Hi every body. My name is Robert and this will be my 3rd trip to Thailand. Thailand is a great country to start if you are new to traveling abroad and want somewhere relatively safe to get your feet wet. I am thinking about heading over in September from the west coast US. I've got a few friends on Koh Samui, Koh Samet, and Koh Phangan that I would like to visit again. Last trip I spent 4 months traveling a good portion of Thailand. Some suggestions that I have, especially for the ladies...be very aware who you go off with at a party, club, etc...do not accept drinks that are already opened or mixed from strangers, if someone tries to convince you something is cool or o.k...it probably isn't. At your Full Moon Party experience, try not to involve yourself with the flaming skip-rope (http://www.travelpod.com/travel-photo/alexhudson/1/1266782532/skip-flaming-rope.jpg/tpod.html)...I have seen really bad injuries from that thing...very dangerous. Another thing that I had witnessed multiple times, especially on Koh Phangan, was scooter and moped accidents...ranging from cuts and bruises all the way to fatalities. Yes, I saw someone die from a scooter injury around new year...nothing pretty. Would break your parents hearts. If you have never driven one, take the time to practice at slow speed until you feel comfortable on one...and do not drink and drive...especially a scooter...unless you are just asking to get hurt...I think there are easier and less messed up ways. It is also a good idea to discuss with the business owner about insurance and what that actually covers. If you crash a motor bike, don't be surprised if the bill gets expensive. If the damage is minimal, I would suggest not even mentioning it...let them find the problem. Playing dumb is sometimes the best option. At parties, know before-hand a good place to put your important belongings...full moon party for example, people even get their bungalows broken into while they are out drinking and having fun....be aware of where you keep your passport at all times. I hear people get pick-pocketed and purse snatched quite regularly...and usually not by Thai people. From my experience Thais in general have a stricter moral compass than most, and will do good by you and take care of you. Very friendly people. Just much different from your average westerner. Use your tools and research places you might visit...that includes restaurants, temples, clubs, whatever...let Google (or whatever search engine) be your friend. You can get lots of heads up before you enter a scene and know pretty well what to expect. If anyone would like more information, let me know, likewise if you want to meet up and have a drink, a meal, a good time, or a travel partner somewhere along the way, get a hold of me.
[ Edit: Edited on 30-Jul-2011, at 02:06 by RobbityBobbity ]