14 Expert Tips For Visiting Bangkok In 2023

Recognized for its chaotic streets, incredible culinary delights, vibrant wildlife, and iconic tourist attractions, Thailand’s capital city offers a lot to see and could take travelers a few days or more to explore. No matter how many times one visits Bangkok, it is the one city that never gets old, and vacationers will always discover more of its unique features every time they explore it. The city has plenty of fun adventures awaiting, but travelers should be well-prepared, especially when visiting for the first time. With that in mind, here are fourteen tips for visiting Bangkok in 2023 to ensure travelers enjoy a fun, safe vacation.


Visit Bangkok 2023: Check out even more Thailand travel tips for visiting the country’s capital!

To provide readers with accurate information that remains current, this article has been updated to include additional tips to enhance the travel experience in Bangkok in 2023.

Related: Take These 10 Stunning Day Trips From Bangkok For The Ultimate Thailand Experience

14 Adhere To Thailand Travel Restrictions

A surgical mask lies beside a roll of toilet paper
Photo by engin akyurt on Unsplash

Mask and toilet paper roll

Bangkok is full of delightful attractions, including some of the most enchanting temples in Thailand. To enter Bangkok and enjoy what it has to offer, tourists need to have a passport, flight itinerary, and hotel booking confirmation. Travel insurance isn’t mandatory; however, it’s highly recommended (still, some travelers coming from certain countries may require proof of insurance – see this page for more information).

Any legit Bangkok travel 2023 guide will also state that some tourists will also need a visa; Thailand visas are issued by the Thai embassy in one’s own country, although some foreign nationals from approved countries may enter Thailand without a visa between 30 and 90 days – again, see this page for more information. If vacationers miss or have incorrect documents, the entry screening process may be delayed, which can affect their smooth trip to Bangkok.

  • Bangkok travel requirements 2023
    : Thailand visa (some countries are exempt), passport, travel insurance (recommended), flight itinerary, and hotel booking confirmation. Note that most travelers no longer need a COVID-19 vaccination certificate or RT-PCR/Pro-ATK test result.

13 Use A Map To Navigate Through Bangkok

Bangkok busy roads at night, lots of traffic
Photo by Hanny Naibaho on Unsplash

Chaotic, busy roads with traffic in Bangkok 

Like other big cities in the world, Bangkok’s routes can be confusing. While asking questions is one good way of interacting with the local people who are known to be friendly, approaching strangers can be challenging for shy travelers. That’s where a map can be handy.

The Bangkok map has the city’s main monuments, squares, churches, museums, and most of its iconic landmarks – one of the most famous being Bangkok’s Grand Palace. With the map, travelers may not need a lot of information to find their way through the city’s attractions.

12 Beware Of Bangkok Scams

Two men interact at a night market in Bangkok with crowds around
Photo by One Zen on Unsplash

Busy night market in Bangkok 

Bangkok is easily the most chaotic city in Thailand, and in a place like that, tourists could be targeted for scams. One of the most important travel tips to Bangkok bound travelers is this: it is important to beware of these scams to avoid falling for them. This doesn’t mean that Thai’s capital isn’t safe. It has a high level of safety and is widely considered by many to be one of the safest cities in the world. But like any other touristy place, these scams happen.

Like in most places around the world, it’s wise to avoid outright trusting any stranger that approaches, especially those that sound too kind. (Yes, some people are genuinely friendly and helpful, but it’s always best to err on the side of caution, no matter which country one is in). In addition, boarding any taxi parked by the hotel is one of the rookie mistakes first-time travelers make when visiting Bangkok. So, avoid taking any taxis parking by the hotel unless it’s confirmed that it’s assigned by the hotel.

Related: Thailand’s Dragon Temple Is Real, & Here’s How To Get There

11 Rely On Public Transportation In Bangkok, Especially During Peak Hours

Public train passing by above in Thailand
Photo by Phatsanphon Nakaranurak on Unsplash

Public train in Thailand 

Public transport is not only a cheaper option to get around Bangkok, but it is also the fastest way to escape the sometimes frustrating traffic in the city. Between 7:00 am and 9:30 am & 5:00 pm and 7:30 pm, the traffic can be heavy, and the roads are packed with motorbikes, cars, tuk-tuks, and buses. To avoid being stuck on the road, tourists can use the Bangkok subway or the BTS Skytrain. They can also use the city’s incredible network of boats and ferries, which is part of the public transportation.

Try to avoid getting around by taxis on roads such as Petchaburi, Sukhumvit, Silom, Sathorn, Rama IV, Ratchadamnoen, and the Ratchaprasong area. Traffic can be heavy along these routes.

10 Stay Safe When Taking Longer Journeys Or Traveling Outside Bangkok City Limits

Busy street in Bangkok
Photo by Wanaporn Yangsiri on Unsplash

Streets of Bangkok, Thailand 

Tuk-tuk and taxis are the best options for vacationers visiting places further afield or outside the city limits. Still, when this is the only option, it is important to be aware of a few things to ensure a smoother trip. Make sure the driver has their meter turned on or agrees on the cost of transportation before embarking on the journey. Also, use Google Maps to ensure the driver follows the exact route. Sometimes, some tuk-tuk or taxi drivers take a longer route to increase the meter billing.

9 Check Bangkok Hotel Reviews And Avoid Asking Taxis For Recommendations

Aerial photo of Sukhumvit Road, after dark, Thailand
Photo by Andreas Brücker on Unsplash

Sukhumvit Road, Thailand, After Dark

Accommodation is a significant part of planning a trip to Bangkok, and every traveler wouldn’t want to have a bad experience, even when on a budget. That’s why vacationers should ensure they pick safe areas, especially if planning to stay for three days and sample the must-do activities in Bangkok.

Reviews from previous visitors help determine the best hotels in Thailand’s capital. If a hotel or hostel has consistently poor online reviews, it’s best to avoid it and choose one with good guest feedback. Tourists must also ensure they receive everything offered in their booked package and report if something is missing.

Furthermore, some travelers claim that tourists should avoid asking taxi or tuk-tuk drivers about accommodation options in the city. According to a number of travelers who have been to Bangkok many times before, some drivers get a commission from hotels by taking tourists to them, which means the tourist may pay a higher fee and not the true price.

Related: Two Days In Bangkok: Here’s What To See In This City In Only 48 Hours

Busy street with crowd and market signs
Photo by Syed Ahmad on Unsplash

Market in Bangkok, Thailand 

Many visitors go to this bustling city for its incredible shopping culture. Every traveler who’s been to Bangkok can tell how amazing its markets and other shopping spots are. Visiting these markets offers tourists a chance to meet the local people and learn some words in their dialect. The markets also let vacationers get an insight into the local culture and expose them to some of its most impressive products.

There are cool things worth buying in Bangkok that many vacationers would want to take home. To keep one’s wallet safe in Bangkok’s markets, though, it is crucial to ensure that one is paying the right amount for a product. Avoid purchasing jewelry unless from a genuine jeweler store with experts within. This is to avoid exchanging money for fake jewelry.

7 Learn A Little Thai Language Before Visiting Bangkok

Signs in Chinatown, Bangkok
Photo by Geoff Greenwood on Unsplash

Chinatown, Bangkok 

Ideally, travelers should be familiar with a few words before visiting the city. This will allow them to trade a little more confidently and freely in the local markets and even talk to the hotel staff in the local dialect. Learn a few words like how to say “thank you”, “hello”, “goodbye”, “cheers”, and any other word that would be useful for tourists during their stay.

Here are a few Thai language tips:

  • Sawatdee
    ’ means “hello”. Males say “Sawatdee Khrap”. Females say “Sawatdee Khun Kha”.
  • Lar Korn
    means “goodbye”.

  • Khawb Khun
    means “thank you”. Males say “Kahwb Khun Khrap”, while females say “Kahwb Khun Kha”. Both mean ‘thank you kindly.’

  • When drinking, the locals say ”
    Chok dee

    to mean “cheers!”

Related: Budget Guide: This Is How Much Money You’ll Need Per Day In Thailand

6 Bangkok Tours Are The Best Option For Exploring The City

Boats in the water with umbrellas at Bangkok floating market
Photo by Frida Aguilar Estrada on Unsplash

Floating markets, a great tour option in Bangkok 

While there are many options for exploring this city, tours are typically the best way because they take tourists to various areas that many tourists might not reach without the help of a local person in the know. They can even take vacationers to some of the secret places in Bangkok that are full of fun, unforgettable adventures.

Many tourists rely on guidebooks, which are great for those who enjoy following these types of books and don’t mind putting in the effort to find the city’s attractions by themselves. For some, though, that task can be a bit stressful. However, Bangkok tours are affordable and convenient and remove the hassle of navigating the city and finding the spots tourists want to visit. All visitors need to do is book and then show up at the meeting point. Ultimately, tours of Bangkok reduce the stress of planning and the fear of finding it difficult to navigate through the busy streets.

5 Exchange Money At Bangkok Airport (Get Coins And Notes)

Busy Bangkok street at night, lots of lights
Photo by Than Diep on Unsplash

Streets of Bangkok 

Among the numerous Thai money and currency exchange tips, one that comes top is that vacationers should have some of their money changed into Thai Baht at the airport. It is wiser to do it there since some exchange booths in Bangkok can be expensive.

Also, have small change and a few coins to help pay for transport or have meals at the local restaurants. Of course, vacationers will want to spend some of their small change trying some delicious and authentic Thai dishes while in the city. Filling one’s pocket with a bunch of coins may be discomforting, but since many local eateries and food stalls may not have the exact balance for a 1,000 baht note, it is better to have plenty of coins and small notes.

  • Where to exchange money in Bangkok Airport:
    For the best exchange rate at Bangkok Airport, visit the Suvarnabhumi Airport Exchange Zone on the B Floor, which is located underground and just next to the Airport Rail Link Suvarnabhumi Station. The money exchanges here offer decent rates that tend to be much fairer than at banks. There are several exchange booths, so check them all to find the best rate.

4 Show Respect By Removing Shoes

Woman bows her head in prayer while shoes on the steps behind her
Photo by Pablo Rebolledo on Unsplash

Prayer at a Temple in Thailand 

When visiting Buddhist temples in Bangkok (and Thailand in general) it’s important to respect religious protocols. One of these practices is removing shoes before entering the temples. In some cases, travelers may also be asked to remove their shoes before entering a person’s home or even a shop if they visit Bangkok in 2023 – while this practice is old, it’s still prevalent and highly important to the Thai people, and it is polite to respect it.

3 Enjoy Bangkok Street Food (Selectively)

Above view of night market stall in Bangkok
Photo by Lisheng Chang on Unsplash

Night market vendor in Bangkok 

Street food is an exciting part of the culinary experience Bangkok travel 2023 has to offer (or any year, for that matter). There are street food stalls, floating markets, and night markets to explore. Travelers should not shy away from trying the street food in Bangkok but choose where they eat from selectively. Best practice is to ensure the food is being cooked right in front of you to avoid consuming something that has been sitting out for hours. Choosing spots that are clearly popular with long lineups (which also means the food supply is constantly being refreshed) is also a great option.

2 Bring Clothing That Covers Shoulders And Knees

Buddhist temple complex in Bangkok
Photo by Alejandro Cartagena 🇲🇽 on Unsplash

Loha Prasat in Bangkok 

Visiting the many Buddhist temples in Bangkok and near the city is an essential part of Bangkok travel in 2023. However, travelers must remember to bring clothing that is appropriate for entering temples. This includes shirts that cover the shoulders and skirts, dresses, or pants that fall below the knee. Of course, if travelers forget to pack something like this, it’s a great excuse to go shopping in the markets!

1 Go With The Flow

National flag of Thailand blowing in the wind
Photo by Dave Kim on Unsplash

Thailand’s Flag 

Bangkok travel in 2023 can be overwhelming at times, especially for travelers who are visiting Thailand for the first time. But they’ll quickly become accustomed to the hectic traffic and busy streets, finding moments of peace at the temples and connection with fellow backpackers at hostels. Being flexible and understanding that plans are sure to change when exploring Bangkok will help travelers make the most of the experience and live in the moment.

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