Anyone who travels a lot or lives in a foreign country knows that it takes time to adapt to a different culture. There is much to learn about where to go and what sights to see. Usually that takes precedence over anything else when you first arrive. You may need to spend time looking for a long-term place to live and it takes a lot of research and talking to locals. If you make a mistake, you can always move. Meanwhile, you taste new foods and experience a range of customs. There comes a wonderful time when you feel at home. There is a code among expats so you will never lack for friends. While you may gravitate to English-speaking residents, you also want to socialize with the people of the land. Don’t make the mistake of hiding out just because you are intimidated and afraid.
Many people don’t feel comfortable or safe when away from home. I have to say right here that Thailand is not a hostile place. The people are welcoming and congenial. You can ask them for anything from directions to places to shop and dine. They will acquaint you with the local mass transportation and suggest outings all year round. The fabulous beaches will get a lot of attention. Locals don’t want you to go home without enjoying the coast.
If you don’t feel safe, even if you know your neighbors and how to contact the police, you can prepare yourself for unforeseen events. I don’t make a big deal out of it, but I will usually carry something that can be used as a weapon in my backpack when on the road. You never want to provoke anyone by drawing a weapon, but it does provide a good sense of security knowing it is there to use in dire circumstances.
It is more likely that you will lose your passport or money or that it could be stolen. It doesn’t have to be by locals; it could be the fault of foreigners. You want to safeguard your belongings in your bag by hiding things in zippered compartments.They are there for things like a cell phone, wallet, keys, sunglasses, or snack. In the middle goes the laptop and a bottle of water and/or an umbrella. Each compartment should zip up. Never keep anything important in a pocket on the outside where it can be easily seen. When you have to pull it out during your travels, make sure that no one is watching. They may follow you out the airport door. Not much else concerns me and I have never encountered any aggression or assault on my person. I keep my business bag close to me, even at work. It is not something you want to leave lying around.
This blog should take care of the obvious in regard to personal safety. Keep an eye on your bag when with a group of strangers and you will be fine.