Basic and useful information for first-time visitors to Thailand
FACTS ABOUT THAILAND
Thailand has a land area of 513,115 sq.km.and is bordered by Malaysia
(South), Myanmar (West & North), Laos (North & East) and
Temperature varies from 38o C to 19o
C and the humidity from 82.8 % to 66%.
Hot (March to May), rainy (June to October) and cool (November to
About 60 million. Of which, 9.45% live in Bangkok.
Thai is the national language. However English is widely understood
in the major cities.
Buddhist 94.82%, Muslim 4.00%, Christian 0.55%, others 0.63%
A constitutional monarchy headed HM King Bhumibol Adulyadej,
The country is divided into 76 provinces, each sub-divided into
amphoe, tambon and muban.
The red, white and blue bands symbolize the nation, Buddhism and
the monarchy respectively.
1,110 km. if the Nan, its main tributary, is included.
Thin cotton is the best. A jacket or sweater may be necessary
in the cool season, especially in a mountainous area in the North
220 volts 50 cycles throughout the country.
Drink only bottled or boiled water.
You can find places to eat 24 hours a day, but it may be better
avoid sidewalk stalls where, though food is cheap and palatable,
hygienic conditions may not be up to standard.
You have wide range of good buys to choose from. They are beautiful
b because Thais are gifted artists, and inexpensive because the
labour cost is low.
TIPS & FACTS
is a Buddhist country where Buddha images are held sacred. Sacrilegious
acts are punishable by imprisonment even if committed by foreign
have great respect for Their Majesties The King & Queen
and members of the Royal Family. Failing to show respect for
the monarchy or making a rude remark about them is an act of
less majeste for which the punishment is imprisonment.
Even to crease a Thai bank note is an offense as it has an image
of HM The King.
Thai women are conservative. So don't touch them without their
properly when entering a Buddhist temple. Mini-skirts and shorts
are not allowed. Take your shoes off before going inside the
hall of worship. Ladies must not on any account touch a Buddhist
monk, give things direct to him or receive things direct from
between men and women should not be displayed in public. Topless
sunbathing is not approved.
address each other using the title Khun and their first name.
John Smith would be addressed as Khun John and not Khun Smith.
smile is the Thai unspoken communication for happiness and pleasure.
A wai is gesture of recognition of a senior person when
the hands are put together in a praying position, raised to
the nose and the head lowered slightly forwards. A younger person
wais to an older person.
touch a person's head, nor ruffle his hair. The head is the
noblest part of the body. A sincere apology should be offered
immediately if you touch someone's head unintentionally.
placing your feet on the table while sitting. Never use your
foot to point things out or to touch any part of the body of
anyone, which is considered rude.
entering a Thai house or a temple you are expected to remove
visitors may bring in an unlimited amount of Thai currency.
For travellers leaving Thailand, both Thais and foreigners,
the maximum amount permitted to take out without prior authorization
is 50,000 baht per person or, if they are going to one of Thailand's
neighbouring countries, 500,000 baht per person.
basic monetary unit in Thailand is the Baht. A baht is divided
into 100 satang. The following coins and notes are currently
25 and 50 satang; 1, 5 and 10 baht.
notes: 20 (green), 50 (blue), 100 (red), 500 (purple) and 1,000
foreign currencies can be exchanged for Thai baht with banks
and authorized money changers. Major credit cards are also widely
accepted in tourist centres.
(e.g., marijuana, hemp, opium, cocaine, morphine, heroin)
of Buddha images (except small ones carried on person), antiques
and genuine works of art require export licenses from the Fine
Arts Department. The shop you deal with can provide such service
tourists are allowed to takeout gold ornaments free. But import
and export of gold other than jewelry are subject to licensing
by the Ministry of Finance.
is prohibited by law to bring any of the following items into
Obscene literature or pictures
Firearms or ammunition -- unless a permit has been obtained from
the Police Department or the local Registration Office
Piranha and certain species of fruits, vegetables and plants.
(Contact the Agricultural Regulatory Division, Bangkhen, Bangkok
still camera with 5 rolls of unused film, one movie-camera with
3 rolls of unused film and used household effects may be brought
in free of duty.
Thai food is already cut into small pieces before serving or
made soft enough to be cut with a spoon or fork; thus, a knife
are rarely found on Thai dinner tables, so add a little cararnel-colour
fish-sauce (called nam-pla in Thai) instead, if you find your
food not salty enough. 0 English is spoken in large restaurants
in tourist provinces; and most establishments have menus in
Thai and English, except street-side food stalls and some small
waiters with a wave of a hand. Don't clap, snap fingers or hiss.
a tip of 10-20 baht or 5-10% of the bill should be left when
dining in a middle or high-class
is an art long practised in Asian countries including Thailand.
So feel free to ask for a proper discount when shopping in places
where prices are not
should be obtained for the goods you buy. For jewelry you must
get a certificate of guarantee
shops can offer a money-back guarantee but you should clearly
determine all conditions with the
from 56 countries can now stay in Thailand for up to 30 days
without an entry visa, according to a new regulation adopted
by the Immigration Division in early February 1995. For visitors
from 76 other countries, visas valid for 15 days may be obtain(
on arrival at any of the four airports at Don Muang (Bangkok),
Chiang Mai, Phuket and Hat Yai.
of visas in Thailand are : Transit, Tourist, Non-Immigrant,
Immigrant and Non Quota Immigrant.
of Transit Visitor Transit and Tourist visas are not allowed
to work in Thailand.
tourist who wants to overstay his visa must apply to the Immigration
Division of the Police Department with the following :
duplicate copy of his or her passport
(3) The medical certificate (only in the case of being sick)
--Thin cotton is the best. A jacket or pullover may be necessary
in the cool season, especially when you are in mountainous areas
in the North or Northeast.
-- 220 v 50 cycles throughout the country.
of area -- Thailand has its own system of area measurement.
The basic units are square wa (=4 sq.m.) and rai (=400 sq.wa
or 1,600 sq.m. or 0.16 hectare).
500 bath. Domestic - no payment (included in air ticket)