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One last question about security in Thailand


One last question about security in Thailand

Old Sep 19th, 2002, 10:54 AM
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One last question about security in Thailand

I have been looking around, and am somewhat concerned about personal security while my girlfriend and I travel.

The three points I have been told:

- Never carry your passport outside of the airport. (My question: If you dont carry your passport, should you make photocopies, and do places accept photocopies? are you ever asked for your passport outside of the airport? or is your drivers license sufficient since its easier to replace?)

- Dont wear any daypacks/backpacks when walking around, as it attracts attention and possible thief’s.
(My question: Even if I strap it down to me, and lock the zippers with little locks, someone could still try to take the daypack from me by force? Do people not carry around extra water, a first aid kit, camera, and possible medicine with maybe a snack or two when they go on day trips?)

- Use a security pouch that you can strap on under your clothes to keep your valuables. (my question: How much money do most people carry around? I have read conflicting reports of people having their credit cards scammed when using them to pay for things, but I would also think carrying too much money around would also be unfavorable.

We are planning on spending time in KL, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, and Thailand.

Thanks for any suggestions or clarifications.

Old Sep 19th, 2002, 12:00 PM
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I have never been asked for my passport in Thailand once I have checked into my hotel. If you are concerned, put it in the hotel safe. I usually carry mine with me, but I do have a photocopy back at the hotel and also one at home with my housesitter just in case.

I always carry a small backpack and have never had a problem. However, in high-risk areas I am very careful. I swing the pack off my back onto one shoulder and carry it under my arm with one hand on it. I don't think the issue is someone trying to take the pack by force, but rather someone getting into it while it is on your back and out of sight. Small locks on the zippers are somewhat effective, but not against a thief in a crowd with a knife to slit the pack material.

I certainly would not carry a lot of cash around. I like to use local ATM's and withdraw smaller amounts as needed. Since my bank does not charge me for each transaction, this works very well for me.

I think the most important thing you can do, since you are traveling with another person, is to BE AWARE and watch out for each other. My husband is a photographer and we travel with a LOT of expensive gear, so often when he is preoccupied shooting I am "watching his back".

I think you will find Thailand to be a very friendly and hospitable place. Have a great trip, use your common sense, and don't worry too much about being ripped off, i.e., don't take anything absolutely irreplaceable with you!!
Old Sep 19th, 2002, 03:58 PM
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chill out a bit... You should be fine, unless you are a nervous person who sweats fear and atracts crooks....
walking around with a backpack is now big deal... for day trips you probably don't need a back back.. I have no clue if your planing on going deep jungle hiking and need a first aid kit but if you wan't too alleast carry some snacks for the bus, just place them inside your 7-11 plastic bags... this is what most people around the world use as luggage anyways..
Old Sep 19th, 2002, 05:02 PM
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Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore are pretty safe destinations (I haven't been to the Phillipines). If you've traveled around Europe, for instance, you're probably less likely to be the victim of a theft in SE Asia than in Europe.

The points you have been told are WAY paranoid. You should always be alert when you are traveling, but there is no need to be paranoid. You will need your passport with you if you are cashing travelers checks, otherwise, leave it in the hotel safe with your tickets and anything else you don't need with you.
Old Sep 19th, 2002, 05:48 PM
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Heh. Thanks for the assurrance. I was up in the air on what to really expect, seeing as how my 26 years of life have been sheltered in one or two states in the US.

I'll probably err on the side of caution just to be safe, since its my first trip out there. But I do appreciate the votes of confidence.

I will make sure not to appear the nervous-come-steal-all-my-things tourist...

Thanks all
Old Sep 20th, 2002, 01:41 AM
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We spent 2 weeks in Thailand earlier this year on our first trip to Asia and we felt quite safe there.

I think we always left our passports in the hotel safe and carried copies. No one asked to see them.

We carried backpacks and a purse, no problem. Just be aware if in a crowded place. We didn't use money belts or security pouches and didn't feel like that was necessary.

Really, you don't need to worry so much.
Old Sep 20th, 2002, 06:52 AM
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You are going to Thailand, one of the easiest and safest places to travel in Asia. You are making a big deal out of nothing.

I would not bother carrying your passport but keep in the hotel safe.

A daypack is fine. You would be very unlucky to get it taken off you by force.

A security pouch can be useful and a lot of people use them. I pwersonally think they make you look like a worried tourist and are therefore more likely to get done over if you start poking around in one whilst in an unfamiliar town. I tend to just carry my wallet (but not in my back pocket like I do at home).

I would take a few ATM cards. There are loads of ATMs in the countries you are visiting so you will be fine.

Old Sep 20th, 2002, 09:48 AM
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I agree with the other posters. I personally avoid things like backpacks, fanny packs and big camera bags. More than being worried about thieves, I worry about looking like a typical tourist! Granted, unless you're Thai, you'll probably stick out in Thailand anyway.

On my previous trip there, I felt quite safe.

I agree. Chill out.
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