My friend is headed to BKK for a month so I gave him a few do's and don'ts. Thought I'd see what you guys think.
Negotiate the price for most all things except food. Start at about 25% of what they say first.
Check out some temples. There are temples everywhere and they each have their own unique charm.
Get a massage. Thai massage is intense and awesome and as long as you don't go somewhere that looks super sketchy (girls hanging around outside reminding you of how handsome you are Online-Samui, it's an awesome experience. And cheap!
Eat everything. Thai food is infinitely varied and delicious, just don't eat stuff that looks like it's been sitting out for a long time (the bugs are fine). Check out your guidebook for directions on how to ask for spicy/not spicy.
Get out of Bangkok and see what I call "Real Thailand."
Swim in a waterfall. Seriously if you travel around other parts of Thailand they're everywhere and it's the best thing ever.
Be careful plugging in your electronics.
Look both ways before crossing the street. They drive on the other side.
Have cash everywhere you go. Most places won't take a card and cash is just easier.
Get used to hearing Zombie by The Cranberries and Hotel California by the Eagles everywhere you go. They are the national songs of Thailand.
Get ripped off. In taxis ask them to use the meter and make them stick to it or settle on a decent price before you leave. Bangkok is a mecca for clueless tourists and Thai people have refined the art of taking advantage of that. As a white tourist that speaks no Thai (I'm assuming) you're a sitting duck. Just make sure you start super low when you begin the negotiations (10-30% of what they tell you in the beginning). It's not that they're dishonest (taxi drivers often are) it's just that tourists are usually easy money. Either way, unless you get date raped and robbed everything will be fine.
Be offended if a Thai person laughs at you. They laugh all the time to try to lighten the mood and not be serious. Don't take offense.
Be offended if a Thai person calls you fat. This is a normal conversation topic and doesn't mean anything derogatory like it does here. Just rub your belly and laugh it off.
Point your feet at things or people. They see feet as the dirtiest part of the body and take it very seriously.
Drink a lot of Chang beer. It has a higher ABV but will also give you a killer hangover. Leo is the beer of the people.
Give money to a girl you've gotten involved with for her uncle to replace a water buffalo that has just died. There is no water buffalo.
Get visibly angry or raise your voice. Everyone loses face and it's just not cool. If someone comes at you with a broken bottle or a ninja sword it is ok to raise your voice.
Bring a bunch of stuff that they'll have in every 7/11 on every street corner. They've got pretty much everything we have here (especially in Bangkok).
Judge Thailand strictly based off of Bangkok. The rest of Thailand is very different. Judging Thailand based off of Bangkok would be like judging the US based off of Vegas.
Wai everyone. You won't do it right, they don't expect you to, and you'll just look silly.
Worry too much about anything I've just said. When in doubt just smile and play dumb and most things will take care of themselves.
Last edited by DarylDixon; 08-02-2019 at 04:30 AM.