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2022 Thailand Travel Guide for Filipinos

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Sawadee krap/ka1!

Eat your favorite Thai dishes such as the Pad Thai2, Tom Yum3 and Khao Neeo Mamuang4 the authentic-way in Thailand and ride on tuktuk5 to temple-hop as many temples as you can visit as Thailand opened its borders again to international travellers. You could even do it on weekends as it is just three hours away from Manila! For hassle-free travel, we have curated below deets that you can refer to for your next trip to Thailand.

Visa-free Entry


Philippine passport holders don’t need a visa to visit the land of smiles for up to 30 days through the Visa Exemption Program.

The Visa Exemption Rule And Bilateral Agreement, effective December 31, 2016, allows passport holders from 64 countries to enter Thailand under this rule provided they meet the following conditions:

  • Be from an approved country.
  • Be visiting Thailand strictly for tourism.
  • Hold a genuine passport with a valid expiry of over 6 months.
  • Can provide a valid address in Thailand on entry that can be verified. This address can be a hotel or an apartment.
  • Must have a confirmed return ticket exiting Thailand within 30 days. Open tickets do not qualify. Travelling overland by train, bus, etc to Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia (including en route to Singapore), Myanmar, etc is not accepted as proof of exiting Thailand.
  • Provide proof of funds of at least 10,000 THB for single travellers, or 20,000 THB per family during your stay in Thailand.

Furthermore, if you intend to stay in Thailand for more than 30 days, you can extend your permit to stay for a further 30 days through any local immigration office, which means you can enjoy Thailand for up to 60 days! BUT WAIT THERE’S MORE! Starting October 1, 2022, the proposal by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) to extend the period of stay for upto 45days for tourists from countries entitled for visa exemption, and to 30days for those eligible for a Visa on Arrival (VOA) was approved by the Thailand’s Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA). That means upto 75days of island hopping and/or foodtripping in Thailand!

For information on the location and contact number of the Royal Thai Embassies and Consulate-Generals for each country, check here. To know more about visa-free entry to Thailand, check Thaiembassy.com.

Check travel restrictions and regulations


Thailand’s border restrictions have eased but still make sure to check from time to time updates on Thailand’s travel requirements and regulations. As of writing, below list is the summary containing the COVID and Vaccination Requirements and other travel regulations for Thailand:

  • Travellers must be vaccinated. If not vaccinated, travellers must have completed an RT-PCR or Pro-ATK (Professional Antigen test through a clinic or medical professional) test before entering Thailand and the test result must be no older than 72 hours before departure from a home country (Note: ATK self-test results are not acceptable). Paperwork proof is not required before leaving a home country, but there are random checks on passengers, arriving in the country, being conducted by Airline staff and Immigration Officer. A Visa Exemption stamp may be denied if the relevant paperwork cannot be provided.
  • Children under 18 will enter Thailand the same way as their parents. If the parent/s travelling with the child is/are unvaccinated, a proof of Covid test/s must be provided.
  • For Visa Exempt travellers, there is no need to provide proof of a valid Covid Insurance policy. Thus, must take note that foreign visitors are not eligible for free medical care while in Thailand. If a foreigner happens to need medical assistance, they will cover any expenses themselves.

For updates on travel restrictions and regulations, you may check them here at these sites Airheart or TATNews.

Must visit per region


North

Bordering Myanmar and Laos, the North region of Thailand is home to many tourist attractions like Mae Sai Market, Golden Triangle, Wat Phra That Doi Wao, and Wat Thampla (also known locally as Money Temple), as well as the iconic three color temples Wat Rong Khun (White temple), Wat Rong Suer Ten (Blue Temple) and Baan Si Dum (Black house). Visit these iconic three colors temple series via Klook that offers convenient transportation from Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai.

Central

Aside from being the location of Thailand’s capital, Bangkok, the Central region of Thailand is a vast district of farming (agriculture products usually rice). It has the historical Chao Phraya River and many other places important to Thailand’s history such as the ancient temples Wat Pho and Wat Arun, Bang Pa-in Royal Palace and Bang Sai Royal Folk Arts and Crafts Center in Ayutthaya Province, and Ko Kret in Nonthaburi Province.

East

The East region of Thailand is divided into mountain and ocean. Despite not having many provinces, eastern Thailand still has numerous wonderful sights and stunning spots to visit such as Koh Samed, Koh Chang, Koh Mak, Koh Larn, Koh Si Chang, Bang Saen Beach, Pattaya (where the famous Sanctuary of Truth is located), Jomtien Beach, Laem Mae Phim Beach, and Mae Ram Phueng Beach.

Northeast

The Northeast region boasts some of the scenic northern highlands and magnificent plateaus. Thai Jasmine Rice (Hom Mali Rice) is being produced in this region and exported worldwide. This region is also home to the Mekong River, a river that runs through the area. Some of the must-visit places along the Mekong River are Amphoe Chiang Khan of Loei Province, Tha Sadet Market in Nong Khai Province, Indochina Market in Mukdahan Province, and Ubon Ratchathani Province’s Sam Pan Bok Grand Canyon. Plus don’t forget to also visit Amnat Charoen to get your hands on some fine silk products and “knit” cloths and every November, boat races are being held by the people of Amnat Charoen on the Mekong River, in front of Amphoe Chanuman’s office.

South

Southern Thailand is abundant of many beautiful beaches and islands in the Gulf of Thailand and the Andaman Sea. It is a well-known tourist destinations especially the Phuket Province, Ko Samui, Ko Phi Phi, Ko Lipe, and Ko Tao. If you are a birdwatching enthusiast, you shouldn’t miss out visiting Chumphon during September to October as thousands of eagles can be seen migrating from Siberia to Chumphon.

You can explore Thailand by booking tours and transportations from Klook . To know more about each region of Thailand, visit AmazingThailand Tourism site.

Thai Food trip


If one of your bucketlist in Thailand is satisfying your tastebuds with everthing Thai cuisine has to offer, well you’ve come to the right page as we summed up below the must-eat foods when you are in Thailand. Just make sure, especially if you are not into spicy foods, to tell when ordering to make your food less spicy as the spicy levels of many foods in Thailand are quite high for a typical Filipino palette.

Common local dishes

  • Pad Thai (Thai-Style Fried Noodles)
    A spicy and sweet stir-fried noodle dish, made with shrimp or chicken and chilies, palm sugar, tamarind, and lime juice, with egg noodles and some fried peanuts on top
  • Pad Kra Pao (Thai Basil Chicken/Pork)
    Minced chicken or pork that is stir-fried with basil and chilies and served with white rice.
  • Khao Neeo Mamuang (Mango Sticky Rice)
    Glutinous rice, fresh coconut milk, and a ripe mango
  • Tom Yum Goong (Spicy Shrimp Soup)
    Fresh prawns and mushrooms with soup blend of fragrant lemongrass, chili, galangal, lime leaves, shallots, lime juice and fish sauce.
  • Som Tam (Thai Green Papaya Salad)
    Thai salad featuring green papaya and a spicy chile pepper dressing
  • Thai Milk Tea
    Thai tea milk tea has a distinct bright orange color made from strongly-brewed black tea, often spiced with ingredients such as star anise, crushed tamarind, cardamom, and other spices as well.

For those up for challenge

Thailand is also known for its exotic dishes such as:

  • Mok Huak (Developing Tadpoles)
    A northeastern Thai food made with a combination of herbs, spices, and tadpoles, wrapped in a banana leaf and roasted over fire
  • Larb Mote Daeng (Red Ants Eggs)
    Spicy Raw Ant Eggs Salad with herbs and spices
  • Malang Tod (Fried Insects)
    Crunchy, flavorful fried insects and can be paired with alcoholic drinks as pulutan (as we Filipinos call foods typically enjoyed with beer) such as:

    • Hon Mai (Silk Worms)
    • Mang Da (Waterbugs)
    • Rod Duan (Bambooo worms)
    • Scorpions
    • Takatan (Grasshoppers)

Don’t forget to express gratitude by saying Kap khun krap/ka6 when receiving your ordered foods and after you finish your delicious Thai dishes. For more Thai foods list, check out AsiaHighlights 20 Yummy and Exotic Thai Street Food You Should Try.

How to manage your Thailand Trip budget


Thailand is a very affordable country to visit. As a matter of fact as per Nomadsaurus, a mid-range (between cheap and luxurious) trip for a day in Thailand, could cost you only around $50-$100 or P3000-P6000, that includes food, accommodation, transportations and attractions already!

But eventhough Thailand is budget-friendly, don’t forget to still bring ample cash if you plan to shop pasalubongs and souvenirs or enroll on some Muay Thai7 lessons or avail traditional Thai massage while in Thailand. Also, make sure to bring backup sources like debit cards that you can use to withdraw funds from ATMs worldwide just like the Security Bank Mastercard Debit Card. And minimize your travel cost as much as possible by using your credit card rewards points in purchasing flight tickets, booking hotels and even in shopping. If you don’t have credit card yet, check out this Security Bank Mastercard Credit Card that can be used worldwide and even offer installments and ready cash services whenever and wherever you needed.

When getting your plane tickets, check patiently from time to time the ticket prices in Google flights or Skyscanner. And be sure to be one of the first ones to know about airline promos by following their social media accounts, constantly checking their websites and applying for their free memberships. Know more hacks about how to score cheap airline fares by checking this blog. And for hassle-free travel, be guided of the common travel mistakes and tips on avoiding them by reading this blog.

For airlines offering direct flights from Philippines to Thailand, check this list:

So what are you waiting for? Book that flight to Thailand now and fill your social media accounts with pictures of Thai foods you ate and temples you visited. Don’t forget to share this blog to your family and friends who are also planning to visit Thailand. And if you are also aiming to go to Japan this year, check out this curated 2022 Japan Travel Guide for Filipinos.


Translations/Descriptions:

(1) Sawadee krap/ka – Hello (men say krap, women say ka)
(2) Pad Thai Thai-Style Fried Noodles
(3) Tom YumSpicy Shrimp Soup
(4) Khao Neeo Mamuang Mango Sticky Rice
(5) tuktuk – motorized 3-wheeled rickshaws that ferry passengers around in most places in Thailand
(6) Kap khun krap/ka – Thank you (men say krap, women say ka)
(7) Muay Thai – Thai boxing

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