Before you book and go on a trip it is always prudent you do some research. In this way you can prepare and plan for having a great and safe trip with a lot of fun. The following list includes but not limited to reminders to think of.
1) What to bring with you
When you go on a trip, make it as comfortable as possible. For this we recommend you to bring the following:
– If you need medication, do not forget to bring it with you. If you think you will be seasick, take the medicine before the boat takes off.
– Most people have a mobile phone these days so please bring it with you (maybe bring charger as well). You can follow the time that the tour guide has indicated for you to meet back at the boat, bus or other location and it can be used in case of an emergency.
– Sun lotion or sunscreen is important to bring as well, since the sun in Thailand can be very strong, especially in or around water due to its reflection. If traveler has sensitive or white skin it can get burned even more easily, which can be painful and uncomfortable. Always protect your self!
– Sunglasses are always good to bring to protect your eyes from the sunlight on the boat, beach or any other location where you are exposed to it.
– A towel can come in handy, particularly when going for a swim or snorkeling. You can also use it as a pillow in case you want to take a nap.
– A swimming suit is essential in case you want to do some sun bathing and/or swimming/snorkeling.
– Bringing an extra set of casual cloths can be helpful if your cloths are dirty, feels sticky, or if you want to wear them when taking pictures at a nice location.
– Do not forget to bring your camera (with charged battery and/or charger) to eternalize your memories.
2) Check with driver and tour agent
It is important that the traveler follows the instructions mentioned on the booking voucher precisely. The driver is responsible for transporting the traveler from the hotel to the pier, or other location, and back.
We have had some experience with travelers not following the instructions, which can cause many problems: in case driver comes late, driver not comes or driver cannot find hotel, communication between traveler, tour agency and travel-company is very important. When booking a trip or excursion, online or directly with a tour agency, always make sure that you give the correct address/telephone details for driver to pick you up, as well as getting the telephone number for the driver that will pick you up in order for you to contact him/her directly. Before going on the trip please check your booking voucher for the time the driver comes to pick you up.
Such as case Phi Phi Island day trip (Popular Island here)if the voucher for a trip to Phi Phi Island indicates that pick up time is 08:30-08:45, then it is required for you to be at the reception at 08:30. If driver does not show up at 08:45 you must call the number(s) given to you to find out what happened. You call driver first and then the booking agent. Maybe driver cannot get to your hotel and waits down the road, or driver is late, or maybe driver cannot find hotel. In that case you can give your phone to staff at reception desk to explain driver how to get there, in case you cannot.
Another thing of importance is that you check the name of the company that picks you up in the morning in order to make sure that you not get on the wrong mini-van. It is possible that mini-vans from other tour companies pick up their guests at your hotel or accommodation as well.
If you have any questions or a problem, please do not hesitate to call tour/booking agent as well, so they can make sure you will be going on the trip that day. They are there to help you!
3) Life jacket
Wearing a life jacket is mandatory when you are on a boat in Thailand. A life jacket can safe your life in the unlikely event that an accident happens. The tour guide on the boat will inform the traveler about this. A life jacket should also be worn during swimming or snorkeling in case the traveler cannot swim or cannot swim so well. It is always better to err on the side of caution!
Keeping time during trips and excursion is very important. The tour company, which organizes the trip, has to follow a strict itinerary. A day trip to Phi Phi Island, which is a popular and very beautiful island, consists of a few stops. For example, the first stop is Monkey Beach where you have 45 minutes the time to look at the monkeys before getting back to the boat to bring you to the next stop. Don’t be late! It has also happened that travelers, when having lunch on Phi Phi Don, they go for a walk after that lunch and are not back at the boat in 1 hour. Other travelers have to wait and after 15-20 minutes the tour guide will advise the captain to leave since there are still other islands to be visited. If this would happen to you, your trip is over and you will have to find your own way back.
This is not such a big problem because you can buy a ticket yourself for the ferry that brings you back to Phuket. If you miss the ferry then you will have to stay overnight at Phi Phi Island. If you happen to go on another island trip, such as to Maiton Island, Raya Island or James Bond Island, and you miss the boat, you may have to join with another tour company and pay some extra money to come back to Phuket. For this reason it is important and best if you follow the time schedule and tour guide information precisely!
5) Eco-friendly travel.
We would like to inform all customers and travelers who go on the trip to visit beautiful islands, locations and coral to be aware of the delicate balance in nature. In particular when many people visit these places, things can get out of control very quickly. For this reason the Thai authorities have even decided to close certain destinations to tourists in order to let these places recover from damage, pollution and over crowding. Please leave these beautiful places in the same state as when you arrived so that many more tourists can enjoy the same as you did. It is therefore paramount to keep in mind the following rules:
– Do not dump any plastic or garbage in the ocean or anywhere else!
When on the boat please make sure that nothing like plastic bottles or paper is left outside on the tables on the decks outside. It is very easy for the wind to blow/carry it to the sea.
– Do not interfere with ocean life. Do not touch any marine life and do not feed any fish, which is also against the law. Do not touch the coral or bring some with you as a souvenir. Damaged coral needs decades to recover. Even taking coral that you found on the beach, is against the law, which could get you into trouble.
– All these things seem very small, which is true, but if it happens thousands of times a day, it adds up, becoming a massive problem. Please show consideration and be conscious of that!
6) At the end of the day
Travelers are usually a bit tired from everything they experienced on their trip and sometimes forget things and leaving things behind. Please make sure you do not forget anything at the locations that you have visited. Also check that you leave nothing behind on the boat before getting in the mini-van that brings you back to your hotel/accommodation. It speaks for itself not to leave anything behind in the mini-van as well. The usual items that people forget are; mobile phones, sunglasses, wallets, passports, cameras and towels. In case you do forget something, do not panic, in most situations we are able to retrieve the items again for you. Just contact the driver directly or the tour agent!
Keeping these recommendations in mind will help you to have a safe and fun trip!