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Speed boat tours and bad backs...

Melbourne, Australia
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151 posts
12 reviews
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Speed boat tours and bad backs...

Just a question for anyone out there who has been on PST's speed boat tours to Phang Nga and Phi Phi that has sore backs...

When I went to Phuket in 2010 I went on a speedboat tour and sat at the back of the boat, and this was also during rough season, and I felt that the trip was quite smooth. The front of the boat was a different story!

I want to take my partner on the speedboat tours with PST in Feb but he has back problems (bulging disc/herniated disc) which he manages with exercise etc..

On their website it warns against anyone with back problems going on these tours.. What I wanted to know, has anyone with back problems done these tours and had problems after? Or not had any trouble? I thought that if we sit at the back of the boat and if he can stretch out (which I know is possible on PST tours cos they don't overcrowd their boats!) then he'd probably be ok?

Any thoughts??

Thanks :)

Norfolk, United...
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for Chaweng, Ko Samui
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1. Re: Speed boat tours and bad backs...

If Captain Mark or anyone reads this who knows ys they will smile!

Firstly, email PST and ask your question specificly.

We both suffer from bad backs, having sat at the front of a speedboat and thrown in the air. Mr Mitch has 1 broken vertebra and 3 crushed, whilst i got a direct cocxcyx hit. This was on a trip to Phi Phi. We both still suffer

We did the Phan Nga Bay speedboat trip last year with PST. We sat at the back, the water in the bay us normally flatter than over to Phi Phi. We had no issues.

If you have any concerns dont, and do their sail boat tour. The sail boat trips are fabulous, especially if he has a bad back.

Phuket Sail Tour attention to safety and their passengers is second to none.

Edited: 22 December 2012, 06:32
Phuket, Thailand
Destination Expert
for Phuket, Kata Beach, Karon
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3,945 posts
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2. Re: Speed boat tours and bad backs...

I would not recommend taking someone with back problems on a speedboat. Otherwise it would be best to contact the captain and find out what he recommends.

Ferntree Gully...
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3. Re: Speed boat tours and bad backs...

When I first read your post I thought you had already been out with the Captain, all you have to do is ask him, seriously, he would never risk anyones safety.


Phuket, Thailand
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492 posts
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4. Re: Speed boat tours and bad backs...

Either don't go - or if you must - sit in the back of the boat where the bouncing is more tolerable. I used to have neck problems and at that time a snorkeling speedboat trip in the front of a boat was true misery.

Edited: 22 December 2012, 09:28
Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Patong
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4,347 posts
31 reviews
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5. Re: Speed boat tours and bad backs...

Agree with the others ask the Captain he has your best interests at heart.

Having said that i would not even consider Phi Phi, its too unpredictable with the seas high or low season. Phang Nga may be possible, but again speak to the Captain about thi.

But seriously as Traveling Mitch said, go with PST to Phang Nga by sail boats, its the most wonderful trip, my fav of them all


Phuket Thailand
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3,478 posts
10 reviews
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6. Re: Speed boat tours and bad backs...

Hi Hayley, and others. What's been said here is pretty accurate, thank you guys.

It is hard to give advice, as it really depends upon the type of back problem. You could ask your doctor, and if so the speed boat may well be ruled out altogether.

I suggest forget Phi Phi. If it is going to be rough anywhere, it will be very rough on a trip to Phi Phi.

Phang Nga Bay by speed boat is a better bet, and may be o/k depending upon the back in question. Sitting at the back is a much smoother ride (rumour has it that I go to sleep there) and if it is likely to be rough we will cancel. February usually has calm seas. Just the same, if I was you I would think very carefully before choosing this option.

The sail boat is the smoothest and safest option of all. A relaxing day with a small group, but you don't get the variety of the speed boat trip.

If you do make a booking, with whoever, please make sure you let people know of the situation.

All the best,


Phuket Sail Tours.

Perth, Australia
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1,360 posts
108 reviews
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7. Re: Speed boat tours and bad backs...

I have just done the Phang Nga tour with Nudi tours and sat at the back of the boar. Even though it was quite rough in places I did not have a problem but I only have a mild back problem.

The biggest problem I had was bending down on the walk through the caves but your husband could stay on the boat or have a swim

Melbourne, Australia
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151 posts
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8. Re: Speed boat tours and bad backs...

Thanks everyone for your honest answers! I had a feeling that was what everyone was going to say but I guess I was in denial! I desperately wanted to take my partner on both the Phang Nga and Phi Phi trips with PST as I know from everyone on here that they are both amazing days! I didn't even think about his back whilst I was planning our trip! Until I read the warning in the email I got from PST!

Captain Mark - as much as I would love to do the sail boat tour, I really wanted to see as much as we could by doing the speedboat tour! But will keep the sail boat as an option...

I will get him to talk to his doctor. It is only a 'mild' back problem now however with the wrong movement etc could ruin our trip... and i definitely dont want that!

Thanks again for all your helpful advice!

Vancouver, Canada
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9. Re: Speed boat tours and bad backs...

I tore my rotator cuff sitting in the front ,on a tour in krabi . I personally recommend the middle of the boat . You can get real wet at the back. Went to Similan islands , a girl we met had thrown her back out . And it was shear torture for her.