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Author Topic: Any tips for photography and safety in Thailand ?  (Read 506 times)

larkis

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Any tips for photography and safety in Thailand ?
« on: March 09, 2018, 12:32:24 AM »

I will be spending some time in Thailand doing photography and would like to know if there is anything I should keep in mind as far as local laws and customs go. I have done photography late in the evening in various cities in the world without problems but they have been fairly safe (Tokyo, Havana, Kathmandu, etc.).

Any tips would be great.

degrub

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Re: Any tips for photography and safety in Thailand ?
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2018, 08:16:26 AM »

as with many places, anything not secured or left, will sprout legs. Most of Thailand is rural and very poor.  Hire a Thai driver or use public transport. In an accident, and there are many, even if you were clearly not at fault, being the farang, you are rich and will pay. The laws are generally against you. Money generally solves issues, but let a Thai person negotiate since you will not be sensitive to the cultural nuances and  you are not fluent in  Thai .  Never make physical contact with a Thai person without clear invitation. Thai are generally happy to be photographed, particularly if you ask first. Some areas will be marked no photography, respect it. No shoes in temples.
Dress and behave conservatively. Most Thai adults do not wear shorts or tank tops. Learn some basic Thai. There are free websites to learn basic language and customs.
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drralph

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Re: Any tips for photography and safety in Thailand ?
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2018, 06:59:22 PM »

My best photos in Thailand came from the countryside, especially in the north outside Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai.  Get a local guide with a reliable vehicle: well worth the expense.  I always asked permission before taking a photo, and almost all were flattered and eager to volunteer.  (One who wasn't threw a potato at me!)  People seemed pleased to receive a small payment, around 5-10 baht, for their trouble.  I was shooting film, so there was no chimping going on, but kids love to see their image on the screen.  The markets are a particularly colorful place to shoot.

Bangkok is a rough place.  Many, many scam artists preying on tourists with a wide variety of M.O.s, and the police appear to look the other way or be complicit.  I also found the pervasiveness of the sex trade there to be disturbing.  I never feared for my physical safety, but I'm sure stuff happens.
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