Is it safe to travel to Thailand in 2018?

By On August 22, 2018

Is it safe to travel to Thailand in 2018?

Aug 22, 2018

Parts of the country have seen a rise in sexual assaults and murders in recent years

A French backpacker gets a taxi in Bangkok, Thailand

A British backpacker has been raped and robbed on a notorious Thai beach after having her drink spiked, it has been reported.

See related Anonymous hacks Thai police websites over death sentencesIs it safe to travel to Indonesia in 2018?

The traveller, who has not been named, was allegedly attacked on Sairee Beach on the island of Koh Tao, the same location where Brits Hannah Witheridge and David Miller were murdered in 2014.

According to the Daily Mirror, the backpacker “had her drink spiked on the beach” and “woke up with no underwear on”.

“The victim in this case had been drinking in the Fish Bow l Bar before making her way to Leo Bar with friends from London,” the newspaper adds.

Sairee Beach has been plagued by ten mysterious deaths in the last six years, The Sun reports.

With the threat of terrorist attacks and rampant petty crime, this is not the only problem visitors to Thailand might face. So how safe is it to travel to Thailand in 2018?

Terrorism

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advises against all but essential travel to the provinces on the Thai-Malaysia border, including Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat and Southern Songkhla province.

The FCO reports that, since January 2004, there have been “regular attacks” in these provinces, which have included arson, bombings and shootings.

“Targets have included civilians and members of the security forces, government offices, tourist hotels, discos, bars, shops, marketplaces, supermarkets, schools, transport infrastructure and trains. Over 7,700 people, including civilians, hav e been killed and several thousand more injured,” its says.

Despite listing the remainder of Thailand as “safe for travel”, it also warns that “indiscriminate attacks” could occur across the country, including in the capital, Bangkok, where a terrorist bombing in 2015 killed at least 20 people.

Safety and security

The US State Department (DOS) reports that “crimes of opportunity”, such as pick-pocketing, bag-snatching and burglary, are common across Thailand.

Lonely Planet advises: “Ensure your room is securely locked and carry your most important effects (passport, money, credit cards) on your person.

“Follow the same practice when you’re travelling. A locked bag will not prevent theft on a long-haul bus.”

Furthermore, the DOS states that taxi and tuk-tuk drivers “may attempt to charge excessive fares or refuse passengers” and that vigilance should be maintained around drivers.

Sex crimes

Parts of Thailan d have developed a reputation for what the DOS calls “sexually motivated violence” in recent years.

“Violent sexual assaults and unprovoked attacks have been reported in popular tourist destinations, including in the Koh Samui archipelago and Krabi province,” the FCO adds. “These are particularly common during the monthly Full Moon parties and generally occur late at night near bars.”

Drink spiking has also been reported around Thailand, with tourists often targeted. “Be careful about taking drinks from strangers and at clubs and parties, or leaving your drinks unattended, particularly in Koh Samui, Pattaya and at the Full Moon party on Koh Phangan, where date rapes have been reported.”

The DOS reminds visitors that Thai police do not look kindly on drug use, and being embroiled in any form of drug-related crime involving dealing or smuggling can result in severe punishments, including the death penalty.

Natural disasters

The main rain y season between May and October can cause flooding and landslides in some regions. In the south-east of the Thai peninsula the rainy season runs from November to March.

Earthquakes are rare but the country was hit by a series of tsunamis following the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. Although the majority of deaths were in Indonesia, more than 5,000 people were killed in Thailand.

Source: Google News Thailand | Netizen 24 Thailand

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