Producer’s note: Someone on Quora asked: What should I absolutely not do when visiting your country? Here is one of the best answers that’s been pulled from the thread. Thank you to the team at Quora for making this happen!
Most Thai people are conservative. You should be extremely careful with everything concerned with the king and the religion.
1. Dress appropriately when visiting temples. Do not wear shorts, short skirt, bikini, tank top, tube top, or any other inappropriate clothes.
2. Females must not be close to or touch monks.
3. Respect Buddha images. Do not do any kind of inappropriate posture near images of Buddha.
4. Do not say anything negative about the king of Thailand and the royal family. Most people love the king. If you say something bad about the king, people will hate you. You can also go to jail.
5. Do not destroy or use Thailand flag inappropriately, e.g. making it into a dress.
6. Do not play with Thai people’s heads. We believe that the head is the highest point of the body.
7. Do not put your feet on the table or use them to point or pick up something, especially banknotes or coins. The feet, for Thai people, are the lowest [most disgusting] part of the body.
8. Do not assume that all women walking on streets are prostitutes. I got called once, totally NOT cool.
9. Do not touch Thai women’s bodies, or stay too close to them.
10. Do not get into a taxi if the driver doesn’t use the meter. Also, be careful when you catch a taxi, and always make sure that you know the direction.
11. Do not catch a taxi or tuk tuk that parks in a long line at the side of the street, especially when the drivers invite you to go with them. Always catch ones that are passing by. Some taxis and tuk tuks take you to tailors, jewellers, or restaurants, and force you to buy stuff. (Tuk tuks also do not use meter. They’re expensive and quite unsafe.)
12. Do not assume that Thailand is a safe country. Be careful especially at night. Do not walk in a soi (alley) at night.
13. Do not expect that most Thai people can speak fluent English. In fact, most people do not speak English.
14. Do not involve in a fight in nightclubs. You may get shot.
15. Do not raise your voice in public.