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What to wear without offending anyone

Scottsdale, Az
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What to wear without offending anyone

Hi my boyfriend and I will be traveling to Bangkok (staying at the Dream Hotel) for 2 days, Koh Samui for 4 days, and Kuala Lumpur for 3 days in less than a week. YAY! We have been hearing conflicting stories about what to wear during the days, shopping, and then to the night clubs. We do not want to stick out like sore thumbs nor disrespect the Thai culture. Any suggestions would be great. Thank you

Sydney, Australia
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367 posts
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1. Re: What to wear without offending anyone

Hi Melissa,

Im pretty sure you can dress as you normally do, however a few things to remember:

1) Don't go nude anywhere - beaches etc, it is disrespectful to thai's

2) Wear long pants and a shirt w/sleeves to the temples otherwise you will not be allowed in

I think you can hire clothing outside the temples - but someone will have to confirm this.

Have a great trip!

Bangkok
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2. Re: What to wear without offending anyone

I'm agree with kimberleyjane. Actually, this period of time, Bangkok is not too hot as it is winter. But arond 10 am - 3 pm, there's might be very hot (someday).

Short sleeve and short or mini skirt is fine in Bangkok if you do shopping. Thai also do this for their shopping. But if you go to the temple, avoid short and mini skirt (short sleeve is fine, but sleeveless is highly NOT recommend)

Bangkok, Thailand
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3. Re: What to wear without offending anyone

Clothing is available in temples if they consider you are inappropriately dress when you go to the bigger temples in Bangkok.

Dress as you would at home just remember that singlets/shorts are not permitted by visitors to temples.

I think the rest has already been covered

4. Re: What to wear without offending anyone

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Charlotte, North...
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5. Re: What to wear without offending anyone

Chances are nobody will say anything to you, but there are a few suggestions to avoid people talking about you. Tank tops with thin straps will draw stares and many Thais will notice. Short shorts and wearing clothes that reveal part of your underwear will also be frowned upon. My Thai wife has commented many times about westerners wearing such clothing, and many other Thais have mentioned such things to me.

Other than temples, shorts and tee shirts, or button down short sleeved shirts or blouses will be acceptable almost anywhere, particularly in daytime.

At the beach, your boyfriend should wear a tee shirt except when actually laying out in the sun or swimming. Men going shirtless is no issue when there is a reason, but walking around shirtless will be thought of as rude or impolite. This is particularly true if walking in town, going to the bar for drinks, or going in a shop.

As a general rule, conservative clothing that still allows for the fact that it will be hot.

6. Re: What to wear without offending anyone

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Adelaide
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7. Re: What to wear without offending anyone

I enjoy wearing coloured singles(no sleeves) thinking that it wouldnt be a problem, nothing was said about my clothing but I did feel a bit conscious about wearing singles. I dont think I would do again, but each to their own.

Hell, Norway
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8. Re: What to wear without offending anyone

A comment by one poster that wearing a thong as a minimum would be acceptable is not so. Thais are very modest people and do not like to see foreigners going topless on the beaches. It is actually illegal to do so, although the police are unlikely to do much unless someone files a complaint. Watch the Thai men and women swimming off any beach. Most of them will be wearing shorts and T-shirts in the water.

9. Re: What to wear without offending anyone

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New York City, New...
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for Yucatan Peninsula
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10. Re: What to wear without offending anyone

I really dont think its necessary for a woman to wear long pants to temples. Skirts that cover the knee are fine. Squatting in pants is not fun!

Wearing a thong bathing suit is completely inappropriate in SEA unless you're in a private villa. Yes, you will see French women topless at the pool - but it doesnt mean its OK or appropriate.