I promise my full recap of my Thailand vacation is coming, but I wanted to share a few tips with you guys before I publish that one. I had a lot of people messaging me and asking for recommendations or tips because they either have a vacation already planned to the area or want to plan one there for this year. I was literally copying and pasting the same thing over and over in the DMs and I figured that it would be best if I just wrote a post and shared it with everyone!
Leave the make-up at home – I didn’t bring much with me, just my small travel bag with my staples, but I didn’t put on a stitch of make-up the entire week I was there. None!!! I used my EOS balm to moisturize my lips, but that’s it. It was too hot and it would’ve melted if I put anything else on. I honestly could’ve saved the space in my backpack and I now know for the future not to bring it.
Bring sunscreen – I can’t say this enough! It was sunny and hot the entire time we were there so sunscreen was a must. And remember to reapply every two hours!
Remember to dress accordingly – Wear loose and light clothes and comfortable shoes. You’ll be doing a lot of walking and it’s going to be hot so dress comfortably. I wore a ton of leggings, dresses, and shorts and I saw a lot of people dressed similarly. I didn’t bring any jeans with me because it would’ve just taken up space in my luggage. It was hot! Not only was it hot, but it was humid and it was the type of humidity that I couldn’t deal with. I thought I’d be okay since it’s pretty humid in Houston, but Thailand was on another level!
Hop around the cities – If you’re going to be in Thailand longer than 4 days (which you totally should do), hop around to cities other than Bangkok. I definitely recommend going to Chiang Mai and visiting an elephant sanctuary there was well as a night market, and also spending at least a day in Phuket at the beach. I actually regret not spending more time in Phuket, but now I know to schedule at least 2 days in the city.
Leave room for souvenirs – I typically don’t do this, but I wish I had done so for this trip. The night market in Chiang Mai had so many great deals on pashminas and clothes (I’m talking $2-$4USD for nice stuff) and I wish I would’ve left room in my luggage to do some shopping.
Make sure you pay for extra luggage weight when booking your hopper flights – Much like airlines here, there’s a luggage weight limit and often times it’s 15kg. I always bought an extra 5kg when I booked my hopper flights just in case my pink suitcase was overweight. I knew that it wouldn’t be considered a carry-on on those flights because of the smaller overhead bins, and I didn’t want to get hit with an overweight luggage fee that would’ve doubled the cost of my airline ticket. Now my luggage was never more than 15kg, but I thought it was better safe than sorry. It was better for me to spend the extra $4-$7 at the time of booking for those extra kilograms, than to spend $50USD when I went to check in for my flight.
Haggle – Just about everything can be negotiated! Tuk tuk rides, night markets, just about everything that’s not metered or on a menu or a hotel price can be haggled! Don’t let them overcharge you because you’re a tourist. Know the conversion rate and negotiate a fair price! We paid more for our canal excursion than we should’ve and looking back I definitely should’ve haggled. Don’t make the same mistake I did.
You don’t have to spend an entire afternoon visiting temples – Once you’ve seen 4 temples you’ve pretty much seen them all. Thailand is crawling with wats and temples and they’re all GORGEOUS, but you really don’t need to spend more than a few hours visiting them. Often times women can’t go into the temples for religious reasons and my cousin and I ended up cutting our tour time in half because we couldn’t do more than explore the grounds at a lot of the wats. Make sure you’re dressed appropriately for these as well, cover your shoulders and your knees and be prepared to pay 20-50 baht for each one you visit.
Try local foods – I had the most delicious seafood and Thai food while I was there. Fresh juices, ice creams and local fruits galore! Try the local cuisine. It’s cheap too! We were getting entire meals for the equivalent of like $3! Just remember to take Alka-Seltzer with you if you’re like me and get heartburn after eating spicy foods.
I’ll have a few more tips in my full recap post, so be on the lookout for that! And feel free to ask me any questions you have in the comment section or email me!