THAILAND GENERAL INFO
Location: Thailand is situated in the heart of the Southeast Asian mainland, covering an area of 513,115 sq.km. and extends about 1,620 kilometres from north to south and 775 kilometres from east to west. Thailand borders the Lao People’s Democratic Republic and the Union of Myanmar to the North, the Kingdom of Cambodia and the Gulf of Thailand to the East, the Union of Myanmar and the Indian Ocean to the West, and Malaysia to the south.
There are conflicting opinions as to the origins of the Thais. Three decades ago it could be said with presumed certainty that the Thais originated in Northwestern Szechuan in China about 4,500 years ago and later migrated down to their present homeland. However, this theory has been altered by the discovery of remarkable prehistoric artifacts in the village of Ban Chiang in the Nong Han District of UdonThani Province in the Northeast. These include evidence of bronze metallurgy going back 3,500 years, as well as other indications of a far more sophisticated culture than any previously suspected by archaeologists. It now appears that the a Thais might have originated here in Thailand and later scattered to various parts of Asia, including some parts of China. Siam is the name by which the country was known to the world until 1939 and again between 1945 and 1949. On May 11, 1949, an official proclamation changed the name of the country to “Prathet Thai”, or “Thailand”, by which it has since been known. The word “Thai” means “free”, and therefore “Thailand” means “Land of the Free.”
Climate: Thailand is a warm and rather humid tropical country with monsoonal climate. Temperatures are highest in March and April with average temperature of 28 degree Celsius to 38 degrees Celsius and humidity averaging between 82.8 percent to 73 percent
The population in Thailand is approximately 67 million, of which around 8 million live in the capital city, Bangkok.
The national and official language is Thai while English is widely spoken and understood in major cities, particularly in Bangkok and in business circles.
Buddhists 94.2%, Muslim 4.6%, Christian 0.8%, other 0.4%.
Government and business offices are open from 8:30 to 16:30 hours, Monday to Friday.
- Hot : March to May, average temperature is about 34 ºC
- Rainy : June to October average temperature is about 29 ºC
- Cool : November to February, average temperature ranges from 20ºC to 32ºC
Thin cotton is the best. Jackets or sweater may be necessary in a cool season, especially in the mountainous areas on the North or Northeast.
Foreign Currency Declaraton
As from 24 February 2008, under the relevant Thai law, any foreigner who brings or takes an aggregate amount of foreign currency exceeding USD 20,000 or its equivalent into or out of the Kingdom of Thailand shall declare such amount of foreign currency to a Customs Officer. Failure to declare upon bringing foreign currency that exceeds the amount restricted by law or its equivalent out of or into the Kingdom of Thailand or making any false declaration to a Customs
220 volts 50 cycles throughout the country
Major Thai commercial banks include the Bangkok Bank, Siam Commercial Bank, Krung Thai Bank, Thai Farmers Bank and Thai Military Bank. Business hours are 08:30 – 15:30 hours, Monday to Friday. Several international banks also have offices in Thailand.
Currency: The Baht is the standard currency unit.
1 Baht = 100 satangs
Bank Notes : 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1,000 Baht
Coins : 1, 5, and 10 baht