Thailand is one of those places where you need to juggle your money effectively and avoid excessive costs.


In other countries, you can just use your regular ATMs, but in Thailand, they slap you with hefty fees for using ATMs.  You could easily spend upwards of 200 Baht in service fees for withdrawal at an ATM.


Here’s what we suggest.


Plan your holiday from start to finish! 


When you plan your holiday to Thailand, list everything you’re going to do and take costs into consideration.


Book hotels, flights and any other big expenses online.  Book all your internal travel online too, such as busses, trains, boat trips, hiking trails, tours, excursions and anything else you can think of.


Bring Cash with you!


Although you can probably go into a bank to get cash, you’ll most likely pay a fee, especially if you’re using anything other than a Mastercard.


Bring your own currency to exchange for Baht, you’ll get really good exchange rates in the cities and towns (probably better than you might get at your bank), just don’t try doing so at the airport when you land.


It’s a good idea to bring enough cash with you, and some extra, just-in-case an impulsive adventure “happens”.


What you will need cash for?


To really experience Thailand, you need to visit the markets and try their street food.  It’s what Thailand is famous for.  Their street food is really, really good.


So, you need to be able to hackle and barter for the best prices. When you’re busy haggling for a good price, cash is your best friend.


Getting around Thailand is normally done in local Tuktuks, for them, you’ll need cash.


Going anywhere by boat? Their songtaews will require cash.


Shopping at retail stores and in malls, restaurants and hotels, inns, etc can be done using your MasterCard.


A tip on swiping that card!


Always ask for payments to be made in Baht. You can do this at ATMs or any shop. The currency conversion rate will be much better.


Tips for tipping in Thailand?


In most places you go, the average tipping rate is between 10 – 15%. 


There aren’t any rules, but it’s nice of you to give an appreciative worker a few baht for work done.


Safety when working with your money


Don’t display wads of cash in public.  You’ll light up the eyes of all the people around you, especially pickpockets and who knows what “other elements” may be lurking in the shadows.


Be sensible:


  • Only take what you “need” with you in person
  • If there’s more than one of you, split the cash
  • Conceal any pouches or wallets
  • Use your biggest notes first
  • Keep your hands on your pouch or wallet in crowds
  • Don’t display flashy valuables


Using these tips should keep you safe from pickpockets and potential undesirable elements who may do more than pick your pockets.




Thailand is pretty safe, except for the occasional pickpocket.  The thing is, tourists are easy targets because they let themselves get so distracted and they’re unaware.


If you’re visiting a foreign country, then you need to be conscious of your surroundings and wake up to the fact that you’re in unfamiliar territory.


The locals can spot you a mile away because of your behavior.


Stay alert, don’t display all your valuables, or show off your status with your smartphones, tablets, and wallets stuffed with cash.  If you do, you’ve just made yourself a target.


If anything, simplify your life and take as little with you as possible on your trip.  How about exercising minimalism and see how it works out for you.


Let us know what you think.  What are your recommendations?

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