Thailand can be a safe country to live in as an expat, or as a visitor on holiday. However, just like any other country around the world, there are dangers. Although nobody can be fully safe wherever they are in the world, if you are not aware and streetwise of the unique dangers within a particular country, then you may find yourself in danger. Here are some tips to cut down the odds of encountering danger whilst living in Thailand.
If you are walking along the path, especially where your bag could be snatched from a passing thief on a motorcycle, always put the strap of the bag over your head, instead of just hanging it on your shoulder. You’ll notice that almost all native Thai people cross the strap over their head to the opposite shoulder. This obviously makes the bag harder to snatch, and more importantly you’ll be less of a target for any potential bag snatcher.
Bolt It Up
If you stay at a hotel in Thailand you will have noticed by now that there will be a bolt inside the door, or even a wooden bar to secure the door from the inside. This obviously makes life a lot harder for any burglars who might want to break in. So it would make sense that if you don’t have inside bolt(s) on your apartment or house door, you should fit some. Also, if you put a bolt onto the inside of the bathroom door, this will function as a safe room for secondary defence.
Alcohol can be a lot of fun, but it can also be your worst enemy when it comes to staying safe. If you have to get ‘off your face’ and drunk on alcohol, get plastered at home – not out on the streets. If you are drunk you will be easy pickings for any criminals who may spot you. There are many stories about people who have gotten completely out of it at full moon parties etc, before they awaken on a beach with no wallet or worse. Do yourself a favour, get drunk with friends at a house party if you have to.
All around the world, tourist areas are happy zones for criminals, as there are usually groups of not so streetwise tourists who may be drunk or carrying a nice amount of spending money. Be extra careful in areas such as Phuket or Pattaya for example; more than you would in a real Thai area such as Samutsakhorn or Lopburi. Don’t carry backpacks around with all your possessions through remote areas, and don’t put your wallet in your back pocket or wear expensive jewellery. Also avoid remote or deserted beaches.
Although in many situations it will be difficult, always try to stay calm in arguments or disputes. In Thailand most people are calm and avoid confrontation, but things can go from 0% to 100% dangerous if there’s trouble. Some countries, such as most European countries, will be used to arguing with someone, then it all blows over when everyone has cleared their system of the frustration. Things just don’t work like that in Thailand, as basically if someone wants to cause trouble, it will look like they are getting away with swearing their heads off or aggressive behaviour for a while, then it will all of a sudden backfire on them, perhaps fatally.
Thailand is one of the safer countries to visit in Asia and most Thai people are kind, calm and friendly, as are most of the expats or visitors to Thailand, but that doesn’t mean that anyone should let their guard down, as dangers lurk everywhere around the world in different forms. However, that being said, Thailand is quite safe when compared to many other countries.