Things not to do in Thailand

It is important to know the things not to do in Thailand, to experience your trip to the fullest, in safety and total serenity, enjoying the infinite beauty of this Far Eastern country. It is a wonderful place, which houses emerald green waters, ancient temples and cutting-edge metropolises. However, the uses and customs in these parts have considerable differences when compared with ours, therefore it is important to know some salient aspects that could touch you closely during your trip, to avoid misunderstandings and dangers. Here is everything you need to know to experience a dream vacation in Thailand.

– When you have to contact a Thai, it is polite to use the first name. While in more formal circumstances the word ‘Khun’ is used, a sort of ‘gentleman’ or ‘lady’ in the Thai language. It applies to both sexes.

– Avoid losing control or yelling in any situation, especially in public: it is considered vulgar. In Thai culture it is a good habit to avoid any kind of discussion. In difficult or embarrassing situations it is advisable to resort to a good reliever smile.

– It is advisable to carefully avoid making matters of any kind even with the police.

– In Thailand, when you say goodbye, it is not customary to shake hands. The Wai, or the Thai greeting, consists in pressing the palms of the hands against each other, and then bringing them to the chin by slightly lowering the head.

– If you plan to go to Thailand with your partner, pay attention to your behavior in public: in Thailand it is rare to see couples kissing or affecting each other in public. It is always recommended to adapt to the customs and habits of the place, so avoid showing yourself too much.

– For Thais the most important and sacred part of the human body is the head, which is why it is important not to touch anyone’s head, especially children. The part that is considered the humblest are the feet: it is polite not to show them.

– If you receive an invitation to the home of some Thai, remember that before entering their home you must absolutely take off your shoes.

– Meals in Thailand are served in large bowls that are placed in the center of the table: each diner will be equipped with a fork and spoon with which he can take the amount of food he likes.

– One of the main attractions of Thailand are the monks. Everyone wants to take some souvenir photos with them, however it is important to keep in mind a couple of things: the monks are a highly respected institution, which comes immediately after the royal family. A monk can never touch a woman and neither can she make contact with him. On public transport, women cannot sit next to a monk and if they have something to hand over, they must use an intermediary.

– Speaking of the royal family, remember that she must never be insulted. It is by far the institution most dear to Thais, criticizing or offending it is considered treason: you can risk prison.

– If you find on the ground a coin depicting the King or some other member of the royal family, be careful not to step on it.

– Often, when trying to close a situation, the expression ‘Mai Pen Rai’ is used, which means ‘it doesn’t matter’.

– Remember that it is absolutely forbidden to visit the temples in tank top, shorts, miniskirt.

– Close the windows of the guest house or hotel well both for insects, potential vectors of many diseases, and for safety reasons.

– Pay particular attention when renting jet skis: it often happens that they try to steal a lot of money from you for alleged damage to the vehicle (frequent scam in Phuket). The contracts are in fact drawn up in Thai language and tourists often do not dwell on them, also sidetracked by the particular affability of the staff who are always smiling and helpful.

Therefore, check the vehicle before using it and report any damage or dents immediately, in order to avoid that they are attributed to your responsibility. The ideal is to take some photos too.

– Finally, two indications of great importance: in Thailand prostitution is illegal and is punished very severely, especially if minors are involved.

The same goes for drugs, the risk of imprisonment and punishment (up to the death penalty) should discourage anyone.