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UK foreign travel advice for Thailand

Summary

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all but essential travel to the provinces of Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat and Songkhla on the Thai-Malaysia border. On 10 April 2014 the Australian authorities indicated that extremists may be planning to target westerners in the southern border provinces. See Terrorism

The FCO advise against all travel to the Preah Vihear (Khaoi Pra Viharn in Thai) temple area and the Ta Krabey/Ta Moan temple area located on the Thai-Cambodian border due to the presence of troops in the area and the risk of outbreaks of fighting. See Cambodian border

On 22 May the Chief of the Royal Thai Army announced that the military had taken control of government, would restore order and ensure political reform in Thailand. Martial law is in place and provides an enabling framework for the Royal Thai Army to take action it deems necessary to enforce law and order, and instructions can change rapidly. As a result there is increased military presence in Bangkok and neighbouring provinces. You should generally allow extra time for journeys, including to Bangkok airports.

A nationwide curfew has been announced 10pm to 5am. Authorities have advised that the curfew will not apply to those travelling to or from the airport, but departing or arriving travellers should have their passports and tickets. You should continue to monitor the media for information and any updates.

The Chief of the Royal Thai Army has assured the safety of all foreigners in Thailand. A number of media outlets have been taken off air and there is a risk that this could extend to the Internet. The military media channels are continuing to broadcast. As the situation is evolving you should monitor local news and social media for developments.

There is a risk of a violent reaction to the Army’s announcement. We recommend that you exercise extreme caution and remain alert to the situation. If you’re in any doubt about your safety, stay in your accommodation.

Political demonstrations continue in and around Bangkok and elsewhere in Thailand. There have been indiscriminate attacks involving weapons and explosives at protest sites and at protest marches causing casualties and deaths. Attacks have taken place during the daytime and at night.

Protest action has caused significant disruption to roads in affected areas, with knock-on effects across the city. The situation is unpredictable and further protests are expected.

The main anti-government protest site is at Ratchadamnoen Avenue with a smaller anti-government protest site at the government complex at Chaeng Watthana. The main pro-government protest site is at Utthayan Road in western Bangkok.

You should take extra care and avoid all protest sites, political gatherings, demonstrations and marches. See Political situation

Tourist’s Friend Centres, which provide information for tourists, are located at the Sport Authority of Thailand in the Bangkapi district of Bangkok, Suvarnabhumi and Don Mueang airports, four BTS Skytrain stations (Siam, Phya Thai, Ekkamai and Wong Wian Yai) and Hua Lampong MRT station. You can also contact the Tourist’s Friend Centre by telephone on +66 (0)2 314 1212 (in English – 24 hours).

There is a high threat from terrorism. See Terrorism

The majority of road traffic accidents in Thailand involve motorcycles, but accidents involving other vehicles including cars, coaches and mini-buses also occur. See Road travel

By law you must carry your passport with you at all times. Tourists have been arrested because they were unable to produce their passport. See Local laws and customs

Penalties for possession, distribution or manufacture of drugs are severe and can include the death penalty. See Local laws and customs

Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.

Over 800,000 British nationals visit Thailand every year. Most visits are trouble-free, but incidents of crime (sometimes violent) can affect visitors. See Crime

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