from too much drink or drugs, or from riding scooters.”

Thailand is Asia’s most popular destination and with its welcoming culture, deliciously exotic cuisine and picture-perfect beaches, jungles and wildlife your trip there won’t be easily forgotten. But remember that some careful planning in advance can make everything run more smoothly and help you avoid any unnecessary hassles.

We hope you’ve enjoyed our Thailand travel guide, and if you or someone you know is planning a trip to Thailand in the near future don’t forget to share this post.

Disclaimer: This blog is intended to provide general information and entertainment around travel-related and other complementary topics to our insurance portfolio. The views expressed in this blog do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Columbus Direct. We do not endorse any statements made by third parties and do not take responsibility for third party content included in this blog. None of the information provided in this blog should be understood as advice or be relied upon for any decisions, particularly medical or financial decisions. The topics covered in this blog are not necessarily reflective of our products or cover. Always read the PDS before deciding if a policy is right for you.

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