What should I do before travelling?
We suggest that all our customers review foreign office advice for Thailand before travelling. Click here for the latest information from the foreign office.
What are the visa requirements?
British passport holders can enter Thailand for 30 days without a visa, but your passport should be valid for a minimum period of six months from your entry into the country.
What is the currency in Thailand?
The currency in Thailand is the Thai Baht. Banks, which are open Monday to Friday from 8:30 to 15:30, give the best exchange rates. In tourist areas, there are also currency exchange outlets that stay open later. ATM machines are found throughout the country and most will accept foreign ATM cards. Visa and Mastercard are the most widely accepted credit cards, but other major credit cards are also accepted, in hotels and larger restaurants.
What is the cuisine like in Thailand?
Thai food is world famous for a reason! Aside from pad thai and green curry there’s an array of cheap and delicious dishes to set your taste-buds watering. The basis of a Thai meal is rice, with other popular ingredients being coconut milk, lemongrass and fish sauce. An emphasis is placed on aromatic flavours and a blend of sour, sweet and salty. Not all Thai dishes are heavily spiced; Thai food can be modulated to suit most tastes. Thailand is also the perfect place for a large choice of tropical fruits such as mangoes, pineapple, mangosteen, jack fruit, as well as the infamous durian, with its unique smell and taste.
What can I expect to pay for eating out locally and in resorts?
Thailand is famous for its cuisine and there is an abundance of places to eat: from streetfood to gourmet restaurants. Street stalls serve freshly prepared local dishes throughout the day for around £1! You can dine equally well in a small local restaurant (generally on plastic chairs - no frills!) on Thai food and expect to pay around £5 per person. For a bottle of local beer you will pay around £1.50 but wine and spirits are more expensive.
If Asian food is not to your taste then western options are also plentiful. Recognisable fast food chains such as Pizza Hut and McDonalds have outlets in Bangkok and main tourist areas in which you can expect to pay the same price as you would in the UK.
Hotels will offer more dining options / cuisine types and a wider choice of imported alcohol. But eating and drinking in hotels will of course be more expensive. Expect to pay in the region of £1.50 for a soft drink, £3 for a beer and £5 for a glass of wine. A Club Sandwich or Caeser Salad for lunch will be around £8. A two course evening meal around £15-£20 per person.
(Prices are simply a guideline and subject to change.)
Are there any customs I should be aware of?
Buddhism is practiced by about 95% of Thais and is an extremely important part of Thai life. When visiting a Buddhist temple always remove your shoes before entering, dress conservatively, always sit with your legs behind you and do not turn your back or point your feet towards Buddha statues
What is the language in Thailand?
The most widely spoken language in Thailand is Thai, which can be quite incomprehensible for foreigners! However, most Thai people, especially in the major cities and tourist areas, speak English and tourists should have no troubles with communication in these areas
Will I need to bring an adaptor?
Yes - you will need to bring a two pin adaptor to Thailand.
Is Thailand safe?
Thailand is a safe country to visit. As a global rule, never leave your belongings unattended and always maintain eye contact or a firm grip on cameras and shoulder bags. Beware of scams and touts that remain fairly common in popular tourist destinations. Scams generally focus on convincing tourists to visit a gem / silk / handicraft shop followed by a hard-sell. As in any country, demonstrations do occasionally take place however they are usually peacefully conducted and in isolated areas away from the major tourist sites.
Can I get married in Thailand?
Thailand is a perfect destination for a wedding: offering stunning locations; legendary service levels; attention to detail and the option of course of cultural touches such as arriving by elephant. In addition, Thailand offers fantastic value for money for a wedding: you certainly get more for your money than if you wed in the UK.
Most luxury hotels will tailormake a wedding package, but it's worth bearing in mind that you must visit Bangkok initially to complete the required leaglities to get married in Thailand.
How do I contact the Tourist Board?
Thai Tourism have a dedicated team based in London. Their office is open from 10am - 5pm, Monday - Friday and is located at 19 Cockspur St, London SW1Y 5BL. If you can't visit in person you can call them on 020 7925 7820. Or check out their blog http://uk.blog.tourismthailand.co.uk/ which is full of news, tips and features.