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Travellers' Advisories, Safety and Security on the Road Recent News, political or military events, which may affect trip plans or routes. Personal and vehicle security, tips and questions.
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  #1  
Old 14 May 2010
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Thailand - safety advice from locals?

Hi, we're currently in South Africa and considering making our next stage Southeast Asia. However, we've heard of growing unrest over there, to the point of embassy closures in Bangkok. Are there any locals out there who can give us an idea of the REAL picture? Should we avoid Thailand? Would be shipping out in about 6-8 weeks time.
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Old 14 May 2010
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I could contact my fiancées uncle he is just outside Bangkok last time I heard from him he said it was nothing but ill see if I can get an update for you.
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Old 14 May 2010
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Hi, i am in Bangkok at the moment, waiting for my bike which is having its teeth cleaned at BMW. I am downtown and have heard gunfire daily. The gunfire is occurring in VERY localized areas. The red shirts have sometimes blocked highways in an effort to prevent support troops from entering BKK. There have been sporadic bombings in the downtown area. Last night I was sitting at a sidewalk pub when BOOM!! the street was rocked by an explosion. People began running away from the blast and there was plenty of screaming. I was chatting with an Irish fellow and we knew things were serious when the owner of the bar began running- without asking for anyone's money! We moved as fast as we could without spilling our drinks. The skytrain is closed now. One of the stations had 5 grenades fired into it several weeks back. There are heavily armed soldiers/police at the stations and downtown now. There is some talk that the yellow shirts may close the airport again but it is open now. Still, I feel safe here. Just avoid the few places where the red shirts are protesting. This hotel is far from any areas of conflict (10-15 kms from the airport) and I have stayed there many times: Cheap & Budget Bangkok Hotels-Nasa Vegas Hotel, Ramkhamhaeng Road ,two star hotel & lodging located near Bangkok New Airport,Bangkok Thailand
I haven't heard anything negative from anyone living "up country." It's mostly BKK for now. I'll be riding to Cambodia this week and will attempt to ship my bike to Nepal around June 1. The situation here is fluid so 6/8 weeks is a long time. Enjoy ZA for me- I love the place! Dave.
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Last edited by hook; 14 May 2010 at 21:07.
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Old 14 May 2010
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issues appear to be restricted to bangkok, my little brothers girlfriend lives in pattaya[shes thai] and both her and her folks up north have not had any problems, however I would stay away from any demonstrations as things are getting very nasty.
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Old 14 May 2010
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Did you read the post above yours?
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Old 14 May 2010
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yup just confirming the "post above yours" that its not countrywide problems, as of 10am GMT this morning its restricted to 1 city and not like the world news is currently saying that the whole country is in civil war mode and the whole country is about to turn into a warzone. stay safe and dont spill any .
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Old 15 May 2010
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Some bad news: The situation here is deteriorating. 22 protesters have been killed in the past 3 days and it seems the government's patience is wearing thin. The protesters are spreading out and embassies are beginning to close or getting ready to evacuate. A day is a month here. Hopefully there will be resolution soon. Dave.
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Old 17 May 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hook View Post
Some bad news: The situation here is deteriorating. 22 protesters have been killed in the past 3 days and it seems the government's patience is wearing thin. The protesters are spreading out and embassies are beginning to close or getting ready to evacuate. A day is a month here. Hopefully there will be resolution soon. Dave.
You said it..very fluid situation. 6-8 weeks is a looong time away.

FYI: According to Thai Visa, there are in fact protests in the NE part of the country, there have also been small attacks in Chiang Mai and Ayutthaya in the last few weeks.

State Of Emergency In 5 Isaan Provinces - Thailand Forum

Thailand violence spreads beyond Bangkok

Gunman opens fire on PAD office


I live just outside downtown and yes life is pretty normal and it will stay that way..until it changes.

My $0.02 ..pay attention to the travel warnings they are there for a reason.
FWIW I am planning on a trip into Laos via the NE part of the country in the next few weeks and yes my plans WILL change if the situation does not improve.

Good luck and stay safe everyone.

Last edited by canoli; 17 May 2010 at 15:07.
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Old 17 May 2010
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I saw on the local news today that a state of emergency has now been declared in 15 provinces. For months soldiers have been coming from up-country into BKK. With the army spread thin up-country the red shirts may start more protests in other parts of the country. Local police would be less likely to shoot local citizens...
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Old 17 May 2010
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Xander,

If you are shipping by sea then irrespective of the Bkk troubles I strongly advise you to ship to KL instead (but you need a carnet). Bkk sea port officials are corrupt and you can expect delays there and without paying a bribe don't expect customs to lift a finger.

The Red Shirts occasionally set up road blocks and check people's cars. As a foreigner I wouldn't think it will mean anything more than travel delays. My advice: stay away from the main highways. It's nicer to travel that way anyway.
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