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What It’s Like to Visit Bangkok Right Now

Where: Bangkok, Thailand
June 11, 2014 at 9:07 AM | by | ()

A lot has happened since we last wrote about the situation in Bangkok. Back in January, we looked at how hotels were impacted by the anti-government protests; fast forward five months and one regime change later and the headlines about whether it is safe or not to visit Thailand continue.

We just had a brief stop in the city last week and here’s what we found:

- Hotels continue to operate as normal, though it was much quieter than we’re used to – official figures aren’t available, but visitor numbers and occupancy are down.

- Life seems to continue as normal as well; if you hadn’t known about the events of the past few months, you probably wouldn’t notice anything at all in most places.

- The night curfew has been lifted in a number of tourist destinations (e.g. Phuket), and has been reduced to midnight to 4am in Bangkok. As this is subject to change, it’s best keep up to date with the latest information. Going to and from the airport is possible even during the curfew, but you should have your travel documentation with you – we’d suggest speaking to your hotel if this is the case for you.

- Arrival at and departure from Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) was without problems. Because we were coming off a long flight, we had our hotel arrange a private transfer, which made things even easier, but the Airport Rail Link and taxis are available as normal. Bangkok’s BTS Skytrain is operating as well.

The U.S. Department of State still recommends that all U.S. citizens reconsider all non-essential travel to Thailand, in particular Bangkok, but many other countries have downgraded their travel warnings at this point.

We never felt uncomfortable, and will likely be back in the near future. As always, if you decide to visit, keep an eye on the latest developments, consult the travel advice of your country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and your travel insurance provider, review where you want to stay and reach out to the hotel, and stay vigilant when you’re out and about, avoiding large crowds or gatherings of any kind.

[Photo: JasonD]

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