Exotic Voyages Discuss the Top Things to Avoid When Traveling to Thailand
If you are looking for one of the best and most incredible travel destinations, look no further than Thailand. It is absolutely a must-visit for any person who wants to travel somewhere with beautiful weather and plenty to do. However, like just about any other country, there are certain places you will want to avoid. As long as you familiarize yourself with some of the top things to avoid, you should be able to have a fantastic time. Here are some of the best tips and tricks from Exotic Voyages in order to ensure you get the most out of your next trip to Thailand.
Places to Stay for Backpackers
Avoid: The entirety of Khao San Road. This is one of the most visited roads and it is a complete tourist trap. Not only will you find nothing but foreigners in this location, but you will find dirty and unpleasant accommodations, cheap bars, and more. While it's not necessarily an area that you will want to avoid at all costs, it is a place you would ideally avoid staying. It is safe however so it's a decent place to stay if it's your last resort. The fact is, too many tourists only look at this road when they are trying to figure out places to stay and it can keep you from enjoying all that Thailand has to offer.
Instead: Siam Square and Sukhumvit are some of the best alternatives that you can consider. Another good area would be the up-and-coming area of Phra Khanong. This is a good area that is experiencing a lot of growth. One of the best strategies to take would be to rent out an Airbnb so you can find yourself in much more of a local setting. This will enable you to experience the local side of Thailand. You could also opt for Couchsurfing which can provide nearly the same experience. One of the best options for AirBnB's would be Ari which is a hipster cafe district. It may be slightly more expensive, but you can find a lot of good options. You can also find a lot of good 5-star hotels at affordable prices in the heart of Bangkok if you are in the mood to splurge.
Avoid: One thing that you should be avoiding is attempting to bargain a flat rate with your respective driver. This is one of the easiest ways to find yourself overpaying.
Instead: You will want to ask them to use the meter. In fact, it is actually illegal for a driver in Thailand to refuse to use it. However, if they do refuse anyways, simply walk to a busy street and try to flag down another one. You can also find a good amount of Uber or GrabTaxi drivers as they have a good presence in Thailand. Therefore, you should have a much better time getting a ride without finding yourself getting scammed. However, you will need to use mobile Internet in order to utilize these services. If you are going to be in need of transportation for an entire day, you can always attempt to do some negotiations upfront to get a set price. You will find this price to vary considerably, but you can expect it to be a couple of thousand baht each day and the actual amount will vary based on the total distance you are traveling. You want to settle everything before stepping into the vehicle to ensure that you are aware of the total price beforehand. You can opt for a private charter which you can find for a set price and it might be cheaper. If you are going to be traveling to and/or from the airport, you will want to schedule a transfer before your flight.
Avoid: Any type of ping pong shows. This is a specific type of sex show that you will find being advertised all across Thailand from Bangkok to Phuket. The number one danger that you want to be aware of would be getting scammed to going to the second level of a bar. This is where you will find yourself held hostage and unable to leave until you are willing and able to pay a significant bill. If you find yourself absolutely wanting to experience one, you can find some bars in the Soi Cowboy area which will give you a lesser version of the show as long as you agree to pay for drinks while enjoying it.
Instead: You want to leverage the beauty of Thailand's beaches. There are so many beaches you can frequent while you are there. Likewise, you will find a lot of amazing performances and all kinds of close attractions that you can visit. One that you shouldn't miss is the Sanctuary of Truth and the Nong Nooch Tropical Garden. You can even find a cabaret show like Tiffany's Show which can be a good experience. If you find yourself traveling with kids, try out the Cartoon Network Waterpark which can be lots of fun or even Art in Paradise where you will be able to experience an interactive gallery. For any adventure-seekers, you will want to participate in an ultralight flight over the entire region. You can find a lot of fruit farms where you can sample the local delicacies including durian. You will find the best weekend getaway beaches at Ko Samet. You can reach a lot of the good places to travel to via a private car conveniently from Bangkok.
Avoid: You never want to start your bargaining too low. While you don't want to start too high, beginning the negotiations too low is seen as offensive in Thai culture.
Instead: You want to figure out your budget and how much you are willing to pay beforehand. You will be offered an initial price. Simply take that price and cut it in half. Begin your negotiations at this point because it will put you in a good spot to get a fair deal. You will want to utilize all of the usual tricks of the trade that you are likely already used to using including doing comparison shopping with other shops, pretending to walk away, and others. If you find yourself arguing over an inconsequential amount, simply fork over the extra amount. At the end of the day, you are there to have fun and it's not going to put you at a huge loss. You will find a lot of the best prices in Thailand at the popular train market called "Talat Rot Fai."
What You Should Do
Avoid: All of the tourist trap areas that you will find scattered throughout Phuket. While we don't mean you should be crossing Phuket off your list, we do think you should be looking to spend the majority of your time elsewhere.
Instead: Avoid the heavy crowds found on Patong beach. You will find a lot of trouble in these areas. Instead, try to explore areas that are off the beaten path. This includes Tachai Island or even the Similan Islands. All of these islands are going to offer you better experiences and a lot of fun activities including snorkeling.
Avoid: This is something that you want to avoid altogether. You would only be helping fund the mistreatment of elephants. Don't pay these criminals and encourage them to mistreat elephants. You will typically find them scattered throughout touristy areas.
Instead: Try to find a sanctuary that you can head to. You will be able to head to an elephant sanctuary that really takes care of their elephants and who spend time, energy, and money rescuing and rehabilitating them. Some of the best that you should consider are; Elephant Nature Park or even Khao Kheow Open Zoo.