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Thailand forum

Political tensions in Thailand and brewing coup. To go or not to go HELP

Posted by firsttimetraveller on 12/9/2008 at 18:17

I was planning a trip to Thailand for my 21st. I planned a 2 week trip to thailand for the second half of december and I was so excited about finally doing some travel. However, the mother of my original travel friend has asked her to bail out because of what is now happening in Thailand. She has been convinced that there is a coup brewing in Thailand and I agreed that the worst thing that could happen on this trip is to be in the middle of a political disaster.

However, now I am a little depressed because Bali is not an option either and my birthday plans are ruined=(

Can anyone offer some light into this? Should I go or should i not??

#1 firsttimetraveller has been a member since 12/9/2008. Posts: 3

Posted by firsttimetraveller on 12/9/2008 at 18:24

My bad, i just realised i posted in the wrong thread. I am now reading the state of emergency thread in Thailand. *sigh...

#2 firsttimetraveller has been a member since 12/9/2008. Posts: 3

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Posted by somtam2000 on 12/9/2008 at 18:38 admin

I wouldn't be changing any travel plans at this stage -- though I would keep an eye on the news.

#3 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 7,938
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Posted by Tilapia on 12/9/2008 at 22:03

Most of my Thai friends in Bangkok figure that the situation is not going to continue as is, and it will eventually end ... badly. But when it will happen is yet to be seen.

Still, I agree with Somtam ... don't cancel any plans to go to that area of the world. Just go somewhere else like Malaysia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, or Burma. And if you do go to Thailand and things go sour, it's very likely that only Bangkok and a couple other larger centres will be effected, and they are easily avoided for the most part.

I'm leaving on December 7th for Thailand and Laos.

#4 Tilapia has been a member since 21/4/2006. Location: Canada. Posts: 1,521
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Posted by Enigma on 14/9/2008 at 16:56

I happen to live in Thailand. The political situation, while not stable, has had very little impact on the average Thai citizen. Most people here will tell you that it has been more of an annoyance than anything, with traffic delays and such as a result of the demonstrations. All of the demonstrations have been near the Sanam Luang area and the government buildings in that section of Bangkok. The remainder of the city is unaffected.

The current situation is fairly calm, certainly not at the point of boiling over. There is no guarantee that the situation would not change, but I think that widespread violence is unlikely. The news media has a habit of running the same film clips over and over again, making the situation appear more serious than it is.

My advice to travelers is always the same - avoid any and all crowds or demonstrations, monitor the local news, and use your common sense. If you are a first time traveler or are nervous about the situation, avoid that area of the city for your lodging. (Instead of Khao San Road, stay in the Silom Road or in the lower Sukhumvit Road areas.) Check the local newspaper each morning before venturing forth to explore this city. Ask for and accept the advice of local residents.

Best wishes for your birthday, wherever you decide to spend it. I hope that you will visit Thailand and get to experience this unique and wonderful city.

#5 Enigma has been a member since 14/9/2008. Posts: 20

Posted by mic59 on 14/9/2008 at 19:33

I don't live in Thailand but have been there. I am not at all bothered about going again and it seems the ones who are worried are those who have no experience of the country. My family and friends and the Australian government smarttraveller site, in my opinion scaredlittleguytraveller would be a better name, are the ones warning against going. To read some of the stuff on smarttraveller you would think Thailand was downtown Baghdad in 2002.
Like Enigma says, stay out of the Sanam Luang area of Bangkok, or stay out of Bankok altogether. And remember, in no way can this be equated to the London, Milan or Bali bombings, the most that has happened to foreigners is that it has caused some of them to miss flights.

#6 mic59 has been a member since 30/7/2008. Posts: 107

Posted by nedz on 14/9/2008 at 21:33

Ive spent some time in Thailand, will be there again 23 oct for two months, and back again in Feb.
I am a skinny white woman who travels alone. so far already ive spent over a year in sth east asia alone.
I have no fears about the coop even if it worsens its not unsafe unless you go out of your way and walk into trouble. the people need to speak and be heard. so much corruption, and the people will win.
I was in legion, bali with the bombing. I feel safe in Thailand. Just watch your step.
all this war mongering has put fear in peoples hearts its very sad. Fly be free.

#7 nedz has been a member since 14/9/2008. Posts: 26

Posted by firsttimetraveller on 14/9/2008 at 22:07

WOW thanks everyone for your replies. I've been reading more Thai news and also getting some advice from friends too. I tried looking in to Laos, Malaysia and Singapore but they don't seem to offer what i'm looking for.

Thanks Enigma, I really hope the political atmosphere in Thailand steadies soon. I'm going to try reconvincing my mates=)

And Nedz, thanks, that's so amazing. I'm a really independent person too but unfortunately a little chicken. haha I'm a small Chinese girl.

Hope to work up the courage to do a million things on my own. Will update here when I find out where I'm going.

#8 firsttimetraveller has been a member since 12/9/2008. Posts: 3

Posted by jgriff on 15/9/2008 at 05:32


I have been travelling to Thailand every winter for the last 15 years and I suggest you do not let the pollitical climate change your mind. My wife is Thai and we were there when the last coup happened and we didn't even notice it and we live in Bangkok when we are in Thailand. The other areas of Thailand should not be misssed and my opinion is that the Thai goverment, whoever is in power, knows that they can not afford to hurt the tourist buisnes as the country depends heavilly on it.
I hope your friends mother chills and you and your friend can make the trip.

#9 jgriff has been a member since 15/9/2008. Posts: 1

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