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dress-code in Thailand

Travel Forums Asia dress-code in Thailand

1. Posted by ponchik (Budding Member 76 posts) 8y

Questions regarding Thailand keep popping in mind... Hope I'm not posting too much :)

I've been told that it is inappropriate to walk around in Bangkok in knee length dresses and skirts, and also that shoulders should be covered at all times, otherwise it is very offensive to the locals, although they are too polite to tell you that... On the other hand, seeing as it is now +36 there, the idea of walking around in a t-shirt and long pants bothers me a little bit... any suggestions?

Also, is this the situation on the islands as well, or is it ok to wear short dresses there?



2. Posted by Erik85 (Respected Member 274 posts) 8y

Hmm the only time I'd really bother about that is if you are visiting temples/religious sites.
Yes covering up would be a bit more respectful in their culture, but they are very used to tourists/westerners, and many young locals don't really cover up all that much anyway. It's not as strict as most muslim countries.

On the islands it's definately fine, you're near the beach and the locals will be very used to tourists there.

3. Posted by aharrold45 (Travel Guru 1281 posts) 8y

Like Erik85 said they are used to tourists so won't frown at you. It would not be particularly wise to wear short shorts that some females wear at least in an Australian summer that are so short they nearly show your pants. I know when you go to the temples they do expect you to be covered up and I saw in some they had these sarong type things that they gave people inappropriately dressed to cover up.

4. Posted by frank_bkk (Full Member 101 posts) 8y

What is insulting of Thai attire is when foreign women walk around not wearing a bra - you'll never see a Thai woman bra-less.

Besides that, in all the well-beaten tourist areas they are used to foreign women wearing shorts/ spaghetti tops etc.......

Besides, again, you should see how many of the young Thai-Chinese Bangkokians wear when hey got out to trendy shopping areas.

5. Posted by Curt1591 (Respected Member 230 posts) 8y

All this said, you will often be treated as your appearance seems to merit.
There are shorts, and then there are shorts. There are tees and then there are tees.
And then there are those who can and cannot where them!

Young Thais are like young people everywhere. They think older people are full of it, and often "rebel". You will see them dress in just about any manner.

Most Thai women, unless they are spending the day mall hopping, will cover up. Modesty does enter into it, but it's more to shelter themselves from the elements.

Cooling down, by stripping off clothing, is only a concept in the minds of people coming from cool climates. Most people raised in the heat cover up.

Another reason to dress modestly is to blend in, to avoid standing out.

Take a midday break, head to the hotel, shower and rest a bit. Frequent showers are the best thing for the heat.

6. Posted by si403 (Full Member 130 posts) 8y

i agree with only if you are going to the temples, you are asked to by signs.

but in actual BKK many people i saw wear vests/shorts including myself, doesnt seem to be a problem.

7. Posted by Curt1591 (Respected Member 230 posts) 8y

Wear slap shoes and a beep nose. Just don't complain if you are treated like a clown.

Even Thais wear shorts (and spiffy hats too!).

8. Posted by si403 (Full Member 130 posts) 8y

Quoting Curt1591

Wear slap shoes and a beep nose. Just don't complain if you are treated like a clown.

Even Thais wear shorts (and spiffy hats too!).