Practical Information About Thailand

We have a wealth of practical details to answer just about any question regarding your travel to Thailand. Here are links to all the relative articles.

Money / Currency
The currency of Thailand is the "Baht" - sometimes spelled "Bath" but pronounced to rhyme with "hot." One Baht is divisible into 100 Satang. Major credit cards are accepted by hotels and large shops, but "hard cash" is the preferred tender almost everywhere. Travelers checks are not widely accepted outside of hotels, so change them for cash at a bank exchange, which you'll find in any and every tourist destination.
Thailand electricity is 220 volts. There is unfortunately no specific standard for plugs and outlets. The most common plug type is the two flat pronged North American type but round prongs are also seen. Note that few buildings have grounded outlets for three-pronged cords.
Contrary to what many people assume, the Thai written language is not idiomatic like Chinese, Japanese and other north Asian languages. Thai uses an alphabet of vowels and consonants just like western languages. There, however, the similarities end. The Thai alphabet is derived from Pali, the language from which almost all Southeast Asian languages originated and still the common language of Buddhism, sort of an Asian Latin.
Mail / Post
Thailand Post is the semi-privatized national postal service in Thailand. They offer a full range of services, from regular air mail to express post. Most hotels can handle postage for post cards and letters to any country in the world. For more complicated requirements, you'll find post offices in almost all airports, or, you can find postal service companies in many shopping malls. These services can deal with all postal services as well as express courier services such as UPS.
Public Holidays
When planning your trip, you should be aware of the major national holidays celebrated throughout the country. However, although businesses and government offices are closed on public holidays, tourist attractions and shops are almost never closed. The main impact on the tourist of these holidays is the increased competition for travel and accommodation from Thais who use long weekends to get away from the big city.
The country code for Thailand is 66. Thai land-line telephone numbers are all nine digits in length while mobile numbers have ten digits, with the first digit in both cases always being zero. When dialing Thai numbers from outside of Thailand, you always drop the leading zero. Within Thailand, you must dial all nine or ten numbers, even within the same area code.
Thailand has three "seasons." The Thais refer to them as the "cool," "hot" and "rainy" seasons. A more accurate description would be "hot," "really HOT" and "really hot AND wet." The "cool" season from October/November through to March is the prime tourist season. Current weather conditions and historical values for the major cities covered (Chiang Mai, Phuket, Samui and Bangkok) are displayed for your information.
Before you book your trip, you'll want to check to see if a visa is required. Thailand has traditionally been rather free with visas, and most westerners still receive 30 day entry stamps on arrival at any airport (if crossing by land, you will only get a 15 day visa). However, like just about every other country since 2001, security concerns have lead to a reduction in the number of countries automatically granted visas. For a current list of countries entitled to visa-free entry, visit the Thai Foreign Ministry's web site.