10 Things Not to Do in Thailand
Thailand, a famous tourist country, attracts more and more foreign tourists. The fact that Thailand is known as the "Land of Smiles" shows that Thailand is welcoming to tourists. To travel to Thailand, we should have a basic understanding of it. Knowing what not to do is necessary to allow us to try not to cause resentment among the locals and to make this trip smoother.
- Don't Misbehave in Public
- Don't Point Fingers or Toes at People or Objects
- Don't Flush Toilet Paper
- Don't Drink Tap Water
- Don't Ride Elephants or Watch Animal Shows
- Don't Wear Revealing Clothes in Religious Places
- Don't Buy the Buddha Even Put It Out of Thailand
- Women are Not Allowed to Touch Monks
- Don't Wear Shoes to Some Places
- Don't Overstay Your Visa
Don't Misbehave in Public
First of all, you should pay attention to what you say and do when you are in public in Thailand. If the words and deeds are too exaggerated, it is easy to arouse the aversion of the Thai people. Secondly, please don't do impolite behaviors, such as smoking in public places and eating food with a strange taste. It is also inappropriate to talk loudly in public. As "the land of smiles," Thais are known for their warmth, smiles, and friendliness. Therefore, Thai people believe that they should keep calm to deal with the problem and not vent their emotions through quarrels.
Don't Point Fingers or Toes at People or Objects
The religious beliefs in Thailand are far-reaching. Under Buddhist influence, the feet are considered to be the lowest body part and the dirtiest body part. Therefore, pointing your toes toward a person or object isn't very respectful. Buddha statues and monks are ubiquitous. Thais who believe in Buddhism consider Buddha statues to be sacred. Thais have great respect for monks. So, we need to pay more attention to not pointing our feet toward the Buddha statues and monks. In many countries, pointing your finger at others isn't polite, which is also true in Thailand. It is etiquette to extend the entire palm and keep it up when we want to point at a person or object. Many Thais consider the left hand dirty because they often use it in the bathroom. So please try to avoid using your left hand when pointing at people.
Don't Flush Toilet Paper
When going to the toilet in Thailand, please put the used toilet paper in the bathroom bin. Thai sewer pipes are unsuitable for handling toilet paper and are easily blocked. Don't flush the toilet paper if you don't want to mess up your trip. Not all Thai toilets provide toilet paper, so take it with you. Bum guns exist in many Thai bathrooms, and Thais are happy to use them. They use the bum gun to flush the lower body area and rub it with their left hand. After rinsing the lower body, they wipe the body with toilet paper and throw it in the trash. You can try the Thai way of life. Be aware that the bum gun can come into contact with many people and can carry a lot of germs by flushing feces, so it's safer to use toilet paper when traveling.
Don't Drink Tap Water
Most tap water in Thailand is not drinkable. Even if Thai tap water is potable, it is not recommended to drink it because it has been filtered during transport and is susceptible to contamination. Otherwise, it is easy to cause various diseases. In some well-traveled areas of Thailand, there is a problem with water pollution. Tourists may be unable to adapt to the quality of tap water in Thailand, resulting in gastrointestinal discomfort and causing infection and other symptoms. When traveling, the most important thing is to keep the body and mind happy, so it is recommended that tourists use bottled mineral water to be safer. In tourism-rich Thailand, you can buy the usual bottled water on the street.
Don't Ride Elephants or Watch Animal Shows
People make animals perform by domesticating them. This activity can still be seen in some places in Thailand. When traveling here, many tourists want to visit the elephants, take pictures with them or ride them, which is harmful to the elephants. In addition, elephants are not fully domesticated animals, they may fight back and are prone to hurting people too. Nowadays, with responsible travel becoming popular, more and more travelers know the importance of protecting animals. Therefore, when traveling in Thailand, if you see an elephant riding program or even an animal show, please reject it decisively and practice animal protection with practical actions. Let animals be free, not harmed.
Don't Wear Clothes that Show Too Much Skin in Religious Places
Thais believe that religious occasions should be serious and solemn and that clothes showing too much skin should not be worn. When visiting temples and buildings associated with religion, women, in particular, should not bare their knees and shoulders, and the length of their skirts should be below the knee. It is recommended that you wear loose clothes and comfortable shoes. Tight dresses and trousers are not conducive to prayer and prostration.
Don't Buy Buddha Statues and Take Them out of Thailand
Bringing a Buddha statue out of Thailand may violate Thai regulations. Thai Customs requires an export license to take the figure out of Thailand. If you need to purchase a Buddha statue, please ask the supplier if they can provide a permit at the time of purchase. The Buddha statue you are buying cannot exceed 12 cm and cannot exceed 5 in number. Otherwise, you will need to go through more cumbersome procedures. If you transport Buddha statues out of the country privately without an export license, you will be severely punished and may pay a considerable fine. Buying Buddha statues at random is also an act of disrespect for Buddha and Buddhism. Most Thais dislike selling Buddha statues as decoration, which offends their religious beliefs.
Temple in Thailand
Women are Not Allowed to Touch Monks
Monks have a code that they must follow. In Thailand, one of the rules that monks must follow is not to touch women. A monk should keep his heart and not be tempted by any desire. If a monk touches a woman's body, they will be punished. Therefore, women are not allowed physical contact with monks in Thai temples or on other occasions. If something is to be handed to a monk, the woman should place the item on a towel or give it to a man to pass on. In addition to not having contact, women should keep their distance from monks. Therefore, communication and physical contact with monks should be avoided during the trip.
Don't Wear Shoes to Some Places
In Thailand, shoes are not allowed in many public places, such as temples. Thais believe wearing shoes will contaminate sacred and solemn areas with dirt. Usually, a sign reminds you that you are not allowed to wear shoes. If there is no sign, pay attention to whether there are shoes placed in the door or the house is barefoot walking, this kind of occasion must also take off your shoes to enter. When visiting a temple, there are occasions when it is necessary to walk with your shoes off. Please pay attention to the signage of the temple building. When visiting a Thai home, always take off your shoes. This is the most basic respect for the host. Don't step on the doorstep of your host's house. Thais are very wary of this behavior, believing it will cause trouble. If you wear socks under your shoes, you can wear socks in these required situations.
Don't Overstay Your Visa
If you stay in Thailand longer than the length of your visa, you are overstaying your visa. Overstay is against the law. Short-term overstays of no more than a few hours may waive the penalty and require only an explanation and apology to the airport's immigration authority. The fine for overstaying depends on the number of days you are out of range, ranging from 500 baht per day to 20,000 baht per day. Those who fail to pay the fine on time will be detained until enough money is raised. If enough money is not presented, the consequences can be more serious, even jail time. Overstaying by more than 90 days will constitute a severe offense and could result in deportation and a revisit ban. The duration of the ban depends on the severity of the overstay. If you overstay times, your passport may be marked to prove that you have violated Thai law. You may be marked as an "undesirable alien," and subsequent travel to Thailand will be restricted.
Understanding these basic prevention methods will help us understand Thailand more quickly. Due to the differences in religious belief, history, and culture, different countries' behaviors may have opposite meanings. Therefore, timely understanding of the information about the destination and respecting cultural differences can reduce a lot of unnecessary trouble during travel. With enough knowledge, you can plan your trip in advance so that you can enjoy your trip to Thailand.
Customize Your Dream Tour
- 1-on-1 Travel Expert
- Reply Within 24 Hours
- Private and Tailor-Made Service
What Our Clients Say
CONTACT A TRAVEL EXPERT
1-to-1 Service | Reply within 24hrs | Expert's Advice
SUBSCRIBE TO WIN A FREE TOUR
Subscribe to our newsletter for a chance to win a free 8-day tour to Greece and Turkey! And more insider travel news, exclusive offers, and inspiration will be sent straight to your inbox.