Being able to travel is a dream come true but with travel comes the ups and downs of being in a new location and environment. I am so tired of watching vlogs that are the “ Top 10 things to do” or “what you have to know about Thailand” because they don’t tell you the real stories that will help you with your journey. Today, I am here to tell you the truth about traveling in Thailand, how to prepare for your trip, and the information no one else has to told you.
As the title suggest, this blog is geared more towards the women but men may gain something from it also so let’s get started.
The bathroom situation.
*In 90% of the public restroom DO NOT have toilet paper. You have to bring your own.
*There are two types of toilets: 1. Your standard toilet like the ones you find in the US and Europe. 2. The other type which you do not sit on but squat over.
DO NOT throw toilet paper in the toilet. It will clog up the system. Your used toilet paper goes in the trash can
*The nozzle (hose that looks like it should be attached to your sink) is for “cleaning” your backside. I have yet to figure out how to use it without soaking the walls and myself. Just try to remember the toilet paper. Also the bucket of water or trough with water in it is used to flush the toilet.
Feminine hygiene products.
*Tampons and pad. Just as the toilet paper goes into the trash can so do tampons, do not flush them. If you need to change your pad or Tampon make sure you have something to wrap it in. You will more than likely need to throw them away in a trash can that is located outside of the restroom.
*Sanitary pad, not just for your period anymore. I wear a sanitary pad everyday. Wanna know why? This is going to get real personal…it’s hot here and you will sweat and sweat a lot. Sometimes you don’t even realize how much you are actually perspiring, until you change your pad. It’s also good to have just in case you forget the toilet paper.
Hydrate. Hydrate. Hydrate.
I moved to Thailand from South Carolina where the summers are hot and the winters are mild. During the summer months we sweat and sweat a lot, this is your body trying to cool down and when you sweat you know you need to drink water.
In Thailand, it’s hot in the winter and SUPER HOT in the summer. During the winter you don’t realize how much you are perspiring until you are dying of thirst. There are 7-11 (yes, the convenient stores we use to see in the US but no longer) everywhere…literally on every corner so you have a chance to get water. Make sure to keep water with you at all times, especially on bus/van rides. A ride that should take 2 hours may end up taking you 5 or 6 hours.
Thank you: kòp kun Kah ( speaking to a woman) kòp kun Kap ( speaking to a man) Sounds like: Cop coon
Hello: Sawatdee informal greeting you may here woman say Sawatdee Kah and men say Sawatdee kop
No spice: Mai Peht Sounds like: My pet… the food here is spicy, I mean on a scale of 1-10 it’s a 20. When they say little spice, it’s still to spicy for me. The word for no spice has become my best friend.
Asking for help, google translate and google maps will be your best friend.
Traveling alone can be hard, I know. Sometimes we get lost and have emotional break downs but what I have found in Thailand is that people are willing to help. Both men and woman a like have watched over me to make sure I get on the correct but, even though we don’t speak the same language.
I was taken to the wrong town and left but with the aid of google translate, google maps, photos, and 4 amazing woman I made my way back home. They also gave me a ride. The majority of the people here are willing to help you and keep you on the right track.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Use your phone to translate what you need, and be patient with yourself and others.
Getting around Thailand can be an adventure in its self. Again, depending on where you are and where you want to go depends on the mode of transportation.
Airports: There are two airports in Bangkok BKK and DMK. BKK is used mostly for international flights and DMK for domestic.
Cabs: In Bangkok you can get a cab from anywhere but ask, “meter” before you get in. The driver will say “yes” and click it on or, “no” do not take a cab that doesn’t have a meter. Remember the traffic…it’s terrible. You may end up sitting in traffic watching the meter tick on.
BTS Skytrain: Again in Bangkok, they have the public transportation system which is cheap but does not go everywhere like near the palace, docks, or Wat Pho. I have yet to take it but I hear its easy to navigate.
Tuk Tuk: This can be a scam. They will try to take you to see Buddha’s the fashion district, and charge you and arm an a leg. You have to be firm and willing to negotiate.
Songthew: These are trucks converted into forms of transportation. They are covered with benches in the back. These are used in the rural areas and smaller towns. You will not see them much in Bangkok.
Buses: You can get anywhere by bus. Every town has a station and the cost depends on the distance you would like to travel.
Vans: There are vans that will take you to locations but are a bit more expensive than buses.
*WARNING – There are no schedules for the pick up of vans and rural buses do not have a schedule. You just need to sit and wait.
What to wear. (Siri is a smart ass…it’s “winter” by the way.)
As I said above, it’s SO HOT! This doesn’t mean you can wear shorts that go up you butt cheeks or shirts that show so much cleavage you may was well wear nothing at all. Depending on what you are doing or where you are going in Thailand dress modestly and appropriately.
*Check the weather before you leave
*Shoes: High heeled shoes are not such a great idea. Flats are a good way to go or wedges. I love my rainbow flip flops but be careful wearing them in a city. Waste is dumped on the street, there is broken glass and other things laying around which you may step on. Closed toe shoes are the best option such as Keens or sneakers.
*Rain gear: rain coat or umbrella
*Shirts: Shirts with short sleeves in the rural areas. Tank tops with spaghetti straps aren’t very appropriate.
*Beach wear: Is for the beach only. This is Thailand, not Myrtle Beach, SC. DO NOT walk around town in your bikini top and bottoms. Bathing suites are fine for the beach but cover up if you walk to a restaurant or back to your hotel.
*Shorts: Shorts are fine as long as they are not super short. I go with the finger tip rule. Put your arms by your side and if your finger tips touch the bottom of your shorts that is a good length. If they are shorter than your finger tips, change.
*Hats: Bring a straw hat or baseball hat. Your face will thank you.