I lived in Bangkok and traveled all over SEA from 2010-2012. Typically I traveled alone or with just one or two companions. Now I am bringing my whole family (7 in the group, including myself) to Thailand for 2 weeks in July. We will be staying in Bangkok at the beginning of the trip, then going to Kanchanaburi for a long weekend, and finishing up with a few days at Railay. I know these places well, but I am more concerned about how to manage a group that large. (Like I said, I've traveled alot, know Thailand well, and my wife is Thai, but the other 5 have never been out of the States before.) I'm trying to get their input but as they've never traveled before they are content to leave the planning to me. Any tips on traveling with first-time travelers in a group that size that could possibly make our trip go more smoothly? Needless to say this is an expensive trip and I just want to make sure everyone enjoys themselves. Thanks!
#1 GrAub has been a member since 9/6/2013. Posts: 1
I would say make sure you plan some down time each day. Also, prep them on the food, as some people (like my mom) can't eat anything remotely spicey. Remind them it is not the US so they should get their heads around that before they go. Nothing more irritating than when you bring someone all that way and they complain how "it's not like that back home". This will likely be a bit stressful for you and your wife, so make sure you plan time for the two of you alone without the group. Good luck.
#2 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957
I've done group travel with family a few times, and it can be tiresome.
One thing thats most important, is there needs to one leader who makes the decisions. you've only got 7, so shouldn't be an issue.
Keeping everyone satisfied with dining choices was always the hardest, having kids in tow increases that issue, but you will have a Thai speaker, that will ease things.
#3 samara400 has been a member since 21/5/2013. Posts: 8
Sounds like a nightmare. I've done some big family holidays before and hated them. You didn't say whether they are kids, your age or parents so hard to recommend anything specific but if you do a tour and it would be easier to do Kanchanaburi.
#4 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148
You should think about hiring a minivan and driver for getting around. Divided up, the price would probably be not too bad depending on how long you have them for.
You're going to K-buri for a long weekend? A Thai long weekend? If so, reserve your rooms well in advance.
Koh Kret, up in the Chao Phraya north of Nonthaburi, is pretty interesting (on weekdays when it's not crammed with people). You and/or your wife should be able to negotiate a good deal in Pak Kret for a boat that will carry everyone. No need to get a longtail boat. You can get one of those walk-on boats like the ones that go back and forth across the Chao Phraya. We got one for 4 of us for B400 and it took us all around the island with stops in 3 or 4 different places. It was great! We had it for about 3 hours.
Tough to comment more without knowing a bit more about the "family."
oh that's not too large a group, 7 is not as big as it sounds. It will be lovely don't worry.
Just make sure you have someone to organize and lead the group otherwise you may all be waiting for others and when travelling with groups that is always my biggest gripe. Waiting for the slower ones and missing out on things..
#6 Maryanne has been a member since 19/6/2013. Posts: 17