Travel Tips



Preparing for Thailand

For many of you, Southeast Asia will be a brand-new experience! You may be wondering what to bring, how to prepare, and what you can expect when you get there. Mai bpen rai – no worries! We are here to help, every step of the way. 

Below you can find our packing guide and some travel advice. Check out our FAQs page if you have other questions, or email us at

Download Your Packing Guide

Know Before You Go

Travel tips to help you prepare for your adventure.





  • Your carry-on should contain your basic essentials, hard-to-replace or valuable items, as well as extra outfits in case your bags take some time to reach you once you arrive at the resort. This includes things such as your valid passport, ID, credit cards, phone charger, medications and a change of clothes.
  • Always keep your passport at hand, and do not pack it in your checked bag.
  • You will be moving around in Thailand so pack light! Domestic flights have smaller bag allowances than your international flight to Bangkok. Bags weighing over 44lbs may be charged a $2-$3/pound overage fee on intercontinental flights.
  • Many hotels have US compatible outlets, but we recommend packing an outlet converter just in case.






What to Wear


  • It will be warm! To help with the heat, wear lightweight, wicking, and comfortable clothing.
  • Thailand is a modest country. While there are no actual rules, staying ‘more covered than not’ will be appreciated. Plan to have your shoulders, decolletage, midriffs, and legs down to at least the knee (to the ankle for the Grand Palace) covered on temple visit days.
  • Bring a comfortable pair of sandals that slip easily on and off – it’s common to remove shoes in Thailand.
  • Casual dress is permitted on most occasions. Around the resort and on excursions, dress comfortably. Shorts, skirts, t-shirts, and sandals are welcome most anywhere during the day. -For pools, beaches, and water excursions feel free to wear a swimsuit, t-shirt, shorts, swimsuit cover up, flip flops, water shoes, or other casual sandals.
  • The Celebration Event is semi-formal but flexible. Anything business casual or better will look great! If you can’t fit a suit coat in your luggage then don’t sweat it. In the spirit of Thailand’s vibrant culture we encourage BRIGHT COLORS. That could mean a bright colored tie, accessory, or a vivid outfit if you’re feeling it! Please note that the reception will take place outdoors, so dress for the weather.
  • Check your excursions for any clothing or shoe requirements.










  • U.S. citizens require a passport to enter Thailand and return home. The passport must have at least six months validity remaining to be allowed entry. Double check that the name on your passport matches the name on your ticket.
  • Always keep your passport handy and secure and do NOT pack it in your checked bag.
  • Take photos to create a backup of all your important travel documents. These would include a copy of your passport, driver’s license, health insurance card, and credit cards.


Airline Reservations


Once you’ve received your final flight schedule, we recommend using your confirmation code to view your reservation on the airline’s website or app to see possible itinerary changes and to confirm your seats. We also recommend checking your reservation online at least 24 hours prior to flight departure. You will receive your flight info via email and with your other travel documents in your pre-trip box.





Cultural Etiquette


  • You may be greeted with a wai, a small bow with the hands in a prayer position. It’s polite to return the greeting in kind.
  •  “Saving face” is very important in Thailand – don’t lose your temper, yell, or speak angrily. Stay calm, smile, and be polite, even when things are going wrong or you’re trying to haggle for the best price!
  •  The head is considered the highest part of a person, both literally and figuratively. Never touch a Thai person on the head – it’s considered extremely rude and offensive.
  • Conversely, the foot is considered to be the lowliest part of the body. Don’t sit with your feet pointed at a Buddha or person, or with your feet propped up on a table or similar. (In a temple, you’ll notice people tuck their feet behind them as they face the Buddha.)
  • Point with four fingers instead of using just your pointer finger.


Phone & Data


  • Most cell phone companies have daily or monthly international plans for your phone, texting and data needs. Check in with your cell phone provider before your trip to set this up if needed. All of the hotels will have wifi but cellular data is needed to text, call, and use maps while on excursions and exploring the cities.


  • Check in with your doctor and review the vaccines and medicines list from the CDC before your trip to get vaccines and or medicines that you may need. CDC website


Cash & Credit Cards


  • Notify your bank in advance to inform them of your travel itinerary.
  • Visa and Mastercard are widely accepted, American Express is accepted in some places, but Discover is not as common. Foreign exchange fees can vary up to 3%. Many establishments, such as supermarkets and department stores, will add a 3% to 5% surcharge for payment by credit card.
  • Thai Baht is the most commonly accepted currency. Thai Baht can be acquired from your local bank with enough advance notice. There are also ATMs and currency exchange counters at the Thailand airport or near our hotels. Currency conversion rates vary daily.
  • Tipping is not expected in Thailand, however giving a tip to your waiter, porter, or tuk-tuk driver to recognize good service will be appreciated.
  • To deter “begpacking”, Thailand requires travelers to have $300 cash on them for entry. Take out cash ($300 USD OR 10,000 Baht) prior to flying. This is not typically checked at the airport but better safe than sorry.


Travel Day


  • You will be responsible for checking in you and your guest(s) at the airline counter to receive your boarding passes. -Most airports recommend arriving three hours prior to your scheduled departure time for international flights. Please note that checked baggage is only accepted within four hours of your scheduled departure.
  • If you booked a pre and/or post night through our registration process, we will take care of your transportation to and from the resort. If you booked your own hotel for pre and/or post nights, transportation to and from the resort will not be provided. You will be responsible for your own transportation.
  • Once you arrive to Bangkok and collect your luggage, you will go through an immigration checkpoint to enter the country. At this check point, you will show your passport and should be prepared to answer the following questions:
    • First Trip to Thailand?
    • Part of a Group Tour? Yes
    • Where are you staying? Shangri-La Bangkok; 89 Wat Suan Phlu Alley, Bang Rak, Bangkok 10500; 4 nights
    • What Cities are you visiting? Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket
    • Do you have a return flight? (show ticket or list date, airline, flight number)
    • What is the purpose of your visit? Leisure
    • What is your occupation and annual household income?
    • Do you have anything to declare?
  • If you need help BEFORE traveling to or from Thailand, please contact a Destinations team member at (801) 928-2332 or
  • If you need help WHILE traveling to and from Thailand, please reach out to a Destinations team member at (801)916-0568. Don’t forget to add this phone number to your contacts for quick access.
Guidelines for Carrying Medications


In Thailand, medications are regulated differently depending on their drug category. Travelers under treatment who need to carry narcotic drugs and/or psychotropic substances in/out of Thailand must strictly follow the applicable regulations. Permits may be required for certain medications. Please visit this Thai Embassy website for more information on which medications require special permits and declaration.