Is Thailand dangerous

How safe is Thailand for tourists?

From TRAVELBOOK | January 29, 2020, 1:05 p.m.

In the winter months, many German vacationers like to go to warm climes. Thailand in particular is very popular at this time of the year. But how safe is it to travel to the country? TRAVELBOOK checked with a travel security expert.

When it comes to long-distance travel, Thailand is the second most popular destination for German holidaymakers after the USA. And those who like to vacation in Thailand are usually drawn there in the first few months of the year. In the main travel season it is usually warm and sunny there - one of the many reasons to visit Thailand in winter.

But what about the security of tourists in the country? TRAVELBOOK asked the author and travel safety expert Sven Leidel. He says: “In my opinion, the general risk and threat situation in Thailand is to be rated as medium-high (3 on a scale from 1 to 5). Petty crime is most likely the greatest risk for tourists. "

Increasing crime

As for all countries and holiday destinations worldwide, the same applies to Thailand: It depends on the region in which you are staying. There are also places in Thailand that are dangerous. Leidel: “The violence in the southernmost provinces has increased, namely in those areas where separatist insurgents are still active. Organized crime (including drug and human trafficking) takes place in various cities and in the border areas of Thailand and can pose an additional threat to travelers. While the frequency of protests and demonstrations has decreased, these have shown in the past that they can also degenerate into violence. "

Thailand tourists should be particularly careful with one aspect. According to Leidel, “criticism of the ruling junta or the monarchy” is viewed as a “serious state offense”. The consequences can be long prison terms or heavy fines. “Travelers should refrain from participating in relevant discussion topics in order not to inadvertently put themselves in danger. Travelers should not transport packages, bags, gifts, suitcases or the like for people they do not know, especially not on board an airplane, e.g. back to Germany. Ignorance of its contents is not an excuse or legal defense against a possible drug trafficking charge in Thailand. Drug trafficking and possession can lead to the death penalty in Thailand. "

The Foreign Office writes on its website, among other things: “Thailand is recording increasing crime. In addition to theft and fraud, violent crimes such as rape and robbery, sometimes resulting in death, occur. This applies in particular to the tourist strongholds of Phuket, Koh Samui and Pattaya. "

Attention at "Full Moon Parties"

Tourists should also be particularly careful with the monthly "Full Moon Party" on the island of Koh Pha Ngan, north of Koh Samui. There have already been several fatal incidents here and women and girls have been raped by participants who were drugged or alcoholic.

Leidel advises: “Top priority: Never accept drinks or food from strangers and never leave your drink or food unattended! At parties like this you may be approached by drug dealers every 10 minutes, but the rule is: Hands off drugs, because there are also many undercover police agents at these parties who pretend to be drug traffickers. ”And with the penalties for drug possession is not to be joked in Thailand: They range from a few years to life imprisonment - serious cases even face the death penalty.

Comparatively low security risk

In a global comparison, Thailand is seen as a safe travel destination. This emerges, for example, from the interactive Travel Risk Map, which is published every year by the companies SOS International and Control Risks and is based on analyzes of the current year and forecasts for the coming year. For Thailand, the security risk is shown to be low compared to other countries.

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