Thailand Tourist Scams
There are a few Thailand Tourist Scams that you have to be aware of before you come to Thailand.
We have listed some well known ones but there are also a lot that you should use common sense with, so you are not scammed
Thailand is arguable the most popular tourist destination in South East Asia. And when you consider its magnificent beaches and outrageous nightlife, it’s certainly not difficult to understand why.
One downside of this beautiful country however is that it also happens to be home to some of the most imaginative tourist scams on earth.
Should you find yourself venturing towards Thailand in the near future, here are six common Thailand tourist scams that you’d be wise to watch out for.
Grand Palace or Temple Scam
When tourists approach the Grand Palace without a guide they are sometimes confronted by someone who says “The Palace is closed today, but we can take you somewhere else” and of course the palace or temple is not closed.
They just want to get your money for transport to another place and/or maybe charge you entrance fee to the other temples.
The Jet Ski Scam
If you plan on heading to the beach during your time in Thailand, the jet ski Thailand tourist scams are an important one to be aware of, especially in Phuket.
Quite a few of the jet ski hire companies operating here make most of their money by scamming tourists.
Such companies hire out jet skis with superficial damage to their undersides. When an unwitting tourist hires and subsequently returns such a jet ski, they are accused of making the said damage.
Charges of up to a thousand dollars for repairs are not unheard of.
The Fake Police Scam
Another popular way to part tourists with their cash in Thailand is to walk around dressed as a police officer.
Particularly popular in Bangkok, fake police can be found wandering about popular tourist areas looking to catch tourists doing something wrong.
When they spot a tourist doing something they shouldn’t be, they run over demanding that the tourist pays a fine. Fines of up to a hundred dollars for minor crimes such as throwing something on the ground are very common.
Tourists who encounter police in Thailand are advised to always ask for identification.
The Motorbike Scam
The motor bike is another dangerous activity in Thailand. Some motorbike hire companies keep a second set of keys for all of their vehicles.
When a tourist hires a motorbike from them, they are subsequently followed and the second set of keys is then used to “steal” the vehicle.
The unwitting tourist is subsequently responsible for replacing it. These Thailand tourist scams are made particularly effective as most motorbike hire companies require that you leave your passport as a deposit.
NB: You do not need to leave your passport at a hire place. Just take a photocopy. If they do not accept it; do not hire through them. There are plenty of hire places around that will take just a photocopy.
In a similar fashion to most countries in South East Asia, drink spiking is a serious problem in Thailand. Contrary to popular belief it’s not something that only women need to worry about either.
Drugged tourists are incredibly easy to rob regardless of their sex.
The best line of defence against getting drugged is to keep a close eye on your drinks at all times. Bottles are obviously preferable and you should never accept a drink from a stranger regardless of their apparent intentions.
Tuk Tuk Tours
Mention the words sex, massage, tailored suits or gem stones to a tuk tuk driver in Thailand and you are virtually guaranteed to be taken on an unwelcome city tour.
Tuk tuk drivers are paid a healthy commission from business owners simply for delivering clueless tourists to their doors.
And to make matters worse, the cost of said commission is invariably paid for by the tourist. Should you find yourself in a tuk tuk that’s going somewhere other than where you requested, the faster you get off, the better,
No don’t get us wrong, most Katoeys are lovely people and treat people with respect and will look after you if you need help.
Of course there are those that are out to make some quick baht by robbing people in the street.
What they’ll do is 3 or 4 will surround you and act like they are trying to sexually touch you and giggle but what they are doing is trying to “Pick Pocket” you
You also get the Katoeys that will not tell their victim that they are a Katoey and because the person is so drunk, they will either wait for you to fall asleep and rob you or do sexual acts to you; while you think they are an actual female.
The Gem Stone Scam
Finally, there is the gem stone scam. Tourists are approached by strangers and told of the wealth that can be made by purchasing gem stones in Thailand, bringing them back to their home countries, and subsequently selling them.
Unfortunately, the gem stones in question are little other than coloured glass. Should you fall for this scam, how much you lose all depends upon both your bank balance and how trusting you are.
Losses of over five thousand dollars are not unheard of.
About The Author
John Taylor is a travel enthusiast. According to him people should have top ten travelling items with them while going on a trip with their family.
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