Thailand has long been a popular destination for all kinds of holiday makers. The bustling cities, beautiful coasts, hedonistic party scene, and exceptional countryside, it really does have something for everyone. More and more holidaymakers are choosing Thailand as their next destination of choice, and that’s for a good reason.

However, like any foreign country, it does come with some inherent risks and potential dangers. If you’re planning a backpacking journey through the Thai countryside, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. Don’t fall for these common mistakes visitors to Thailand make. Keep reading to find out more. 

Forget To Get Insured

Any holiday comes with the promise of adventure and unbridled excitement, even more so for a backpacking trip. Freeing yourself from the shackles of city-living can be incredibly liberating, leaving you free to explore at your own pace and soak in the marvel of nature.

While an experience like this can be life-changing and create memories that you’ll treasure forever, being aware of the potential risks is essential and can help you avoid them on your trip. Make sure you’ve got insurance for travel to cover any unforeseen incidents, as it can cover you for medical expenses, lost luggage, or even last-minute cancellations. The more prepared you are and covered, the more you will be able to focus on your holiday. Not only can it give you peace of mind, but it can actually help you in certain situations when you need them.

It’s worth noting that there are a range of different types of insurance policies that could be of use to someone going to Thailand, depending on what sort of holiday they are going on. If you decide to go on a road trip type of holiday, then you will have to look into various car insurance policies or relevant RV insurance that can help cover you during your holiday.

Ignore Cultural Etiquette

Thailand is a country that prides manners and politeness, making yourself aware of cultural norms and traditions will endear you to the locals and ensure you don’t upset anyone on your trip. Make sure you don’t touch anyone on their hand, this is a big no-no and is considered an extremely offensive gesture. The feet are also considered offensive, don’t show anyone the soles of your feet and you should avoid upsetting anyone. 

For greeting, the Wai sign is usually the politest approach. Bring your hands together in front of your face as if you were praying, bow your head slightly and close your eyes. This is often a better option for greeting someone in Thailand than a handshake. 

It’s important for you to do your research when it comes to going to Thailand. You should ask those in your life who you know who have gone to Thailand before so that you can find out what their experience of the country was, and what they learned about the culture. If they can share any of this information with you before you go, then you will be able to gain useful insight that will serve you well.

Go At the Wrong Time

Timing is everything when visiting Thailand. Go at the wrong time of year and you could be in trouble, particularly when you’re spending a lot of time outside like you will on a backpacking trip. Thailand has a tropical climate with three distinct seasons. The wet season generally lasts from May to October, this is characterised by extremely heavy rainfall and monsoons, not ideal for an outdoor backpacking adventure. The cool season runs from November to February, with comfortable humidity and dry conditions. The hot season lasts from March to May, this is generally very hot with high, uncomfortable humidity. 

For a backpacking holiday where you’ll be getting a lot of exercise, you’ll need to pick the time of year you visit carefully. To get the best out of your trip, the cool season is definitely the season you want to aim for. 

It depends on what sort of holiday you want as well as who you are going with. If it’s a few people you’re planning on going with, then it will be in your best interest to find out what suits everyone, so that you can narrow down a suitable time and date. You may find it is easier to find a suitable time/date in a smaller group setting.

Pack Incorrectly

For any holiday, bringing the right stuff along with you is essential. Clothes, documents, and money are all vital, forgetting any can be anything from an annoyance to a total disaster. Avoid this risk by packing properly and effectively. Remember, this is a backpacking holiday, so you’ll need to bring more than usual. Sturdy walking boots are a must, as are thick socks with extra pairs. A hat, sunglasses, and sunblock are crucial too, especially if you’re spending long periods out in the sunshine. 

You should plan your packing ahead of time. This means you shouldn’t leave any of the details until the last minute and should instead plan for what you need. The last thing you want to happen is not have crucial things in your case right before you fly out. You should consider what clothes you need, as well as electronics in some cases. You will also need to think about what traditional toiletries and other holiday pieces you will need, and have everything you need ready to pack. Once you have planned everything, you should ensure everything is packed the day before you leave, so you can focus on the trip to Thailand. 


A backpacking holiday in Thailand can be the adventure of a lifetime. The vast countryside is full of exciting trails and incredible sights, you’ll be sure to make memories that will last forever. To guarantee you have the best possible time, make sure to get insurance, pack correctly, choose the right time to go, and, above all else, show respect to the country and its residents.