I think it is fair to say that most Thai people are very friendly and love to smile. They can be rather cute when they chat and to a male the girls would be a great attraction when coming to Thailand. I do not have this problem and are not involved in this type of scene (I don't have to explain what I mean here) but if you are a guy I would be careful especially if you are travelling alone. You will be like a Honeypot for the bees if you get my drift.
Unique Suggestions: Sure it is nice to have all this wonderful attention and sure it is great to lap it up. But remember guys these girls are making a living out what they are doing and this is their job.
OK not all woman are going to treat you bad and walk all over you, but once you have grabbed the attention of one girl if you are with her more than one day consider yourself her "Boyfriend" pretty much straight away and be prepared to take her out, wine and dine her and basically pay for all her costs while you are with her.
If that is what you want to do, that's fine but sometimes some guys are left with a reasonable sum of money gone out of their pockets after spending some time with the ladies. There can be some really cunning people out there so just look after yourself and I guess set a limit on how much you want to spend on them.
Fun Alternatives: I am no expert when it comes to these matters at hand, I am not interested what goes on, I am female and when I have come to Pattaya usually to do shopping so this doesn't come into my routine.
But if you guys are going to take a lady out go and find places where they aren't going to break your bank account, get her to help to shop for bargains for gifts or clothing. Enjoy your time with her but make sure you use your common sense, Sure it is nice to have all the attention like I have just said but be careful and always use protection.
Girls if you are reading this, I know it doesn't apply to us, but in Thailand one does have to look after oneself and in fact anywhere we go around the world, we should always be alert at all times on our travels.
If you decide to get out of Pattaya for the day and go off to one of the local islands for a Day trip you may be asked to have your photograph taken just before you board your boat.
These people who take the photo will tell you it is a neccessity in case you get lost in case they cannot find you while you are in their care for the day.
Its a bit of scam, these are people who are in to making a bit of money which is fine (we all like to make money don't we?). But basically they are there to take your photo and then when you get off the boat sell you the photo for 100 baht which is inside a plasticky white frame with a stand.
Unique Suggestions: OK so you have seen your photo and it's not a bad shot, if you feel generous buy it, it's only 100 baht after all. If it isn't a great shot, leave it and to be honest these guys weren't excatly pushing you to buy one. My shot wasn't that bad so I got it. The frame looks like it could be used as an ashtray and is a little tacky but what the hell.... who cares you are on holiday have a bit of tackiness for a change hahahha!!! :+)
Fun Alternatives: If you don't like the photo don't get it
If you do like the photo you decide what you want to do with it.
Smile and say cheese for that camera and have a nice trip. The day out is a really nice way to get away from the Bars, shopping, etc... for awhile.
A lot of tourists come in Pattaya and then book at their hotel directly. But do you know that you can save up to 50% ?
Unique Suggestions: It's very simple to get this discount. You have to book your hotel by Internet. In fact on Internet, you can get a travel agent price which is always cheaper than if you book the hotel directly.
I think you can get the cheapest prices for Pattaya on asiarooms. Go to : www.asiarooms.com/thailand/pattaya.html
Stop pay too much !
If you are in a bar and meet a girl who does not work there, be careful about taking her back to your place for the night. If she doesnt work for the bar, there is no bar fine and you might think you're a good looking dude who just scored some hottie based on your crappy Thai and killer tan...but you're probably entirely wrong too! A buddy of mine met some girl and brought her back to his hotel room (she "forgot" her ID to sign in at the hotel and so my buddy paid some extra money to the attendant to ignore this). We were leaving the next morning and I pounded on his door trying to wake his dumbass up but he wouldnt answer. I called and called and knocked and finally got the manager to open his door and he was so drugged up he could barely stand. He remembered pouring two glasses of wine in the room and then going to the bathroom. When he returned to drink the wine, he said he drank a little and that's all he remembers. His wallet was empty and his suitcase had been rumaged through too. He's lucky I had his passport from the the previous day when we checked in.
After this longwinded story, here is the moral: If you're going to take home a girl, make sure she has ID and signs in at the front. Lock your crap up in the safe and do all your drinking before you bring the girl back!
Whenever you take a taxi from the Don Muang International airport in Bangkok towards Pattaya, the taxi driver will always ask for money to pay for the Toll ways.
But mostly this cost is already in the price you paid for your taxi in the airport.
So be careful that you do not pay this toll twice.
Last time I was sure it was included, and then the driver asked for money to pay the toll way, so I did give him some money. But then on arrival I did not give him a tip, and on that he did not react as he knew he cheated on me.
Unique Suggestions: What to do, ask and double ask when you buy your taxi ticket if the toll ways are included, take your time to read the small letters on the ticket : often is written ; This price included express way but exclude Don Muang toll way.
Then you know that only have to pay some extra money for the Don Muang toll way.
Or ask a ticket where everything is included.
Fun Alternatives: If you are sure that the taxi driver cheated on you, then do not give him a tip upon arrival.
I know that it is custom to give tips, as it is part of their pay.
But it is also custom that they try to cheat you and ask more because you are a "farang" (foreigner)
Our plan to travel to Pattaya from Bangkok is by bus. This bus station in BKK is located near BTS skytrain 'ekkamai' station. Now what happens here is that all busses 'look' almost the same. Be it express or public Here is the difference - public bus take 5 hours to get to pattaya and express bus take 21/2 hours.
Guess which one i took ?
The 5 hours ride is very uncomfortable - congested with people, a lot of stops and the air conditioning is not really working : (
Unique Suggestions: The public bus conductors will be running around asking you to aboard their bus. Ignore them and head to the express bus counter. Pay at the counter, where they will issuse you an official ticket.
If you are taking a ferry to Koh Larn island, beware of tour package sellers at the ferry terminal, they'll tell you there are no more ferries to Koh Larn island, so that they can sell you packages for Elephant ride and Tiffany show at 1500baht instead.
Just go to the end of terminal where the ferries are, ferry departs every hour from morning to 6.30pm, just board the ferry and pay 20baht onboard.
bars charging stupid amounts of money for a drink
Unique Suggestions: I wouldn't be too worried about things like being charged 100 dollars instead of baht for a drink, in all my time in pattaya I have never had any bar try and rip me off, not saying it never happens but I think to be blatantly ripped off in the manor described previously you would have to appear extremely naive, in which case you really shouldn't be going anywhere apart from the safety of your own home.
Back in 1991 already, a significant percentage of entire female population was HIV positive. Revolting! Many women are into prostitution, and Pattaya is famous for sex tourism. Women go to be prostitutes for certain period, and nobody asks them where they have been when they return with money. Selling their body in exchange for being able to sustain the family is the pride there, and they are respected and treated with honor when they come back... It's their only way to survive in cruel conditions of poverty...
So, watch out! Be careful and take all precautions...
Actually a bit of out of date, still worth to mention ... because you can find many many Cafes Internet all over. Bit annoying is the head of ADSL - FAST CONNECTION on the window. If you are in a hurry and want to check some ... Bad luck when your computer is a very slow one! Donot loose bad mood ... for only one Baht per minute!
Unique Suggestions: So best is to check where are the real FAST CONNECTION computers!
Pattaya does have a lot of excellent Cafes Internet. Included to buy a drink or snack.
Look in the Pattaya 2nd. Rd., South Pattaya Rd. and around in the small Sois (=streets).
Even some hotels offer to use their computers.
Ask around when in desperate emotion ... ;o)
Fun Alternatives: Buy your self a laptop ... very good bargains all around!
When I got my first antique-looking Quan Yin and Buddha images I got my first delirious enchanting, too. Even my brother warned me these were faked up antiques. In course of time I realized how forgery business always has been there, starting with the first art creators. I am myself an art-painter and got once surprised by copies of my paintings, made in Bali! But the copy business of Thailand amazed me. That many galleries included that many paintings, that many faked ups, my oh my ...
Unique Suggestions: Maybe you do feel trapped, watching at the same Van Gogh painting hanging in your bedroom. Still enjoy that "cheap" painting, maybe between 2000 - 6000 TBT here at the art studio. Think of the Thai artists who has all an art school degree. Some are really good with a many years experience at other copy shops, or galleries. They come together to earn some good money in the many art galleries ...
Fun Alternatives: If a famous painter has been dead for over more than 50 years a copy of his painting is legal! So Thailand got its copy shops and art studios in an easy legal way and got world-wide famous for its Dali's, Matisse's and Warhol's. If you payed a lot of money for a greatly painted copy (and even the copy was not that cheap!), a visit to Thailand and its art studios could be disillusioned. A tip? Buy another Van Gogh just for the pleasure,...
Pick pocketing is a big problem in town mostly in crowded places like Walking street try to follow the basic rules like don’t carry your passport or more money that you need with you and try to have exact money for motorbike taxis
Pattaya is very colourful during the night. but be careful when selecting a bar to drink and spend time. because many bar girls may come around you and this is not good for both your pocket and your delight.
The Sanctuary of Truth is advertised on Local TV. I read about it in the Thai Newspaper, so I had to see it.
The first problem is getting there. The Baht bus does not go there directly from Pattaya Beach road or second road. It is in the North end of North Pattaya. I did not see a good way to get there, so I spent 200 Bt. for a mini-motorcycle. I am not a big fan of these death machines, but was determined to get there.
It is located off soi 12 in Naklua, North Pattaya. There is a small ticket office at the entrance. There I found it was 500 Bt ($15 USD) to enter and walk to the sanctuary a half Km away. It cost more for the horse cart, Elephant ride or boat. I am cheap, so I walked.
You will have to wait for a tour to start, because you can't just go wander by your self. A middle age Thai lady with fair English skills took our group into the sanctuary. The first thing you learn is it is not a temple, thus term sanctuary.
The sanctuary is made up of a collection of wood carvings that requires a team of people to maintain. The statues really are stunning, but the number and content is more like a crazy man's nightmare.
After the tour, you can buy a drink and watch a Thai dance show. You can then walk out or stop along the way to visit the petting zoo or the rifle range. I just wondered if I had missed it would I have been disappointed? No, I think not. This place can be taken off your list of must see tourist traps in Pattaya.
Unique Suggestions: If you really like wood carving, you will love this place. Also, renting a motorbike and racing around Pattaya is quite exciting, otherwise, I don't know if I would ever recommend it.
Fun Alternatives: Take your 500 Bt. that you would have spent plus the 200 Bt for the bike, plus the 100 bt to refuel the bike, and buy a beer or two for yourself and your friends in ann open air bar. You can enjoy your friends' company, watch the world go by and have an excellent Chang Draught Beer.
A fascinating assortment of weird but wonderful exibitsfrom all over the world.
Unique Suggestions: dont miss the 16ft model of titanic made from match's
Fun Alternatives: http://www.ripleys.com/dialup/pattaya.html