Bangkok is one of the most visually-stimulating cities in the world with its old temples, humongous skyscrapers, and never-ending buzz of tuk tuks, street vendors, and monks roaming about. In a refined way, there’s a mix of culture and chaos, almost everywhere you turn, and can therefore be a little overwhelming for the average tourist.
Although I fell in love with Bangkok’s sights, I experienced several mishaps and disappointments that could of been avoided if only I had a little more guidance and experience.
That being said, if you plan on visiting Bangkok in the future, read these tips to protect yourself, your money, and your time!
- ALWAYS take a metered taxi wherever you go. They’re available all over so don’t settle! Taxis without meters will try to negotiate a set price, and this price will usually be over double what it should be. Tuk tuks tended to be even bigger rip-offs, especially if you don’t know the distance to your destination (but definitely ride in one once, just for the experience 😊).
- This may be the most important tip…There’s a lot of scammers lurking around the city, especially outside of the temples, and they really know what they’re doing. They may tell you things like “You’re not dressed appropriately for the temple” or “The temple is closed today due to holiday”, but these are just lies they’re telling to get you to agree to an incredibly overpriced tour with them. If you agree to the tour, they’ll probably say something like “I need to stop at a shop for 10 minutes”, but this is also a scam. They get commission on whatever you buy, so it’s all part of the plan! A lot of these scammers tend to be, but are not limited to being, tuk tuk drivers. Just be skeptical of anyone that approaches you with deals, politely decline, and then go on with your initial plans solo!
- Traffic is CRAZY in Bangkok! Keep this in mind when making plans and reservations. Even if your GPS says it takes 5 minutes to get somewhere, it can be double or even triple the time when stuck in traffic. It once took me over an hour to go to a floating market that my GPS said was only 12 minutes away!
- There’s a strict dress code when visiting temples and government buildings. It may be dreadfully hot, but that won’t excuse your shorts and tank tops! Follow this guide in order to dress appropriately.
I hope these tips help you make the most out of your next trip to Bangkok 😊 I think you’ll easily agree with me that it’s truly an amazing city as long as you come equipped with a plan-of-attack and all the right knowledge!