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Thailand Trip Details

Introduction

Welcome to Thailand!

The Land of Smiles is one of the few places that never seems to disappoint, keeps travelers begging for more, and offers surprises at every corner. From idyllic beaches to serene temples, and iconic street food stalls to vibrant flea markets--Thailand has everything that one can ask for.

Travel to three popular destinations of Thailand: Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Krabi. Discover the capital city of Bangkok--visiting the Grand Palace and touring the alleyways that weave through the city. Explore the mountainous region of Chiang Mai--swimming in a waterfall and visiting an elephant sanctuary. Chill on the white sand beaches on Krabi, and kayak around limestone karsts of the Andaman Sea.

Read more about Thai Culture.

Duration: 10 days & 9 nights

Start: Suvarnabhumi International Airport (BKK) -- Bangkok, Thailand
To ensure included transportation: plan to arrive before 3:00 pm by Day 1.

Finish: Krabi Airport (KBV) -- Krabi, Thailand
To ensure included transportation: plan to depart after 2:00 pm on Day 10.

Airfare booking details will be sent after registration--please wait to book your flight until you receive further instructions.

What's Included

  • 10 days & 9 nights shared accommodations in boutique hotels
  • 9 breakfasts, 3 lunches, & 7 dinners
  • Overnight train ticket to Chiang Mai
  • Domestic flight to Krabi
  • Visit Ayutthaya Historical Park a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Experience Doi Suthep Temple
  • Climb Bua Tong Sticky Waterfalls
  • Full day experience at an elephant sanctuary
  • Transport to & from Krabi beach destination
  • Rock climbing experience (April through October trips)
  • Island tour with snorkeling
  • Insider local knowledge of the finest Thai cuisine
  • Transport and entrance fees to all included activities
  • Airport pick-up upon arrival
  • Airport drop-off upon departure
  • Under30Experiences Trip Leader
  • Personal recommendations for optional activities
  • The chance to meet some kick-ass people
  • Access to the Under30Experiences Community
  • Taxes always included, never hidden fees, & NO blackout dates

Travelers are responsible for international airfare to Bangkok and from Krabi.

Highlights

  • Royal Grand Palace Bangkok: the official residence of the Kings of Siam since 1782
  • Ayutthaya Historical Park: a UNESCO World Heritage site, Ayutthaya was the second capital of the Siamese Kingdom founded in 1350
  • Elephant sanctuary: spend a day learning about Asian elephants and the conservation efforts to protect these giant mammals
  • Island hopping through the Andaman Sea: tour the magnificent karsts with our private boat and swim in hidden lagoons
  • Thai cuisine: indulge in the curries and spices of Thailand at local food stalls

Is this Trip for You?

Thai culture is deeply influenced by religion with around 95% of the country being Theravada Buddhist. The most important values Thai people hold are respect, self-control, and a non-confrontational attitude.

We expect our travelers to adhere to and respect Thai culture.  Remember, we are Thailand’s guests, and learning about new cultures is one of the greatest gifts of travel.

Thailand has a tropical, humid climate. Please advise that daytime temperatures can be hot--upper 80's to lower 90’s Fahrenheit. This trip involves of lot of movement throughout the day and you will sweat.

-Age requirement:  21+
-Group Size:  12-14 travelers
-Physical Rating: Moderate. Rock climbing on Railay beach (April through October trips) is physical but the routes are designed for beginners. There are short hikes when visiting waterfalls and at the elephant sanctuary. Kayaking is optional and is conducted on open water. Tab Kak Hang Nak Nature Trail (November through March trips) is physically demanding hike.

Travel Community

Travel connects us. Community keeps us connected.

Before your trip you'll have the opportunity to join a custom Facebook Group and connect with others members of your group. Many travelers meet in the airport, or for pre-trip drinks if they are from the same city. Others coordinate plans to stay in a country after their trip.

During your adventure, our Trip Leaders do their best to foster an open, supportive environment, where people feel safe to truly be themselves.

After your trip, you'll be an official U30X Alumni, and part of our larger online Travel Community where you'll have access to our network of thousands of past travelers. We are constantly hosting meetups that range from simple happy hours, to hikes, to outdoor movie nights.

More than 70% of our travelers come solo, but they all leave with friends.

Itinerary Disclaimer

Travel can be unpredictable. Our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience.

While it is our intention to adhere to the itinerary, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into it and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations.

Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.

Meals

Breakfast will be served at your accommodations. Dinners are enjoyed at local restaurants and some are eaten family style where multiple dishes are ordered and everyone shares. Food vendors will range from modern restaurants to local style food stalls.

You will have a packed lunch on activity days (Day 5 & 8) and lunch will be served at the elephant sanctuary.

Sample Breakfast Menu: 

  • Mixture of western and Thai buffet, eggs, and fruit are almost always an option.
  • ‍On Day 4, breakfast will be a choice of noodle soup or chicken and rice.  These are two common breakfast dishes in Thailand.

Sample Dinner Menu: 

  • Mixture of curries, spiced sausages, chili dips and salads
  • Seafood BBQ
  • A variety of traditional Thai dishes. Thai food is delicious yet spicy, and we will taste a variety of local dishes on this trip.

We do our best to accommodate dietary restrictions.

Transport

You will be traveling by private and public ground transportation throughout your trip.

  • Private ground transportation from Bangkok airport to your accommodations (Included)
  • Public transit system including subway, skytrain, & boats in Bangkok (Not Included)
  • Private ground transportation from Bangkok to Ayutthaya Historical Park (Included)
  • Public train service from Ayutthaya to Chiang Mai (Included)
  • Private and public songthaews (truck with covered benches in the bed) in Chiang Mai (Included)
  • Private boats while visiting and touring the islands in Phang Nga Bay (Included)

Accommodation

You will be staying in shared boutique hotel rooms for the duration of your trip.

Laundry is available at some hotels for an additional fee. Ask your Trip Leader for details.

Accommodations may vary but will be the same quality.
Solo travelers are paired with someone of the same gender.
Private room options are available upon request subject to hotel availability for an extra charge.

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is mandatory in order to participate on any of our trips.

When selecting a travel insurance policy please bear in mind that all travelers must have medical coverage and that we require a minimum coverage of $200,000 USD for repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. Please ensure that all the activities you plan on participating in are covered by your travel insurance.

The World Nomads “Explorer Plan” will cover all the included activities on U30X trips and is our recommended travel insurance vendor.

If you have travel insurance with your credit card we require proof of purchase of the trip in the form of a receipt or credit card statement on a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage, and emergency contact telephone number.

Cancellation Policy

Very Flexible

Give us at least 30 days notice and you can switch your trip for free, or we'll hold your Experience Credits for future use.

If you have an emergency cancellation that is less than 30 days before your trip, please refer to your travel insurance company as they may cover you for some expenses. 
We are not able to transfer trips or hold experience credits within 30 days of the trip because we have already secured reservations on your behalf.

Trip Leader Expectations

All Under30Experiences trips are accompanied by experienced Trip Leaders.

The goal of the Trip Leader is to facilitate an awesome experience and help our travelers have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are traveling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends.

You can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects.


Packing List

Please be eco-friendly!
  • Bring a reusable water bottle to refill where clean water is available.
  • Use as little plastic as possible by declining straws and plastic bags at restaurants and when shopping.
  • Please avoid aerosol bug sprays as they negatively affect the environment.

We recommend using a travel backpack for your convenience, or a medium-sized suitcase if you prefer. A daypack is also essential for carrying everyday items. Space is limited on transportation, so there is a limit of one main piece of luggage per person. You will be responsible for carrying your own luggage.

Below includes our staff picks of the best items on the market that we travel with!  All products selected are 3 ounces or less to comply with TSA carry-on size and organically inspired when possible.

Do not forget: water bottle, sunscreen, sandals, quick-dry travel towel, waterproof rain jacket, insect repellent, sunglasses, & a hat.

Some links on this page are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you Under30Experiences will earn a small commission if you make a purchase.

Passport & Visas

Guidelines for U.S. Passport Holders

Make sure you have an updated passport with you. Your passport must be valid for 60 days after your trip. Under30Experiences recommends that your passport be valid for at least 6 months after your trip.  Please consult the U.S. Department of State with any more questions.

Make sure there is no damage to your passport. Conditions that may constitute damage requiring you to replace your passport include water damage, a significant tear, unofficial markings on the data page, missing or torn out visa pages, a hole punch, or other injuries.

The VISA EXEMPTION RULE allows tourists from 55 countries to enter Thailand without a visa. They are granted to stay a maximum of 30 days if they are entering Thailand via an international airport or entering through a land border checkpoint from neighboring countries.

If you have a passport different than the USA please check visa requirements to enter Thailand.

Health & Insurance

The tap water in Thailand is not safe to drink. Please bring a reusable water bottle to refill from filtered water stations and join us in our efforts to be environmentally friendly and keep Thailand beautiful.

Our suggested travel insurance vendor is World Nomads and has a minimum of $200,000 USD coverage.

Please consult with your doctor before traveling regarding physical activity and vaccinations.

No inoculations are required to enter Thailand from the United States but the Center for Disease Control suggests vaccinating for Hepatitis A and Typhoid. Required vaccines should go through CDC, recommended vaccines should be through your doctor.

Mosquito born viruses exist in most of Southeast Asia. Please cover exposed skin and use mosquito repellent.

Money & Currency

We suggest bringing $350 USD in cash to be used at establishments that do not accept credit cards.

This is not a total cash amount that you should expect to spend on your trip. Please consider your own spending habits for additional expenses such as snacks, souvenirs, & optional activities.

The official currency in Thailand is the Thai baht (THB)

Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to additional expenses such as snacks, alcoholic drinks, souvenirs, and optional activities.

You will have to exchange your money into Thai Baht (THB), vendors do not accept USD. If you’d like a better exchange rate call your bank and order Baht before your trip. However, there are exchange booths to every location we visit.

Remember to call your bank and credit card company and let them know you will be traveling overseas.

For an up-to-date exchange rate, download the XE Currency Exchange App.

Please be advised that US Dollar notes that are slightly torn, heavily marked, or faded may be difficult to exchange. It is best to bring notes in fairly good condition, in denominations lower than $100.

Safety & Security

Always carry a copy of your travel insurance, health insurance and passport with you. A photo of these items on your phone is also a good backup.

Keep your passport and any valuables locked in the safe at the accommodations.

Don’t leave valuables unattended and be aware of purses & backpacks, especially in crowded markets as pick-pocketing and bag snatching does occur.

US Citizens please consider registering with US State Department's “SMART Traveler Program” who can contact your family in case of emergency.

Weather

The weather can be described as tropical and humid for the majority of the country during most of the year. Average temperatures are in the mid to upper 80’s Fahrenheit.

There are three seasons:

Hot season of March-May

  • Hot, dry weather. Rainfall is scarce. Prepare for high temperatures and make sure to stay hydrated if you're traveling during these months.

Cooler season of November-February

  • Temperatures keep in the 70’s and low 80’s Fahrenheit. Known as the high season with plenty of visitors.

Rainy season of June - October

  • Please expect showers and thunderstorms that pass through on most days.

cultural information

Thai people do not shake hands.  They greet one another with the wai, or pressing one’s palms together about chest level and bowing one’s head slightly.

When eating, using a fork and spoon is more common than chopsticks.  The spoon is held with the dominant hand and the fork is used to push the food onto the spoon.

Touching someone’s head is highly offensive. So is raising or pointing your feet at a person or any religious object.

Smile regularly, just like Thai people. Raising your voice is unacceptable and considered an act of losing control.  Avoid doing or saying anything that may embarrass another person cause them to “lose face”.

Touching or showing affection in public is not common, so please avoid this as well.

Duck down when walking between two people or when walking past a person blocking their vision.  This is polite gesture of respect to acknowledge the interruption.

Key Phrases

Note on politeness: Men always end their sentences with “krap” and women always end their sentences with “ka”. So a man would say “sa-wat-dee krap” as a greeting, and a woman would say “sa-wat-dee ka”.

  • Hello -- Sa-wat-dee
  • Thank you -- khob khun
  • Excuse me / sorry -- Khor toat
  • How much? -- Nee tao rai
  • Bathroom -- Hong nam or "toilet" is commonly used
  • Would you like to dance with me? -- dten gan mai
  • May I take a picture? -- tai roop dai mai
  • Never mind -- Mai pen rai (handy all purpose phrase to express the Thai go-with-the-flow attitude)
  • Comfortable, relaxed-- Sabai Sabai (commonly used among locals meaning everything is chill)

Optional Activities

The activities below will be paid in Thai Baht. All amounts are approximate prices in US dollars.

  • Thai Cooking Classes: ~$25 USD
    Thai cuisine is world-famous and most travelers coming to Thailand choose to opt for an instructional cooking class.  Learn directly from the host who will teach you about the flavors, ingredients & techniques.  Most importantly, you get to taste the food as you cook before enjoying the full meal at the end of the class.  
  • Elephant Parade House: ~$18-$30 USD
    Elephant Parade is a social enterprise and runs the world’s largest art exhibition of decorated elephant statues. Created by artists and celebrities, each Elephant Parade statue is a unique art piece. The life-size, baby elephant statues are exhibited in international cities and raise awareness for the need of elephant conservation.  The Elephant Parade House in Chiang Mai offers travelers a chance to paint their own elephant sculpture with the proceeds going to elephant conservation initiatives.  This is a nice, relaxed and informative activity in an air-conditioned room.
  • Monk Chat: Suggested donation ~$3 USD
    Informally talk with a monk to learn about everyday life, Thai culture and tradition and more in-depth aspects of Buddhism.  This is a perfect cultural exchange to not only learn more about the spiritual progression with the Thai Buddhist framework but to also share your culture and language with a Thai monk.
  • Stand Up Paddle-boarding: ~$10 USD/hour or $55 for a sunset tour
    Take a beginner lesson to learn the basics, test your balance with a yoga practice or join in on a sunset tour off the beaches of Railay. Please note: the sunset tour is only available for trips operating between April and October.
  • Kayaking Ao Thalane Bay: ~$25 USD
    Kayak through beautiful mangrove forests, discover small inlets, hidden caves and secret lagoons.  Get up close to nature with this memorable experience. Please note: this tour is only available for trips operating between November and March.

While your Trip Leader will assist you with optional activities available, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of the Under30Experiences itinerary. We offer no guarantees on the safety or standard of the activity.

General Rules

Respect the people around you and the environment in which you’re traveling. This includes, but is not limited to fellow travelers, Trip Leaders, the local community, nature, wildlife, and yourself.

Do your best to keep yourself and fellow travelers out of harm’s way.

It’s important to obey local laws and customs while on our trips. This includes, but is not limited to wearing appropriate clothing while visiting certain communities, refraining from taking photos of people without asking, avoiding the use of illegal drugs, having weapons, and soliciting prostitution. If you’re not sure about something, take time to educate yourself, or ask.

Travel involves contact with new cultures. When confronted with a different way of living than you’re used to, do your best to understand that neither way is better or worse. They’re simply different ways of life.

Know your limits! This applies to physical ability, emotional space, social situations, and alcohol consumption. If you can’t participate in something, be upfront about it. If you need a break from people, take it. Stop drinking before you get too drunk.

Trip Leaders are working in the travelers’ best interest. If they say something or ask you not to do something it’s not because they’re tyrants, but because they want you to have a good time!

Lying or withholding information about any physical or mental condition that might affect your ability to participate in any of the activities may be grounds for removal from your trip with no refund.

Staying longer or arriving early?

Still need to book your flight?

Advice for booking international flights! We recommend that you arrange for a roundtrip ticket to and from Suvarnabhumi International Airport (BKK).

For the final day (Day 10) of the trip, purchase a separate domestic flight from KBV (Krabi) - BKK (Bangkok). Bangkok Airways and Thai Smile are recommended carriers. This will provide less expensive international flights and will offer more flight time options.

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